LA Times Crossword Answers 15 Apr 17, Saturday










Constructed by: Roland Huget

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: None

Bill’s time: 11m 50s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Nevada’s state flower : SAGEBRUSH

One of the nicknames for Nevada is “the Sage State”, a reference to the wild sagebrush found all over the state. Nevada is also called “the Sage-Hen State”, for the sage hen (also “sage grouse”) that once was plentiful there.

10. Yippie Hoffman : ABBIE

Abbie Hoffman was the founder of the “Yippies”, an activist group that had violent clashes with the police during the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

16. Like some winds : REEDY

Those would be woodwinds, the musical instruments.

18. “Joyful, __ nations, rise”: carol lyric : ALL YE

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” is one of my favorite Christmas carols. It was written in 1739 by Charles Wesley, although he scored it as a very slow and somber tune. A number of musicians modified the music over the years (including Felix Mendelssohn) giving us the more uplifting air that we know today.

19. Asylum seeker : IMMIGRANT

“Asylum” (plural “asyla”) is a Latin word, meaning “sanctuary”.

20. Walk quartet : BALLS

That would be baseball. Pitching four balls leads to a walk.

21. Rathskeller turndown : NEIN

A city hall in Germany is called a Rathaus. In days gone by there was often a restaurant located in the basement or cellar of a Rathaus, and this restaurant was given the name Rathskeller.

24. Half of Bennifer : J.LO

“Bennifer” is a portmanteau used for the super-couple pairing of actors Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez. Other supercouples are/were:

  • Tomkat – Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes
  • Grant ‘n’ Hurley – Hugh Grant and Elizabeth Hurley
  • Posh and Becks – Victoria and David Beckham
  • Brangelina – Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie

25. “Inferiority complex” coiner : ADLER

Alfred Adler was one of the group of medical professionals that founded the psychoanalytic movement. Today Adler is less famous than his colleague, Sigmund Freud.

27. “Unfaithful” co-star : GERE

Richard Gere has played such great roles on the screen, and I find him to be a very interesting character off the screen. Gere has been studying Buddhism since 1978 and is a very visible supporter of the Dalai Lama and the people of Tibet.

“Unfaithful” is a 2002 drama film with leads played by Richard Gere and Diane Lane. The Hollywood movie is a remake of a French film called “La Femme infidèle” (The Unfaithful Wife).

28. Hold ’em holding : PAIR

The official birthplace of the incredibly popular poker game of Texas hold ’em is Robstown, Texas where the game dates back to the early 1900s. The game was introduced into Las Vegas in 1967 by a group of Texan enthusiasts including Doyle Brunson, a champion often seen playing on TV today. Doyle Brunson published a poker strategy guide in 1978, and this really helped increase the popularity of the game. But it was the inclusion of Texas hold ‘em in the television lineup that really gave the game its explosive surge in popularity, with the size of the prize money just skyrocketing.

29. Calif. NHL team, on scoreboards : LAK

The Los Angeles Kings hockey team was founded in 1967 and joined the NHL as an expansion team. The Kings played their home games at the start first season not in Los Angeles, but rather in neighboring Long Beach, at the Long Beach Arena. Team owner Jack Kent Cooke built his own arena for the Kings called the Forum, which opened for business later in the season. The Kings called the Forum home for thirty-two years, until they moved to the Staples Center at the start of the 1999-2000 season.

32. Liftoff sensation : G-FORCE

The force of gravity (g-force) that we all feel is referred to as “one G”. As gravity is a actually an accelerating force, acceleration is measured relative to that force of gravity. So, if we are sitting in a vehicle that accelerates at 3G, then we are experiencing a force that is three times that which we feel from the gravitational pull of the earth. Zero-G is weightlessness that is experienced when in space, outside the influence of the earth’s gravity.

35. Moonraker, for one : SAIL

On a square-rigged sailing ship, the moonraker is the uppermost square sail on each of the masts. If the uppermost sail is triangular, then it is referred to as a skyscraper.

36. “You kiss by the book” speaker : JULIET

In William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet”, after their first kiss, Juliet tells her beau, “You kiss by the book”. There has been some debate about the exact intent of this line. On the downside, it could be a mild rebuke, indicating that Romeo kisses, well, but there’s nothing special. On the upside, it could be that Juliet is complimenting Romeo on his knowledge and expertise in the art of the kiss.

39. Solar __ : CELL

Solar panels are arrays of solar cells that make use of what’s known as the photovoltaic effect. We are more likely to have learned about the photoelectric effect in school, in which electrons were ejected from the surface of some materials when it was exposed to light or other forms of radiation. The photovoltaic effect is related but different. Instead of being electrons ejected from the surface, in the photovoltaic effect electrons move around in the material creating a difference in voltage.

43. Heavy traffic may affect them, briefly : ETAS

Expected time of arrival (ETA)

44. Buddy : CHUM

A “chum” is a friend. The term originated in the late 1600s as an alternative spelling for “cham”. In turn “cham” was a shortened form of “chambermate”, a roommate at university.

48. First date concern : ZIT

The slang term “zit”, meaning “pimple”, came into the language in 1966, but no one seems to know its exact derivation.

49. Civil War battle site : SHILOH

The Battle of Shiloh was a major engagement in the Civil War, and was fought in 1862 at Pittsburg Landing in southwestern Tennessee. The battle started with a surprise attack by Confederate forces led by Generals Albert Sidney Johnston and P. G. T. Beauregard. The attackers gained the upper hand on the first day over the Union forces led by Major General Ulysses S. Grant. Union reinforcements arrived during the night and the tide of the battle turned the next day and the Confederates were forced to withdraw. Almost 3,000 men died in the course of the Battle of Shiloh, thus making it the bloodiest battle in US history up to that point in time.

51. Tahari of fashion : ELIE

Elie Tahari is an American fashion designer, although he was born in Jerusalem. Tahari immigrated to the US from Israel in 1971 and started work as an electrician in the the Garment District in New York City. It was there that he became interested in fashion.

52. Young would-be 19-Across in 2000 news : ELIAN
(19A. Asylum seeker : IMMIGRANT)

The immigration status of young Cuban boy Elián González was all over the news in 2000. Elián’s mother drowned while trying to enter the US illegally, whereas Elián and his mother’s boyfriend survived the journey. The INS placed Elián in the care of paternal relatives in the US who then petitioned to have the boy stay with them permanently, against the wishes of Elián’s father back in Cuba. After court proceedings, the federal authorities forcibly removed Elián from his relatives in the US, and he was returned to his father who took him back to Cuba. Back in Cuba, Fidel Castro stepped in and befriended Elián, and the young man still has influential sponsorship in his homeland as a result of his ordeal. Elián has grown up, earning himself a degree in industrial engineering in 2016.

54. River across Quebec, in Quebec : ST LAURENT

The Saint Lawrence River (“Fleuve Saint-Laurent” in French” rises as the principal outflow of Lake Ontario, runs almost 2,000 miles before emptying into the Atlantic Ocean at the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, which is the largest estuary on the planet.

57. Carousel riders : SUITCASES

Apparently the baggage carousel was developed by a French company. The first installation was in Paris Orly Airport in the 1950s.

59. Lily’s “Laugh-In” operator : ERNESTINE

Lily Tomlin is a comedian and actress who got her big break as a regular member of the cast of “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In” in the late sixties and early seventies. Tomlin created several great characters on the show. My personal favorite is Ernestine, the condescending telephone operator with the marvelous nasal voice and snorting laugh. Ernestine was fond of saying “One ringy dingy …” I really enjoy Tomlin’s performances as an actress, notably in the movies “9 to 5” and “All of Me”, and on the TV shows “The West Wing” and “Grace and Frankie”. I went to her stage show many years ago in San Francisco, and just did not enjoy it. I was devastated …

60. Janitor’s supply : LYSOL

The disinfectant called Lysol takes its name from the words “lysosome” and “solvent”. Lysosomes are structures found within cells that have the job of breaking up waste material and cellular debris.

A janitor is someone who takes care of the maintenance or cleaning of a building. An older definition of the term is “doorman”. Our word comes from the Latin “ianitor” meaning “doorkeeper”.

Down

1. Pioneering : SEMINAL

Something that is seminal is creative and has the power to originate, is formative. The term comes from the Latin “semen” meaning “seed”.

2. Oakland’s county : ALAMEDA

“Alameda” is Spanish for “a place full of poplars”. There are number of locations in the US and elsewhere with the name “Alameda”, including the county of Alameda, California where I am right now, writing this post. Alameda County is also home to the city of Alameda located on Alameda Island.

The city of Oakland, located in the San Francisco Bay Area, was settled by the Spanish in 1772. The area now known as Oakland was called “Encinal” by those early settlers, which translates as “oak grove”, giving the city its name.

3. Dairy line? : GOT MILK?

The “got milk?” advertising campaign was funded originally by the California Milk Processor Board and later by milk processors and dairy farmers. The “got milk?” ads encourage us to drink cow’s milk, and lots of it.

5. Hamlet : BURG

“Burg” is an informal term used in the US for a smaller town, from the German word “burg” meaning a fortified city.

A hamlet is a small village, especially one without a church (it says here …).

7. Innate : UNTAUGHT

Something innate is untaught, has existed from birth. The term comes from the Latin “innatus” meaning “inborn”.

9. Hawthorne’s Prynne : HESTER

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”.

10. Sheikdom of song : ARABY

“The Sheik of Araby” is a song that dates back to 1921, when it was a Tin Pan Alley hit. It was soon absorbed into the jazz standard repertoire. The inspiration of the song was Rudolph Valentino’s performance in the 1921 movie “The Sheik”.

11. Coach of Nadia and Mary Lou : BELA

Béla Károlyi is a gymnastics coach from Romania who has lived in the US since 1981. Károlyi has coached both the US and Romanian national teams, with both winning Olympic gold.

Nadia Comaneci won three golds in the 1976 Summer Olympics and was the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of a ten in the gymnastics competition. Comaneci published a book called “Letters to a Young Gymnast” in 2003, and now lives in the United States.

Mary Lou Retton is an Olympic champion gymnast from Fairmont, West Virginia. Retton won Olympic Individual All-Around gold in the 1984 games, making her the first female athlete to do so who wasn’t from Eastern Europe.

12. Protective display cover : BELL JAR

A bell jar is a bell-shaped glass jar used in a laboratory. The jar is placed over an object that needs to be surrounded by a vacuum. That vacuum is created by pumping air from inside the jar via a hose fitted to the top. Bell jars can also be used as display cases.

13. Charmingly rustic : IDYLLIC

An “idyll” (also “idyl”) is a short poem with a pastoral theme, usually depicting the scene in romantic and idealized terms. The word comes from the Greek “eidyllion”, which literally translates to “little picture” but was a word describing a short, poem with a rustic theme.

14. Candidate for Photoshop : EYESORE

Photoshop is a wonderful piece of software used for editing graphics. When I first bought a copy of Photoshop, it was really expensive (about $300, ten years ago), but now there are cost-effective, stripped-down versions available. Also, the full version of Photoshop is now only available as a monthly subscription service.

34. Grafton’s “__ for Burglar” : B IS

Sue Grafton writes detective novels, and her “alphabet series” features the private investigator Kinsey Millhone. She started off with “A Is for Alibi” in 1982 and is working her way through the alphabet, most recently publishing “’W’ is for Wasted” in 2009. Apparently Ms. Grafton is working on her “X is for …” novel, and has already decided that “Z is for Zero” will be the final title in the series. What a clever naming system!

36. Biblical wife of Ahab : JEZEBEL

Ahab was a King of Israel, but the power behind his throne was his wife Jezebel, a Phoenician princess. Jezebel’s god was Ba’al, and she used her influence to get temples of Ba’al built in Israel. Jezebel’s name is still associated with the worship of false prophets.

38. Selena and others : LATINAS

Singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez, known professionally simply as “Selena”, was murdered in 1995 by the president of her own fan club at the height of her career. In a 1997 biopic about Selena’s life, Jennifer Lopez played the title role.

39. Lab dish subject : CULTURE

Julius Richard Petri was a German bacteriologist and was the man after whom the Petri dish is named. The petri dish can have an agar gel on the bottom which acts a nutrient source for the specimen being grown and studied, in which case the dish plus agar is referred to as an “agar plate”.

40. Historical Oder River region : SILESIA

Silesia is a region in Central Europe that lies mainly in Poland, but also in the Czech Republic and Germany. Silesia is home to large coalfields. As a result, the region is highly industrialized.

42. Flies over Africa? : TSETSES

Tsetse flies live on the blood of vertebrate mammals. The name “tsetse” comes from Tswana, a language of southern Africa, and translates simply as “fly”. Tsetse flies are famous for being carriers of the disease known as “sleeping sickness”. Sleeping sickness is caused by a parasite which is passed onto humans when the tsetse fly bites into human skin tissue. If one considers all the diseases transmitted by the insect, then the tsetse fly is responsible for a staggering quarter of a million deaths each year.

49. Fishhook connector : SNELL

A snell is a length of thin line that connects a fishhook to heavier line.

53. Currency exchange fee : AGIO

The term “agio” derives from the Italian “aggio” meaning “exchange rate, discount, premium”. Most often, the agio is defined as the difference between the actual exchange rate and the nominal exchange rate for two currencies. That difference is mainly made up of the service fee for making the exchange.

55. Sch. in the same system as Berkeley : UCSB

The University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) is one of the 10 campuses in the UC system. UCSB joined the UC system in 1944, although the school was founded as a teachers’ college in 1891.

The University of California, Berkeley (Cal) is the most difficult public university to get into in the world. It opened in 1869 and is named for Anglo-Irish philosopher George Berkeley.

Return to top of page

Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Nevada’s state flower : SAGEBRUSH

10. Yippie Hoffman : ABBIE

15. Silver tongue : ELOQUENCE

16. Like some winds : REEDY

17. Becomes ripe : MATURATES

18. “Joyful, __ nations, rise”: carol lyric : ALL YE

19. Asylum seeker : IMMIGRANT

20. Walk quartet : BALLS

21. Rathskeller turndown : NEIN

22. In silence : MUTELY

24. Half of Bennifer : J.LO

25. “Inferiority complex” coiner : ADLER

27. “Unfaithful” co-star : GERE

28. Hold ’em holding : PAIR

29. Calif. NHL team, on scoreboards : LAK

30. How many TV shows are aired : IN HD

32. Liftoff sensation : G-FORCE

34. Record flaw : BLOT

35. Moonraker, for one : SAIL

36. “You kiss by the book” speaker : JULIET

39. Solar __ : CELL

40. Word heard before a pistol fires : SET

43. Heavy traffic may affect them, briefly : ETAS

44. Buddy : CHUM

46. Seriously hurts : MAIMS

48. First date concern : ZIT

49. Civil War battle site : SHILOH

51. Tahari of fashion : ELIE

52. Young would-be 19-Across in 2000 news : ELIAN

54. River across Quebec, in Quebec : ST LAURENT

56. Overindulgence : BINGE

57. Carousel riders : SUITCASES

58. Business that requires browsing : E-TAIL

59. Lily’s “Laugh-In” operator : ERNESTINE

60. Janitor’s supply : LYSOL

61. Collector’s targets : DEADBEATS

Down

1. Pioneering : SEMINAL

2. Oakland’s county : ALAMEDA

3. Dairy line? : GOT MILK?

4. Like some mounts : EQUINE

5. Hamlet : BURG

6. Prepare for a new assault : REARM

7. Innate : UNTAUGHT

8. Like many candles : SCENTED

9. Hawthorne’s Prynne : HESTER

10. Sheikdom of song : ARABY

11. Coach of Nadia and Mary Lou : BELA

12. Protective display cover : BELL JAR

13. Charmingly rustic : IDYLLIC

14. Candidate for Photoshop : EYESORE

23. By the book : LEGAL

26. Get to : RILE

28. Campaign pro : POL

31. V-shaped cut : NOTCH

33. Thin coat : FILM

34. Grafton’s “__ for Burglar” : B IS

35. Pasta ingredient : SEMOLINA

36. Biblical wife of Ahab : JEZEBEL

37. Water or gas : UTILITY

38. Selena and others : LATINAS

39. Lab dish subject : CULTURE

40. Historical Oder River region : SILESIA

41. Distinguished : EMINENT

42. Flies over Africa? : TSETSES

45. Sounded displeased : HISSED

47. Make bubbly : AERATE

49. Fishhook connector : SNELL

50. More than a little unpopular : HATED

53. Currency exchange fee : AGIO

55. Sch. in the same system as Berkeley : UCSB

Return to top of page

13 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 15 Apr 17, Saturday”

  1. 4 errors, 46 minutes. About like Thursday’s grid, lot of guesses on things I didn’t know, all wrong. WSJ was pretty routine, though. For those that might still play the CHE, it got posted rather late this week (COB, Friday). But it’s there, and a pretty decent effort.

  2. @Bill, a thousand pardons, but don’t the “balls” in 20 across refer to pitches outside the strike zone (or something like that) in baseball? Four balls pitched and the batter “walks.” Although a “quartet of balls” seems a rather whimsical description, I’d say…

    1. I agree, a definite baseball reference. There are only two “balls” of the feet, or more correctly, the first metatarsal phalangeal (MTP) joint of each foot.

    2. Foiled by my lack of familiarity with sports yet again! Thanks for setting me on the right path, Joel. All fixed now.

  3. I can’t believe I got ARABY and MUTELY but missed REEDY. I finished this one very quickly for a Saturday. I guessed right with the L in ELIE/SILESIA, but I just went with REEDs and hoped that an EsESORE meant something. REEDY never even occured to me. Is a guitar stringy?…well maybe it is.

    Agree with the above. 4 balls is a walk. But Andy got me interested as to the exact definition of the balls of the feet. I assumed there were 10 – one for each toe. 2 is correct according to wiki. But they define the “ball of the foot” as “the padded portion of the sole between the toes and the arch” So the entire area is considered THE ball of the foot – i.e. from the big to to the pinky toe.

    Interesting, but I can’t foresee even one time the rest of my life where that information will actually be useful to me 🙂

    Also – 61A DEADBEATS for collector’s target? Can someone explain that to me?

    Best –

  4. Ended up with dead beets (should have watered them more perhaps?) so DNF. D’oh! Hope everyone has a good Easter Sunday. See you all downstream…

  5. Agree with the baseball definition. “Ball four! Walk.
    @Carrie re: yesterday’s puzzle. 57D NYE actress married to Dick Cavett.
    Bill said, “Cavett is also famous for making up anagrams from the celebrity names. Examples are “genuine class” for Alec Guinness and “grow a spine” (that’s the polite version!) for Spiro Agnew”.
    As always, a DNF on the Saturday puzzle.
    Very tired today.
    Maundy Thursday service. Good Friday service. Easter tomorrow.
    A Blessed Easter to all who celebrate.

  6. Just finished Friday’s today. The question regarding The Quite Man brought me back to my vacation to Ireland in September. The film was made in Cong, cute little town, with a bronze statue of the Duke and O’Hara. The road trip to get there is an adventure of it’s own!

  7. Woo Hoo, two Saturdays in a row. It took about an hour but finished without errors. Did look at MATURATES for a while. BLOT is also a little odd, as I think of a skip instead. Must be a different type of record!?

    Moonraker being a sail is interesting. I was cursing myself for not having seen the movie yet, but got it on the crosses.

    Also had dane, then king and then BURG.

    So, if tsetse means fly, isn’t tsetse fly redundant?

  8. Hiya folks!!
    @Vidwan yesterday & Pookie today — thanks y’all for pointing out the Agnew reference! I must have looked right past it!!! ?
    Finíshed Saturday!!! Very good puzzle, except for MATURATES, which in my mind STILL isn’t a word….
    Interesting to hear of the different interpretations of Juliet’s line. Must read the play again. I’ll be happy to let you all know my brilliant conclusions​….?
    Happy Easter!!! Here come the bunnies….
    Be well~~™?????

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.