LA Times Crossword Answers 7 Apr 17, Friday










Constructed by: Jeffrey Wechsler

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: Oy Vey!

Today’s themed answers are common phrases with OY inserted:

  • 35A. Apt cry in reaction to four puzzle answers? : OY VEY!
  • 17A. Young Pharaoh’s mischievous playmate? : TOMBOY OF KING TUT (from “tomb of King Tut”)
  • 25A. Overly sweet fruit? : CLOYING PEACHES (from “cling peaches”)
  • 43A. Useless metallurgical product? : ALLOY FOR NAUGHT (from “all for naught”)
  • 56A. Small shellfish of high quality? : PRIME MINI-OYSTER (from “prime minister”)

Bill’s time: 17m 46s!!!

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Chanel product : SCENT

Chanel No. 5 is a perfume that was released by Coco Chanel back in 1921. Chanel had an affinity for the number “5”, and always presented her dress collection on May 5th (the fifth day of the fifth month). When she was presented a selection of experimental scents as potential choices for the first perfume to bear the Chanel name, she chose the sample in the fifth vial. Chanel instructed that the “sample number 5” should keep its name, asserting that it would bring the scent good luck.

6. Father of Hector : PRIAM

Priam was king of Troy during the Trojan War. Reputedly, Priam was father to fifty sons and many daughters with his many wives. His eldest son and heir to the throne was Hector. Paris was another of Priam’s sons, the man who caused the Trojan War by eloping with Helen, Queen of Sparta.

As described in Homer’s “Iliad”, Hector was a Trojan prince and a great fighter. Hector was slain during the Trojan War, as the Greeks lay siege to Troy. If we are to believe the 2004 film “Troy”, Hector actually died at the hands of Achilles, while fighting a duel. Homer’s “Iliad” is less specific about the circumstances of Hector’s death.

15. “The Flintstones” co-creator : HANNA

I once had the privilege of spending an afternoon in the room (Bill Hanna’s den) where Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera came up with the idea of “The Flintstones” …

16. Martial arts accessory : OBI

The sash worn as part of traditional Japanese dress is known as an obi. The obi can be tied at the back in what is called a butterfly knot. The term “obi” is also used for the thick cotton belts that are an essential part of the outfits worn by practitioners of many martial arts. The color of the martial arts obi signifies the wearer’s skill level.

17. Young Pharaoh’s mischievous playmate? : TOMBOY OF KING TUT (from “tomb of King Tut”)

“King Tut” is a name commonly used for the Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun. Tutankhamun may not have been the most significant of the pharaohs historically, but he is the most famous today largely because of the discovery of his nearly intact tomb in 1922 by Howard Carter. Prior to this find, any Egyptian tombs uncovered by archaeologists had been ravaged by grave robbers. Tutankhamun’s magnificent burial mask is one of the most recognizable of all Egyptian artifacts.

22. Stephen Colbert forte : IRONY

Stephen Colbert is a political satirist who hosted his own show on Comedy Central, “The Colbert Report”. Colbert’s first love was theater, and so he studied to become an actor. He then moved into comedy, and ended up on the “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart”. He left “The Daily Show” in 2005 to set up his own spinoff, “The Colbert Report”. In his own inimitable way, Colbert likes to use a “French” pronunciation for the name of his show, so “The Colbert Report” comes out as “The Col-bear Rep-oar”. Colbert took over the “Late Show” when David Letterman retired.

23. Papuan food staple : SAGO

When I was growing up in Ireland I was very familiar with pearl sago, which is very similar to pearl tapioca. Pearls of sago are simply little balls of sago starch used to make breads, pancakes, biscuits, or the steamed puddings that we ate as kids. Sago comes from pith of the sago palm tree. To get at the starch the tree has to be cut down and the trunk split to reveal the pith. The pith is crushed and manipulated to make the starch available, which is then washed out of a fibrous suspension. One sago palm tree yields about 150-300 kg of starch. Personally I love the stuff, but then, I am a bit weird …

Papua New Guinea is a country occupying the eastern half of the island of New Guinea (the western side of the island is part of Indonesia).

24. Solar prod. : ELEC

Solar panels 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.

25. Overly sweet fruit? : CLOYING PEACHES (from “cling peaches”)

There are two broad categories of peaches: freestones and clingstones. Clingstones (also “cling peaches”) have flesh that clings tightly to the pit. Freestones are easier to consume as the flesh separates easily from the pit.

33. Chekov colleague : SULU

Mr. Sulu was played by George Takei in the original “Star Trek” series. Takei has played lots of roles over the years, and is still very active in television. Did you know that he appeared in the 1963 film, “Pt-109”? He played the helmsman steering the Japanese destroyer that ran down John F. Kennedy’s motor torpedo boat. From destroyer helmsman to starship helmsman …

Walter Koenig played Pavel Chekov in the original “Star Trek” series. Mr Chekov was a Russian character, but Koenig himself was born in Chicago, the son of Jewish immigrants from Lithuania.

35. Apt cry in reaction to four puzzle answers? : OY VEY!

“Oy vey” is a Yiddish expression of dismay that literally translates as “oh, pain”. The more usual translation is “woe is me”.

38. Carson predecessor : PAAR

“The Tonight Show” has had six permanent hosts so far:

  • Steve Allen (1954-57)
  • Jack Paar (1957-62)
  • Johnny Carson (1962–92)
  • Jay Leno (1992–2009, 2010–14)
  • Conan O’Brien (2009–10)
  • Jimmy Fallon (2014–present)

40. “Norma __” : RAE

“Norma Rae” is a 1979 movie starring Sally Field as Norma Rae Webster in a tale of union activities in a textile factory in Alabama. The film is based on the true story of Crystal Lee Sutton told in a 1975 book called “Crystal Lee, a Woman of Inheritance”.

41. Salad garnish brand : BACOS

Betty Crocker Bac-Os aren’t real “bacon bits”. Rather, they are “bacon-flavor” morsels made out of, well, probably nothing too healthy. But still, vegans should be happy to hear that there are no animal products included.

43. Useless metallurgical product? : ALLOY FOR NAUGHT (from “all for naught”)

An alloy is a mixture of metals, or a mixture of metal with some other element, that behaves like a metal. Alloys are produced as perhaps cheaper alternatives to pure metals, or as alternatives that have enhanced metallurgical properties. Common examples of alloys are steel, solder, brass, pewter and bronze.

51. Hold for another time : TABLE

These “tabling” and “shelving” idioms drive me crazy, because they are often misused. If a topic is shelved, it is set aside. If a topic is tabled, it is brought “off the shelf” and put “on the table” for discussion. I know that language evolves, but I think it should at least make sense …

53. “Law & Order: SVU” rank : SGT

“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” is a spin-off from the TV crime drama “Law & Order”. “SVU” has been on the air since 1999, and is set in New York City. Interestingly, since 2007 there has been a very successful Russian adaptation of the show that is set in Moscow.

61. Keats’ Muse : ERATO

In Greek mythology, Erato was the Muse of lyric poetry, and is often depicted playing a lyre.

The poet John Keats is famous for writing a whole series of beautiful odes. The most renowned are the so-called “1819 Odes”, a collection from the year 1819 that includes famous poems such as “Ode on a Grecian Urn”, “Ode to a Nightingale” and “Ode to Psyche”.

62. Montpelier-to-Providence dir. : SSE

Providence is the capital of the state of Rhode Island. The city was founded way back in 1636 by a religious exile from the Massachusetts Bay Colony called Roger Williams. Williams believed that it was “God’s merciful providence” that revealed the location of today’s city as a haven for him and his followers, and so gave the new settlement the name “Providence”.

Montpelier is the capital of the state of Vermont, the smallest state in the Union in terms of population. The city was named for the French city of Montpelier in the days when there was great enthusiasm for things French after the aid received during the American Revolution.

63. Ski resort near Montpelier : STOWE

Stowe ski resort is located on the slopes of Mount Mansfield and Spruce Peak, near the town of Stowe, Vermont. Alpine skiing was brought first to Mount Mansfield, after the Civilian Conservation Corps cut trails back in 1933. The following year, Mount Mansfield was home to the first ski patrol in the nation, which became the model for the National Ski Patrol.

64. In la-la land : DITZY

“La-la land” is a euphemism for a state of unconsciousness.

Down

1. Opposite of starve : SATE

“Sate” is a variant of the older word “satiate”. Both terms can mean either to satisfy an appetite fully, or to eat to excess.

3. Saint Erasmus of Formia, familiarly : ELMO

Saint Elmo is the patron saint of sailors. More formally referred to as Erasmus of Formia, St. Elmo is perhaps venerated by sailors as tradition tells us that he continued preaching despite the ground beside him being struck by a thunderbolt. Sailors started to pray to him when in danger of storms and lightning. He lends his name to the electrostatic weather phenomenon (often seen at sea) known as St. Elmo’s fire. The “fire” is actually a plasma discharge caused by air ionizing at the end of a pointed object (like the mast of a ship), something often observed during electrical storms.

4. San Francisco’s __ Hill : NOB

Nob Hill is a very elevated and central location in the city of San Francisco. Because of its views of the surrounding city and environs, Nob Hill became a desirable place to live for the wealthy in the 1800s. The area is still one of San Francisco’s most affluent neighborhoods and is home to upscale hotels as well as the magnificent Grace Cathedral. The name “Nob Hill” comes from the slang term for someone who is well-to-do, a “nob”.

6. Laser particle : PHOTON

In the field of electromagnetic radiation, a photon is the basic unit of light, an elementary particle. The photon is believed to have no mass, but this fact does seem to create some theoretical inconsistencies … which I just don’t understand!

7. Large quantity : RAFT

A raft is a large amount, coming from the Middle English “raf” meaning the same thing.

10. Capital south of Taipei : MANILA

Many moons ago I spent a couple of very happy years living in Manila in the Philippines. I had an apartment there, and residing in the apartment building next door was Imelda Marcos, along with all of her shoes I assume …

“Taipei” translates from Chinese as “Northern Taiwan City” and indeed is situated at the northern tip of Taiwan. The city is nicknamed “City of Azaleas” as flowers are said to bloom better in Taipei than in any other city on the island.

12. Have __ in the oven : A BUN

There might be a bun in the oven, a baby in the womb.

18. Hindu ascetic : YOGI

In the West we tend to think of yoga as a physical discipline, a means of exercise that uses specific poses to stretch and strengthen muscles. While it is true that the ancient Indian practice of yoga does involve such physical discipline, the corporeal aspect of the practice plays a relatively small part in the whole philosophy. Other major components are meditation, ethical behavior, breathing and contemplation.

19. Athenians, to Parisians : GRECS

“Grec” is the French word for “Greek”.

23. Four after do : SOL

The solfa syllables are: do, re, mi, fa, sol, la & ti.

24. Selection word : EENY

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Catch the tiger/monkey/baby by the toe.
If it hollers/screams let him go,
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe, you are it!

25. Foundation of many islets : CORAL

Polyps are tiny sea creatures that are found attached to underwater structures or to other polyps. Polyps have a mouth at one end of a cylindrical “body” that is surrounded by tentacles. Some polyps cluster into groups called stony corals, with stony corals being the building blocks of coral reefs. The structure of the reef comprises calcium carbonate exoskeletons secreted by the coral polyps.

28. “Hop-Frog” author : POE

“Hop-Frog” is a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe that was first published in 1849. Hop-Frog is a jester in a king’s court, intent on revenge against his master and his retinue. The jester convinces the king and his inner circle to dress up as orangutans for a masquerade ball, and then sets fire to their costumes killing them all.

29. Literature Nobelist of 1948 : ELIOT

T. S. Eliot was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948, largely due to his “Four Quartets”, a set of four poems that Eliot himself considered to be his life’s masterpiece.

31. Literary sobriquet : PAPA

Apparently, the author Ernest Hemingway picked up the moniker “Papa” on the birth of his first child (as one might expect!). Hemingway seemed to the like the nickname, and welcomed its use outside of the family, and his admirers obliged.

A sobriquet is an affectionate nickname. “Sobriquet” is French for “nickname”.

35. “Carmina Burana” composer : ORFF

“Carmina Burana” is a cantata by Carl Orff based on a collection of medieval poems that go by the same name. The name translates as “Songs from Beuern”. The best known movement of the cantata by far is the dramatic “O Fortuna” used at the opening and closing of the piece. One study placed “O Fortuna” as the most often played piece of classical music in the UK over the past 75 years, largely due to its use in television commercials. Famously, the piece appeared in the US in ads for Gatorade and Old Spice aftershave.

36. Former Rocket Ming : YAO

Yao Ming is a retired professional basketball player from Shanghai who played for the Houston Rockets. At 7’6″, Yao was the tallest man playing in the NBA.

39. “Air Music” composer : ROREM

American composer Ned Rorem is famous for his musical compositions, but also for his book “Paris Diary of Ned Rorem” that was published in 1966. Rorem talks openly about his sexuality in the book, and also about the sexual orientation of others including Noel Coward, Leonard Bernstein and Samuel Barber, much to some people’s chagrin.

“Air Music” is a classical piece by American composer Ned Rorem that was first performed in 1975. It is a set of ten variations, and won the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1976.

45. Like Victoria’s Secret models : NUBILE

The word “nubile” can mean of a marrying age, or sexually attractive. The word generally applies to young women, and comes from the Latin “nubere” meaning “to take a husband”.

Victoria’s Secret was founded in 1977 in San Francisco, California. The founder wanted to create an environment where men were comfortable buying lingerie for their wives or girlfriends, an alternative to a department store.

46. Woody offshoot? : ARLO

Arlo Guthrie is the son of Woody Guthrie. Both father and son are renowned for their singing of protest songs about social injustice. Arlo is most famous for his epic “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree”, a song that lasts a full 18m 34s. In the song Guthrie tells how, after being drafted, he was rejected for service in the Vietnam War based on his criminal record. He had only one incident on his public record, a Thanksgiving Day arrest for littering and being a public nuisance when he was 18-years-old.

51. Blessing for a couch potato : TIVO

TiVo was introduced in 1999 and was the world’s first commercially successful Digital Video Recorder (DVR).

53. ER shout : STAT!

The exact etymology of “stat”, a term meaning “immediately” in the medical profession, seems to have been lost in the mists of time. It probably comes from the Latin “statim” meaning “to a standstill, immediately”. A blog reader has helpfully suggested that the term may also come from the world of laboratory analysis, where the acronym STAT stands for “short turn-around time”.

54. Stan with a sax : GETZ

Stan Getz was a jazz saxophonist. Getz’s playing style earned him the nickname “The Sound”.

55. Paris’ realm : TROY

The ancient city of Troy was located on the west coast of modern-day Turkey. The Trojan War of Greek mythology was precipitated by the elopement of Helen, the wife of the king of Sparta, with Paris of Troy. The war itself largely consisted of a nine-year siege of Troy by the Greeks. We know most about the final year of that siege, as it is described extensively in Homer’s “Iliad”. The city eventually fell when the Greeks hid soldiers inside the Trojan Horse, which the Trojans brought inside the city’s walls. Beware of Greeks bearing gifts …

58. Indian honorific : SRI

“Sri” is a title of respect for a male in India.

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Chanel product : SCENT

6. Father of Hector : PRIAM

11. Interruption : GAP

14. Give the green light : ALLOW

15. “The Flintstones” co-creator : HANNA

16. Martial arts accessory : OBI

17. Young Pharaoh’s mischievous playmate? : TOMBOY OF KING TUT (from “tomb of King Tut”)

20. It’s on display while boasting : EGO

21. Eccentric : DOTTY

22. Stephen Colbert forte : IRONY

23. Papuan food staple : SAGO

24. Solar prod. : ELEC

25. Overly sweet fruit? : CLOYING PEACHES (from “cling peaches”)

31. Features of a Los Angeles aerial view : POOLS

32. Charged thing : ION

33. Chekov colleague : SULU

34. Line on a globe : ARC

35. Apt cry in reaction to four puzzle answers? : OY VEY!

37. One in a cage : RIB

38. Carson predecessor : PAAR

40. “Norma __” : RAE

41. Salad garnish brand : BACOS

43. Useless metallurgical product? : ALLOY FOR NAUGHT (from “all for naught”)

47. Coll. employee : PROF

48. Motivate : URGE

49. Helped create, in a way : SIRED

51. Hold for another time : TABLE

53. “Law & Order: SVU” rank : SGT

56. Small shellfish of high quality? : PRIME MINI-OYSTER (from “prime minister”)

59. Succor : AID

60. Parking garage component : LEVEL

61. Keats’ Muse : ERATO

62. Montpelier-to-Providence dir. : SSE

63. Ski resort near Montpelier : STOWE

64. In la-la land : DITZY

Down

1. Opposite of starve : SATE

2. Obstruct : CLOG

3. Saint Erasmus of Formia, familiarly : ELMO

4. San Francisco’s __ Hill : NOB

5. Weekend, usually : TWO DAYS

6. Laser particle : PHOTON

7. Large quantity : RAFT

8. Black : INKY

9. “Wheel of Fortune” purchase : AN I

10. Capital south of Taipei : MANILA

11. Seek a higher authority? : GO TO CHURCH

12. Have __ in the oven : A BUN

13. “How unfortunate” : PITY

18. Hindu ascetic : YOGI

19. Athenians, to Parisians : GRECS

23. Four after do : SOL

24. Selection word : EENY

25. Foundation of many islets : CORAL

26. What a homecoming parade generates : LOCAL PRIDE

27. Alms provider : GIVER

28. “Hop-Frog” author : POE

29. Literature Nobelist of 1948 : ELIOT

30. Fills in : SUBS

31. Literary sobriquet : PAPA

35. “Carmina Burana” composer : ORFF

36. Former Rocket Ming : YAO

39. “Air Music” composer : ROREM

41. Obviously astonished : BUG-EYED

42. Vital statistic : AGE

44. Some Alpine entertainment : YODELS

45. Like Victoria’s Secret models : NUBILE

46. Woody offshoot? : ARLO

49. Getaway options : SPAS

50. Camera lens feature : IRIS

51. Blessing for a couch potato : TIVO

52. One way to start : ANEW

53. ER shout : STAT!

54. Stan with a sax : GETZ

55. Paris’ realm : TROY

57. Exchanged handshakes : MET

58. Indian honorific : SRI

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9 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 7 Apr 17, Friday”

  1. Oy vey is right for this one! Never have I seen anything called a “mini”oyster. Direction from Montpelier to Providence?

  2. Tough one indeed. Finally finished this one after much more time than I’d like to admit. Didn’t get the theme completely until the very end. ROREM, ORFF and a couple of others I had to get via crosses.

    Last to fall was the NW. I had offDAYS for “Weekend” and all kinds of problems needed to be fixed after that.

    INKY for Black? Ok…I guess.

    Hadn’t thought of BACOS in years. Reminds me of the Jim Gaffigan bit on bacon in general. Hilarious.

    Speaking of comedians. Sad to see Don Rickles died at age 90. One of the funniest men to ever go on stage or screen.

    Best –

  3. Really fun challenge. For awhile I wasn’t sure it would come together successfully, but it finally fell after I realized I had misspelled “naught” as “nought” and that correction led to completion.

    See you all tomorrow for the Saturday “brain strain” fest (at least if today is any indication of what tomorrows grid may be like in terms of difficulty).

    1. Bill… seventeen minutes (!!!), I normally take my completion time and divide it in half — and that is usually very close to your time. Today we were very close — I don’t put myself on a clock, but I glance at it when I start and when puzzle is completed . Today between seventeen and eighteen minutes. Fun puzzle, looking forward to Saturday’s toughie….

  4. 2 errors (couple of wrong guesses), 51 minutes. Surprised I did that well with all the guessing I had to do on it.

  5. Very tough puzzle. Could not complete. Had absolutely no idea on where the clues would lead me. Bill, you had seventeen minutes ? You must be two standard deviations in crossword IQ ahead of me.

    But looking at all the answers, I can appreciate the punny answers, the cute theme, and the intricate cluing. Well done, Mr. Wechsler !

    Carrie, I don’t get a chance to repond to you, but your pun on wok reminded of a joke –
    – Have you heard of a new chinese cookbook ?
    – 101 ways to wok your dog.

    Oy Vey, actually is redundant – the interjections both mean woe, one in hebrew, the other in Aramaic. But they are generally said together, by habit or for emphasis (?) Vey iz mir, also is woe is me, and is more forceful, and dire. In some 3 indian languages, an automatic reaction of distress, or woe, would be ai-ya, ai-yi-yo or ai-yo-baa. or ayyo-mah. These interjections, I’m sure, are learnt in childhood, and culturally hereditary, and almost instinctive.
    Just like americans. and only americans, say ‘Ouch’, when they stub their toe …. Chinese say ‘I-yo’, germans say ‘Ow-ah’ the japanese say, – ‘ee-tai’

    I have five bottle of Chanel No.5, , pre WWII, unopened, ( long story of how I obtained it – ) … and I am thinking, of either opening one up, to inhale the scent – or to sell all 5, intact, on Ebay …. in another 5 years ….. or ten…. once I find them where they are (!)
    I opened up a bottle of ‘Joy’ last year, …. and trust me, its all french hype and marketing ….. it smells like a citrusy-tuber rose. (!) with an after lingering octave of dried mushrooms …. or something.

    Have a nice day, all.

  6. Fun puzzle and it was going well, but I fizzled in the ME. Had to do the puzzle on-line and this time I did it without red letters, but bacos and rib and the fruit just would not come. I was pretty sure SULU was Chekov’s colleague, but, anyway, I finally turned on red letters and finished in a trice. The timer said 30:15, so that’s not too bad.

    Should have looked closer at the theme; that would have helped this time.

    On to Saturday…

  7. Hi all!
    Finíshed this after much angst and pacing. Dirk, I also struggled with that middle east! Finally thought Star Trek rather than playwrights. Last to fall was the B at SUBS/RIB. Didn’t think I’d get it!
    Vidwan–LOL! Thanks also for that interesting info about oy vey. Can’t wait to mention that among friends and impress them…?

    If that Chanel #5 is still sealed, does it retain its scent? Like wine? Maybe it has alcohol in it? Probably worth a fortune.
    This puzzle has readied me for Saturday — I hope!!!
    Be well~~™?

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