LA Times Crossword Answers 20 May 16, Friday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: D. Scott Nichols & C.C. Burnikel
THEME: Heat … each of today’s themed answers has the same clue, namely “Heat”.

17A. Heat INTENSE PRESSURE
31A. Heat QUALIFYING RACE
38A. Heat MIAMI HOOPSTERS
59A. Heat HABANERO FEATURE

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 9m 58s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Light source BIC
Société Bic is a French company, based in Clichy in France. The first product the company produced, more than fifty years ago, was the Bic Cristal ballpoint pen that is still produced today. Bic also makes other disposable products such as lighters and razors.

4. Sea bordering Uzbekistan 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 …

The Republic of Uzbekistan is a former Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR). Uzbekistan is a landlocked country in Central Asia, and is in fact surrounded by countries which are also landlocked. This means that to reach a coastline from Uzbekistan, you have to cross at least two international borders. There are only two “doubly landlocked” countries in the world: Uzbekistan in Central Asia, and Liechtenstein in Central Europe.

8. Online money source E-LOAN
E-Loan used to be based just down the road from me in the San Francisco Bay Area, but after takeover by a Rosemont, Illinois company it was moved to the parent’s headquarters. E-Loan was founded in 1997 to provide customers access to mortgages over the Internet.

13. Prepare for a snap LOAD
Back in the day, one had to load a camera before taking a snap (photo).

15. “Sons and Lovers” author DH LAWRENCE
D. H. Lawrence was very much a reactionary novelist, in the sense that his work tended to decry the social impact of the industrial revolution. His novels were also criticized for their erotic content, so much so that Lawrence was publicly labelled as a pornographer by the end of his days. His most famous novels are “Sons and Lovers”, “The Rainbow”, “Women in Love” and “Lady Chatterley’s Lover”.

19. Tuscan hill city SIENA
Siena is a beautiful city in the Tuscany region of Italy. In the center of Siena is the magnificent medieval square called Piazza del Campo, a paved sloping open area made up of nine triangular sections. The square has to be seen to be believed. Twice a year, the famous bareback horse-race called the Palio di Siena is held in the Piazza.

22. Gulf Coast resort city SARASOTA
Sarasota is a city on Florida’s Gulf Coast. The area was noted on maps in the mid-1700s as “Zara Zote”, perhaps a local name. The name became “Sara Sota” when European settlers arrives in the late 1840s, and finally “Sarasota” in 1902.

24. Like sriracha sauce HOT
Sriracha hot chile sauce is named for the coastal city of Si Racha in eastern Thailand, where the recipe likely originated. Here in North America, we are most familiar with the Sriracha sold in a red bottle with a green that is made by Huy Fong Foods in the city of Irwindale, California. The manufacturer was founded by Vietnamese refugee David Tran, who escaped from Vietnam in 1978 on a Taiwanese freighter called the Huey Fong, after which he named his new company.

27. Colorful cover-ups SERAPES
“Serape” is the English pronunciation and spelling of the Spanish word “zarape”. A zarape is like a Mexican poncho, a soft woolen blanket with a hole in the middle for the head. Most serapes have colorful designs that use traditional Mayan motifs.

36. Popular truck brand RAM
Chrysler put ram hood ornaments on all of its Dodge branded vehicles starting in 1933. When the first line of Dodge trucks and vans were introduced in 1981, they were named “Rams” in honor of that hood ornament.

38. Heat MIAMI HOOPSTERS
The Miami Heat basketball team debuted in the NBA in the 1988-89 season. The franchise name was chosen in a competitive survey, with “Miami Heat” beating out “Miami Vice”.

46. PETA concern FUR
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is a very large animal rights organization, with 300 employees and two million members and supporters worldwide. Although the group campaigns for animal rights across a broad spectrum of issues, it has a stated focus in opposition of four practices:

– factory farming
– fur farming
– animal testing
– use of animals in entertainment

47. Turn right GEE
“Haw!” is a command given to a trained animal that is hauling something (like a horse or an ox). “Haw!” is used to instruct the animal to turn to the left. The equivalent command for a right turn is “Gee!” Just to confuse things, the same commands are used in the British Isles but with the opposite meanings. That must be pretty unsettling for jet-setting plow horses …

53. Egg on SPUR
The verb “edge” has been used to mean to incite, to urge on, from the 16th century. Somewhere along the way “edge” was mistakenly replaced with “egg”, giving us our term “to egg on” meaning “to goad”.

56. L, vis-à-vis C HALF
In Roman numerals, L (50) is a half of C (100).

We can use the French phrase “vis-à-vis” as a preposition meaning “compared with”. When used as an adverb or adjective, it means “face to face”, which is a more literal translation from French.

59. Heat HABANERO FEATURE
The habanero chili has a very intense flavor. Interestingly, the correct spelling of the chili’s name is “habanero”, although in English we often try to be clever and add a tilde making it “habañero”, which isn’t right at all …

63. Fries, e.g. SIDE
“French fries” are called “chips” back in the British Isles where I grew up. In France, they’re called “pommes frites” (meaning “fried potatoes”).

64. Medicare card specification PART A
Medicare is divided into four parts:

A: Hospital Insurance
B: Medical Insurance
C: Medicare Advantage Plans
D: Prescription Drug Plans

65. Fabulous runner-up HARE
“The Tortoise and the Hare” is perhaps the most famous fable attributed to Aesop. The cocky hare takes a nap during a race against the tortoise, and the tortoise sneaks past the finish line for the win while his speedier friend is sleeping.

We use the word “fabulous” these days mainly to describe something incredible, almost impossible to believe. The term can also mean “told about in fables”.

66. Talk trash to DIS
“Dis” is a slang term meaning “insult” that originated in the eighties. It is a shortened form of “disrespect” or “dismiss”.

Down
2. Region that rebelled against Persia in about 500 B.C. 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.

4. Hulu distractions ADS
Hulu.com is a website providing streaming video of full television shows. It is a joint venture of NBC and Disney, and so features a lot of their content. The service is free and is supported by advertising, but you can sign up for a premium subscription and get access to more shows. A lot of younger folks seem to use Hulu quite often …

5. Butler in a classic film RHETT
In Margaret Mitchell’s novel “Gone with the Wind”, when Rhett Butler finally walks out on Scarlett O’Hara he utters the words “My dear, I don’t give a damn”. Most of us are more familiar with the slightly different words spoken by Clark Gable in the film adaption of the story: “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

6. Greek leader ALPHA
The Greek alphabet starts off with the letters alpha, beta, gamma …

7. Logan of “60 Minutes” LARA
Lara Logan is a South African newswoman, and is currently the Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent for CBS News. CBS placed Logan on a forced leave of absence at the end of 2013 for comments that she made about the US Government’s culpability in the Benghazi attack and for inaccuracies in her reporting of the story.

The marvelous news magazine program “60 Minutes” has been on the air since 1968. The show is unique among all other regularly-scheduled shows in that it has never used theme music. There is just the ticking of that Aristo stopwatch.

8. EMS destinations ERS
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) usually head for the emergency room (ER).

9. Advertised advantage of some lights LESS TAR
The partially combusted particulate matter that is produced as a cigarette burns forms a resinous material called “tar”. Cigarette tar is different than the tar used on roads, but is very toxic. Marijuana smoke produces a very similar tar to cigarette smoke, and is just as dangerous.

10. “Get __”: 1967 Esquires hit ON UP
The Esquires were an R&B band from Milwaukee that formed in 1957. The band’s biggest hit was “Get on Up”, released in 1967.

11. Amount to plow ACRE
At one time, an acre was defined as the amount of land a yoke of oxen could plow in a day. This was more precisely defined as a strip of land “one furrow long” (i.e. one furlong) and one furlong wide. The length of one furlong was equal to 10 chains, or 40 rods. A area of one furlong times 10 rods was one rood.

14. “You’re welcome,” in Havana DE NADA
“Nada” is the Spanish word for “nothing”. “De nada” translates literally from the Spanish as “of nothing”, and is used to mean “you’re welcome” or “don’t mention it”. The French have the same expression “de rien”, also translating to “of nothing” and used the same way.

Havana is the capital city of Cuba. The city was founded by the Spanish in the early 1500s after which it became a strategic location for Spain’s exploration and conquest of the Americas. In particular, Havana was used as a stopping-off point for treasure-laden ships on the return journey to Spain.

16. Anger simile WET HEN
Someone described as “mad as a wet hen” is “very angry”.

18. Like Willie Nelson’s voice NASAL
Country singer, actor and activist Willie Nelson was born during the Great Depression in Abbott, Texas. He wrote his first song at the age of seven and joined his first band at the age of ten, and he is still going strong. Nelson has a ranch in Texas but now spends most of his time in Maui, where he lives in a largely self-sustaining community alongside neighbors such as Kris Kristofferson, Woody Harrelson and Owen Wilson.

23. Kabuki accessory OBI
The sash worn as part of traditional Japanese dress is known as an obi. The obi can be tied in what is called a butterfly knot.

Kabuki is a Japanese form of theater involving dance and drama. In the original Kabuki theater, both male and female parts were played by women. In contrast, the Noh dramas have the male and female parts played by men.

25. URL ender ORG
The .org domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:

– .com (commercial enterprise)
– .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
– .mil (US military)
– .org (not-for-profit organization)
– .gov (US federal government entity)
– .edu (college-level educational institution)

27. Easy mark SIMP
“Simp” is slang for a simple or foolish person. Not nice …

28. Host after Allen PAAR
Jack Paar was most famous as the host of “The Tonight Show”, from 1957 to 1962. When he died in 2004, “Time” magazine wrote that Paar was “the fellow who split talk show history into two eras: “Before Paar and Below Paar”. Very complimentary …

Steve Allen was a television personality who always seemed to be on air in the fifties, sixties and seventies. Famously, Allen was the original host of “The Tonight Show”. He also played a little piano and composed over 10,000 songs, perhaps more than anyone in history. His best known song is probably “This Could Be the Start of Something Big”.

29. Med. tests using leads ECGS
An EKG measures electrical activity in the heart. Back in my homeland of Ireland, an EKG is known as an ECG (for electrocardiogram). We use the German name in the US, Elektrokardiogramm, giving us EKG. Apparently the abbreviation EKG is preferred as ECG might be confused (if poorly handwritten, I guess) with EEG, the abbreviation for an electroencephalogram.

32. 1,509-mile border river URAL
The Ural River rises in the Ural Mountains in Russia and flows for half its length through Russian territory until it crosses the border into Kazakhstan, finally emptying into the Caspian Sea.

34. 2011 NBA retiree YAO
Yao Ming is a retired professional basketball player from Shanghai who played for the Houston Rockets. At 7’6″, Yao was the tallest man playing in the NBA.

35. Divs. on some rulers CMS
Centimeters (cms.)

39. “The Grapes of Wrath” character MIGRANT
John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath” is set during the Great Depression. The novel tells the story of the Joad family from Oklahoma, farmers who had to leave their home and head for California due to economic hardship.

40. Make sure of ICE
“To ice” is a slang term meaning “to secure a victory”.

42. Bay Area travel letters SFO
San Francisco International Airport (SFO) serves as the main base of operations for Virgin America (recently sold to Alaska Airlines), and is also the maintenance hub for United Airlines. SFO was the site of a 2013 crash of an Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 that resulted in three fatalities.

43. Home of the WNBA’s Shock TULSA
The Shock were the professional WNBA team based in Tulsa from 2010 to 2015. The team was founded as the Detroit Shock in 1998, and became the Dallas Wings after leaving Tulsa in 2016.

48. Botanist’s field FLORA
The fauna is the animal life of a particular region, and the flora is that region’s plant life. The term “fauna” comes from the Roman goddess of earth and fertility who was called Fauna. Flora was the Roman goddess of plants, flowers and fertility.

50. Old Celtic religious leader DRUID
Druids were priests of Celtic Europe during the Iron Age.

51. Column in un calendrier MARDI
In French, one of the columns in “un calendrier” (a calendar) is “mardi” (Tuesday).

54. Hemingway sobriquet PAPA
Apparently, the author Ernest Hemingway picked up the moniker “Papa” on the birth of his first child (as one might expect!). Hemingway seemed to the like the nickname, and welcomed its use outside of the family, and his admirers obliged.

55. Cab company competitor UBER
Uber is a ridesharing service that was founded in 2009 and is based in San Francisco. The service is somewhat controversial and has been described as an illegal taxicab operation. Central to Uber’s service is the company’s mobile app, which can use the client’s GPS location to help find the nearest available ride. Personally, I love the service and only have had good experiences …

57. Image on Missouri’s state quarter ARCH
The Gateway Arch in St. Louis is the tallest monument in the United States. It was designed by Eero Saarinen, with the help of structural engineer Hannskarl Bandel. They did their design work back in 1947, but construction wasn’t started until 1963. In 1980, a daredevil took it upon himself to parachute onto the top of the arch, intending to further jump from the apex of the arch and parachute to the ground. He hit the arch alright, and slid all the way down one of the arches to his death. No comment …

The American quarter is a little unusual in the world of decimal currency if you think about it. Most currencies have a “20-cent” coin, easier to work with mathematically. The US went for the quarter in deference to the practice of dividing Spanish Milled Dollars into eight wedge-shaped “bits”. That’s also why the quarter is sometimes referred to as “two bits”. State quarters were introduced in 1999, but prior to that the quarter had an eagle on its reverse.

60. “Citizenfour” org. NSA
“Citizenfour” is a 2014 documentary about Edward Snowden and his leaking of classified NSA information. Much of the film consists of footage that director Laura Poitras shot while interviewing Snowden in a hotel room in Hong Kong before the story broke.

61. Saison in Provence ETE
In French, “été” (summer) is “la saison chaude” (the warm season).

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Light source BIC
4. Sea bordering Uzbekistan ARAL
8. Online money source E-LOAN
13. Prepare for a snap LOAD
15. “Sons and Lovers” author DH LAWRENCE
17. Heat INTENSE PRESSURE
19. Tuscan hill city SIENA
20. “__ does it!” THAT
21. Zipped SPED
22. Gulf Coast resort city SARASOTA
24. Like sriracha sauce HOT
26. Smidgen DAB
27. Colorful cover-ups SERAPES
31. Heat QUALIFYING RACE
35. Alley wanderer CUR
36. Popular truck brand RAM
37. Important time AGE
38. Heat MIAMI HOOPSTERS
45. Unites, in a way SPLICES
46. PETA concern FUR
47. Turn right GEE
48. “No, really?” FOOLED ME
53. Egg on SPUR
56. L, vis-à-vis C HALF
58. Junkyard material SCRAP
59. Heat HABANERO FEATURE
62. It’s thinly disguised OPEN SECRET
63. Fries, e.g. SIDE
64. Medicare card specification PART A
65. Fabulous runner-up HARE
66. Talk trash to DIS

Down
1. Euphoria BLISS
2. Region that rebelled against Persia in about 500 B.C. IONIA
3. Work at weddings CATER
4. Hulu distractions ADS
5. Butler in a classic film RHETT
6. Greek leader ALPHA
7. Logan of “60 Minutes” LARA
8. EMS destinations ERS
9. Advertised advantage of some lights LESS TAR
10. “Get __”: 1967 Esquires hit ON UP
11. Amount to plow ACRE
12. Cry out for NEED
14. “You’re welcome,” in Havana DE NADA
16. Anger simile WET HEN
18. Like Willie Nelson’s voice NASAL
23. Kabuki accessory OBI
25. URL ender ORG
27. Easy mark SIMP
28. Host after Allen PAAR
29. Med. tests using leads ECGS
30. “Now do you believe me?” SEE?
31. Wit’s end? QUIP
32. 1,509-mile border river URAL
33. Big dos FROS
34. 2011 NBA retiree YAO
35. Divs. on some rulers CMS
39. “The Grapes of Wrath” character MIGRANT
40. Make sure of ICE
41. Titter HEE-HEE
42. Bay Area travel letters SFO
43. Home of the WNBA’s Shock TULSA
44. Puts up ERECTS
48. Botanist’s field FLORA
49. Proposal OFFER
50. Old Celtic religious leader DRUID
51. Column in un calendrier MARDI
52. Fencing swords EPEES
53. Hunt for bargains SHOP
54. Hemingway sobriquet PAPA
55. Cab company competitor UBER
57. Image on Missouri’s state quarter ARCH
60. “Citizenfour” org. NSA
61. Saison in Provence ETE

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9 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 20 May 16, Friday”

  1. Very nice puzzle, but I tend to love Friday grids anyway. I eventually finished unaided. I even matched Bill's time as long as you don't count the first 45 minutes I worked on it. Sheesh. Last to fill in was GEE. Huh? No clue as to what that was until the blog. Some tricky cluing as well e.g. the clue for LESS TAR. I also had "awful" at first for Willie Nelson's voice but finally got it right.

    I think the Sriracha plant almost had to shut down a year or 2 ago as the aroma of garlic was overtaking the neighborhood and people were protesting. I think they eventually found a better way to contain the fumes and all was well. I love the stuff so that was a close call for me.

    Habaneros are named after Havana, Cuba so it's easy to remember the pronunciation that way.

    Speaking of 60 Minutes, it was sad to see Morley Safer died yesterday. He was on that one show for 46 years. Wow.

    Best –

  2. LAT: DNF, but managed about 3/4 of the way through with a couple of major errors.

    WSJ: Zero errors. No good show the work answer on the meta, but that's pretty usual for me anyway.

    @Jeff They made a big deal of him retiring over the last couple of weeks, and even did a special 60 Minutes last weekend all about him. Most of the "death" reporting was actually copied from that, actually. Pretty interesting guy overall.

  3. I didn't think of 'snap' as taking a picture. Gee and haw—never heard of them in this context. Good puzzle Like the theme

  4. Just finished the LAT's so the WSJ is next up. Struggled for sometime to get 31 Across but when I finally got that one then the Q made me see Quip for 31 Down and that was the final brick in the wall.

    I'm off to Vegas tomorrow to see our son and his fiance "tie the knot" so won't be around for the Saturday or Sunday puzzles this week. Hope you all have a good weekend.

  5. WSJ got completed successfully…but it wasn't fast or easy for me. And now I can relax until I leave in the early AM for the drive to Vegas. I'm leaving about 5 AM, so the traffic should be light but the light should be dim (ha).

  6. Got the top very quickly and the bottom reasonably quickly but I fizzled in the middle for some reason, although I had good parts of it. Still feel OK about it…on to tomorrow.

    -Dirk

  7. Intensely disliked NW corner. See my time when I gave up without finishing after four hours of googling. NOT FUN!

  8. Hey y'all!
    ICE/GEE…?? really?? Talk about cruel and unusual!!!
    This thing took a coupla years off my life, and right before Saturday!
    I'm hoping to sleep it off. Busy days both Friday and Saturday, but I'll try to get an earlier start for Saturday grid….
    Sweet dreams~~®

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