LA Times Crossword Answers 24 Jun 16, Friday




LA Times Crossword Solution 24 Jun 16 - 125%







Constructed by: Howard Barkin

Edited by: Rich Norris

Quicklink to a complete list of today’s clues and answers

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Theme: Three-Ring Circus

Today’s THREE themed answers all have the same clue, namely “RING”, although that “RING” is represented by the letter O in the puzzle:

  • 56A…Site of confused activity, and a hint to 20-, 32- and 43-Across..THREE-RING CIRCUS
  • 20A…O..CRIMINAL NETWORK
  • 32A…O..BOXING VENUE
  • 43A…O..WEDDING BAND

Bill’s time: 9m 57s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1…”I Love Lucy” airer..CBS

Lucille Ball was at the height of her success while she was married to Desi Arnaz. The couple met in 1940 and not long afterwards eloped. Lucy had several miscarriages before she gave birth to her first child in 1951, just one month before her fortieth birthday. A year and a half later, while “I Love Lucy” was garnering large audiences, she became pregnant with her second child, a pregnancy that was written into the television show’s script. In fact, the day that Lucy gave birth on the show, was the same day that she gave birth in real life.

9…”I Love Lucy” role..ETHEL

In the hit television show “I Love Lucy”, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz played Lucy and Ricky Ricardo. The Ricardos’ best friends were also their landlords, Fred and Ethel Mertz. The Mertz’s were played by William Frawley and Vivian Vance.

14…Caucasian native..HUN

The Huns were a nomadic people who originated in Eastern Europe in the 4th century. Under the command of Attila the Hun they developed a unified empire that stretched from modern-day Germany across to the steppes of Central Asia. The whole of the Hunnic Empire collapsed within a year of Attila’s death in 453 AD.

The Caucasus is a geographic region lying between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea on the European-Asian border. The region is home to the Mount Elbrus in the Caucasian Mountains, which is the highest peak in the whole of Europe.

16…__ football..ARENA

Arena Football is played indoors, on a smaller field than American (and Canadian) football. The sport was invented in 1981, and the Arena Football League (AFL) was around from 1987 till 2008. There’s a new AFL in business now, which started playing games in 2010.

17…Detergent in a red container..ERA

Era was the first liquid laundry detergent produced by Procter & Gamble.

18…Kind of curl..BICEP

The biceps muscle is made up of two bundles of muscle, both of which terminate at the same point near the elbow. The heads of the bundles terminate at different points on the scapula or shoulder blade. “Biceps” is Latin for “two-headed”.

19…More miffed..SORER

“To miff” is “to put out, to tee off”, a word that has been around since the early 1600s. Interestingly, in 1824 Sir Walter Scott described the word “miffed” as “a women’s phrase”. That would get him a slap, I’d say …

23…Inca __: Peruvian soft drink..KOLA

Inca Kola is a soft drink from Peru that was introduced in 1935. The soda’s main flavoring ingredient is lemon verbena, and it is said to taste like bubblegum.

24…Taxing people?..IRS

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was set up during the Civil War to raise money to cover war expenses. Prior to the introduction of income tax in 1862, the government was funded by levies on trade and property.

25…Meet at the poker table..SEE

I’ll see your bet and raise you …

26…Twitter follower, usually..FAN

I have never tweeted in my life, and have no plans to do so (but one should never say “never”). Twitter is a microblogging service that limits any post sent to just 140 characters. In a sense, it is similar to this blog. Here I send out a post once a day containing information that I think might be useful to folks (thank you for reading!). I don’t think I could send out much of interest using just 140 characters.

28…Horseshoe-shaped boat part..OARLOCK

Oarlock are swivelling braces on the sides of a rowing boat that hold the oars as the boat is being propelled. Back in Ireland, we call them “rowlocks” (pronounced “rollox”).

37…Garden pond fish..KOI

Koi are also called Japanese carp. Koi have been bred for decorative purposes and there are now some very brightly colored examples found in Japanese water gardens.

39…Meteor tail?..-ITE

A shooting star is what we call the visible path of a meteoroid as is it enters the earth’s atmosphere. Almost all meteoroids burn up, but if one is large enough to survive and reach the ground, we call it a meteorite. The word “meteor” comes from the Greek “meteōros” meaning “high in the air”.

40…Ancient Greek physician..GALEN

Galen of Pergamum was a physician of Ancient Rome (of Greek ethnicity). He mainly worked on monkeys, dissecting their bodies to learn about physiology as it was not permitted to dissect human bodies in his day.

42…Author Deighton..LEN

I used to walk my dog right past author Len Deighton’s house years ago, as we lived in the same village in Ireland (probably my only claim to fame!). Deighton wrote the excellent espionage thriller “The IPCRESS File”, made into a 1965 movie starring Michael Caine.

46…Angles for iron users..DOGLEGS

That would be in golf.

48…Course for newcomers: Abbr…ESL

English as a Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).

49…”… __ the set of sun”: “Macbeth”..ERE

“That will be ere the set of sun” is a line from William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”, a line that is spoken by one of the three witches.

50…Seven-film franchise..SAW

The “Saw” franchise of movies is gruesome in the extreme. I’ve only seen a few minutes of “Saw” footage (accidentally). The stories are about imprisoned victims who are faced with having to mutilate themselves to escape. Ugh …

63…”Rumour __ It”: 2011 Adele hit..HAS

Adele is the stage name of English singer Adele Adkins. Adele’s debut album is “19”, named after the age she was during the album’s production. Her second album was even more successful than the first. Called “21”, the second album was released three years after the first, when Adele was three years older. More recently, her third studio album “25”, released in 2015, broke the first-week sales records in both the UK and the US.

66…Spacewalk initials..EVA

Extra-vehicular activity (EVA) is the name given to any work done by an astronaut outside of his or her spacecraft. The term would encompass walking on the moon, as well as making a space walk i.e. floating around in space tethered to spacecraft.

68…Spoke Abyssinian?..MEWED

The Abyssinian is a popular short-haired breed of domestic cat. The name “Abyssinian” would seem to indicate that the breed originated in Ethiopia (formerly “Abyssinia”), but most stories suggest that the Abyssinian comes from Egypt.

69…”L.A. Law” actress..DEY

The actress Susan Dey first appeared on “The Partridge Family” when she was 17-years-old when she had no acting experience. Years later, Dey won a Golden Globe for playing the leading role of Grace Van Owen in “L. A. Law”.

Down

2…Grand Canyon animal..BURRO

Our word “burro” meaning donkey comes from the Spanish word for the same animal, namely “burrico”.

The wild donkey that we know as a burro was introduced into the Grand Canyon in the late 1800s, where they used the animal to help pack out mined copper, asbestos and lead. When the miners moved on, they left the burros to roam free. Feral burros essentially overran the Grand Canyon in subsequent years, leading to the forced removal of 500 of them in the early eighties by the National Park Service. Burros wreak havoc on the canyon’s ecosystem, and in particular compete with native bighorn sheep. The bighorn sheep population has rebounded since the number of wild donkeys has dropped.

4…View from the Qilian Mountains..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”.

The Qilian Mountains are located in China, with the name “Qilian” translating as “Southern”. The mountains used to be called the Richtofen Range by European, named for explorer and geologist Ferdinand von Richthofen. Ferdinand was an uncle of WWI flying ace Manfred von Richthofen, aka the Red Baron.

6…Muppet in a can..OSCAR

Oscar the Grouch is the Muppet that lives in a garbage can. Oscar’s persona comes from various sources. He is named after Oscar Brand who was one of the board members of the Children’s Television Workshop, the backers for “Sesame Street” as the Muppets were being developed in the sixties. Oscar’s personality was inspired by an angry waiter that once served Jim Henson (father of the Muppets). The voice was modeled on a grumpy New York cab driver encountered one day by Caroll Spinney, the puppeteer who brings Oscar to life.

8…”Outside the Lines” airer..ESPN

“Outside the Lines” (OTL) is an ESPN show that has aired since 1990.

9…Hidden DVD features..EASTER EGGS

In a film, book, computer program (or even a crossword!), an “Easter egg” is a hidden message or inside joke that is left intentionally during production. The term “Easter egg” is used for such a device as it evokes the idea of an Easter egg hunt. You can check out thousands of such Easter eggs at www.eeggs.com.

11…Sub..HERO

“Hero” is another name for a submarine sandwich. The hero originated in New York City in the 1800s among Italian immigrants who wanted an Italian sandwich that reminded them of home. The name “hero” was coined in the 1930s, supposedly by a food critic in the “New York Herald Tribune” when he wrote that “one had to be a hero” to finish the gigantic sandwich. Hero is a prevalent term to this day in New York City, reserved for a submarine sandwich with an Italian flavor.

12…U.S. dept. with a windmill on its seal..ENER

The US Department of Energy (DOE) came into being largely as a result of the 1973 oil crisis. The DOE was founded in 1977 by the Carter administration. The DOE is responsible for regulating the production of nuclear power, and it is also responsible for the nation’s nuclear weapons. The official DOE seal features symbols denoting five sources of energy: the sun, an atom, an oil derrick, a windmill and a dynamo.

21…Classic 20-Across..MAFIA
(20A…O..CRIMINAL NETWORK)

Apparently “Cosa Nostra” is the real name for the Italian Mafia. “Cosa Nostra” translates as “our thing” or “this thing of ours”. The term first became public in the US when the FBI managed to turn some members of the American Mafia. The Italian authorities established that “Cosa Nostra” was also used in Sicily when they penetrated the Sicilian Mafia in the 1980s. The term “Mafia” seems to be just a literary invention that has become popular with the public.

22…Genesis name..ESAU

Esau was the twin brother of Jacob, the founder of the Israelites. When their mother Rebekah gave birth to the twins “the first emerged red and hairy all over (Esau), with his heel grasped by the hand of the second to come out (Jacob)”. As Esau was the first born, he was entitled to inherit his father’s wealth (it was his “birthright”). Instead, Esau sold his birthright to Jacob for the price of a “mess of pottage” (a meal of lentils).

28…R.E.M.’s “The __ Love”..ONE I

“The One I Love” is a song released in 1987 by the rock band R.E.M. The lyrics are somewhat cynical. The song starts out with “This one goes out to the one I love”, but then the second line is less wholesome, “A simple prop to occupy my time” …

29…St. with a panhandle..OKLA

The state of Oklahoma takes its name from the Choctaw words “okla humma” meaning “red people”.

30…”Fargo” director..COEN

“Fargo” is one of my favorite films of all time, and stars perhaps my favorite actress, Frances McDormand. “Fargo” was directed by the Coen brothers, Joel and Ethan. Frances McDormand is Joel’s wife.

33…Toast topping..OLEO

Emperor Louis Napoleon III of France announced a competition to develop a substitute for butter, a substitute that would be more accessible to the lower classes and more practical for the armed forces. A French chemist called Hippolyte Mege-Mouries came up with something he called oleomargarine in 1869, which was eventually manufactured under the trade name “margarine”. The name “oleomargarine” also gives us our generic term “oleo”.

34…Word seen under a deer silhouette..XING

Deer Crossing (Xing)

35…YouTube clips, for short..VIDS

YouTube is a video-sharing website, launched in 2005 by three ex-PayPal employees. Google bought YouTube in 2006 for $1.65 billion. Yep, $1.65 billion, less than two years after it was founded …

36…RR schedule listing..ETD

Estimated time of departure (ETD)

Railroad (RR)

44…Hungarian wine region..EGER

Eger is a city in the northeast of Hungary that is noted for its thermal baths and for its wine production. Back in Ireland, I would quite often drink “Bull’s Blood”, Hungary’s most famous red wine, which comes from the Eger wine region.

45…Widely criticized 1985 product introduction..NEW COKE

When “new Coke” was introduced in 1985, the market reacted very, very badly. The public reaction was so negative that the Coca-Cola company quickly reintroduced its “Coca Cola Classic” line. Ironically, the whole debacle resulted in Coke actually gaining market share when the “old coke” returned to supermarket shelves.

55…SAT part that’s judged..ESSAY

Today the standardized test for admission to colleges is known as the SAT Reasoning Test, but it used to be called the Scholastic Aptitude Test and Scholastic Assessment Test, which led to the acronym SAT.

56…Wielder of Mjölnir..THOR

Mjölnir is the name of the hammer associated with the Norse god Thor. The name “Mjölnir” translates as “crusher”.

59…SALT topic..ICBM

There were two rounds of Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) between the US and the Soviet Union, and two resulting treaties (SALT I & SALT II). The opening round of SALT I talks were held in Helsinki as far back as 1970, with the resulting treaty signed by President Richard Nixon and General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev in 1972.

An Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) is a ballistic missile with the range necessary to cross between continents. Being ballistic (unlike a cruise missile), an ICBM is guided during the initial launch phase, but later in flight just relies on thrust and gravity to arrive at its target. It is defined as intercontinental as it has a range greater than 3,500 miles. ICBMs are really only used for delivering nuclear warheads. Scary stuff …

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1…”I Love Lucy” airer..CBS

4…Search, in a way..GROPE

9…”I Love Lucy” role..ETHEL

14…Caucasian native..HUN

15…Havens..OASES

16…__ football..ARENA

17…Detergent in a red container..ERA

18…Kind of curl..BICEP

19…More miffed..SORER

20…O..CRIMINAL NETWORK

23…Inca __: Peruvian soft drink..KOLA

24…Taxing people?..IRS

25…Meet at the poker table..SEE

26…Twitter follower, usually..FAN

28…Horseshoe-shaped boat part..OARLOCK

32…O..BOXING VENUE

37…Garden pond fish..KOI

38…Crook’s invention..ALIAS

39…Meteor tail?..-ITE

40…Ancient Greek physician..GALEN

42…Author Deighton..LEN

43…O..WEDDING BAND

46…Angles for iron users..DOGLEGS

48…Course for newcomers: Abbr…ESL

49…”… __ the set of sun”: “Macbeth”..ERE

50…Seven-film franchise..SAW

52…Smooth over..EASE

56…Site of confused activity, and a hint to 20-, 32- and 43-Across..THREE-RING CIRCUS

61…Stockpile..HOARD

62…Sportscast analysis..COLOR

63…”Rumour __ It”: 2011 Adele hit..HAS

64…First sign..ONSET

65…In need of change?..BROKE

66…Spacewalk initials..EVA

67…Brief copy?..REPRO

68…Spoke Abyssinian?..MEWED

69…”L.A. Law” actress..DEY

Down

1…It’s always dated..CHECK

2…Grand Canyon animal..BURRO

3…Spiral-shelled creature..SNAIL

4…View from the Qilian Mountains..GOBI

5…Coming down..RAINING

6…Muppet in a can..OSCAR

7…Strips off..PEELS

8…”Outside the Lines” airer..ESPN

9…Hidden DVD features..EASTER EGGS

10…Garden tool..TROWEL

11…Sub..HERO

12…U.S. dept. with a windmill on its seal..ENER

13…Escapade..LARK

21…Classic 20-Across..MAFIA

22…Genesis name..ESAU

27…Was supervised by..ANSWERED TO

28…R.E.M.’s “The __ Love”..ONE I

29…St. with a panhandle..OKLA

30…”Fargo” director..COEN

31…Warmhearted..KIND

32…Undisguised..BALD

33…Toast topping..OLEO

34…Word seen under a deer silhouette..XING

35…YouTube clips, for short..VIDS

36…RR schedule listing..ETD

41…More capable..ABLER

44…Hungarian wine region..EGER

45…Widely criticized 1985 product introduction..NEW COKE

47…Rude sort..LEERER

50…Bedroom noise..SNORE

51…Warmly lit..AGLOW

53…Yearned..ACHED

54…Polished..SUAVE

55…SAT part that’s judged..ESSAY

56…Wielder of Mjölnir..THOR

57…Perfect..HONE

58…Grating sound..RASP

59…SALT topic..ICBM

60…More than annoyed..IRED




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14 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 24 Jun 16, Friday”

  1. LAT: Zero errors. For a Friday, nothing too remarkable compared to a Thurs – basically went much quicker than I expected, especially after the theme fell.

    Only real comment about the fill is REM’s “The One I Love” – it’s not so much “cynical”, but a view of how so many see the idea of “love” as a disposable one where the other person is simply “used”. As can now be readily seen by the divorce rate today, “true love” is indeed disposable. “a simple prop to occupy my time”, indeed. Funniest is all the dedications of this song that have happened with couples or other loved ones over the years, which shows that people really don’t listen to songs all too closely.

    WSJ: Zero errors. Meta answered and contest entered. I’m not 100% sure of the answer (it’s a “complete the theme” meta), but sure enough to enter an answer. Generally different fill that represented a fair challenge, overall.

  2. @Carrie
    Usually by a lot of practice. I remember having to do that myself back in those days. Taking a GMAT one time was quite a shock and naturally, I did quite a lot worse than I did with my college entrance one. But I could pull out some turn of the century (19th-20th) exams that would rip up just about everyone involved. To say the education system is a race to the bottom wouldn’t be too far from accurate.

    While unfortunately, I don’t have any of the answers I need in life at this point, I would say that I’m as smart as I need to be for the moment. It has to be good enough. 🙂

  3. Nice grid! For the most part, an enjoyably romp (:12). Always nice to see an omage to Lucille Ball.

    I’m trying to balance all this with the news on “Brexit,” and I’m going to take refuge in crosswords, since they don’t send dormant butterflies out of my wallet. Sorry to interject real world things. It’s been a long night.

  4. Too much trivia such as which TV network carried what show, or Peruvian soft drinks; easy fills, but meh. I can’t get worked up enough to be ired about this.

  5. Did this puzzle first thing in the AM, and it was easier than yesterday’s, but it looks like it was easier for everyone. Took me a while to get the theme as I thought the rings were the letter “O” or zeroes. EASTEREGG in that sense is totally new to me.

    @Carrie
    Missing 2 of 22 sounds pretty good to me. Then again it’s all relative. Missing 2 of 22 free throws in basketball is pretty good, but an airline losing 2 of 22 flights…not so much. I always did well on those type tests, but I studied a lot for each one. Who knows how I would have done cold?

    I took a Wunderlich test once absolutely cold. Not only did I not study for it, I walked into the room not even knowing I was going to take it or any test. Crazy test. 50 questions and you have 12 minutes to complete them. Some are math or analogy types you’re used to, but I remember some were like – indentifying the second earliest date from a list of dates. Easy enough but doing it quickly was very tricky. Finishing that test completely (which I did not) requires reading/solving/marking an answer every 14 seconds.

    For anyone who’s interested they list average scores (number of correct answers) by profession. I believe certain blue collar workers averaged an 18, attorneys averaged 25-28 or so. Highest scoring profession I saw was chemical engineers who averaged a 33 on it. Peyton Manning famously scored a 48 on it when the NFL administered it to him before he was drafted.

    @Vidwan
    The evils of auto correct. You should see my auto correct when I Google the nearest Fuddruckers….

    Best –

  6. Thanks to Bill for his easteregg explanation and web site. Kept coming to ‘easteregg’ as the answer but couldn’t imagine what it had to do with the clue. Never heard of this.

    1. Thanks, Cattygirl. If you’re ever bored, you can spend a pleasant hour watching Easter Eggs in movies on YouTube.

    1. A sportscast team has two main members. The main one is the play-by-play person (or the sportscaster) who just announces the action. The other one is the color commentator (reference in the clue) or analyst who’s there to provide analysis of the game and any other background information such as injuries to the players, statistics, and the like. The color guy is often a former player or coach. Usually the two pass the time when action isn’t happening by talking about what the analyst has to offer or just generally bantering.

  7. Thank you, @Glenn! But why is he called a “color” analyst? Does it mean to add color to the discussion? I’m trying to understand the derivation of this idiom. Thanks.

    1. @RestMyCase
      “Does it mean to add color to the discussion?”

      You could say that, yes. To “add color” or “add interesting details beyond what is simply happening in the game for those that may understand how and why”. (Play-by-play answering who and what)

  8. @RestMyCase – According to Wikipedia the etymology of the term is as follows:

    “The term color refers to levity and insight provided by a secondary announcer. A sports color commentator customarily works alongside the play-by-play broadcaster”

  9. Hey guys!
    Good puzzle, and I finished, altho I got stuck at DOG LEGS/EGER. Never heard of either, and just guessed at what sorta sounded right.
    Thanks Jeff! Yes, 2 wrong really isn’t bad; I just (smugly) thought I’d ace it, being a teacher. Will continue practicing, as I may begin tutoring SAT prep.
    I googled the wunderkind test you mentioned (pun intended.) THAT sounds tough. I’m impressed by Manning’s score. Is he now a COLOR commentator somewhere?
    Sweet dreams~~™ ??????

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