LA Times Crossword Answers 26 Feb 16, Friday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: James Sajdak
THEME: Homophonic(ish) Phrases … each of today’s themed answers sounds like a common phrase:

20A. Québec quiche, e.g.? CANADIAN BAKING (sounds like “Canadian bacon”)
26A. Saying “It wasn’t me” when, in fact, it was? COWARDLY LYING (sounds like “Cowardly Lion”)
46A. “Wish we had built a bigger pyramid,” e.g.? EGYPTIAN RUING (sounds like “Egyptian ruin”)
56A. Greeting from a faithful friend? WELCOME WAGGING (sounds like “Welcome Wagon”)

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 15m 59s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 4 … LOOOIE (Louie), OSRIC (Osrik), INTAGLIOED (intagliued), TITICACA (Titicaka) … all are embarrassing!

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

6. Jack letters MIC
Microphone (mic)

A jack is a socket that accepts a plug, allowing a connection to some electrical circuit.

9. “Hotel Imperial” (1927) star NEGRI
Pola Negri was a Polish actress, the first star to be invited from Europe to develop a career in Hollywood. Most of her success came in the silent era, but she was able to make the transition to the talkies. Her off-screen life attracted the attention of the gossip columnists who rejoiced in her affairs with the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Rudolph Valentino.

“Hotel Imperial” is a silent film from 1927 that is based on a 1917 play of the same name by Austro-Hungarian writer Lajos Bíró. The movie is set during WWI and stars Pola Negri as a chambermaid at the hotel.

14. Best New Artist Grammy winner after Alicia NORAH
The beguiling Norah Jones is the daughter of famous sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, and is one of my favorite singers. If you haven’t heard Jones sing her song “Come Away with Me”, you just haven’t lived …

Alicia Keys is the stage name of Alicia Cook, an R&B and soul singer from Hell’s Kitchen in New York City.

15. Tesoro de la Sierra Madre ORO
In Spanish, the “tesoro de la Sierra Madre” (treasure of the Sierra Madre) is “oro” (gold).

“The Treasure of the Sierra Madre” is a 1927 novel by German novelist B. Traven. The book was made into a famous 1948 movie of the same name by John Huston, starring Humphrey Bogart and Walter Huston (director John’s father).

16. Horse play EQUUS
“Equus” is a play written in 1973 by Peter Shaffer. Shaffer wrote the play after he heard about a real-life crime in which a 17-year-old youth blinded six horses. The play tells of a psychiatrist treating a young man who has an unhealthy fascination with horses.

20. Québec quiche, e.g.? CANADIAN BAKING (sounds like “Canadian bacon”)
What we tend to call “Canadian bacon” in the US, we know as “rashers” on the other side of the Atlantic. One of my uncles worked in the meat trade in Dublin, and his nickname was “Rasher”.

Québec is the largest province in Canada, and the only one with French as its sole official language. The name “Québec” comes from an Algonquin word “kebec” meaning “where the river narrows”. This refers to the area around Quebec City where the St. Lawrence River narrows as it flows through a gap lined by steep cliffs.

The classic dish called quiche is made with eggs (“oeufs” in French). Even though the quiche is inextricably linked to French cuisine, the name “quiche” comes from the German word for cake, “Kuchen”. The variant called “quiche lorraine” includes bits of smoked bacon as an ingredient.

23. Start of a weekly cry TGI
“Thank God It’s Friday” (TGIF) is a relatively new expression that apparently originated in Akron, Ohio. It was a catchphrase used first by disk jockey Jerry Healy of WAKR in the early seventies. That said, one blog reader wrote me to say that he had been using the phrase in the fifties.

24. “Either thou, __ … must go with him”: Romeo OR I
“Either thou or I, or both, must go with him.” is a line from William Shakespeare’s play “Romeo and Juliet”.

William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” is all about the love between the two title characters, which is forbidden as the pair come from two families who are sworn enemies. Early in the play, Romeo (a Montague) sneaks into a masquerade ball being held by the Capulets in the hope of meeting a Capulet girl named Rosaline. Instead, he meets and falls for Juliet, also a Capulet. Tragedy ensues …

26. Saying “It wasn’t me” when, in fact, it was? COWARDLY LYING (sounds like “Cowardly Lion”)
The movie “The Wizard of Oz” is full of irony. The Scarecrow wants to be intelligent and discovers he is already very smart. The Tin Man wants to be able to love and finds out that he already has a heart. The Lion thinks he is a coward but turns out to be fearless. And the big reveal is that the Wizard of Oz, who is positioned as all-powerful, is actually just a bumbling and eccentric old man.

36. Greenwich Village sch. NYU
The main campus of the private New York University (NYU) is located right in Manhattan, in Washington Square in the heart of Greenwich Village. NYU has over 12,000 resident students, the largest number of residents in a private school in the whole country. NYU’s sports teams are known as the Violets, a reference to the violet and white colors that are worn in competition. Since the 1980s, the school’s mascot has been a bobcat. “Bobcat” had been the familiar name given to NYU’s Bobst Library computerized catalog.

40. Eastwood’s “Rawhide” role YATES
The actor and director Clint Eastwood is a native of San Francisco, California. As many of us perhaps remember, Eastwood’s big break was playing the supporting role of Rowdy Yates in the TV show “Rawhide” in the late fifties and early sixties. He then became the face of the spaghetti western genre of movie in the sixties, most notably in the classic “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”. In later years Eastwood has branched out into directing and producing with remarkable success. And of course in the late eighties he also served as mayor of his hometown, Carmel-by-the-Sea.

43. Retail giant with stores in 23 U.S. states IKEA
Every IKEA store features a restaurant that serves traditional Swedish food, including Swedish meatballs and lingonberry jam. Each store also has a Swedish Food Market where customers can purchase specialty foods from Sweden.

45. Bit of power WATT
James Watt was a Scottish inventor, a man who figured prominently in the Industrial Revolution in Britain largely due to the improvements he made to the fledgling steam engine. The SI unit of power is called the watt, named in his honor.

52. Source of bills ATM
ATM (Automatic Teller Machine)

53. Stretcher, to Huck Finn LIE
Here’s the opening paragraph of Mark Twain’s classic novel “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” …

YOU don’t know about me without you have read a book by the name of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; but that ain’t no matter. That book was made by Mr. Mark Twain, and he told the truth, mainly. There was things which he stretched, but mainly he told the truth. That is nothing. I never seen anybody but lied one time or another, without it was Aunt Polly, or the widow, or maybe Mary. Aunt Polly — Tom’s Aunt Polly, she is — and Mary, and the Widow Douglas is all told about in that book, which is mostly a true book, with some stretchers, as I said before.

56. Greeting from a faithful friend? WELCOME WAGGING (sounds like “Welcome Wagon”)
Welcome Wagon is a company that was founded in 1928 in Memphis. The company contacts new homeowners with coupons and advertisements from local businesses. Up until 1998, new homeowners would be contacted by Welcome Wagon “hostesses” who provided the coupons and advertisements in gift baskets, along with free product samples.

61. Sitar accompaniment TABLA
A tabla is a percussion instrument used in the Indian subcontinent. The tabla consists of a pair of hand drums and is similar to bongos.

The sitar has been around since the Middle Ages. The sitar is a stringed instrument that is played by plucking, and is used most often in Hindustani classical music. In the West we have been exposed to the instrument largely through the performances of Ravi Shankar and some music by George Harrison of the Beatles, a onetime student of Shankar.

63. Sarge’s superior LOOIE
A lieutenant (looie) is higher in rank than a sergeant (sarge).

64. “Hamlet” courtier OSRIC
In William Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet”, Osric is the courtier that Claudius dispatches to invite Hamlet to participate in a duel.

66. Supports illegally ABETS
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.

67. Mary’s upstairs neighbor RHODA
The seventies sitcom “Rhoda” was a spinoff of “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” that starred Valerie Harper. The eighth episode of the show was an hour-long special in which Rhoda married her fiance Joe (played by David Groh). At the time of airing it was the second-most watched television episode in history, second only to the 1953 birth of Little Ricky on “I Love Lucy”.

68. Cooper creation KEG
A cooper is a craftsman who makes wooden vessels, such as barrels. The term “cooper” ultimately derives from the Latin “cupa” meaning “tub, cask”.

Down
2. Modern kerchief cousin DO-RAG
Hip-hoppers might wear do-rags today, but they have been around for centuries. If you recall the famous image of Rosie the Riveter, she was wearing a do-rag. The etymology is pretty evident, a piece of cloth (rag) to hold a hairstyle (do) in place.

A “kerchief” is a triangular or square piece of cloth used as a covering for the head. So, a handkerchief (“hand-kerchief”) is a square piece of cloth held in the hand and used for personal hygiene.

3. How many O. Henry stories end IRONICALLY
O. Henry was the pen name of writer William Sydney Porter from Greensboro, North Carolina. O. Henry is famous for his witty short stories that have a clever twist in the tail.

4. Writer Janowitz TAMA
Tama Janowitz is an American writer. Janowitz was born in San Francisco but has lived much of her life in New York City. In New York she hung around with the likes of Andy Warhol and became well known in literary circles. Her most famous work is a collection of short stories called “Slaves of New York”, which was made into a film of the same name in 1989.

6. Angora fabric MOHAIR
Angora wool comes from the Angora rabbit. On the other hand, the Angora goat produces the wool known as mohair.

7. Republic since 1979 IRAN
Before 1935, the country we know today as Iran was called Persia by the Western world. The official name of the country since the Iranian Revolution of 1979 is the “Islamic Republic of Iran”.

9. Legendary Australian outlaw NED KELLY
Ned Kelly was an Irish-Australian outlaw, regarded by many as a symbol of resistance against the British ruling class in Australia in the 19th century. There have been two famous films made of his life story. “The Story of the Kelly Gang” was released in 1906, and is recognized today as the first feature film ever made. We might be more familiar with the film called “Ned Kelly” released in 1970, as it starred Mick Jagger in the title role.

11. “Treasure Island” castaway Ben GUNN
In Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island”, Ben Gunn is a character who had been marooned on the island by his shipmates. Gunn had lived there alone for three long years when Jim Hawkins comes across him. Author R. F. Delderfield wrote a “prequel” to “Treasure Island” called “The Adventures of Ben Gunn” telling the story of Gunn, a parson’s son who became a pirate.

13. Prefix with bar ISO-
An isobar is a line on a weather map connecting points of equal barometric pressure.

21. George’s lyrical brother IRA
Ira Gershwin was a lyricist who worked with his brother George to create such American classics as the songs “I Got Rhythm” and “Someone to Watch Over Me”, as well as the opera “Porgy and Bess”. After George Gershwin died, Ira continued to create great music, working with the likes of Jerome Kern and Kurt Weill.

22. __ alcohol: fusel oil component AMYL
Fusel oils are a mixture of several alcohols produced in small amounts as a by-product during the fermentation of alcohol. The main constituent of fusel oil is amyl alcohol. Some suggest that fusel oils present in alcoholic drinks contribute to the severity of a hangover. The term “fusel” is German, translating as “bad liquor”.

27. Bed-in for Peace participant ONO
John Lennon and Yoko Ono had a very public honeymoon in a hotels in Amsterdam and then Montreal, when they staged their famous “bed-in” for peace. In answering questions from reporters Lennon found himself often repeating the words “give peace a chance”. While still in bed, he composed his famous song “Give Peace a Chance” and even made the original recording of the song in the Montreal hotel room, with reporters present, and with a whole bunch of friends. The song was released later in 1969 and became a smash hit. Writing credit was initially given to Lennon-McCartney, as was the agreement between John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Later versions of the song were credited just to Lennon, even though Lennon stated that Yoko Ono actually wrote the song with him.

28. “Blowin’ in the Wind” songwriter DYLAN
Bob Dylan wrote the famous song “Blowin’ in the Wind” in 1963, apparently taking all of ten minutes to finish the whole composition.

29. Early spaceflight proponent Willy __ LEY
Willy Ley was a German rocket scientist who did much of his work here in the US. Unlike many of his compatriots, Ley left Nazi Germany and moved the US prior to WWII, in 1935. He wrote books about space travel that were very approachable and helped popularize the concept with the general public. His book “The Conquest of Space” was published in 1949.

30. Like petroglyphs INTAGLIOED
Intaglio is the technique of carving an image or design into one side of a gemstone. Strictly speaking, the image must be carved into the surface of the stone, producing an engraved image. However, the term intaglio usually covers the production of relief images as well. Any ones I have seen on display are really beautiful.

Petroglyphs are artistic images carved into rock, and are often associated with prehistoric peoples. The term comes from the Greek “petra” meaning “stone” and “glyphein” meaning “to carve”. The related form of rock art known as “pictographs” are painted onto the rock surface.

31. Nikita’s no NYET
“Nyet” is Russian for “no”, and “da” is Russian for “yes”.

38. Bolivian border lake TITICACA
Lake Titicaca is the largest lake in South America, and the highest navigable lake in the world (navigable by “large” commercial vessels). Lake Titicaca is located in the Andes, on the border between Peru and Bolivia.

41. Botanical beard AWN
“Awn” is the name given to hair or bristle-like structures found in numerous species of plants. In some species, like barley, the awns can contain photosynthetic tissue.

48. Caesar salad dressing ingredient RAW EGG
The Caesar Salad was created by restaurateur Caesar Cardini at the Hotel Caesar’s in Tijuana, Mexico. The original recipe called for whole lettuce leaves that were to be lifted up by the stem and eaten with the fingers.

49. Acting guru Hagen UTA
Uta Hagen was a German-born American actress. Hagen married Jose Ferrer in 1938, but they were divorced ten years later after it was revealed that she was having a long-running affair with Paul Robeson. Her association with Robeson, a prominent civil rights activist, earned her a spot on the Hollywood Blacklist during the McCarthy Era. This forced her away from film, but towards a successful stage career in New York City.

“Guru” is a Hindi word meaning “teacher” or “priest”.

54. OK components INITS
Initials (inits.)

57. River of Spain EBRO
The Ebro is the longest river in Spain. The river was known by the Romans as the Iber, and it is the “Iber” river that gives the “Iberian” Peninsula its name.

59. Falco of “Nurse Jackie” EDIE
The actress Edie Falco won three Emmy Awards for playing Carmela Soprano on HBO’s outstanding drama series called “The Sopranos”. Falco also won an Emmy in 2010 for playing the title role in “Nurse Jackie”.

60. Silk Road desert GOBI
The large desert in Asia called the Gobi lies in northern China and southern Mongolia. The Gobi desert is growing at an alarming rate, particularly towards the south. This “desertification” is caused by increased human activity. The Chinese government is trying to halt the desert’s progress by planting great swaths of new forest, the so called “Green Wall of China”.

61. 2015 A.L. East champ TOR
The Toronto Blue Jays baseball franchise was founded in 1977. The Blue Jays are the only team based outside the US to have won a World Series, doing so in 1992 and 1993. And since the Montreal Expos relocated to Washington, the Blue Jays are the only Major League Baseball team now headquartered outside of the US.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Publishing tasks EDITS
6. Jack letters MIC
9. “Hotel Imperial” (1927) star NEGRI
14. Best New Artist Grammy winner after Alicia NORAH
15. Tesoro de la Sierra Madre ORO
16. Horse play EQUUS
17. Kitchen drawer? AROMA
18. It can be cured HAM
19. “Beats me” DUNNO
20. Québec quiche, e.g.? CANADIAN BAKING (sounds like “Canadian bacon”)
23. Start of a weekly cry TGI
24. “Either thou, __ … must go with him”: Romeo OR I
25. Ran into MET
26. Saying “It wasn’t me” when, in fact, it was? COWARDLY LYING (sounds like “Cowardly Lion”)
33. Digitize, in a way SCAN
35. Squawk YELL
36. Greenwich Village sch. NYU
37. Set apart, as funds ALLOT
39. Layer PLY
40. Eastwood’s “Rawhide” role YATES
42. Ref. book VOL
43. Retail giant with stores in 23 U.S. states IKEA
45. Bit of power WATT
46. “Wish we had built a bigger pyramid,” e.g.? EGYPTIAN RUING (sounds like “Egyptian ruin”)
51. Feel poorly AIL
52. Source of bills ATM
53. Stretcher, to Huck Finn LIE
56. Greeting from a faithful friend? WELCOME WAGGING (sounds like “Welcome Wagon”)
61. Sitar accompaniment TABLA
62. Citrus cooler ADE
63. Sarge’s superior LOOIE
64. “Hamlet” courtier OSRIC
65. Fix RIG
66. Supports illegally ABETS
67. Mary’s upstairs neighbor RHODA
68. Cooper creation KEG
69. Performed, in the Bible DIDST

Down
1. Pass ENACT
2. Modern kerchief cousin DO-RAG
3. How many O. Henry stories end IRONICALLY
4. Writer Janowitz TAMA
5. Sunny day phenomenon SHADOW
6. Angora fabric MOHAIR
7. Republic since 1979 IRAN
8. Search high and low COMB
9. Legendary Australian outlaw NED KELLY
10. Fairness EQUITY
11. “Treasure Island” castaway Ben GUNN
12. Step up? RUNG
13. Prefix with bar ISO-
21. George’s lyrical brother IRA
22. __ alcohol: fusel oil component AMYL
27. Bed-in for Peace participant ONO
28. “Blowin’ in the Wind” songwriter DYLAN
29. Early spaceflight proponent Willy __ LEY
30. Like petroglyphs INTAGLIOED
31. Nikita’s no NYET
32. Sudden blow GUST
33. Word processing command SAVE
34. Blockage CLOG
38. Bolivian border lake TITICACA
39. Shade of green PEA
41. Botanical beard AWN
44. Smuggler’s unit KILO
47. Wan PALLID
48. Caesar salad dressing ingredient RAW EGG
49. Acting guru Hagen UTA
50. “Good for you” I’M GLAD
54. OK components INITS
55. Throw out EGEST
56. Load in a basket WASH
57. River of Spain EBRO
58. Con man’s target MARK
59. Falco of “Nurse Jackie” EDIE
60. Silk Road desert GOBI
61. 2015 A.L. East champ TOR

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10 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 26 Feb 16, Friday”

  1. I dont deserve this first post on the blog, because I had such a tough time with the puzzle. Even the 3 letter clues were way off my realm of knowledge. The homophonic idea was very clever indeed – I just couldn't figure it out even after I had filled in the 'hole' puzzle.

    The biggest shock ofcourse, is that it took Bill so long, and so many mistakes. Oy vey ! (Even Bill is human.)

    Re: Norah Jones …. I have read Ravi Shankar's autobiography – a very pretentious man, even the book itself, had the pages edged in gold foil. He is very cagey in the book, and mentions an 'affair' but does not acknowledge a child. I firmly believe she has succeeded only on her own talents, and despite her parentage.

    I used to think that Watt was a baseball player, or an ump, or a poor actor, because …. people are always shouting, 'Kill-a-Watt' this or 'kill-a-watt' that …. or so many kill-a-watts. (groan).

    When we first moved into our new house, in a new development, 25 years ago, I spent the first month eagerly waiting for the Welcome Wagon – which, unfortunately never arrived. I guess we were too much out of the mainstream to have made any waves.

    Have a happy and delightful weekend, all.

  2. Very clever, and I got all the theme answers quickly. But some of the others! 7 Googles, which is a Friday improvement for me.

    I've been hating the spelling of MIC as an abbreviation for microphone for a while, now. (Also don't like referring to singers as artists.- Don't worry, I'm almost dead.)

    I still don't get INIT.

    I misspelled INTAGLIuED crosses LOuIE.

    @Vidwan – always interesting. Not every neighborhood has a welcome wagon. In mine, one would here the sound of door bolts if they knocked. Since I can't stand ranch houses and suburbs, I've avoided those Nosy Parkers. You ain't missin' nuttin.

  3. Very tough puzzle I needed a nudge on in a few places. That's just my way of saying I had to cheat to finish.

    I actually got the theme which is usually a good sign on a Friday. I thought 63A was a Beetle Bailey reference so that didn't help. Any puzzle with a Huck Finn reference is a good one though.

    Fusel oil causing hangovers. Well maybe to an extent. It's not the gallon of booze they drink with it? Reminds me of a story a friend of my father's told me. While in college he once drank a fifth of whiskey and ate a banana with it. He got so sick, he just couldn't eat bananas again….

    Best-

  4. One lousy letter from a solution. "Intaslioed" with an "s" where the "g" should hzve been led to my DNF for today. I was feeling bad until I saw the difficulty that Bill had with this one and then that made me feel better. Thanks, Bill! (g)

    Hope you all have a fun Friday. I look forward to seeing what Saturday will bring (and if today is any harbinger it will undoubtedly spell doom for me).

    @Sfingi – "Init" was short for "initial" was OK was made up of the initials for the word "okay"

  5. Had intaglio in my mind, but I think of it as the printing process, so resisted writing it in. I'm still thinking the clue was wrong.
    Same w/ Titicaca. I thought that was the lake Mexico City sits on, so resisted writing it in. I was definitely wrong on that one!
    Matt

  6. For those wondering, I'm still around. Just needed to step away, as there's times when these grids frustrate me at how poorly I do with them. For example, 27 errors between three grids this week. I did zero error Burnikel's grid yesterday, so I guess there's that.

    I just need to stay positive in how I express myself, given all the other stressors going on. Given the environment here, I'm sure no one needs my open frustration over doing so poorly at these.

  7. Looks like many had a problem with intaglioed. Re the explanation, I think an intaglio is an etched image (like a petroglyph). An image made in bas relief would be called a "cameo".

    @Glenn Hang in there. If failing to complete a puzzle was an indicator of self worth, we would all be in trouble 🙂

  8. @Glenn
    Nonsense. You're always welcome here as is ANYbody. Just make sure you show your official Crossword Badge and we'll always let you in.

    The word petroglyph is totally new to me. Would Mount Rushmore qualify as a petroglyph? I realize most of that was done with dynamite, but does that matter? Just curious.

    Best –

  9. Missed my window of crossword solving today and after reading how difficult it was, I think I was better off. ^0^
    petroglyph… intaglioed oh my!

    @Glenn! Glad to hear from you.
    Lots of things can be frustrating. Some of these puzzles make me think I really don't know much.
    Just want to have some fun and learn something new.
    I started swimming lessons (don't laugh ^0^)
    and I'm swimming and practice every day, but I still am not doing certain movements correctly.
    So, I just go back the next day and try again.
    The practice alone is improving my stamina, so that's the good part.

  10. @Glenn–I WAS wondering about you! These dang puzzles really take the measure of the person. Don't let it get to you. I've been doing them longer than you (in a consistent fashion, based on what you've said.) I think it takes at least two years to be proficient enough to, let's say, finish a majority of Fridays.
    @Sfingi–I also dislike MIC, but I'm fine with it here, as the clue reads "Jack letters" and it does say MIC where you plug in on amps and the like.
    I could say this puzzle was a complete failure — felt like it — but I did manage a handful of correct answers, and I'm inordinately happy to see RHODA here!!:-D 😀
    Sweet dreams~~™

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