LA Times Crossword Answers 26 Jan 17, Thursday










Constructed by: Jerome Gunderson

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: SC Added

Today’s themed answers are common, two-word phrases, but with the letters SC added to the front of the second word:

  • 17A. What rattlers that never bask in the sun may get? : PALE SCALES (from “pale ales”)
  • 27A. Strikebreakers at a brewery? : SIX-PACK SCABS (from “six-pack abs”)
  • 45A. What berets cover? : FRENCH SCALPS (from “French Alps”)
  • 60A. Angry looks in the hayloft? : BARN SCOWLS (from “barn owls”)

Bill’s time: 9m 45s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Hindu noble : RAJA

“Raja” (also “rajah”) is word derived from Sanskrit that is used particularly in India for a monarch or princely ruler. The female form is “rani” (also “ranee”) and is used for a raja’s wife.

5. Like pastrami : CURED

In the US, pastrami was originally called “pastrama”, a dish brought to America by Jewish immigrants from Romania in the second half of the the nineteenth century. The original name may have evolved from the Turkish word “pastirma” meaning “pressed”. “Pastrama” likely morphed into “pastrami” influenced by the name of the Italian sausage called salami.

10. Rum cake : BABA

Rum baba (also “baba au rhum” in French) is a small yeast cake saturated in rum, and sometimes filled with whipped cream. Rum baba is derived from the recipe for the tall “babka” yeast cake that was introduced to the world by the Polish communities. The Polish words “baba” and “babka” mean “old woman” or “grandmother” in English. I guess someone must have thought that all grandmothers were saturated in rum!

14. “O no! it is an __-fixed mark … “: Shak. : EVER

Here is the full text of William Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 116”:

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand’ring bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever lov’d.

15. “SNL” alum Cheri : OTERI

Cheri Oteri was the SNL (“Saturday Night Live”) cast member who regularly appeared with Will Ferrell in the skit featuring a pair of Spartan cheerleaders.

16. Restaurant in the same corporate group as Applebee’s : IHOP

The International House of Pancakes (IHOP) was founded back in 1958. IHOP was originally intended to be called IHOE, the International House of Eggs, but that name didn’t do too well in marketing tests!

The Applebee’s chain of “Neighborhood Bar & Grill” restaurants was founded in 1980, with the first Applebee’s eatery opening in Decatur, Georgia. When it comes to “chain” restaurants, I like Applebee’s …

17. What rattlers that never bask in the sun may get? : PALE SCALES (from “pale ales”)

The scales covering the tip of a rattlesnake’s tail are made of keratin, the same structural protein that makes up the outer layer of human skin, as well as our hair and nails. The rattlesnake shakes its tail vigorously to warn off potential predators, causing the hollow scales to vibrate against one another and resulting in that scary “rattle” sound. The rattler’s tail muscles “fire” an incredible fifty times a second to achieve that effect, demonstrating one of the fastest muscular movements in the whole animal kingdom.

19. Pool element : GENE

The set of all genes in a particular population is known as the “gene pool”, a term coined in Russian by geneticist Aleksandr Sergeevich Serebrovskii in the 1920s. In general, the larger the gene pool the more diverse and robust the population.

22. Oaf : LUMMOX

The word “lummox” comes from East Anglian slang (northeast of London), and describes an ungainly and often clueless person. The term is probably a contraction of “lumbering ox”.

27. Strikebreakers at a brewery? : SIX-PACK SCABS (from “six-pack abs”)

We first started calling strikebreakers “scabs” in the early 1800s, and before that a scab was a person who refused to join a trade union (back as early 1777). The word probably comes from the use of “scab” as a symptom of a skin disease, and so is a term that is meant to insult.

The abdominal muscles (abs) are more correctly referred to as the rectus abdominis muscles. They are all called a “six-pack” in a person who has developed the muscles and who has low body fat. In my case, more like a keg …

34. “Curb Your Enthusiasm” creator : DAVID

Larry David was one of the creators of the sitcom “Seinfeld”, and was a co-writer of many of the episodes. David also stars in the HBO comedy “Curb Your Enthusiasm”, which has a very “Seinfeld” feel to it.

39. Controversial sightings : UFOS

In 1952, the USAF revived its studies of reported sightings of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) in a program called Project Blue Book. Project Blue Book ran from 1952 until it was shut down in 1969 with the conclusion that there was no threat to national security and that there were no sightings that could not be explained within the bounds of modern scientific knowledge.

41. Grammy category : FOLK

The first Grammy Awards Ceremony was held in 1959 and focused on recognizing outstanding achievement in the recording industry. The idea of a Grammy Award came up when recording executives were working on the Hollywood Walk of Fame project in the fifties. These executives concluded that there were many people in the recording industry deserving of accolades but who would probably never make it to the Walk of Fame. As a result, they founded the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. The Academy considered naming the award the “Eddies” after Thomas Edison, but then opted for “Grammy” after Edison’s invention: the gramophone.

43. Allen who managed the Beatles and Stones : KLEIN

Allen Klein was a big player in the music industry starting in the sixties. He managed the Beatles as well as the Rolling Stones, both groups at the same time. Klein was a controversial figure though, eventually spending a couple of months in jail for making false statements on a tax return.

45. What berets cover? : FRENCH SCALPS (from “French Alps”)

There are eight Alpine countries:

  • Austria
  • Slovenia
  • France
  • Switzerland
  • Liechtenstein
  • Germany
  • Monaco
  • Italy

49. Odorless gas : ETHANE

Ethane is the second largest component of natural gas, after methane. Ethane’s main use is in the production of ethylene, a compound that is widely used in the chemical industry.

56. Comic actor Jacques : TATI

Jacques Tati was a very famous filmmaker and comic actor in his homeland of France. Even though he only directed six feature-length movies, Tati is often cited by insiders as one of the greatest movie directors of all time.

58. Words in praiseful titles : … TO A …

As in “Ode to a Nightingale”, perhaps.

60. Angry looks in the hayloft? : BARN SCOWLS (from “barn owls”)

The barn owl is the most common species of owl. The barn owl is found everywhere in the world, except in desert and polar regions.

63. Military wind : FIFE

A fife is a small flute that is often used in military and marching bands. The name “fife” comes from the German “Pfeife” meaning “pipe”.

64. African herbivore : RHINO

There are five types of rhinoceros that survive today, with the smaller Javan Rhino being the most rare. The rhinoceros is probably the rarest large mammal on the planet, thanks to poaching. Hunters mainly prize the horn of the rhino as it is used in powdered form in traditional Chinese medicine.

67. Quaker in the forest : 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”.

68. Adele’s brother : FRED

Fred Astaire’s real name was Frederick Austerlitz. Fred was from Omaha, Nebraska and before he made it big in movies, he was one half of a celebrated music hall act with his sister Adele. The pair were particularly successful in the UK, and Adele ended up marrying into nobility in England, taking the name Lady Charles Cavendish.

Down

1. They get carried away : REPOS

Repossession (repo)

3. Pudding snack cup maker : JELL-O

If you like Jell-O, then you want to stop by LeRoy, New York where you can visit the only Jell-O museum in the world. While at the museum, you can walk along the Jell-O Brick Road …

5. Bone below the sacrum : COCCYX

The human coccyx is what is left of a tail that our evolutionary ancestors possessed.

The sacrum and the two ilia are three bones in the human pelvis.

6. State on the Colorado Plateau : UTAH

The Colorado Plateau is a geographical feature in the southwest, covering parts of Colorado, Utah, New Mexico and Arizona, roughly equivalent to what is known as the Four Corners region. The Colorado Plateau is home to the greatest concentration of national parks in the country. Included in the area are Grand Canyon NP, Zion NP, Bryce Canyon NP, Arches NP and Mesa Verde NP, to name but a few.

10. Lunch order with “special sauce” : BIG MAC

The iconic Big Mac sandwich was introduced nationally by McDonald’s in 1967. It was the creation of a Pittsburgh franchisee who offered it on the menu as a response to the very similar “Big Boy” sandwich offered by the competing Big Boy restaurant chain.

The dressing on a McDonald’s Big Mac was first described as a “special sauce” in a 1974 advertising campaign. Apparently, the “special sauce” is no “secret sauce”, as the recipe can be found quite readily online. It consists of mixture of regular mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish and yellow mustard all blended together, with some vinegar, garlic powder, onion powder and paprika.

12. Pro __ : BONO

The Latin term “pro bono publico” means “for the public good”, and is usually shortened to “pro bono”. The term applies to professional work that is done for free or at a reduced fee as a service to the public.

18. Flavorful : SAPID

Something that is “sapid” is “tasty, savory”. The opposite to “sapid” is “insipid”, meaning “without taste, bland”.

23. Cold War letters : USSR

The term “Cold War” was first used by the novelist George Orwell in a 1945 essay about the atomic bomb. Orwell described a world under threat of nuclear war as having a “peace that is no peace”, in a permanent state of “cold war”. The specific use of “cold war” to describe the tension between the Eastern bloc and the Western allies is attributed to a 1947 speech by Bernard Baruch, adviser to Presidents Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

25. Trident-shaped letters : PSIS

The Greek letter psi is the one that looks a bit like a trident or a pitchfork.

28. Johnnycakes : PONES

“Pone” is another word for corn bread, from the Powhatan word “apan” meaning “something baked”.

Johnnycake is a flatbread made from cornmeal that is associated with the Atlantic coast. There are claims that johnnycake originated in Rhode Island.

29. Top story : ATTIC

An attic or loft is a room or space located below the roof of a building. The term “attic” is a shortened form of “attic story”, the uppermost story or level of a house. This term “attic story” originally applied to a low, decorative level built on top of the uppermost story behind a building’s decorative facade. This use of decoration at the top of buildings was common in ancient Greece, and was particularly important in the Attica style. That Attica style was so called because it originated in the historical region of Attica that encompassed the city of Athens. And that’s how our attics are linked to ancient Greece.

30. Fine __ : CHINA

The ceramic known as “porcelain” can be referred to as “china” or “fine china”, as porcelain was developed in China.

31. Lady’s company? : AVON

In 1886, a young man called David McConnell was selling books door-to-door. To enhance his sales numbers he was giving out free perfume to the ladies of the houses that he visited. Seeing as his perfume was more popular than his books, he founded the California Perfume Company in New York City and started manufacturing and selling across the country. The company name was changed to Avon in 1939, and the famous “Avon Calling” marketing campaign was launched in 1954.

32. Take to the cleaners : BILK

The verb “to bilk”, meaning “to defraud”, comes from the card game of cribbage.

33. Fifth Avenue store : SAKS

Saks Fifth Avenue is a high-end specialty store that competes with the likes of Bloomingdale’s and Neiman Marcus. The original Saks & Company business was founded by Andrew Saks in 1867. The first Saks Fifth Avenue store was opened on Fifth Avenue in New York City in 1924. There are now Saks Fifth Avenue stores in many major cities in the US, as well in several locations worldwide.

34. Keister : DUFF

“Duff” is a slang term for the buttocks, rump. The exact etymology isn’t known, but the term dates back to the 1830s.

Back in the early 1900s a “keister” was a safe or a strongbox. It has been suggested that this term was then used as slang by pickpockets for the rear trouser pocket in which one might keep a wallet. From this usage, keister appeared as a slang term for the buttocks in the early 1930s.

36. Suffrage, with “the” : VOTE

Nowadays, the word “suffrage” is used to mean “right to vote”. The term comes from the Latin noun “suffragium” that translates as “vote, right to vote”.

40. Moorish palace of southern Spain : ALHAMBRA

Alhambra is a magnificent fortress and palace in Granada, Andalusia in the south of Spain. The large complex was completed in the 14th century in the days when the Moors ruled Andalusia.

43. Dodge Aries, e.g. : K-CAR

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?

51. “48 HRS.” co-star : NOLTE

The actor Nick Nolte got his big break playing opposite Jacqueline Bisset and Robert Shaw in “The Deep”, released in 1976. Prior to that he had worked as a model, and in fact appeared in a magazine advertisement for Clairol in 1972 alongside fellow model Sigourney Weaver.

“48 HRS.” is a hilarious 1982 movie starring Eddie Murphy and Nick Nolte. Even though the lead characters play a convict and a cop who team up, “48 HRS.” is often cited as the first of the modern “buddy cop” movies, a precursor to the likes of “Beverly Hills Cop” and “Lethal Weapon”.

55. Name for a poodle : FIFI

The standard Poodle breed of dog is considered to be the second most intelligent breed, after the Border Collie. The name “poodle” comes from a Low German word meaning “to splash about”, reflecting the original use of the breed as a water retriever.

57. Diarist Frank : ANNE

Anne Frank has to be one of the most famous victims of the Holocaust. This is largely because the story of this young girl lives on in her widely published diary, and in adaptations of the diary for stage and screen. Anne Frank was a German until she lost her nationality in 1941 when the Nazis came to power. By this time she was living with her family in Amsterdam, as the Franks chose to flee Germany in 1933. When the Germans occupied the Netherlands, the family went into hiding in the attic of Otto Frank’s office building (Otto was Anne’s father). There the family hid for two whole years until they were betrayed. The family was split up, and Anne and her sister died from typhus in a concentration camp in 1945.

Return to top of page

Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Hindu noble : RAJA

5. Like pastrami : CURED

10. Rum cake : BABA

14. “O no! it is an __-fixed mark … “: Shak. : EVER

15. “SNL” alum Cheri : OTERI

16. Restaurant in the same corporate group as Applebee’s : IHOP

17. What rattlers that never bask in the sun may get? : PALE SCALES (from “pale ales”)

19. Pool element : GENE

20. Vegetable __ : OIL

21. Sore : ACHY

22. Oaf : LUMMOX

24. Careless : SLOPPY

26. “This __ test” : IS A

27. Strikebreakers at a brewery? : SIX-PACK SCABS (from “six-pack abs”)

34. “Curb Your Enthusiasm” creator : DAVID

37. Different : OTHER

38. By way of : VIA

39. Controversial sightings : UFOS

40. Demonstrators, often : ANTIS

41. Grammy category : FOLK

42. Budgetary waste : FAT

43. Allen who managed the Beatles and Stones : KLEIN

44. Farmyard noises : OINKS

45. What berets cover? : FRENCH SCALPS (from “French Alps”)

48. Wee battery : AAA

49. Odorless gas : ETHANE

53. Declare : AFFIRM

56. Comic actor Jacques : TATI

58. Words in praiseful titles : … TO A …

59. Track component : RAIL

60. Angry looks in the hayloft? : BARN SCOWLS (from “barn owls”)

63. Military wind : FIFE

64. African herbivore : RHINO

65. Lot : FATE

66. Lost traction : SLID

67. Quaker in the forest : ASPEN

68. Adele’s brother : FRED

Down

1. They get carried away : REPOS

2. Be of use to : AVAIL

3. Pudding snack cup maker : JELL-O

4. It may come after you : ARE

5. Bone below the sacrum : COCCYX

6. State on the Colorado Plateau : UTAH

7. Fall back (on) : RELY

8. Before, in verse : ERE

9. Doesn’t care for : DISLIKES

10. Lunch order with “special sauce” : BIG MAC

11. “May I speak?” : AHEM

12. Pro __ : BONO

13. High point : APEX

18. Flavorful : SAPID

23. Cold War letters : USSR

25. Trident-shaped letters : PSIS

28. Johnnycakes : PONES

29. Top story : ATTIC

30. Fine __ : CHINA

31. Lady’s company? : AVON

32. Take to the cleaners : BILK

33. Fifth Avenue store : SAKS

34. Keister : DUFF

35. Miles off : AFAR

36. Suffrage, with “the” : VOTE

40. Moorish palace of southern Spain : ALHAMBRA

41. Sneakily seek, with “for” : FISH

43. Dodge Aries, e.g. : K-CAR

44. Eye-related : OPTIC

46. Aced : NAILED

47. Shows one’s feelings : LETS ON

50. Battling : AT WAR

51. “48 HRS.” co-star : NOLTE

52. Moved carefully : EASED

53. Stray sounds? : ARFS

54. Epic __ : FAIL

55. Name for a poodle : FIFI

56. Vacation plan : TRIP

57. Diarist Frank : ANNE

61. “I get it” sounds : AHS

62. Not quite right : OFF

Return to top of page

9 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 26 Jan 17, Thursday”

  1. Fine Thurs puz, but what’s up with the out-of-nowhere, tied-to-nothing “SC” theme? My print version didn’t mention it, and neither did anything in the cluing (which was quite good, BTW, except for that silly 4D — yes, ARE “may come after you,” but that’s also true for DID and CAN and MAY and BET and … oh, well).

  2. I was still half asleep when I did this one so I’ll blame my slow solve time on that. Mid grid was the last to fall as ATTIC got me in the same way for about the 4th time in just a few weeks. Didn’t know KLEIN either, and Fine CHINA just wouldn’t come to mind very fast.

    Maybe the setter is an alum of Southern Cal (SC)? And Joe B you know by now that just because there are alternative possibilities, that does not make the actual answer incorrect. As long as the answer can be correct in at least one instance, that’s all that matters in crossword-land.

    Best –

  3. Only had a “U” for “Keister” tUsh? rUmp? DUFF!
    Third instance in a short period of time that I’ve written in K-CAR.
    Only had _ O_ K for Grammy category. ROCK? Nope.That left me with
    BIcK for “Take to the cleaners”.
    Anyway, the SC helped get SAPID, which I will promptly forget, as well as TATI, who is an absolute unknown to me.
    Agree with Joe B that the “You ARE was lame.

  4. Pretty horrid week so far (01/23-1/26) with a very large number of depressingly bad errors (3, 1, 0, 2). Times in min: 12, 11, 12, 34. Again I’m amazed at how flatly high my times are over the week (and statistically flat, period).

    At least I can say I have an idea on why that is, now, after those grids and playing with three more “Daily Commuters” yesterday (got down to 6 min on those by fixing a couple of things). I’m not sure if “the big problem” is something that can be fixed, but at least I know more of what it is now. :S

  5. First of all, I keep forgetting how to pronounce Coccyx ( cock-Six), though my wife keeps correcting me. I still think it should be spelled in a more phonetic manner. 😉

    I had a tough time with the puzzle and struggled to complete it. But I enjoyed it very much. The theme was beyond my ken, so I would like to thank Bill for elucidating me. Reading Bills blog, made me wonder why Monaco is an “alpine nation”, despite the fact it is made up of a mile and half of french sea-coastline …. maybe the poker chips on the casino tables form the Alps.

    Thank you Bill, also for Allen Klein, whose biography I immediately read on the wiki. Being a manager and a wheeler dealer, to the stars, appears to be almost as important as a rock star ….. and even more profitable.
    My big mistake was in thinking that the odorless gas was an element in itself, like Neon, Argon or Xenon.

    Have a good night, all. I forgot to post …..

  6. I re read Bills blog and now, finally remember the McDonalds “special sauce” …. too late for the puzzle ….

    Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, … onions on a sesame seed bun. I can still sing to it.
    Who remembers ? 1973.

  7. Did this one at a very leisurely pace, while selling my honey, and managed to fill most of it despite very heavy sales today. I had to take a nap and then head out to my night-class and managed a little more fill. Finally when I got back, I got SAPID and the rest of the NW that was eluding me.

    Really fun puzzle today with clever clues.

    On to Friday…

  8. Hey guys and gals!
    Pretty good puzzle; not much to say on it, except that Allen KLEIN was a big jerky LUMMOX, IMO.
    Vidwan! I do remember that jingle! Also: “Hold the pickles, hold the lettuce, special orders don’t upset us….” I wonder if that’s still true at Burger King.
    As for the “theme,” SC, it’s funny how these seemingly random things are even referred to as themes. It’s more like a trick or a gimmick. A “theme” is profound and pervasive right? But I guess they have to call them something. I do understand why a setter would use “SC” — it starts a lot of words.
    Okay! Friday and Saturday! I’m ready!!!
    Be well~~™????

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.