LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Feb 16, Monday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: David Steinberg
THEME: Rock Groups … each of today’s themed answers ends with the name of Rock Group:

56A. Musicians found at the ends of 16-, 24-, 37- and 46-Across ROCK GROUPS

16A. Birds on United States seals BALD EAGLES (giving “Eagles”)
24A. Commonly multi-paned patio entrances FRENCH DOORS (giving “The Doors”)
37A. Reptiles known for their strong jaws SNAPPING TURTLES (giving “The Turtles”)
46A. Bank transport vehicles ARMORED CARS (giving “The Cars”)

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

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Basil sauce PESTO
The term “pesto” applies to anything made by pounding. What we tend to know as “pesto” sauce is more properly called “pesto alla genovese”, pesto from Genoa in northern Italy. I love, love pesto sauce …

14. 88 or 98 automaker OLDS
The last Oldsmobile 88 came off the production line in 1999. The first 88 was made way back in 1949. The Oldsmobile 98 was discontinued in 1996, but had been introduced in 1940.

16. Birds on United States seals BALD EAGLES (giving “Eagles”)
The bald eagle is sometimes referred to as the American eagle. It is both the national bird and the national animal of the USA, and appears on the US Seal.

Eagles are a rock band that formed in 1971, with the founding members being Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner. Frey and Henley were hired as session musicians by Linda Ronstadt. The four then played live together backing Ronstadt in a gig at Disneyland in 1971, and recorded their debut album together in England the following year.

19. Old photo hue SEPIA
Sepia is that lovely rich, brown-grey color so common in old photographs. “Sepia” is the Latinized version of the Greek word for cuttlefish, as sepia pigment is derived from the ink sac of the cuttlefish.The “sepia tone” of old photographs is not the result of deterioration over time. Rather, it is the result of a deliberate preservation process which converts the metallic silver in the photographic image to a more stable silver sulfide. Prints that have been sepia-toned can last in excess of 150 years.

20. Started the poker kitty ANTED
The “pot” in a card game has been referred to as the kitty since the 1880s. It’s not certain how the name “kitty” evolved but possibly it came from “kit”, the necessary equipment for the game.

24. Commonly multi-paned patio entrances FRENCH DOORS (giving “The Doors”)
French doors usually come in pairs, and have glass panels throughout the body of the door.

The Doors formed in 1965 in Los Angeles. The band chose their name from a book by Aldous Huxley called “The Doors of Perception”.

29. More like a cad RUDER
Our word “cad”, meaning “a person lacking in finer feelings”, is a shortening of the word “cadet”. “Cad” was first used for a servant, and then students at British universities used “cad” as a term for a boy from the local town. “Cad” took on its current meaning in the 1830s.

30. Send a racy phone message to SEXT
“Sexting” (a portmanteau of “sex” and “texting”) is the sending of explicit dialog and images between cell phones. The term “sexting” was first coined by the UK’s “Sunday Telegraph Magazine” in a 2005 article. Apparently the practice is “rampant” among teens and young adults. Whatever happened to dinner and a movie …?

37. Reptiles known for their strong jaws SNAPPING TURTLES (giving “The Turtles”)
Snapping turtles are quite aggressive and have the ability to “snap” with their relatively powerful jaws. They exhibit this behavior especially when out of the water.

The Turtles were a Californian rock band active in the late sixties. The biggest hit for the Turtles was 1967’s “Happy Together”.

40. Actor McKellen IAN
Sir Ian McKellen is a marvelous English actor, someone who is comfortable playing anything from Macbeth on stage to Magneto in an “X-Men” movie. On the big screen, McKellen is very famous for playing Gandalf in “The Lord of Rings”. In the UK Sir Ian is noted for being at the forefront of the campaign for equal rights for gay people, a role he has enthusiastically embraced since the eighties.

42. 50-and-over organization AARP
AARP is now the official name for the interest group that used to be called the American Association of Retired Persons. The name change reflects the current focus of the group on all Americans aged 50 or over, as opposed to just people who have retired.

43. Somber melody DIRGE
A “dirge” is a slow and mournful musical piece, like a funeral hymn.

45. Red-nosed “Sesame Street” character ERNIE
For many years, I believed that the “Sesame Street” characters Bert and Ernie were named after two roles played in the Christmas classic “It’s a Wonderful Life”. In the movie, the policeman’s name is Bert and his taxi-driving buddy is named Ernie. However, the “Sesame Street” folks have stated that the use of the same names is just a coincidence.

46. Bank transport vehicles ARMORED CARS (giving “The Cars”)
The Cars are a rock band from Boston, Massachusetts who were at the height of their success in the late seventies and early eighties.

52. Quicken offerings LOANS
Quicken is a popular software application primarily used for managing personal finances. The Quicken program was developed by Intuit, a company that purchased Rock Financial in 1999. Intuit renamed the Rock Financial Lending Institution to Quicken Loans.

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

The brand name Reebok was adopted as the new company name for Foster Shoes of the UK in 1960. The name Reebok (more commonly “Rhebok”) is an Afrikaans word for an antelope, and comes from the term “roe buck”.

55. __ Spumante ASTI
Asti is a sparkling white wine from the Piedmont region of Italy, and is named for the town of Asti around which the wine is produced. The wine used to be called Asti Spumante, and it had a very bad reputation as a “poor man’s champagne”. The “Spumante” was dropped in a marketing attempt at rebranding associated with a reduction in the amount of residual sugar in the wine.

61. Costa __ RICA
Costa Rica is a country in Central America, bordered by Nicaragua in the north, and Panama to the South. Costa Rica is remarkable in my opinion, a leader on the world stage in many areas. It has been referred to as the “greenest” country in the world, the “happiest” country in the world, and has a highly educated populace. In 1949, the country unilaterally abolished its own army … permanently!

64. “I’m not impressed” MEH
“Meh!” is one of those terms unfamiliar to me outside of crosswords. It is a modern colloquialism meaning “I’m not great, but not bad”. A friendly reader of this blog tells me that the usage of the term increased dramatically after it started to appear regularly in “The Simpsons” starting in the early nineties.

66. Little songbirds WRENS
A wren is a small songbird belonging to the family troglodytidae and the genus troglodytes.

Down
1. Banned chem. pollutant PCB
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were banned with good reason. Apart from their link to cancer and other disorders in humans and animals, they are extremely persistent in the environment once contamination has occurred. Among other things, PCBs were used as coolants and insulating fluids in electrical gear such as transformers and large capacitors.

2. Pitching stat ERA
Earned run average (ERA)

3. South-of-the-border sun SOL
In Spanish, the “el sol” (sun) rises in the “este” (east).

4. Youngsters TADS
Back in the 1800s “tad” was used to describe a young child, and this morphed into our usage of “small amount” in the early 1900s. The original use of “tad” for a child is very likely a shortened version of “tadpole”.

5. Michael of “Caddyshack” O’KEEFE
Michael O’Keefe played Danny Noonan in the film “Caddyshack” (I’m not a big fan of that movie). I mainly know O’Keefe from the George Clooney film “Michael Clayton”.

6. “Git along” little critter DOGIE
“Dogie” is cowboy slang for a motherless calf in a herd.

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

8. Pres. before JFK DDE
President Eisenhower was born in Denison, Texas and given the name David Dwight Eisenhower, but by the time he made it to the White House he was going by the name Dwight D. Eisenhower (DDE). Growing up, his family called him Dwight, and when “Ike” enrolled in West Point he himself reversed the order of his given names.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy (JFK) was the son of Joe Kennedy and Rose Fitzgerald, hence the president’s double-barreled name.

10. Post-race place for a NASCAR winner VICTORY LANE
The acronym NASCAR stands for the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing. NASCAR is very, very popular and commands the second largest television audience of any professional sport in America, second only to football.

12. Dandelions, e.g. WEEDS
The name “dandelion” comes from the French “dent de lion” meaning “lion’s tooth”. The name is a reference to the coarse, tooth-like edges of a dandelion’s leaves.

15. Kayak kin CANOE
The boat called a canoe takes its name from the Carib word “kenu” meaning “dugout”. It was Christopher Columbus who brought “kenu” into Spanish as “canoa”, which evolved into our English “canoe”.

There is a type of boat used by Eskimo people called an “umiak”. . The term “umiak” means “woman’s boat”, whereas “kayak” means “man’s boat”.

17. Earth Day mo. APR
Earth Day was founded in the US, an event introduced by Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin. Earth Day was designed to increase awareness and appreciation of our planet’s natural environment. The original Earth Day was on April 22nd, 1970. Decades later, the day is observed in over 175 countries.

21. Low operatic voices BASSI
The bass is the lowest male singing voice. A man with such a voice might be called a “basso” (plural “bassi”).

26. Organic fertilizer HUMUS
Humus is the dark organic material found in soil. It is result of the decomposition of vegetable and animal matter, and supplies vital nutrients to the earth. “Humus” is Latin for “earth, soil”.

28. Fuel additive brand STP
STP is a brand name for automotive lubricants and additives. The name STP comes from “Scientifically Treated Petroleum”.

31. __-watching: TV viewing spree BINGE
I’m a big fan of binge-watching, the practice of watching perhaps two or three (even four!) episodes of a show in a row. My wife and I will often deliberately avoid watching a recommended show “live” and wait until whole series have been released on DVD or online. I’m not a big fan of “tune in next week …”

32. Put the kibosh on ENDED
“Kibosh” is something that constrains or checks. “Kibosh” looks like a Yiddish word but it isn’t, and is more likely English slang from the early 1800s.

33. Movie SFX CGI
Computer-generated imagery (CGI)

“FX” is an abbreviation for “effects”, as in “special effects”, sometimes referred to as “SFX”.

36. Trembling tree ASPEN
The “quaking” aspen tree is so called because the structure of the leaves causes them to move easily in the wind, to “tremble, quake”.

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

44. Ancient Aegean region IONIA
The geographic region called Ionia is located in present day Turkey. Ionia was prominent in the days of Ancient Greece although it wasn’t a unified state, but rather a collection of tribes. The tribal confederacy was more based on religious and cultural similarities than a political or military alliance. Nowadays we often refer to this arrangement as the Ionian League.

The Aegean Sea is that part of the Mediterranean that lies between Greece and Turkey. Within the Aegean Sea are found the Aegean Islands, a group that includes Crete and Rhodes.

45. Real-estate holding account ESCROW
One type of escrow account is held by a trusted third party for two parties who have some contractual arrangement, an arrangement that is often in dispute. The third party only releases the funds when both parties have fulfilled their contractual obligations.

47. Riveting icon ROSIE
Rosie the Riveter is a cultural icon that represented women working in factories across the country during WWII as part of the war effort. The term “Rosie the Riveter” first appeared as the title of a 1942 song that was a national hit.

56. Dr. Jekyll creator’s monogram RLS
Robert Louis Stevenson (RLS) was a Scottish author, famous for his novels “Treasure Island”, “Kidnapped” and “The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde”.

Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” was first published in 1886. There are many tales surrounding the writing of the story including one that the author wrote the basic tale in just three to six days, and spent a few weeks simply refining it. Allegedly, Stevenson’s use of cocaine stimulated his creative juices during those few days of writing.

57. Saudi Arabian export OIL
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the largest Arab country in the Middle East and is the world’s largest oil producer, home to the world’s largest oil reserves. The Saudi dynasty started in central Arabia in 1744 when the secular leader Muhammad ibn Saud joined forces with the Islamic scholar and Imam, Muhammad ibn Abd-al-Wahhab. At the time, Saud was a ruler of a town near Riyadh and he was determined to bring “true” Islam to the Arabian peninsula. Since 1744 the fortunes of the Saudi family have risen and fallen, but it is that same family who rules what we know today as Saudi Arabia.

58. “__ the Force, Luke” USE
The Force is a metaphysical power much cited in all of the “Star Wars” movies, and still today we may hear someone in real life say “May the Force be with you”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Basil sauce PESTO
6. Pops, to baby DADA
10. Sacred assurance VOW
13. Sound from a lily pad CROAK
14. 88 or 98 automaker OLDS
15. Give a ticket to CITE
16. Birds on United States seals BALD EAGLES (giving “Eagles”)
18. Longing feeling ACHE
19. Old photo hue SEPIA
20. Started the poker kitty ANTED
21. Explosion noise BAM!
24. Commonly multi-paned patio entrances FRENCH DOORS (giving “The Doors”)
27. Hop out of bed ARISE
29. More like a cad RUDER
30. Send a racy phone message to SEXT
31. Changed into BECAME
34. Apt anagram of “aye” YEA
37. Reptiles known for their strong jaws SNAPPING TURTLES (giving “The Turtles”)
40. Actor McKellen IAN
41. Briefs, informally UNDIES
42. 50-and-over organization AARP
43. Somber melody DIRGE
45. Red-nosed “Sesame Street” character ERNIE
46. Bank transport vehicles ARMORED CARS (giving “The Cars”)
51. Poetic nightfall E’EN
52. Quicken offerings LOANS
53. Reebok rival ASICS
55. __ Spumante ASTI
56. Musicians found at the ends of 16-, 24-, 37- and 46-Across ROCK GROUPS
61. Costa __ RICA
62. Word for the calorie-conscious LITE
63. Fertile desert spots OASES
64. “I’m not impressed” MEH
65. Arrived at second base headfirst, perhaps SLID
66. Little songbirds WRENS

Down
1. Banned chem. pollutant PCB
2. Pitching stat ERA
3. South-of-the-border sun SOL
4. Youngsters TADS
5. Michael of “Caddyshack” O’KEEFE
6. “Git along” little critter DOGIE
7. Edgar __ Poe ALLAN
8. Pres. before JFK DDE
9. Stubborn animal ASS
10. Post-race place for a NASCAR winner VICTORY LANE
11. Catchall check box OTHER
12. Dandelions, e.g. WEEDS
15. Kayak kin CANOE
17. Earth Day mo. APR
20. Poisonous snake ADDER
21. Low operatic voices BASSI
22. Sports venue with tiered seating ARENA
23. Versatile, as a wardrobe MIX-AND-MATCH
25. Shipping container CRATE
26. Organic fertilizer HUMUS
28. Fuel additive brand STP
31. __-watching: TV viewing spree BINGE
32. Put the kibosh on ENDED
33. Movie SFX CGI
35. Tremble-inducing EERIE
36. Trembling tree ASPEN
38. Good vibrations, in the cat world PURRS
39. Sticky road stuff TAR
44. Ancient Aegean region IONIA
45. Real-estate holding account ESCROW
46. Smartphone wake-up feature ALARM
47. Riveting icon ROSIE
48. Desert plants CACTI
49. Patronized a help desk ASKED
50. Big truck RIG
54. Zoom up SOAR
56. Dr. Jekyll creator’s monogram RLS
57. Saudi Arabian export OIL
58. “__ the Force, Luke” USE
59. Confident crossword solver’s tool PEN
60. Escaping-air sound SSS!

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5 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Feb 16, Monday”

  1. Pretty impressive for a Monday IMO. It has more of a Friday design to it but without the degree of difficulty. This took me more like a Wednesday time to finish regardless.

    I really wish they'd stop putting AARP into puzzles. I'm tired of being reminded I'm actually old enough to join them. I prefer to be in denial of that.

    Oh well – onward with the week.

  2. For a Mo0nday I thought this was a step or two up in terms of difficulty. No real problems but a bit more "thinking time" than typical for the opening salvo of the week.

    The Sunday puzzle got me (I think this was the second time the same clue tripped me up) with 85 Down "Half a patio pair" with the answer of "tong" which just didn't compute for me (which is a bad pun for being unable to get the last "t" in 84 Across "bit to the byte" for the answer of "octet"). Bill's write up about "octet" didn't even clear things up for me. Doh!

  3. Just found out I confuse Michael O'KEEFE and Michael Keaton. Wrote in KEATON, very sure of myself.

    Last time this happened it was Kurt Russell and Patrick Swayze, until one of them died.

    Guess a lot of white guys look alike.

  4. Hi all,
    Does SEXT pass the Breakfast Rule? I don't think so…not that it bothers me of course. Sometimes I'd like to see MORE "racy" stuff.
    This was super easy for me, perhaps becuz I got the band names right away. Overall, very Monday, IMHO.
    @Jeff, careful what you wish for–we'll start seeing ELDER a bunch.
    As an elder also of age to join AARP, here's my ranking of today's featured groups (as if anyone cares…)
    1. Doors
    2. Eagles
    3. Turtles
    4. Cars
    Might as well say that I was in about 3rd grade when the Turtles were big — so I can still make a (feeble) case for ignoring those dang AARP mailers…LOL:-
    Be well~~™

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