LA Times Crossword Answers 24 Mar 16, Thursday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Mel Rosen
THEME: Two-Celebrity Phrases … each of today’s themed answers is a common phrase comprising the family name of two celebrities side by side:

17A. Rich and Chris in a capital? LITTLE ROCK (Rich Little & Chris Rock)
23A. Billy and Minnie on a road? SUNDAY DRIVER (Billy Sunday & Minnie Driver)
38A. Vida and John in a ballpark? BLUE JAY (Vida Blue & John Jay)
49A. Karen and Adam on a hill? CARPENTER ANT (Karen Carpenter & Adam Ant)
59A. Eddie and Arsenio in a concert venue? ALBERT HALL (Eddie Albert & Arsenio Hall)

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 01s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

5. Bremen or Hamburg, locally STADT
“Stadt” is the German word for “city” or “town”.

Bremen is an industrial port city in northwestern Germany. The city actually lies almost 40 miles inland on the River Weser, with the relatively young city of Bremerhaven (literally “Bremen’s Harbour”) lying at river’s mouth. Together, Bremen and Bremerhaven comprise the German state known as the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen.

Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany (after Berlin), and the third largest port in Europe (after Rotterdam and Antwerp).

14. Joie de vivre ELAN
Our word “élan” was imported from French, in which language the word has a similar meaning to ours, i.e “style” or “flair”.

“Joie de vivre” means “joy of living” in French. We use the phrase to mean the happy, carefree enjoyment of life, like when we finish our crossword puzzles …

15. Circus Maximus attire TOGAS
In Ancient Rome the classical attire known as a toga (plural “togae”) was usually worn over a tunic. The tunic was made from linen, and the toga itself was a piece of cloth about twenty feet long made from wool. The toga could only be worn by men, and only if those men were Roman citizens. The female equivalent of the toga was called a “stola”.

The Circus Maximus was an ancient stadium used for chariot racing in Rome. It was the first such stadium built by the Romans, and was the largest ever to be built in the whole of the Roman Empire. The Circus Maximus was over 2,000 feet long and just under 400 feet wide, and could house about 15,000 spectators. There is very little of the original structure remaining and the site is now used as a major park.

16. Pizza chain started in Chicago, informally UNO’S
The chain of pizza parlors known today as Uno Chicago Grill used to be called Pizzeria Uno, or just “Uno’s”. Apparently Uno’s created the world’s first deep dish pizza.

17. Rich and Chris in a capital? LITTLE ROCK (Rich Little & Chris Rock)
The city of Little Rock is the capital of Arkansas, and is located in the center of the state. Early French travelers used a small rock formation on the Arkansas River as a landmark, a formation that they named “La Petite Roche” (The Little Rock) in 1722. “The Little Rock” actually lies across the river from a large bluff known as “Big Rock”, which was once the site of a rock quarry.

19. Pond denizen NEWT
Newts wouldn’t be my favorite animals. They are found all over the world living on land or in water depending on the species, but always associated with water even if it is only for breeding. Newts metamorphose through three distinct developmental stages during their lives. They start off as larvae in water, fertilized eggs that often cling to aquatic plants. The eggs hatch into tadpoles, the first developmental form of the newt. After living some months as tadpoles swimming around in the water, they undergo another metamorphosis, sprouting legs and replacing their external gills with lungs. At this juvenile stage they are known as efts, and leave the water to live on land. A more gradual transition takes place then, as the eft takes on the lizard-like appearance of the adult newt.

Nowadays we use “denizen” to mean simply a resident, but historically a denizen was an immigrant to whom certain rights had been granted, something like today’s “resident alien”.

21. Fragrant hybrid TEA ROSE
The first tea roses were so called because they had a fragrance reminiscent of Chinese black tea.

23. Billy and Minnie on a road? SUNDAY DRIVER (Billy Sunday & Minnie Driver)
Billy Sunday was a professional baseball player who abandoned his sporting career in the 1880s to a celebrated and influential evangelist in the Christian ministry.

The delightful Minnie Driver is a actress from London who has made quite a name for herself in Hollywood. Some of my favorite films in which Driver appears are “Circle of Friends”, “Grosse Pointe Blank”, “Good Will Hunting”, “The Phantom of the Opera” and “Return to Me”.

33. “__ Mir Bist Du Schoen”: Andrews Sisters hit BEI
“Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen” was a hit in the 1930s for the Andrews Sisters. The title translates from German into English as “To Me, You Are Beautiful”. The song was originally titled in Yiddish as “Bei Mir Bistu Shein” as it was written for a 1932 Yiddish comedy musical called “Men Ken Lebn Nor Men Lost Nisht”.

37. i follower -POD
The iPod is Apple’s signature line of portable media players. The iPod first hit the market in 2001 with a hard drive-based device, now known as the iPod Classic. Later models all use flash memory, allowing a smaller form factor. The smallest of the flash-based models is the iPod Shuffle, which was introduced in 2005.

38. Vida and John in a ballpark? BLUE JAY (Vida Blue & John Jay)
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.

Vida Blue is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He played for the Oakland Athletics, the San Francisco Giants and the Kansas City Royals. He is one of only four pitchers in history to have started one all-star game for the American League and one for the National League.

John Jay was one of the Founding Fathers and President of the Continental Congress from 1778 to 1779. From 1789 to 1795, Jay was the nation’s first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. He retired from the court to serve as the second Governor of New York.

40. i follower -PAD
The groundbreaking iPad isn’t Apple’s first foray into the world of tablet computing. Apple created great buzz by introducing the Newton MessagePad way back in 1993. This innovative machine was fraught with problems and really died a very slow death, finally being withdrawn from the market in 1998.

41. Nicks on albums STEVIE
Singer Stevie Nicks came to fame as the lead singer of Fleetwood Mac. Nicks has a very distinctive voice, heard at its best (I think) in the famous 1977 album “Rumours”.

43. 1980s-’90s gaming console NES
The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was sold in North America from 1985 to to 1995. The NES was the biggest selling gaming console of the era.

44. With 1-Across, woodcutter who stole from thieves ALI …
(1A. See 44-Across … BABA)
In the folk tale “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves”, the title character is a poor woodcutter who discovers the magic words “Open Sesame” that open the thieves’ den.

45. River island AIT
Aits are little islands found in a river. Aits aren’t formed by erosion, but by the deposition of silt over time. As a result, aits often have a long and narrow shape running parallel to the banks as the sediment builds up with the flow of the water. Many of the islands in the River Thames in England have been given the name “Ait”, like Raven’s Ait in Kingston-upon-Thames, and Lot’s Ait in Brentford.

48. Animal in the Chinese zodiac RAT
The 12-year cycle in the Chinese calendar uses the following animals in order:

– Rat
– Ox
– Tiger
– Rabbit
– Dragon
– Snake
– Horse
– Goat
– Monkey
– Rooster
– Dog
– Pig

49. Karen and Adam on a hill? CARPENTER ANT (Karen Carpenter & Adam Ant)
Carpenter ants can wreak havoc in a wooden structure. They burrow into damp wood creating galleries and pathways that form a complex network of nests. Unlike termites though, carpenter ants don’t feed on the wood.

Karen Carpenter was an accomplished drummer, although she only started playing drums in high school, as a member of the school band. After she graduated she started playing jazz with her brother, Richard, and a college friend. Later, she and Richard played with a group called Spectrum, and submitted many demo tapes to recording companies, but all were unsuccessful. Finally, Karen and Richard got a recording contract with A&M Records, and when they had Karen take the lead on their songs, they hit the big time and toured as the Carpenters. Sadly, Karen passed away at only 32-years-old, dying from heart failure brought on by anorexia.

Adam Ant is an English musician who had some number-one hits on both sides of the Atlantic in the eighties. His most famous recordings were probably “Stand and Deliver” and “Prince Charming” from 1981, and “Goody Two-Shoes” from 1982. Englishman Ant even managed to get himself voted as sexiest man in America by viewers of MTV.

53. Eellike fish LAMPREY
Lampreys look like a cross between a fish and an eel.

54. Brand with classic “beep beep” commercials AAMCO
AAMCO is named after one of the two founders, Anthony A. Martino (AAM). The company was founded in 1963 in Philadelphia, and opened its first franchise in Newark that same year. There are now about 800 franchises, and AAMCO is the largest chain in the world specializing in automotive transmissions.

59. Eddie and Arsenio in a concert venue? ALBERT HALL (Eddie Albert & Arsenio Hall)
The beautiful Royal Albert Hall in London is most famous as the home to the BBC Prom concerts that have been performed each summer since 1941. The concert hall was opened in 1871 by Queen Victoria. The Queen ordered that the intended name for the new hall be dropped in favor of the “Royal Albert Hall” in honor of her husband Prince Albert, who had passed away ten years earlier.

The actor Eddie Albert is perhaps best known for his supporting role as photographer Irving Radovich in the 1945 classic film “Roman Holiday”, and as attorney-turned-farmer Oliver Wendell Douglas on the sitcom “Green Acres”. In the run-up to WWII, Albert worked undercover for US Army Intelligence while touring Mexico as clown and high-wire artist, secretly photographing German U-boats in Mexican harbors. During the war, Albert was awarded the Bronze Star for using a landing craft to rescue 47 stranded marines while taking heavy fire during the invasion of Tarawa.

64. __ firma TERRA
“Terra firma” is Latin for “solid ground”.

66. Some honored Brits: Abbr. KNTS
Knight (knt.)

68. Europe’s highest volcano ETNA
Mt. Etna is the largest of three active volcanoes in Italy, and the highest volcano in Europe. Mt Etna is about 2 1/2 times the height of its equally famous sister, Mt. Vesuvius. Etna is home to a 110-km long narrow-guage railway, and two ski resorts.

Down
1. Composer Bartók BELA
Bela Bartók was a composer and a pianist, and perhaps after Liszt is considered by many to be Hungary’s greatest composer.

3. Cricket equipment BATS
Cricket is the national game of England. The term “cricket” apparently comes from the Old French word “criquet” meaning “goalpost, stick”.

5. Jeanne d’Arc, e.g.: Abbr. STE
“Sainte” (ste.) is French for “saint”, when referring to a female.

Joan of Arc (also “Jeanne d’Arc”, her birth name) led the French Army successfully into battle a number of times during the Hundred Years War with England. When she was eventually captured, Joan was tried in Rouen, the seat of the occupying English government in France at that time. There she was burned at the stake having been found guilty of heresy. Joan of Arc was canonized some 600 years later, in 1920, and is now one of the patron saints of France.

6. Craggy crest TOR
A tor is a high rocky hill. “Tor” comes from the Old English “torr”, the word for a tower or rock, which in turn comes from the Old Welsh “twrr” meaning a heap or a pile.

8. Three-syllable foot DACTYL
In poetry, a dactyl is a foot consisting of a stressed syllable followed by two unstressed syllables. An example of a word with such a meter is “inn-o-cent”.

12. Use a divining rod DOWSE
Dowsing is the practice of divining for not just water, but also buried metals and gemstones for example. Often a dowser will use a Y-shaped or L-shaped rod as a tool, which can also be called a dowser. Here in the US, the tool used might be referred to as a “witching rod”, as it is usually made from witch-hazel.

13. Fall flower ASTER
Apparently, most aster species and cultivars bloom relatively late in the year, usually in the fall.

22. “You __ Destiny” ARE MY
“You Are My Destiny” is a 1957 hit song written and released by Paul Anka.

25. Dijon deity DIEU
In French, “Dieu” (God) is the foe of “le diable” (the devil).

Dijon is a city in eastern France, in the Burgundy region. Dijon is famous for its mustard, a particularly strong variation of the condiment. The European Union doesn’t protect the name “Dijon” so anyone can use it on a label. That seems fair enough to me, given that 90% of the mustard made in and around Dijon is produced using mustard seed imported from Canada!

26. Property recipient, in law ALIENEE
An alienee is one to whom ownership of property is transferred, alienated.

27. Nile threats ASPS
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. It is so venomous that the asp was used in ancient Egypt and Greece as a means of execution. Cleopatra observed such executions noting that the venom brought on sleepiness without any painful spasms. When the great queen opted to commit suicide, the asp was therefore her chosen method.

28. Hot stuff? LOOT
“Loot” is the name given to anything taken by dishonesty or force, particularly during war. The term came into English from the Hindi “lut” meaning “goods taken from an enemy”.

47. Art major’s subj. ANAT
Anatomy (anat.)

50. Golden calf maker, in Exodus AARON
According to the Book of Exodus in the Bible, Aaron made a golden calf as an idol for the Israelites to worship while Moses was on Mount Sinai receiving the Ten Commandments. When Moses returned, he became angry on seeing the calf and destroyed it.

52. Second-deepest U.S. lake TAHOE
Lake Tahoe is up in the Sierra Nevada mountains, right on the border between California and Nevada. Lake Tahoe is the largest alpine lake in the country, and the largest lake in general, behind the five Great Lakes. It’s also the second deepest lake, with only the beautiful Crater Lake in Oregon being deeper. Given its location, there are tall casinos that sit right on the shore on the Nevada side of the state line where gambling is legal.

57. Clay crock OLLA
An olla is a traditional clay pot used for the making of stews. “Olla” was the Latin word used in Ancient Rome to describe a similar type of pot.

62. Dorm deputies: Abbr. RAS
RAs are resident assistants or resident advisers, the peer leaders found in residence halls, particularly on a college campus.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. See 44-Across … BABA
5. Bremen or Hamburg, locally STADT
10. Fast-food order SODA
14. Joie de vivre ELAN
15. Circus Maximus attire TOGAS
16. Pizza chain started in Chicago, informally UNO’S
17. Rich and Chris in a capital? LITTLE ROCK (Rich Little & Chris Rock)
19. Pond denizen NEWT
20. Stumped AT SEA
21. Fragrant hybrid TEA ROSE
23. Billy and Minnie on a road? SUNDAY DRIVER (Billy Sunday & Minnie Driver)
27. Pub order ALE
30. Cause harm DO ILL
31. Capt.’s direction ESE
32. Family member SON
33. “__ Mir Bist Du Schoen”: Andrews Sisters hit BEI
34. Come out EMERGE
37. i follower -POD
38. Vida and John in a ballpark? BLUE JAY (Vida Blue & John Jay)
40. i follower -PAD
41. Nicks on albums STEVIE
43. 1980s-’90s gaming console NES
44. With 1-Across, woodcutter who stole from thieves ALI …
45. River island AIT
46. “I gotta run!” SEE YA!
48. Animal in the Chinese zodiac RAT
49. Karen and Adam on a hill? CARPENTER ANT (Karen Carpenter & Adam Ant)
53. Eellike fish LAMPREY
54. Brand with classic “beep beep” commercials AAMCO
58. Forte AREA
59. Eddie and Arsenio in a concert venue? ALBERT HALL (Eddie Albert & Arsenio Hall)
63. Scams CONS
64. __ firma TERRA
65. Exam type ORAL
66. Some honored Brits: Abbr. KNTS
67. Aerosol targets ODORS
68. Europe’s highest volcano ETNA

Down
1. Composer Bartók BELA
2. Settled down ALIT
3. Cricket equipment BATS
4. Starting stakes ANTES
5. Jeanne d’Arc, e.g.: Abbr. STE
6. Craggy crest TOR
7. Earlier AGO
8. Three-syllable foot DACTYL
9. Expressed disdain for TSKED
10. Often photogenic event SUNRISE
11. A round of 73, usually ONE OVER PAR
12. Use a divining rod DOWSE
13. Fall flower ASTER
18. Acclaim LAUD
22. “You __ Destiny” ARE MY
24. To the manor born NOBLE
25. Dijon deity DIEU
26. Property recipient, in law ALIENEE
27. Nile threats ASPS
28. Hot stuff? LOOT
29. Affection ENDEARMENT
34. Campus breeze EASY A
35. It might be a big benefit GALA
36. Cut and paste, say EDIT
38. Muzzle wearer, probably BITER
39. Derisive shout JEER
42. One way to get backstage VIP PASS
46. Worked in a salon STYLED
47. Art major’s subj. ANAT
49. Rattling sound CLACK
50. Golden calf maker, in Exodus AARON
51. “Peachy-keen!” NEATO!
52. Second-deepest U.S. lake TAHOE
55. Trading center MART
56. Feud faction CLAN
57. Clay crock OLLA
60. Good bud BRO
61. Guess wrong ERR
62. Dorm deputies: Abbr. RAS

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9 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 24 Mar 16, Thursday”

  1. 1 error. Looked up TAHOE in the early going, but got through the rest of it well though it was slow going to get through the grid.

    For those that play with the WSJ, got 1 (admittedly stupid?) error on that grid as well. A challenge, but relatively straight forward to figure out, once I did. Again some good data towards that "wildly varying difficulty" question I had yesterday.

  2. Normally I would tell you all how much I despise this grid. But since this is Holy Week, I will refrain…oops, Freudian slip.

    Billy SUNDAY? A schlep who played 8 seasons in the National League (IN THE 1800s)? That makes DIEU and ALIENEE a Natick of each. ALIT…I think you all know my take on that one. DACTYLs? There is not a single known work in English using Dactyls. It goes back to the time of Homer (no…not Homer Simpson), when the Iliad was recited in dactylic hexameter.

    There's just too much to-and-fro in this grid between erudite and pop-culture. I guess I can appreciate that the constructor tried to slip in a cricket reference with so many baseball clues, but since I've been listening to Joe Garagiola clips all night, it kinda irks me.

    But if you want some fun…Monty Python's take on a Newt.

    Off for the rest of Holy Week…happy solving to all!

  3. From yesterday, Thank you Jeff, for correcting my misimpression on the (correctly – ) 3rd floor view for a pilot of a Boeing 747 (-400) . I make many, many mistakes and thanks to you erudites, they get corrected …. and also in my mind. A Boeing 747 may cost 350 mil. but it is normally insured for 3.2 bill. for the people and the cargo, and it is insured with over 120 insurance companies across 10 nations …. no one company could absorb that loss.

    Thank you, Willie D for the youtube link and the the other link on landing a Boeing. It was absolutely fascinating. A pilot on a 747 carries and affects more lives, in one trip, than a doctor handles in a month, or a week …. or in the case of my opthalmologist, who I met yesterday, ….. in a day. The instruments that eye doctors command can even detect white blood cells perched on the surface of the retina, the back inside walls of your eye. Blows your mind….

    The puzzle was rather difficult, especially ALIENEE …. never heard that before. I would have thought that an alienee ( this is, speaking from personal experience …. 🙂 ) a person desperately trying to evade deportation !!! The theme itself seems easy, but for me, was somewhat hazy …. and I cant believe I forgot about Karen Carpenter – my favorite singer.

    Finally, something I saw yesterday ….
    There is "lie" in Believe …. "over" in Lover ….. "end" in Friend …. "us" in Trust …. "ex" in Next ….. and "if" in Life.

    Have a nice day, all.

  4. @Willie D Thanks for another Monty Python clip. I'm still laughing ^0^.
    Too complex, DACTYL,ALIENEE,AIT
    too simple, SON, AL,E IPAD, IPOD.
    Vida Blue- blast from the past!

  5. Finished without final error(s). I was hung up staring and thinking about 9 Down for the longest time and just could not see what was wrong until I went back and looked at the answer I had filled in for 17 Across "Chris and Rich in a capital?" and suddenly realized that "Little Rose" made no sense at all. After I put in Little Rock things finally went smoothly from there.

    Hope everyone has a good day. See you all tomorrow.

  6. @Mendoza – Bei mir bist du shon – is German for To me you're beautiful.

    Now you know how I feel when crosswords always expect you to know French.

    I thought this puzzle was very clever and liked how it went from the sublime to the ridiculous – plus no French and only 2 (easy) sports.

    @Willie – Billy Sunday is more famous as an evangelist, esp. on the radio – before your time. My grandmother, born in the 1880s, adored him.

  7. Hi all!
    Bill!! Thanks for starting out by mentioning Karen CARPENTER was a drummer…she was great.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9IagAg7u5M
    How do I make that hyper link?? Anyway — She preferred drumming to singing, despite her marvelous voice.
    I did pretty well on this puzzle, and I actually got the theme answers rather quickly. Had to look up STADT (which I should have known) and DO ILL, which by the way is a HORRIBLE answer. When the gosh would you ever say that??!
    @Sfingi, I seem to remember MY grandmother listening to Billy Sunday. I even think I remember his ads in the TV Guide. Weird.
    Peace out, every buddy!
    Sweet dreams~~

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