LA Times Crossword Answers 25 Feb 17, Saturday










Constructed by: Julian Lim

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: None

Bill’s time: 16m 14s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Muslim veils : HIJABS

Some Muslim women wear a hijab in the presence of males outside of their immediate family. A hijab is a veil covering the head and chest. Some also wear a niqab as part of the hijab, which is a cloth that covers the face. Other Muslim women wear a burqa, which covers the whole body from the top of the head to the ground.

7. Curly’s dad on “Sesame Street” : PAPA BEAR

The Bear Family are a group of characters on “Sesame Street”. There’s Papa Bear and Mama Bear, and their offspring Baby Bear (a male), and Curly Bear (a female).

15. “For unto us a child is born” source : ISAIAH

According to the Bible’s Book of Isaiah:

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

19. Penn., for one : STA

Penn Station in New York City may have been the first Pennsylvania Station, but it’s not the only one. The Pennsylvania Railroad gave that name to many of its big passenger terminals, including one in Philadelphia (now called 30th Street Station), one in Baltimore, one in Pittsburgh, one in Cleveland, as well as others.

23. Brewmaster’s need : HOPS

The foodstuff that we call “hops” are actually the female flower of the hop plant. The main use of hops is to add flavor to beer. The town in which I live here in California used to be home to the largest hop farm in the whole world. Most of the harvested hops were exported all the way to the breweries of London where they could fetch the best price.

25. Plenty of horn? : KLAXON

A klaxon is a loud horn, and “klaxon” is one of those words derived from the name of a particular brand. The original klaxon was a car horn manufactured and sold by the Klaxon Company.

27. Payless box letters : EEE

Payless ShoeSource is discount shoe store that was founded in 1956 in Topeka, Kansas.

30. “Anthem for Doomed Youth” poet Wilfred __ : OWEN

Wilfred Owen was an English soldier and noted poet, famous for writing realistic poetry about the tragedies of trench warfare during WWI. Owen was killed in action only one week before the war ended, so most of his work was published posthumously.

Here’s the text of “Anthem for Doomed Youth”, a famous poem by Wilfred Owen.

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.

What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls’ brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

31. Thirsts : YENS

The word “yen”, meaning “urge”, has been around in English since the very early 1900s. It comes from the earlier word “yin” imported from Chinese, which was used in English to describe an intense craving for opium!

32. Structure from the Arabic for “lighthouse” : MINARET

A minaret is an architectural feature of Islamic mosques, a tall tower with an onion-shaped crown that is used for the call to prayer. The world’s oldest minaret is part of the Great Mosque of Kairouan in Tunisia, having been completed in 836 BCE. The term “minaret” comes from the Arabic for “lighthouse”.

34. Low bar? : DIVE

We’ve been using the word “dive” in American English for a run-down bar since the latter half of the 19th century. The term comes from the fact that disreputable taverns were usually located in basements, so one had to literally and figuratively dive into them.

37. Some timeshares : VILLAS

The original “villas” were country houses owned by the elite in Ancient Rome. A member of the Roman elite would live in a “domus” in the city, whereas the rest of the population would live in “insulae”, apartment buildings.

41. Poet friend of author Ernest : EZRA

Ezra Pound was an American poet who spent much of his life wandering the world, spending years in London, Paris, and Italy. In Italy, Pound’s work and sympathies for Mussolini’s regime led to his arrest at the end of the war. His major work was the epic, albeit incomplete, “The Cantos”. This epic poem is divided into 120 sections, each known as a canto.

Ernest Hemingway moved around a lot. He was born in Illinois, and after leaving school headed to the Italian front during WWI. There he served as an ambulance driver, an experience he used as inspiration for “A Farewell to Arms”. He returned to the US after being seriously wounded, but a few years later moved to Paris where he worked as a foreign correspondent. He covered the Spanish War as a journalist, from Spain, using this experience for “For Whom the Bell Tolls”. During the thirties and forties he had two permanent residences, one in Key West, Florida, and one in Cuba. In the late fifties he moved to Ketchum, Idaho, where he committed suicide in 1961.

44. Downtime? : FUNK

“Funk” is ill-humor, a word that dates back to the mid-1700s and is probably a term that came from Scottish and northern English.

47. Like some ukuleles : OVAL

The ukulele (uke) originated in the 1800s and mimicked a small guitar brought to the Hawaiian Islands by Portuguese immigrants.

49. Many a group vacation photo, in slang : WEFIE

A “selfie” is a self-portrait, usually one taken with a digital camera or cell phone. A group “selfie” is sometimes referred to as a “groufie” or “wefie”.

50. 2008-’09 Japanese prime minister Taro __ : ASO

Taro Aso is a Japanese politician who served as his nation’s prime minister from 2008 until 2009. Aso’s younger sister is Princess Tomohito of Mikasa, having married into Japan’s Imperial Family.

53. Urquhart Castle’s loch : NESS

Urquhart Castle is a ruin that sits right on the edge of Loch Ness in the Highlands of Scotland. What’s left of the old castle today dates from the 13th to 16th centuries.

59. Rule broken by deities? : I BEFORE E

“I before E, except after C”, although with so many exceptions, I don’t think that this rule is taught in schools anymore …

61. Target of a whacking : PINATA

Piñatas originated in Mexico, probably among the Aztecs or Mayans. Today piñatas are usually made from cardboard that is brightly decorated with papier-mâché. Traditionally a piñata was made out of a clay pot, adorned with feathers and ribbons and filled with small treasures. During religious ceremonies the clay pots would be suspended and broken open so that the contents would spill out onto the ground at the feet of a god as an offering.

63. “Mad Men” actor John : SLATTERY

Actor John Slattery is perhaps best known for playing Roger Sterling in the TV show “Mad Men”. For those into comic book superhero movies, Slattery might also be recognized for portraying Howard Stark in several recent films of that genre. Slattery is married to actress Talia Balsam, ex-wife of George Clooney.

65. Name on many bars : HERSHEY’S

Milton Hershey used profits from the sale of his successful Lancaster Caramel Company to construct a chocolate plant in his hometown of Derry Church, Pennsylvania. Hershey started building the factory in 1903, and by 1906 his chocolate was so successful that Derry Church changed its name to Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Down

2. Kind of muscle contraction : ISOTONIC

“Isotonic” means “of equal tension” and is of Greek origin. There are two common uses of the term. Solutions of equal concentration are said to be isotonic. An isotonic solution of saline has the same amount of salt (NaCl) as there is in blood. Also, in the isotonic contraction of a muscle, the amount of tension stays the same whereas the muscle’s length changes. Lifting an object at a constant speed causes the isotonic contract of the lifting muscle.

3. Pepper with punch : JALAPENO

The jalapeño is a chili pepper, and a favorite of mine. The pepper’s name translates from Spanish as “from Xalapa”. Xalapa (also “Jalapa”) is the capital of the Mexican state of Veracruz, and the traditional origin of the jalapeño pepper.

6. Osso buco cut : SHANK

“Osso” is the Italian word for bone, as in the name of the dish called osso buco, which features braised veal shanks.

7. Tree with green-skinned fruit : PAWPAW

The papaw (also “pawpaw”) tree is native to North America and has a fruit that looks similar to a papaya. Papaw probably gets its name from the word papaya, but papaw and papaya are two distinct species.

8. Maugham’s “Cakes and __” : ALE

The phrase “cakes and ale” makes a number of appearances in literature. Aesop uses the phrase in his fable “The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse”, to symbolize the good life. Shakespeare included the line “Dost thou think, because thou art virtuous, there shall be no more cakes and ale?” in his play “Twelfth Night”. W. Somerset Maugham used the Shakespearean line as inspiration for the title of his 1930 play “Cakes and Ale, or, The Skeleton in the Cupboard”.

W. Somerset Maugham was a playwright and novelist from the UK. Maugham was actually born in France, but on British soil in the British embassy in Paris. He became very successful as an author and was the highest paid writer of the 1930s.

9. Irritating growth : POISON IVY

Two of the plants that are most painful to humans are poison oak and poison ivy. Poison oak is mainly found west of the Rocky Mountains, and poison ivy to the east.

10. Chlorine’s periodic table follower : ARGON

The chemical element argon has the symbol Ar. Argon is a noble gas, and so by definition is relatively nonreactive. The name “argon” comes from the Greek word for “lazy, inactive”. There’s a lot of argon around, as it is the third-most abundant gas in our atmosphere.

Chlorine is a yellow-green gas that is very poisonous at high concentrations. As such, chlorine gas was used in WWI, earning the shameful title of the world’s first gaseous chemical weapon. Chlorine was mistakenly believed to be an oxide for many years, until English chemist Sir Humphry Davy correctly concluded that the gas was an element. Davy coined the name “chlorine”, from the Greek “chloros” meaning “”green-yellow”.

11. __ Men: one-hit wonders of 2000 : BAHA

The Baha Men are so called because they hail from the Bahamas. Their big hit was “Who Let the Dogs Out?”, which has been ranked as third in a list of the world’s most annoying songs!

12. Carte part : ENTREE

Entrée means “entry” in French. An entrée can be something that helps one get “a way in”, an interview for example perhaps helped along by a recommendation letter. In Europe, even in English-speaking countries, the entrée is the name for the “entry” to the meal, the first course. I found it very confusing to order meals when I first came to America!

“Carte” is a word sometimes used in French for a menu. Menu items that are “à la carte” are priced and ordered separately, as opposed to “table d’hôte” which is a fixed price menu with limited choice.

13. Tatum O’Neal received her Oscar at it : AGE TEN

Tatum O’Neal is the youngest actress to win a “competitive” Oscar. She won the Best Supporting Actress Award in 1974 when she was just 10 years old, for her role as Addie in “Paper Moon”. The youngest person to win an honorary Academy Award was Shirley Temple, who was only 5 years old when she was presented with an Oscar in 1934.

24. Best Actress after Field : SPACEK

The actress Sissy Spacek probably got her big break in movies when she played the title role in the 1976 horror movie “Carrie”, which is based on the Stephen King novel. Her most acclaimed role is the lead in the 1980 biopic about Loretta Lynn called “Coal MIner’s Daughter”, for which she won an Oscar. Spacek’s first cousin is the actor Rip Torn.

Actress Sally Field first came to the public’s attention in the sixties with title roles in the TV shows “Gidget” and “The Flying Nun”. She has two Best Actress Oscars: one for “Norma Rae” (1979) and one for “Places in the Heart” (1984).

29. “Yes!” singer Jason : MRAZ

Jason Mraz is a singer-songwriter from Mechanicsville, Virginia. Jason is of Czech descent, and his name “Mraz” translates as “frost”.

31. #3 on the 2016 Forbes “World’s 100 Most Powerful Women” list : YELLEN

The economist Janet Yellen has been the Chair of the Federal Reserve since 2014, and is the first woman to hold the position.

“Forbes” has been compiling a list of the world’s 100 most powerful women since 2004. The five women at the top of the list for 2016 are:

  • Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany
  • Hillary Clinton, Presidential candidate of the United States
  • Janet Yellen, Chair of the Federal Reserve of the United States
  • Melinda Gates, Co-founder of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors

38. Productivity-increasing trick, in modern parlance : LIFE HACK

A “life hack” is a technique that makes a routine task easier or more efficient. The term was coined in 2004 by journalist Danny O’Brien when describing less-than-elegant shortcuts used by IT professionals.

42. Prefix with fauna : AVI-

“Avifauna” is the collective name for birds of a specific region. An older term for the same thing is “ornis”, which has the same root as “ornithology”.

43. Airline to Eilat : EL AL

El Al Israel Airlines is the flag carrier of Israel. El Al is known for its high levels of security, both on the ground and in the air. Reportedly, the airline’s passenger aircraft have been operating with anti-missile technology for several years.

Eilat (sometimes “Elat”) the most southerly city in Israel, sitting right at the northern tip of the Red Sea, on the Gulf of Aqaba.

52. Toon pursuing l’amour : LE PEW

Pepé Le Pew is a very likeable cartoon character from the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies series. Pepé is a French skunk, first introduced way back in 1945. He is always thinking of “l’amour” and chases the lady skunks, or a black cat with a white stripe painted down her back accidently.

55. Small salamanders : EFTS

Salamanders are lizard-like amphibians found in all across the northern hemisphere. They are the only vertebrate animals that can regenerate lost limbs.

57. Conn of “Grease” : DIDI

Didi Conn, born Edith Bernstein, played a great character in the “Grease” films called “Frenchy”. Conn also played Stacy Jones in the children’s television show “Shining Time Station” in the late eighties-early nineties.

“Grease” was, and still is, a very successful stage musical with a blockbuster film version released in 1978. The movie stars John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. Travolta wasn’t the first choice for the lead role. It was first offered to Henry Winkler of “Happy Days” fame in which he played “the Fonz”. Winkler turned down the role for fear of being typecast as a leather-clad fifties “hood”.

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Muslim veils : HIJABS

7. Curly’s dad on “Sesame Street” : PAPA BEAR

15. “For unto us a child is born” source : ISAIAH

16. One way to serve fowl : A L’ORANGE

17. “See?!” : TOLD YA!

18. Counterbalanced, say : WEIGHTED

19. Penn., for one : STA

20. Thing to do with your fingers : SNAP

22. Attain, as great heights : SOAR TO

23. Brewmaster’s need : HOPS

25. Plenty of horn? : KLAXON

27. Payless box letters : EEE

28. It often follows 12 : ONE PM

30. “Anthem for Doomed Youth” poet Wilfred __ : OWEN

31. Thirsts : YENS

32. Structure from the Arabic for “lighthouse” : MINARET

34. Low bar? : DIVE

36. Green machine : ECOCAR

37. Some timeshares : VILLAS

41. Poet friend of author Ernest : EZRA

43. Point of view? : EYELINE

44. Downtime? : FUNK

47. Like some ukuleles : OVAL

49. Many a group vacation photo, in slang : WEFIE

50. 2008-’09 Japanese prime minister Taro __ : ASO

51. __ chief : TRIBAL

53. Urquhart Castle’s loch : NESS

54. Created with : MADE OF

56. Ran : BLED

58. Cool : HEP

59. Rule broken by deities? : I BEFORE E

61. Target of a whacking : PINATA

63. “Mad Men” actor John : SLATTERY

64. Elicits : EDUCES

65. Name on many bars : HERSHEY’S

66. Acknowledge subtly : WINK AT

Down

1. Strikes a chord : HITS HOME

2. Kind of muscle contraction : ISOTONIC

3. Pepper with punch : JALAPENO

4. First __ : AID

5. Canine sounds : BAYS

6. Osso buco cut : SHANK

7. Tree with green-skinned fruit : PAWPAW

8. Maugham’s “Cakes and __” : ALE

9. Irritating growth : POISON IVY

10. Chlorine’s periodic table follower : ARGON

11. __ Men: one-hit wonders of 2000 : BAHA

12. Carte part : ENTREE

13. Tatum O’Neal received her Oscar at it : AGE TEN

14. Overhauls : REDOES

21. Seas : A LOT

24. Best Actress after Field : SPACEK

26. Struck (out) : XED

29. “Yes!” singer Jason : MRAZ

31. #3 on the 2016 Forbes “World’s 100 Most Powerful Women” list : YELLEN

33. Like 100 on most tests : ERROR FREE

35. Mountaineer’s expectation : VIEW

38. Productivity-increasing trick, in modern parlance : LIFE HACK

39. Herbal beverage : ANISE TEA

40. Overlooks, as a fault : SEES PAST

42. Prefix with fauna : AVI-

43. Airline to Eilat : EL AL

44. Starve, to Shakespeare : FAMISH

45. Worth keeping : USABLE

46. Tender turndown : NO, DEAR

48. Some retreats : ABBEYS

51. Sweet __ : TOOTH

52. Toon pursuing l’amour : LE PEW

55. Small salamanders : EFTS

57. Conn of “Grease” : DIDI

60. Trick ending? : -ERY

62. One in an order : NUN

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13 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 25 Feb 17, Saturday”

  1. 17:10, no errors. Quite a few educated guesses at things I don’t know or have only a noddinq acquaintance with (like OWEN, WEFIE, ASO, SLATTERY, MRAZ, DIDI, and LIFE HACK), but muddled through it okay.

  2. A Julian Lim Saturday. Yikes. There were probably half a dozen spots where I thought there would be no way I’d finish this one. In the end I was able to finish error free and Google free albeit in a very pedestrian 53 minutes via guessing, crosses, instinct and maybe a little luck. But I’ll take it.

    Very enjoyable challenge for me, but I guess they’re all enjoyable when you’re able to finish them. As usual, some very clever cluing from Mr. Lim.

    Wechsler Friday and Lim Saturday. All we need now is Gareth Bain tomorrow and we’ll have Pookie’s hall of fame weekend. Where has he been lately anyway?

    I feel too good after doing this one. I don’t know if I want to risk these good feelings over at the NY Times later today. We’ll see.

    Best –

  3. 2 dumb errors in 59 minutes (took way too long for me) on Friday’s grid. Another 4 (untimed b/c of the first grid) on the WSJ (not even a guess as to the theme to start on the meta). And a 11 letter DNF on the CHE (but I don’t know poetic literature anyway, so the whole grid theme was too specialized). Ended up with the Friday NYT two days ahead of when I usually get it and have a couple of sections left at about 65 minutes before I called it a night. I guess my mind just ran very very slowly yesterday – I was just dragging tired all day (until it was actually TIME to sleep of course).

    As for today, this grid and the Newsday to come along with wrapping up the other NYT stuff and the Sunday grids tomorrow…

    @not sure who this comment is to in the conversation, but let’s just say “general”: As far as the online LAT puzzles are concerned, I’ve noted (back when I had steady Internet access) that all the ads actually impeded my ability to do the puzzles, causing many typos, lags, and other problems. To that end, while I couldn’t find a good line to complain about it, I’m surprised that the LAT general comment avenue didn’t get crushed by all the people that were sure to have problems over it.

    @Jeff
    I gather from what I see that Gareth Bain is more a solver than a setter. FWIW, he regularly comments on a large subsection of the LAT grids on another blog elsewhere (link omitted to stay out of the moderation queue).

    1. Glenn –

      Piano Man told us about Ad Blocker Plus which is available via the icon (upper right corner) in Firefox’s toolbar. I just installed it and it works great. I see the puzzle but no ads flashing or playing. In fact I have some apps on my phone that include annoying flashing ads, and Ad Blocker Plus installed on my phone has stopped those too.

      With regards to Gareth – I do miss some of his puzzles, but I guess he’s more of a critic now than a setter as you say..

      Dirk – I read what you were talking about regarding the LA Times online telling you to disable the ad blocker. Initially I installed a different ad blocker, and I got the same message you did. When I installed specifically Ad Blocker Plus, it worked like a charm. Maybe you just need to re-install it or something?

      Best –

      1. @Jeff
        Actually, I have numerous ad blocking utilities here for use on my personal machine if I had Internet access at home. When I did, I ran some combination of NoScript, Adblock Plus, and Ghostery. Nothing ever bothered me, including the ads on the LA Times site. I mentioned my experience without those simply because there are those that are either not so technically inclined or can’t do anything like that (me now if I didn’t know about PUZ files).

  4. A lot of things and people that I never heard of before. I managed to finish which actually surprised me because it looked impossible when I started.
    I was amused at Bill’s comment about not teaching “I before E”. I think he is probably right. The spelling I’m trying to learn is text speak because I never know the crossword clue answers for that.?

  5. @ Jeff I’m still here, but I’m not a “he”. 🙂
    Thursday Friday and today were just over my head.
    Just now got ethernet back on.
    Have to meet a friend for lunch so I’ll see you all tomorrow.

    1. Pookie – LOl never thought you were a “he”. I was referring to Gareth Bain – i.e. that I wondered where he has been lately. Haven’t seen a puzzle from him in many months.

  6. It was a slog, but I wrestled into submission finally. The last to fall was the SW corner. Lots of staring and thinking time went into this grid.

    Will do the WSJ grid tonight or tomorrow.

  7. I didn’t do the puzzle, itself – but just came in to read Bill’s blog and the comments. They’re second nature to me now.
    Pookie, I got the biggest laugh, when I read, that you thought, that Jeff put you down as a ‘he’, !! Although, to be fair, the name Pookie can be uni-sexual. The only other Pookie I know, is my granddaughter’s teddy bear, and I don’t think even she ( i.e g-daughter – ) knows its gender….

    The puzzle must have been long ….. Bill, thanks for the diff between hijab, niqab and burqa. UAE women cover their head and body, but not the face, which they decorate copiously with lots of makeup…. ( they are generally very pretty, to begin with -).

    Thanks Bill, …. I always wondered why NYC had a Penn Station. Although I am familiar with the Penn Central bankruptcy and how the retirees and employees lost all their pensions, as well. Thats when the IRAs and rules on ( investment of – ) retirement plans were really changed.

    Talking about Lighthouses – wow what a coincidence !!!! There is a wonderful GOOGLE doodle today about the first female lighthouse keeper, and the bravest swimmer and lifesaver in America …..

    Thank you for reinforcing my idea about isotonic – especially isotonic solutions. I had forgotten.

    I have visited Hershey ( near Harrisburg, PA ) more than 10 times, and their streetlamps look like Hershey’s Kisses. Mr. Hershey originally thought of starting a chocolate factory to take care of all the extra milk from the dairy farms, in his neighborhood. Also he donated all his money for the orphanages, that he started, and sold chocolates to the US Army at a discount of less than 5c a bar, for all the GI’s fighting all over the world, during the WW II. Patriotism, takes many forms …..

    Have a good weekend, all.

  8. Too hard for me today. Got most of the top half and little bits of the bottom, but just didn’t have the patience today. Oh well.

    Irritating that some of the answers I was considering, turned out to be the actual answers, but still too many unknowns proper nouns. Sigh!!

  9. Yay!!! Success!! At the risk of sounding hyperbolic, this wasxmy toughest solve in memory, and I’m likely to break an arm patting myself on the back. So happy!!!???
    Hardest and last to fall was that SE corner. Didn’t know EDUCES or WEFIES but I sussed them out and now I can see the etymology.
    Like that I BEFORE E thing. Very cute.
    Saturdays often make me wonder why I spend SO MUCH TIME on these puzzles……But then I think of how quickly the early-week Puzzles go, and I figure it balances out.
    Have a lovely Sunday!! We’re expecting more rain in LA, but hopefully in the evening only.
    Sweet dreams~~™???

  10. I applaud all of you for your perseverance. ? I can rarely finish a Saturday puzzle the same day! I stare at it forever, fill in a few guesses then leave it until the next day when I hope I can some how muddle through. I needed a little help with my muddling this time.

    Worst clue – SEAS. Best – RULE BROKEN BY DEITIES.

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