LA Times Crossword Answers 10 Jan 17, Tuesday










Constructed by: Janice Luttrell

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: Stir the Pot

Today’s themed answers each include a string of three circled letters in the grid. That string comprises the letters POT rearranged, STIRRED up:

  • 61A. Cause trouble … and a hint to this puzzle’s circled letters : STIR THE POT
  • 17A. Dice roller’s exhortation : COME TO PAPA!
  • 40A. Actor with near-synonymous first and last names : RIP TORN
  • 11D. Pretty darn simple : IDIOT PROOF
  • 25D. Toaster snack : POP-TART
  • 29D. Verses by Allen Ginsberg, e.g. : BEAT POETRY

Bill’s time: 5m 54s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

5. Dodge Aries and Plymouth Reliant : K-CARS

The Dodge Aries (and the Plymouth Reliant) were Chrysler’s first “K-cars”, introduced in 1981. The K-cars were designed to carry 6 passengers, on two bench seats. Remember taking a corner a little too fast on those seats, in the days when no one wore seat belts?

16. Pop singer Brickell : EDIE

Edie Brickell is a singer-songwriter from Dallas, Texas. Brickell has been married to fellow singer Paul Simon since 1991.

19. Scrabble piece : TILE

The game of Scrabble has been produced in many international versions, and each of these editions has its own tile distribution to suit the local language. For example, in English we have two tiles worth ten points: one “Q” and one “Z”. If you play the game in French then there are five tiles worth ten points: one “K”, one “W”, one “X”, one “Y” and one “Z”.

23. Satchel feature : STRAP

A satchel is a soft-sided bag, usually with a strap that is often worn diagonally across the body. When we were kids in Ireland, we’d carry our books to and from school in a backpack satchel. All Irish schoolchildren had a satchel back then.

26. Margarita glass rim coating : SALT

No one seems to know for sure who first created the cocktail known as a margarita. The most plausible and oft-quoted is that it was invented in 1941 in Ensenada, Mexico. The barman mixed the drink for an important visitor, the daughter of the German ambassador. The daughter’s name was Margarita Henkel, and she lent her name to the new drink. The basic recipe for a margarita is a mixture of tequila, orange-flavored liqueur (like Cointreau) and lime juice.

27. Curved sword : SABER

A saber is a sword with a curved blade and a relatively large hand guard. It is thought that the term originated with the Hungarian verb “szabni” meaning “to cut”.

30. Application info: Abbr. : DOB

Date of birth (DOB)

38. P-like Greek letter : RHO

Rho is the Greek letter that looks just like our Roman letter “p”, although it is equivalent to the Roman letter R.

39. Actress Thurman : UMA

Robert Thurman was the first westerner to be ordained a Tibetan Buddhist monk. Robert raised his children in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition and called his daughter “Uma” as it is a phonetic spelling of the Buddhist name “Dbuma”. Uma’s big break in movies came with her starring role in Quentin Tarantino’s 1994 hit “Pulp Fiction”. My favorite Uma Thurman film is the wonderful 1996 romantic comedy “The Truth About Cats and Dogs”.

40. Actor with near-synonymous first and last names : RIP TORN

Rip Torn is the actor who played the veteran television producer Artie on “The Larry Sanders Show”. That said, I always associate Torn with the role of Agent Zed in the “Men in Black” movies. Torn was married three times, to actresses Ann Wedgeworth, Geraldine Page and Amy Wright. His first cousin is actress Sissy Spacek. “Rip” is a nickname that runs in the Torn family. The actor was born Elmore Rual Torn, Jr.

44. Yuletide : NOEL

“Noël” is the French word for the Christmas season, ultimately coming from the Latin word for “birth” (natalis). Noel has come to be used as an alternative name for a Christmas carol.

Yule celebrations coincide with Christmas, and the words “Christmas” and “Yule” (often “Yuletide”) have become synonymous in much of the world. However, Yule was originally a pagan festival celebrated by Germanic peoples. The name “Yule” comes from the Old Norse word “jol” that was used to describe the festival.

47. __ Lanka : SRI

The island nation of Sri Lanka lies off the southeast coast of India. The name “Sri Lanka” translates from Sanskrit into English as “venerable island”. Before 1970, Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon, a name given to the country during British rule.

49. Upper, in Ulm : OBER

Ulm is in the south of Germany and sits on the River Danube. Ulm is famous as home to the tallest church in the world, Ulm Minster, a Gothic building with a steeple that is 530 feet tall, with 768 steps to climb. Ulm is also the birthplace of Albert Einstein, and is where the entire Austrian army surrendered to Napoleon after the Battle of Ulm in 1805.

60. Wee bit : IOTA

Iota is the ninth letter in the Greek alphabet. We use the word “iota” to portray something very small as it is the smallest of all Greek letters.

65. Emulate Vesuvius : ERUPT

Mount Vesuvius is on the Bay of Naples, just over five miles from the city of Naples. The most famous of the volcano’s eruptions took place in AD 79, the one which destroyed the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Today, Vesuvius is considered to be one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world, largely because it is at the center of the most densely populated volcanic region in the world, with 3 million people living nearby.

66. Scarlet letter of fiction : RED A

The main character in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel “The Scarlet Letter” is Hester Prynne. When Prynne is convicted by her puritanical neighbors of the crime of adultery, she is forced to wear a scarlet “A” (for “adultery”) on her clothing for the rest of her life, hence the novel’s title “The Scarlet Letter”.

67. Slow Churned ice cream brand : EDY’S

Dreyers’ ice cream sells its products under the name Dreyers in the Western United States, and Edy’s in the Eastern states. The company’s founders were William Dreyer and Joseph Edy.

68. Hagar of Van Halen : SAMMY

Rock vocalist and guitarist Sammy Hagar achieved fame in the seventies as a member of the group Montrose. He then carved out a successful solo career, and in 1985 took over from David Lee Roth as the lead vocalist of Van Halen.

Van Halen is a heavy metal band formed in Pasadena, California back in 1972. Brothers Eddie and Alex Van Halen originally called the band Mammoth, changing the name to Van Halen in 1974 when they found out there was another Mammoth playing the circuit. Early on, the brothers were renting a sound system from David Lee Roth, and they decided to save some money by bringing him into the band and saving on the rental fee!

Down

1. Random House vol. : DICT

The Random House publishing house was founded in 1925 by Donald Klopfer and the marvelous Bennett Cerf of TV’s “What’s My Line”. Apparently, Klopfer and Cerf originally resolved to “publish a few books on the side at random”, and hence came up with the name “Random House”.

2. Woodwind instrument : OBOE

Woodwind instruments are a subcategory of wind instruments that were traditionally made of wood, although some are now made from metal. There are two main classes of woodwind: flutes and reed instruments. Flutes produce sound by blowing air across the edge of a hole in a cylindrical tube. Reed instruments produce sounds by blowing into a mouthpiece, which then directs the air over a reed or reeds, causing them to vibrate.

3. Dalai __ : LAMA

The Dalai Lama is a religious leader in the Gelug branch of Tibetan Buddhism. The current Dalai Lama is the 14th to hold the office. He has indicated that the next Dalai Lama might be found outside of Tibet for the first time, and may even be female.

5. Soup mix brand : KNORR

When I was growing up in Ireland, we never saw Campbell’s soup on the shelves. It was basically all Knorr products, and dehydrated soup from a packet at that. How times have changed. Knorr is a German brand, now owned by the Anglo-Dutch Company Unilever.

6. “Blue Bloods” extra : COP

“Blue Bloods” is a police drama series about a family of police officers led by Police Commissioner Frank Reagan, played by Tom Selleck. The show has been on the air since 2010.

7. Pie-mode connection : A LA

In French, “à la mode” simply means “fashionable”. In America, the term has also come to describe a way of serving pie. Pie served à la mode includes a dollop of cream or ice cream, or as I recall from my time living in Upstate New York, with a wedge of cheddar cheese.

8. TV host Kelly : RIPA

When Kelly Ripa secured the co-host spot on morning television with Regis Philbin, she was still acting in “All My Children” in a role she had been playing for over ten years. After a year of holding down two jobs, she eventually gave up the acting gig. Ripa has acted as spokeswoman for several brands over the years, most recently for Electrolux and Rykä.

12. Housecat’s perch : SILL

“Sill plate” or simply “sill” is an architectural term for a bottom horizontal member to which vertical members are attached. A “window sill” is specific sill plate that is found at the bottom of a window opening.

25. Toaster snack : POP-TART

Pop-Tart is the most successful single brand for the Kellogg company, as millions of the sugary treats are sold every year. The US Military bought quite a few in 2001, and dropped 2.4 million Pop-Tarts into Afghanistan during the invasion after 9/11.

28. Evangelist __ Semple McPherson : AIMEE

Aimee Semple McPherson was a pioneer in the arena of evangelism, being one of the first to use radio to get across her message. In 1926, McPherson disappeared under mysterious circumstances at Venice Beach, California. About a month later, Aimee’s mother received a ransom note, which she says that she tossed away thinking that her daughter had drowned. A few days later, McPherson was found wandering around in a Mexican town across the border from Douglas, Arizona, claiming that she had been kidnapped and had escaped. There were many discrepancies in her story though, and five witnesses claimed to have seen her in a seaside cottage in Carmel, California while she was “gone”. No one seems to know for sure what exactly happened during that month.

29. Verses by Allen Ginsberg, e.g. : BEAT POETRY

Allen Ginsberg was a poet from from Newark, New Jersey whose name became inextricably linked with the Beat Generation of the 1950s and the counterculture of the 1960s. His most famous work is the 1955 poem “Howl”, in which Ginsberg denounces capitalism and conformity in the US.

33. Burglar : THIEF

The crime of burglary is the breaking into and entering of a building with the intent to steal. The actual theft is a separate crime.

34. “Deck the Halls” greenery : HOLLY

The music for the Christmas song “Deck the Halls” is a traditional Welsh tune that dates back to the 16th century. The same tune was used by Mozart for a violin and piano duet. The lyrics with which we are familiar (other than the “tra-la-la”) are American in origin, and were recorded in 19th century. “‘Tis the season to be jolly …”

48. Luxurious : POSH

No one really knows the etymology of the word “posh”. The popular myth that POSH stands for “Port Out, Starboard Home” is completely untrue, and is a story that can actually be traced back to the 1968 movie “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”. The myth is that wealthy British passengers travelling to and from India would book cabins on the port side for the outward journey and the starboard side for the home journey. This trick was supposedly designed to keep their cabins out of the direct sunlight.

52. Well-dressed : NATTY

A natty dresser is one who dresses smartly. The term may come from the Middle English “net” meaning “fine, elegant”, in which case it shares its etymology with the word “neat”.

57. Weapon with a tip guard : EPEE

The French word for sword is “épée”. In competitive fencing the épée is connected to a system that records an electrical signal when legal contact is made on an opponent’s body.

59. Walk of Fame figure : STAR

The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a series of sidewalks taking up 15 blocks of Hollywood Boulevard and 3 blocks of Vine Street in Hollywood. The Walk of Fame is an ever-changing monument dedicated to those who have achieved greatness in the entertainment industry, both in front of and behind the camera. The first stars installed in the sidewalk were a group of eight, officially laid in 1960. That group consisted of:

  • Joanne Woodward (actor)
  • Olive Borden (actor)
  • Ronald Colman (actor)
  • Louise Fazenda (actor)
  • Preston Foster (actor)
  • Burt Lancaster (actor)
  • Edward Sedgwick (director)
  • Ernest Torrence (actor)

62. Periodic table suffix : -IUM

Dmitri Mendeleev was a Russian chemist. When Mendeleev classified elements according to their chemical properties, he noticed patterns and was able to group elements into his famous 1869 Periodic Table. So powerful was his table that he actually predicted the properties of some elements that had not even been discovered in 1869. Element number 101 is mendelevium and was named after Mendeleev.

63. Turntable no. : RPM

The first standard for the rotational speed of gramophone records was 78 rpm. Like so many things it seems, the US version of “78” was slightly different from that for the rest of the world. The US record was designed to play at 78.26 rpm, whereas the standard in the rest of the world was 77.92 rpm. So, imported records playing on American equipment didn’t sound quite as they were intended.

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Doofus : DOLT

5. Dodge Aries and Plymouth Reliant : K-CARS

10. Smack on the mouth : KISS

14. Letter-shaped support piece : I-BAR

15. “For real!” : NO LIE!

16. Pop singer Brickell : EDIE

17. Dice roller’s exhortation : COME TO PAPA!

19. Scrabble piece : TILE

20. TV preview : TEASER

21. Taken as a whole : ALL TOLD

23. Satchel feature : STRAP

26. Margarita glass rim coating : SALT

27. Curved sword : SABER

30. Application info: Abbr. : DOB

32. Pool measure : DEPTH

35. What soccer shootouts resolve : TIES

36. Peaceful state : REPOSE

38. P-like Greek letter : RHO

39. Actress Thurman : UMA

40. Actor with near-synonymous first and last names : RIP TORN

41. Museum hanging : OIL

42. Amount after costs : NET

43. Suitcase attachments : ID TAGS

44. Yuletide : NOEL

45. Not so hot? : TEPID

47. __ Lanka : SRI

48. Swollen : PUFFY

49. Upper, in Ulm : OBER

51. Male voice range : TENOR

53. “Toodle-oo!” : CHEERIO!

56. Evaluate for tax purposes : ASSESS

60. Wee bit : IOTA

61. Cause trouble … and a hint to this puzzle’s circled letters : STIR THE POT

64. Time in office : TERM

65. Emulate Vesuvius : ERUPT

66. Scarlet letter of fiction : RED A

67. Slow Churned ice cream brand : EDY’S

68. Hagar of Van Halen : SAMMY

69. Wine bottle number : YEAR

Down

1. Random House vol. : DICT

2. Woodwind instrument : OBOE

3. Dalai __ : LAMA

4. Locks on heads : TRESSES

5. Soup mix brand : KNORR

6. “Blue Bloods” extra : COP

7. Pie-mode connection : A LA

8. TV host Kelly : RIPA

9. Applies weatherstripping to : SEALS

10. Stovetop whistler : KETTLE

11. Pretty darn simple : IDIOT PROOF

12. Housecat’s perch : SILL

13. Watermelon eater’s discard : SEED

18. Four: Pref. : TETR-

22. Saddled (with) : LADEN

24. People with skill : ADEPTS

25. Toaster snack : POP-TART

27. Publicity ploy : STUNT

28. Evangelist __ Semple McPherson : AIMEE

29. Verses by Allen Ginsberg, e.g. : BEAT POETRY

31. Shake it on the dance floor : BOOGIE

33. Burglar : THIEF

34. “Deck the Halls” greenery : HOLLY

36. Free (of) : RID

37. Yearbook gp. : SRS

40. One on horseback : RIDER

44. Room with a crib : NURSERY

46. Steel girders : I-BEAMS

48. Luxurious : POSH

50. Greets the judge : RISES

52. Well-dressed : NATTY

53. Mention in a footnote : CITE

54. Broke up some clods : HOED

55. Senorita’s “other” : OTRA

57. Weapon with a tip guard : EPEE

58. Scotch go-with : SODA

59. Walk of Fame figure : STAR

62. Periodic table suffix : -IUM

63. Turntable no. : RPM

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12 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 10 Jan 17, Tuesday”

  1. Hey guys, I read Sundays comments – and forgive me, but I don’t think the ‘new posters’ were critical of Bill at all, or assumed he had any responsibility for the snafu. They were understandably, very miffed, and Bill’s blog appeared to them as the only place where they could legitimately complain and expect to ‘be heard’ and some action might be taken, as a result. It was, of course, too late, for that particular day. As a humorous aside —- come to think of it —- now, THAT was a real puzzle…. worthy of the “Imitation Game” …. totally cryptic. A dedicated, devoted, crossword fan would be tearing his / her hair er, TRESSES.

    It is a great compliment to Bill, that they thought that this was one of the preeminent sites which the L A Times authorities might visit for a possible feedback ….

    So, Bill, is now, as much an ‘establishment’, in this case, as say, The Times of London.

    I also noticed, that, that Sunday was Patti Varol’s birthday – she, who is the right hand aide-de-camp, and chief deputy, of the Crossword General, Mr. Norris. Needless to say, she is a very eminent crossword constructor, in her own right. So guys, lighten up, maybe they were out celebrating, and what with the cake and champagne …..

    OMG, this has become an essay. My sincere apologies.

  2. As for the puzzle, today, I found it more difficult than yesterday, but still, a lot of fun. My times were much longer, but I enjoyed it. Its only Tuesday.

    I thought I had the ‘theme’, and but I completely misunderstood it. I thought,’Stir the Pot’ – what with the dice thrower, meant that these were synonyms of the word ‘pot’ – as in a poker game the ANTE and such. Reading Bill’s blog completely deflated my ego – I still have a lot to learn.
    ( I must strenuously emphasize, that ‘pot’ as a marihuana slang, never even entered my mind. That I am sure of. Pretty much, almost sure, anyway….. )

    I thought Satchel was Satchel Paige – what feature ?
    I thought ‘Blue bloods’ had to do with haemophilia, and hence british and russian royalty … a three letter word ?

    Finally, on the Periodic Table, may I recommend one of my favorite books of all time, ‘The disappearing spoon” …. a non-fiction, book-documentary on the Elements, by Sam Kean …. if you have any interest in chemistry, this is the book !!

    Have a nice day, folks.

  3. @David Kennison (Yesterday)

    Yes, one square moves (left, up, right, down) are a requirement for the maze. I didn’t think to state that before. FWIW, the print version has gaps printed in the boxes, indicating this. And using the same square more than once counts as the path crossing itself. As for the last question, I understood that the path was supposed to begin on the RAT at 79-Across (I believe) and then end at CHEESE (109-Down, I think?). Then as I stated before, the path has to go through each RAT in the order that it’s spelled (if it shows up as TAR, the maze has to go through it from right to left). I notice already in my recent studies on how to generate PUZ files how much is lost from the print versions. I’m sure this particular one is almost crazy in how different it is, especially since the software obviously isn’t designed to accomodate the maze. Hopefully the maze solution is posted somewhere where you can see it.

    And yes, they were an extra on the DVD named Wordplay (a documentary involving Shortz, Merl Reagle, and numerous others that was released in 2006 which chronicled the ACPT of 2005 and followed a Merl Reagle grid from creation to a collection of celebrity’s hands). Definitely worth trying to get a look at if you’re interested in crosswords to any degree. Unfortunately, an obvious sad omission was that they should have put this grid in with the other 5 as printable, especially since they talked about it so much throughout the work (the other grids discussed being the ACPT contest ones).

    FWIW, in other news, I’ve been catching up on WSJ grids. Have two Sunday grids to wrap up, but so far it’s been mostly standard fare, falling as big grids usually do for me. I can let you know what I think of the one you mentioned Saturday when I get through with it.

    @Carrie
    I was formally trained, and then just a whole lot of experience from there on manuals, electrics, and computers (and in my once-job as a coder). Oddly enough, one thing I’ve done in handwriting grids is improve my penmanship (part of last Tuesday’s errors and time for me last week was trying to write smaller, and in lowercase – then not understanding my writing afterwards) – you’d be surprised of the different muscles that get used in such activities and how trainable your brain is.

    FWIW, I may have to see if I can dig out the test site I used if there’s interest in actual measurement. I know I saved the final results screen with my rating, so hopefully it can be tracked back from there.

    1. @Glenn … The rules you state for that maze puzzle are the ones I decided to use and the solution that I came up with obeys them. I intend to rent or buy a copy of the “Wordplay” DVD, so I’ll be able to check my solution against the one on it. I did see the movie when it first came out, but I can’t remember now if I rented it or saw it in a theater. Initially, I thought you had found the Will Shortz puzzle list on a sort of crossword puzzle blog associated with the NYT web site which also bears the name “Wordplay” – hence my confusion …

      @Carrie … We may be about to overlap here. I did a slightly overlong hike in the wind yesterday and now I can’t sleep. (I hope I’m not coming down with something … )

  4. Back in the U.S. What a wonderful place, Acapulco. It’s largely forgotten with U.S. travelers because of the perceived danger and some violence elsewhere in the state of Guerrero. I’ve never seen anything resembling violence there, and I’ve been going there for 11 years.

    Johnny Weissmuller, Frank Sinatra among others made the place famous years ago. Its natural beauty, its energy and (now) extremely inexpensive price tag make it one of the world’s best vacation bargains IMHO. A bar called “Paradise” there is outside with a beautiful view of the bay, cheap alcohol, and a 150 foot bungie jump attached to it. The girl I was with did it; I chickened out. Maybe I just needed more tequila to do it. Fun, Fun place.

    Even more fun was what I apparently missed on Sunday. Wow. So much fuss over something with a relatively easy fix – ie just printing it out (for free!) from the LAT site and doing the puzzle. And a lot of people coming out of the woodwork indeed to complain. I’m convinced some people are only happy when they have something to complain about. Was the puzzle itself a good one?

    Pretty standard puzzle today. Tuesday worthy theme. Bennett Cerf founded Random House? There’s the revelation of the day for me..

    Trying to get everything back to normal today. We’ll see.

    Best –

  5. I believe “Port out, starboard home” has nothing to do with avoiding direct sunlight. Rather, such cabins provide for views of the shoreline (of Europe and Africa, leaving and returning to England) instead of the endless sea.

  6. I have a small problem with 30 across, if the clue refers to job applications. Here in the U.S., it is against the law to ask for an applicant’s age. So one’s date of birth would not appear on a job application. Perhaps it appears on other types of applications, so my objection is a small, nit-picky one.

    Otherwise, a fairly easy and enjoyable grid for me.

  7. Changed UBER to OBER because of the theme.
    According to “Google” it also means “waiter”
    Otherwise I would have missed by one letter…well maybe not.
    BEAT PUETRY wouldn’t make sense. 🙂

  8. 33D: Burglary is a breaking and entering with the intent to commit any felony therein; therefore the clue was actually incorrect.

  9. Really quick Tuesday; finished with about 14 minutes on paper. Had to change AuditS to ASSESS fix STaRTHEPOT to finish correctly. Was also leaning towards COMEonbAby, but left it blank waiting for crosses.

    Acapulco sounds wonderful, but I have to admit I’ve been a little cautious after reading so many incidents. I understand if you stay strictly in the tourist area, that you’re relatively safe.

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