LA Times Crossword Answers 5 Nov 15, Thursday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Gerry Wildenberg
THEME: Incidental Music … each of today’s themed answers contains a hidden word, with each word being a MUSICAL instrument:

65A. Film score component, and a hint to words hidden in 17-, 27-, and 49-Across INCIDENTAL MUSIC

17A. What a party crasher may get CHILLY RECEPTION (hiding “LYRE”)
27A. 19th-/20th-century South African conflicts ANGLO-BOER WARS (hiding “OBOE”)
49A. Horror movie characters LAB ASSISTANTS (hiding “BASS”)

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 22s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Luxurious POSH
No one really knows the etymology of the word “posh”. The popular myth that POSH stands for “Port Out, Starboard Home” is completely untrue, and is a story that can actually be traced back to the 1968 movie “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”. The myth is that wealthy British passengers travelling to and from India would book cabins on the port side for the outward journey and the starboard side for the home journey. This trick was supposedly designed to keep their cabins out of the direct sunlight.

5. Decorative bedroom item SHAM
A “sham” is something that is imitation, fake. In the world of bed linens a sham is also imitation and fake, in the sense that it is a decorative cover designed to cover up a regular pillow used for sleeping.

9. As such PER SE
“Per se” is a Latin phrase that translates as “by itself”. We use “per se” pretty literally, meaning “in itself, intrinsically”.

14. Morales of “Jericho” ESAI
The actor Esai Morales is best known for his role in the 1987 movie “La Bamba”, which depicted the life of Ritchie Valens and his half-brother Bob Morales (played by Esai).

“Jericho” is a drama series, initially produced by CBS, that tells of life in the aftermath of nuclear attacks on many cities in the US.

17. What a party crasher may get CHILLY RECEPTION (hiding “LYRE”)
The lyre is a stringed instrument most closely associated with Ancient Greece, and with the gods Hermes and Apollo in particular. According to myth, Hermes slaughtered a cow from a sacred herd belonging to Apollo and offered it to the gods but kept the entrails. Hermes used the entrails to make strings that he stretched across the shell of a tortoise, creating the first lyre. Apollo liked the sound from the lyre and agreed to accept it as a trade for his herd of cattle.

22. Nuggets’ org. NBA
The Denver Nuggets were founding members of the American Basketball Association (ABA) in 1967, at which time they were known as the Denver Rockets. The team name was changed in 1974 as the franchise planned its transition to the NBA. The name change was needed as the NBA already had the Houston Rockets. As is tradition, the new name was chosen in a fan contest.

23. Air traveler’s concern, briefly ETA
Estimated time of arrival (ETA)

25. Mil. group that “teaches you to lead” ROTC
The Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) is a training program for officers based in colleges all around the US. The ROTC program was established in 1862 when as a condition of receiving a land-grant to create colleges, the federal government required that military tactics be part of a new school’s curriculum.

27. 19th-/20th-century South African conflicts ANGLO-BOER WARS (hiding “OBOE”)
There were two Boer Wars, the first fought between 1880 and 1881 and the second fought between 1899 and 1902. The Dutch settlers of the Boer republics took on the British Empire in both conflicts.

33. “Stupid me!” D’OH!
“The Simpsons” is one of the most successful programs produced by the Fox Broadcasting Company. Homer Simpson’s catchphrase is “D’oh!”, which became such a famous exclamation that it has been included in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) since 2001. “D’oh!” can be translated as “I should have thought of that!”

34. Unlikely prom king NERD
A prom is a formal dance held upon graduation from high school (we call them “formals” over in Ireland). The term “prom” is short for “promenade”, the name given to a type of dance or ball.

35. Chocolate-covered caramel treats ROLOS
Rolo was a hugely popular chocolate candy in Ireland when I was growing up. Rolo was introduced in the thirties in the UK, and is produced under license in the US by Hershey. I was a little disappointed when I had my first taste of the American version as the center is very hard and chewy. The recipe used on the other side of the Atlantic calls for a soft gooey center.

43. Habit WONT
The word “wont” can be used as an adjective meaning “accustomed”, as in “I am wont to solving the crossword of an evening”. The term can also be used as a noun, e.g. I solved the crossword today, as is my wont, as is my custom.

44. NFL’s winningest coach SHULA
Don Shula is a former football player and coach. Shula appeared as head coach in a record six Super Bowls, including a run of three successive Super Bowls (1971-73, winning twice). Shula also holds the record for most NFL career wins (347).

54. Petty with hits TOM
The singer-songwriter Tom Petty first became interested in rock and roll music when he met Elvis Presley at ten-years-old. Later he was inspired to get into a band when he saw The Beatles on “The Ed Sullivan Show”. Pretty cool role models, I’d say …

55. Shindigs DOS
“Shindig” is such a lovely word, I think, describing a party that usually includes some dancing. Although its origin isn’t really clear, the term perhaps comes from “shinty”, a Scottish game similar to field hockey.

68. “Sweeney __ the Nightingales”: Eliot poem AMONG
The author T. S. Eliot was the son of Henry Ware Eliot and Charlotte Champe Stearns, so his full name was Thomas Stearns Eliot (TSE).

69. Newbie TYRO
A tyro (also “tiro”) is a beginner or a novice. “Tyro” comes into English from Latin, in which “tiro” means “a recruit”.

70. Italian meat sauce RAGU
The Ragu brand of pasta sauce is owned by Unilever. The name ” Ragù” is the Italian word for a sauce used to dress pasta, however the spelling is off a little. In Italian the word is “Ragù” with a grave accent over the “u”, but if you look at a jar of the Unilever sauce, it is spelled “Ragú” on the label, with an acute accent. Sometimes I think we just don’t try …

73. Inbox clogger SPAM
Apparently the term “spam”, used for unwanted email, is taken from a “Monty Python” sketch. In the sketch (which I’ve seen) the dialog is taken over by the word Spam, a play on the glut of canned meat in the markets of Britain after WWII. So “spam” is used for the glut of emails that takes over online communication. I can just imagine nerdy Internet types (like me) adopting something from a “Monty Python” sketch to describe an online phenomenon …

Down
1. Lats relatives PECS
“Pecs” is the familiar term for the chest muscle, more correctly known as the pectoralis major muscle. “Pectus” is a the Latin word for “breast, chest”.

The muscles known as the “lats” are the latissimi dorsi, the broadest muscles in the back. “Latissimus” is the Latin for “broadest” and “dorsum” is Latin for “back”.

2. Workplace welfare agcy. OSHA
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was created in 1970 during the Nixon administration. OSHA regulates workplaces in the private sector and regulates just one government agency, namely the US Postal Service.

3. Caravel mover SAIL
A caravel was a Portuguese ship that was small and very maneuverable. Caravels had triangular lateen-rigged sails which allowed them to sail quite close to the wind. Caravels were indeed quite small, only accommodating a crew of twenty or so sailors. Christopher Columbus’ Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria were all caravels.

4. Jewish campus organization HILLEL
Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life is a Jewish campus organization that operates throughout the world. Hillel was founded at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 1923. The organization is named for a first-century Jewish sage called Hillel the Elder.

7. Out of the wind ALEE
“Alee” is the direction away from the wind. If a sailor points into the wind, he or she is pointing “aweather”.

8. Celtics coach before Rick Pitino ML CARR
M.L. Carr is a retired NBA player who also served as head coach and general manager of the Boston Celtics.

Rick Pitino is the head basketball coach at the University of Louisville, and did spend some time coaching at the professional level as well, with the New York Knicks and the Boston Celtics. Pitino is the only men’s coach to have lead three different schools to the NCAA Final Four (Providence, Kentucky and Louisville).

9. Lady Gaga, for one POP STAR
Lady Gaga is the stage name of Stefani Germanotta. Germanotta is a big fan of the band Queen, and she took her stage name from the marvelous Queen song titled “Radio Ga Ga”.

10. Tolkien forest creature ENT
Ents are those tree-like creatures that live in J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth in his series of books “The Lord of the Rings”. “Ent” is an Old English word for “giant”.

J. R. R. (John Ronald Reuel) Tolkien was an English author, best known by far for his fantasy novels “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings”. Although Tolkien lived in England and was a professor at Oxford, he served for many years as an external examiner at my old school, University College Dublin in Ireland.

11. Trigger guide REIN
Roy Rogers had a famous horse, a palomino named Trigger. When Rogers met up with Trigger, he was a “horse-for-rent” who appeared regularly in films. He was called Golden Cloud back then, and one of his roles was as the mount of Maid Marian, played by Olivia de Havilland, in “The Adventures of Robin Hood”. After Rogers rode Golden Cloud in his first major movie, he bought him and renamed him Trigger.

12. Uppity type SNOB
Back in the 1780s, a “snob” was a shoemaker or a shoemaker’s apprentice. By the end of the 18th century the word was being used by students at Cambridge University in England to refer to all local merchants and people of the town. The term evolved to mean one who copies those who are his or her social superior (and not in a good way). From there it wasn’t a big leap for “snob” to include anyone who emphasized their superior social standing and not just those who aspired to rank. Nowadays a snob is anyone who looks down on those considered to be of inferior standing.

13. “Giant” author Ferber EDNA
Edna Ferber was a novelist and playwright from Kalamazoo, Michigan. Ferber won a Pulitzer for her novel “So Big”, which was made into a film a few times, most famously in 1953 starring Jane Wyman.

“Giant” is a 1952 novel by author Edna Ferber. It was adapted into a successful Hollywood movie released in 1956. In the film, Bick Benedict (played by Rock Hudson) marries Leslie (played by Elizabeth Taylor) and takes his new wife home to the family ranch in Texas called Reata. The ranch’s handyman is Jett Rink, played by James Dean. Dean was killed in a car accident before the film was released. Some of of Dean’s lines needed work before the film could be released and so another actor had to do that voice-over work.

19. Sufficient, to Shakespeare ENOW
“Enow” is an archaic form of the word “enough”.

24. Provide the bank layout to, say ABET
The word “abet” comes into English from the Old French “abeter” meaning “to bait” or “to harass with dogs” (it literally means “to make bite”). This sense of encouraging something bad to happen morphed into our modern usage of “abet” meaning to aid or encourage someone in a crime.

27. Court figs. ADAS
Assistant District Attorney (ADA)

28. Snack NOSH
Our word “nosh” has been around since the late fifties, when it was imported from the Yiddish word “nashn” meaning “to nibble”.

29. Horror movie character GHOUL
Our word “ghoul” comes from the Arabic “ghul”, the name for an evil spirit that feeds on corpses.

30. Hockey legend ORR
Bobby Orr is regarded as one of the greatest hockey players of all time. By the time he retired in 1978 he had undergone over a dozen knee surgeries. At 31 years of age, he concluded that he just couldn’t skate anymore. Reportedly, he was even having trouble walking.

32. Memorial __ Kettering: NYC hospital SLOAN
The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City comprises the Memorial Hospital for Cancer and Allied Diseases, and Sloan Kettering Institute. The center was founded in 1884 as the New York Cancer Hospital by a group of philanthropists led by John Jacob Astor and his wife Charlotte. The Sloan-Kettering Institute is the research arm of the center. The institute was set up in 1945 with funds from the charitable foundation of Alfred P. Sloan. Jr. Charles F. Kettering was an executive at General Motors at the time, and he organized the application of industrial research techniques to the fight against cancer. Sloan and Kettering jointly announced the founding of the institute in the days following the dropping of the first atom bomb on Hiroshima. The pair pointed out that if a two billion dollar scientific effort could produce an atomic bomb, then surely a similar application of funds and scientific talent could make enormous strides in the fight against cancer.

37. EPA issuances STDS
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issues standards (stds.).

41. Tuna type AHI
Yellowfin tuna is usually marketed as “ahi”, its Hawaiian name. Yellowfin tuna is one big fish, often weighing over 300 pounds.

51. Double exposures? STUNTS
A stunt person on a film set sometimes acts as a double for one of the principal actors.

55. Dashboard feature DIAL
Back in the 1800s, “dashboard” was the name given to a board placed at the front of a carriage to stop mud from “dashing” against the passengers in the carriage, mud that was kicked up by the hoofs of the horses. Quite interesting …

57. 2013 Wimbledon champ Andy Murray, e.g. SCOT
Andy Murray is a tennis player from Scotland who has been the British number one for several years now. Much to the delight of the locals, Murray won the Wimbledon Championship in 2013, making him the first British player to win in 77 years. Murray also won Olympic gold in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

60. Title outranking viscount EARL
In the ranking of nobles, an earl comes above a viscount and below a marquess. The rank of earl is used in the British peerage system and is equivalent to the rank of count in other countries. Other British ranks have female forms (e.g. marquess and marchioness, viscount and viscountess), but there isn’t a female word for the rank of earl. A female given the same rank as an earl is known simply as a countess.

62. Memo letters ASAP
As soon as possible (ASAP)

63. Capital west of Moscow RIGA
Riga is the capital city of Latvia. The historical center of Riga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, declared as such because of the city’s magnificent examples of Art Nouveau architecture.

66. Bach’s “Mass __ Minor” IN B
Perhaps the most famous mass in classical music is J. S. Bach’s “Mass in B minor”, fittingly completed just before he died. It was one of the last of Bach’s compositions, although much of the music was composed earlier in his life.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Luxurious POSH
5. Decorative bedroom item SHAM
9. As such PER SE
14. Morales of “Jericho” ESAI
15. Improbable TALL
16. Without stopping ON END
17. What a party crasher may get CHILLY RECEPTION (hiding “LYRE”)
20. French room SALLE
21. Signifies MEANS
22. Nuggets’ org. NBA
23. Air traveler’s concern, briefly ETA
25. Mil. group that “teaches you to lead” ROTC
27. 19th-/20th-century South African conflicts ANGLO-BOER WARS (hiding “OBOE”)
33. “Stupid me!” D’OH!
34. Unlikely prom king NERD
35. Chocolate-covered caramel treats ROLOS
38. Starting from AS OF
40. Event with arguments TRIAL
43. Habit WONT
44. NFL’s winningest coach SHULA
46. In the way indicated THUS
48. Support AID
49. Horror movie characters LAB ASSISTANTS (hiding “BASS”)
53. Jog TROT
54. Petty with hits TOM
55. Shindigs DOS
58. Occupied IN USE
61. Shows of crowd approval ROARS
65. Film score component, and a hint to words hidden in 17-, 27- and 49-Across INCIDENTAL MUSIC
68. “Sweeney __ the Nightingales”: Eliot poem AMONG
69. Newbie TYRO
70. Italian meat sauce RAGU
71. Do not disturb LET BE
72. Promote SELL
73. Inbox clogger SPAM

Down
1. Lats relatives PECS
2. Workplace welfare agcy. OSHA
3. Caravel mover SAIL
4. Jewish campus organization HILLEL
5. Mess of a place STY
6. Hurt HARM
7. Out of the wind ALEE
8. Celtics coach before Rick Pitino ML CARR
9. Lady Gaga, for one POP STAR
10. Tolkien forest creature ENT
11. Trigger guide REIN
12. Uppity type SNOB
13. “Giant” author Ferber EDNA
18. Give away LET ON
19. Sufficient, to Shakespeare ENOW
24. Provide the bank layout to, say ABET
26. Brag CROW
27. Court figs. ADAS
28. Snack NOSH
29. Horror movie character GHOUL
30. Hockey legend ORR
31. Polishes in publishing EDITS
32. Memorial __ Kettering: NYC hospital SLOAN
36. Sleep __ ON IT
37. EPA issuances STDS
39. Uninspired FLAT
41. Tuna type AHI
42. Unbridled desire LUST
45. Shorten ABRIDGE
47. Assault STORM
50. First-rate A-ONE
51. Double exposures? STUNTS
52. Affairs of the heart AMOURS
55. Dashboard feature DIAL
56. “I’ll pay” ON ME
57. 2013 Wimbledon champ Andy Murray, e.g. SCOT
59. Eye problem STYE
60. Title outranking viscount EARL
62. Memo letters ASAP
63. Capital west of Moscow RIGA
64. Bathtub buildup SCUM
66. Bach’s “Mass __ Minor” IN B
67. Texter’s “What a riot!” LOL

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9 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 5 Nov 15, Thursday”

  1. I thought this was generally easier than our usual Thursday grids, but I will admit to taking some extra time to straighten out the NW corner as my knowledge of French is someplace between slim an none. So 20 Across "French Room" had me going and the "Jewish Campus Organization" was also an unknown.

    Hope everyone has a great day. I look forward to seeing what brain bending machinations await us on the morrow! (my ode to English poets!)

  2. i had a fairly tough time with this puxxle. ( I am still addle pated ….). I finally had to google a couple of answers.

    I am familiar with the Boer wars, where Winston Churchill first fought, and 'won' his colors. The Boers lost the battles, but in my opinion, won the wars – in that they still remained, very much, in power and their political intentions and destiny remained intact.

    i was wondering if there was a mini theme in that OBOER ( is there such a word ? ) – player of the Oboe, and BASSIST – a player of the Bass instrument.

    I wonder if the word 'spam' comes from the Hormel meat(s) that were popularized during the WW II. Considering that these were cheap meat 'fillers', with high fat, and nutritionally less beneficial – just like the unwanted spam messages that clog up your email box.

    Have a nice day, all.

  3. This was certainly no speed run for me.
    Finished correctly but could not see the theme at all.
    Changed SALon to SALLE.
    Saw BASS, but could not see LYRE or OBOE.
    I was even thinking do re mi fa….was in there somewhere. NOPE!
    Tough puzzle,meh theme.
    I doubt if I'll ever remember HILLEL if it comes around the bend again.

  4. This is probably apocryphal, but I once heard that "snob" was the abbreviation for "sans nobilitas" which in the past was the term applied in English public schools such as Eton and Harrow to the rare students who were commoners and not members of the titled peerage. By inversion, the term came to mean anyone who stood out vis-à-vis the majority.

  5. And re Rabbi Hillel: when an unbeliever jeeringly asked him to teach him the Torah while he stood on one foot, Hillel famously replied, "Do not do unto others what is hateful to you. That is the whole Torah – the rest is commentary. Now go and study." And the questioner became a Torah scholar in his own right.

  6. I think Rabbi Hillel, is known more for his three questions:

    1. If I am not for me, who will be for me ?

    2. If I am only for myself, what am I ?

    3. If not now, when ?

    I think, the profound nature of his philosophy, so early in the history of judaism ( circa 110 BCE to 10 CE) is what has inspired the Hillel movement, which has branches in most US universities and seek to bring and keep, more and most, especially, socalled secular and non-observant jews into the fold.

  7. Yay!! Finished!! Slogged through, and ultimately the grid fell together for me. @Vidwan, I also saw BASSIST, which got me looking for similar terms in the theme answers. I find it so funny that OBOE was a hidden word here, since it's usually a favorite fill answer among grid setters.
    More and more I find my instincts work when I pay attention to them; eg I had MUSIC when I only had a C filled in for that phrase. Smugday for me, indeed!
    Not so confident about Friday, tho…
    Must click now on Willie's SPAM link and I know what's coming!
    Be well~~™

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