LA Times Crossword Answers 2 May 17, Tuesday










Constructed by: C.C. Burnikel

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: Ab and On

Today’s themed answers comprise two words, the first starting with the letters AB- and the second ending with the letters -ON:

  • 37A. Leave high and dry … or, when divided into three parts, what the answers to starred clues are encompassed by : ABANDON or AB AND ON
  • 16A. *Bath towel material : ABSORBENT COTTON
  • 22A. *Bart and Lisa’s grandpa : ABE SIMPSON
  • 49A. *”Falcon Crest” actress : ABBY DALTON
  • 59A. *Book that’s been shortened : ABRIDGED VERSION

Bill’s time: 5m 58s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Accessory for Supergirl : CAPE

Kara Zor-El is Superman’s cousin, and is also known as Supergirl. Supergirl’s father and Superman’s father were brothers.

5. Volkswagen Routan, for one : VAN

The Volkswagen Routan is a seven-seat minivan that is a variant of the Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country. All three brands have been manufactured alongside each other at Chrysler Canada’s Windsor assembly plant.

12. Andes animal : LLAMA

The wool from a llama is much softer than that from a sheep, and it is also free from lanolin.

14. Belgrade native : SERB

Belgrade is the capital city of Serbia. The name “Belgrade” translates into “White City”.

19. Pilates class need : MAT

Pilates is a physical exercise system developed by, and named for, Joseph Pilates. Pilates introduced his system of exercises in 1883 in Germany.

22. *Bart and Lisa’s grandpa : ABE SIMPSON

In the animated TV show called “The Simpsons”, Grampa Abe Simpson is voiced by Dan Castellaneta, the same actor who provides the voice for Homer.

32. Saudi’s neighbor : OMANI

Oman lies on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula and is neighbored by the OAE, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Oman is a monarchy, and the official name of the state is the Sultanate of Oman. All of the country’s legislative, executive and judiciary power resides with the hereditary sultan.

33. Neeson of the “Taken” films : LIAM

Irish actor Liam Neeson got his big break when he played Oskar Schindler in the Spielberg epic, “Schindler’s List”. Neeson was in the news a few years ago when he lost his wife, actress Natasha Richardson, in a tragic skiing accident in 2009.

“Taken” is a fabulous thriller movie released in 2008. It stars Liam Neeson as kind of an older James Bond-ish character, and he is great in the role. “Taken 2” followed in 2012 and it wasn’t a bad sequel, I must say. 2014’s “Taken 3” was just “okay” …

35. Rare Hawaiian goose : NENE

The bird called a nene is a native of Hawaii, and is also known as the Hawaiian goose. The name “nene” is imitative of its call. When Captain Cook landed on the islands in 1778, there were 25,000 nene living there. By 1950, the number was reduced by hunting to just 30 birds. Conservation efforts in recent years have been somewhat successful.

36. Huff Post owner : AOL

“The Huffington Post” is a news website founded in 2005 by Arianna Huffington. It is a very active site, with 3,000 people contributing blog posts (including many celebrities and politicians), and readers leaving over one million comments every month. “The Huffington Post” was sold to AOL in 2011 for $315 million, with Arianna Huffington staying on as editor-in-chief.

41. Mex. ladies : SRAS

The equivalent of “Mrs.” in French is “Mme.” (Madame), in Spanish is “Sra.” (Señora) and in Portuguese is also “Sra.” (Senhora).

46. Online live-stream lecture : TED TALK

The acronym TED stands for Technology Entertainment and Design. TED is a set of conferences held around the world by a non-profit group called the Sapling Foundation. The conference subjects are varied, and the meetings are often led by big names such as Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Bill Gates and Jane Goodall. The Sapling Foundation then makes recordings of the conferences available for free online with the intent of disseminating the ideas globally. These conferences are known as “TED Talks”.

48. __ Rico : PUERTO

Puerto Rico is located in the northeastern Caribbean (in the Atlantic Ocean), east of the Dominican Republic. The name “Puerto Rico” is Spanish for “rich port”. The locals often call their island Borinquen, the Spanish form of “Boriken”, the original name used by the natives.

49. *”Falcon Crest” actress : ABBY DALTON

Actress Abby Dalton played nurse Martha Hale on “Hennesey” and Joey Bishop’s wife on “The Joey Bishop Show”, two sitcoms from the fifties and sixties. More recently, she played Julia Cumson on the primetime soap “Falcon Crest” in the eighties.

56. Cookie fruit : FIG

The Fig Newton cookie is based on what is actually a very old recipe that dates back to Ancient Egypt. Whereas we grew up with “Fig Rolls” in Ireland, here in America the brand name “Fig Newton” was used, named after the town of Newton, Massachusetts where they were first produced.

66. Bluesy James : ETTA

Etta James was best known for her beautiful rendition of the song “At Last”. Sadly, as she disclosed in her autobiography, James lived a life that was ravaged by drug addiction leading to numerous legal and health problems. Ms. James passed away in January 2012 having suffered from leukemia.

Down

1. Chowder ingredient : CLAM

The type of soup known as “chowder” may be named for the pot in which it used to be cooked called a “chaudière”, a French term.

2. Jessica of “Good Luck Chuck” : ALBA

Actress Jessica Alba got her big break when she was cast in the Fox science fiction show “Dark Angel”. Alba had a tough life growing up as she spent a lot of time in hospital and so found it difficult to develop friendships. As a youngster she twice had a collapsed lung, frequently caught pneumonia, suffered from asthma, had a ruptured appendix and a tonsillar cyst. On top of all that she acknowledges that she suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder as a child. It seems that she has really turned her life around …

“Good Luck Chuck” is a 2007 romantic comedy film that wasn’t received well by the critics at all. Stars of the movie are Dane Cook (Chuck) and Jessica Alba. Chuck is a man who has a curse placed on him, so that every woman he sleeps with breaks up with him and marries the next man who asks her out.

5. Scorpion’s poison : VENOM

There are about 1750 different species of scorpion in the world, but only 25 or so have venom sufficiently toxic to kill a human.

7. “The Voice” network : NBC

“The Voice” is yet another reality television show. “The Voice” is a singing competition in which the judges hear the contestants without seeing them in the first round. The judges then take on chosen contestants as coaches for the remaining rounds. “The Voice” is a highly successful worldwide franchise that originated in the Netherlands as “The Voice of Holland”.

13. Country south of Georgia : ARMENIA

Armenia is a landlocked country found east of Turkey, and a former Soviet Republic. Back in the year 301 CE, the ancient Kingdom of Armenia became the first nation in the world to adopt Christianity as its national religion.

The former Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR) of Georgia is now an independent country. Supposedly, the Georgian people were given their name because they especially revered St. George. The flag of Georgia does indeed feature five St. George’s crosses.

14. 18-wheeler : SEMI

A “semi” is a “semi-trailer truck”. The vehicle is so called because it consists of a tractor and a half-trailer. The half-trailer is so called because it only has wheels on the back end, with the front supported by the tractor.

17. “Porgy and __” : BESS

“Porgy and Bess” is an opera with music by George Gershwin, lyrics by Ira Gershwin, and libretto by DuBose Heyward. The storyline of the opera is based on the novel “Porgy” written by DuBose Heyward and and wife Dorothy. “Porgy and Bess” was first performed in 1935, in New York City, but really wasn’t accepted as legitimate opera until 1976 after a landmark production by the Houston Grand Opera. The most famous song from the piece is probably the wonderful aria “Summertime”.

18. Former NBA forward Lamar : ODOM

Lamar Odom is a basketball forward in NBA. Apparently Odom loves candy, and that’s how he earned his nickname, “The Candy Man”. Odom was married to Khloé Kardashian, and the couple’s wedding featured on an episode of the reality show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians”. Not a show that I have ever seen …

24. Museum with a Goya Gate : PRADO

The Museo del Prado is in Madrid, the capital of Spain, and has one of the finest art collections in the world. The gallery’s most famous work is “Las Meninas” By Velazquez.

25. Sport with silk-clad referees called gyoji : SUMO

Sumo is a sport that is practiced professionally only in Japan, the country of its origin. There is an international federation of sumo wrestling now, and one of the organization’s aims is to have the sport accepted as an Olympic event.

27. Love, to Casanova : AMORE

Giacomo Casanova was an 18th-century adventurer from Venice. We know so much about him, and his reputation as a womanizer, because he left us his autobiography “Histoire de ma vie” (Story of My Life). A guy recounting stories of his love life and conquests. All true, I am sure …

33. Tall and lean : LANKY

The term “lank” can describe something that is straight and flat, particularly hair. The usage was extended in the early 1800s (especially in the form “lanky”) to mean “awkwardly tall and thin”.

34. Gary’s st. : IND

The city of Gary, Indiana is located just 25 miles from downtown Chicago and falls within the Chicago metropolitan area (also known as “Chicagoland”). Gary was founded by US Steel in 1906, as the company selected it as the site for a new steel plant. The name “Gary” was chosen in honor of Elbert H. Gary, who was the key player in setting up US Steel in 1901.

39. Fixes, as Fido : NEUTERS

“Fido”, the name for many a dog, is Latin for “I trust”.

45. Rock’s __ Speedwagon : REO

REO Speedwagon is an American rock band that formed in 1967, and is still going strong. The band’s biggest hits are “Keep On Loving You” (1980) and “Can’t Fight This Feeling” (1985). The founding members chose the name for the REO Speed Wagon flatbed truck. Note that the band’s name is one word “Speedwagon”, whereas the vehicle’s name uses two words “Speed Wagon”.

48. Ballet knee bend : PLIE

The French word for “bent” is “plié”. In the ballet move known as a plié, the knees are bent. A “demi-plié” is a similar move, but with less bending of the knees.

51. Off-road rides: Abbr. : ATVS

All-terrain vehicle (ATV)

52. Wind warning indicated by two red flags : GALE

A gale is a very strong wind that is defined by Beaufort Wind Scale as a wind with speeds from 50 to just over 100 kilometers per hour.

The Beaufort wind scale is named after Irishman Sir Francis Beaufort, a Rear-Admiral in the Royal Navy. Beaufort was a hydrographer as well as a career navy man.

53. “In memoriam” piece : OBIT

“Obituary” comes from the Latin “obituaris”, originally the record of the death of a person, although the literal meaning is “pertaining to death”.

57. Bitty bit : IOTA

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

58. Bitty biter : GNAT

Gnats are attracted to the smell of rotting food, and to vinegar. Simple homemade traps that use vinegar are often constructed to attract and kill gnats.

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Accessory for Supergirl : CAPE

5. Volkswagen Routan, for one : VAN

8. Put into words : SAID

12. Andes animal : LLAMA

14. Belgrade native : SERB

15. Pinnacle : ACME

16. *Bath towel material : ABSORBENT COTTON

19. Pilates class need : MAT

20. Note from the boss : MEMO

21. Data storage media : DISKS

22. *Bart and Lisa’s grandpa : ABE SIMPSON

26. Washroom bowls : BASINS

28. “People are saying … ” : RUMOR IS …

32. Saudi’s neighbor : OMANI

33. Neeson of the “Taken” films : LIAM

35. Rare Hawaiian goose : NENE

36. Huff Post owner : AOL

37. Leave high and dry … or, when divided into three parts, what the answers to starred clues are encompassed by : ABANDON or AB AND ON

40. One of a golfer’s pocketful : TEE

41. Mex. ladies : SRAS

43. Loosen, as laces : UNDO

44. Spew lava and ash : ERUPT

46. Online live-stream lecture : TED TALK

48. __ Rico : PUERTO

49. *”Falcon Crest” actress : ABBY DALTON

52. “Haven’t the foggiest” : GOT ME

55. “It’s __”: “Nobody wins” : A TIE

56. Cookie fruit : FIG

59. *Book that’s been shortened : ABRIDGED VERSION

63. Male with a thick mane : LION

64. Totals : ADDS

65. “Yes and no” : SORTA

66. Bluesy James : ETTA

67. Believe, as a story : BUY

68. Tuckered out : BEAT

Down

1. Chowder ingredient : CLAM

2. Jessica of “Good Luck Chuck” : ALBA

3. Picnic side dish : PASTA SALAD

4. Revealing rock genre : EMO

5. Scorpion’s poison : VENOM

6. Gallery showing : ART

7. “The Voice” network : NBC

8. Audited, as a class : SAT IN ON

9. Circus performances : ACTS

10. “Everything’s fine” : I’M OK

11. Many man caves : DENS

13. Country south of Georgia : ARMENIA

14. 18-wheeler : SEMI

17. “Porgy and __” : BESS

18. Former NBA forward Lamar : ODOM

23. Coal holder : BIN

24. Museum with a Goya Gate : PRADO

25. Sport with silk-clad referees called gyoji : SUMO

26. Brag : BOAST

27. Love, to Casanova : AMORE

29. Shoot back : RETURN FIRE

30. Ham-handed : INEPT

31. Take care of : SEE TO

33. Tall and lean : LANKY

34. Gary’s st. : IND

38. Onion or shallot : BULB

39. Fixes, as Fido : NEUTERS

42. Mountain climber’s need : STAMINA

45. Rock’s __ Speedwagon : REO

47. Still in the sack : ABED

48. Ballet knee bend : PLIE

50. Papa : DADDY

51. Off-road rides: Abbr. : ATVS

52. Wind warning indicated by two red flags : GALE

53. “In memoriam” piece : OBIT

54. Relaxed gait : TROT

57. Bitty bit : IOTA

58. Bitty biter : GNAT

60. Shoot the breeze : GAB

61. Academic URL ending : EDU

62. Have a good cry : SOB

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10 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 2 May 17, Tuesday”

  1. Hi all! Didn’t get to the Monday grid until now. 5:31, no errors on that. Pretty much a normal speed-fest.

    6:51, no errors on this one. Several weird bits of phrasing and had to get 49A entirely by crosses (at least I could though).

  2. @Glenn – Had to Google for the first name of 49A, ABBY. Falcon Crest was one of those shows I avoided.

    Had poDcAst before TEDTALK. What was the theme? Oh.

  3. Another hand up for someone who had to get ABBY DALTON entirely by crosses. Otherwise a typical Tuesday level puzzle. I probably didn’t need to lean on the theme, but I did anyway once I figured it out.

    NYT tied me in knots today. I finished but in closer to a Wed or Thurs time for me. Time to get on to something productive today.

    Best –

  4. It took me awhile to see ABSORBENT!
    TED TALK new to me.
    I remembered Abby Dalton, don’t know why.
    Falcon Crest, Dallas, Flamingo Road….
    Ah, the BIG hair, the sequins, and the shoulder pads. 🙂
    I remember it well.

  5. re SUMO wrestling as an Olympic sport
    Have they cleaned it up since Freakonomics was written?

    I also got ABBY DALTON w/ the crosses.

    1. Bella – I’d never heard of Freakonomics nor had I heard of any scandals in the Sumo wrestling business.

      I Googled it and saw that the wrestlers who had already qualified for the next tournament were allegedly losing on purpose to wrestlers who hadn’t won enough bouts in order to help them along to the next round. Sounds like an awfully benevolent scandal but a scandal nonetheless as the results were tainted.

      Sounds like an interesting book.

  6. I forgot to post yesterday. ( note to myself – ). Both yesterdays and todays puzzles were quite easy, and I throughly enjoyed myself. Small pleasures.

    I ‘got’ the Abandon part, but wondered where the ‘and’ disappeared in the starred answers… Doh !

    Btw, the towel material of ‘Absorbent Cotton’ ( or more properly aDsorbent cotton) is not any different from ordinary short staple cotton. The towel materials absorbancy is actually due to the nature of the weave that leaves large continuous loops ( more as in ‘turkish’ towels – ) which provide a substantially larger surface area for the water to be absorbed and desorbed for quick drying. The extra warp thread loop, tied off with the weft allows for over 240 percent more cotton fibre for the luxurious dried off feeling.
    TMI.

    have a nice day, folks.

  7. Hiya folks!
    Finished easily, but started slowly, being thrown right away by the first three clues!!! Don’t know anything about Supergirl, and I expected VAN and SAID to be something arcane….But of course it’s only Tuesday, and the answers were simple.
    Went for the key theme answer, got it, and filled in those letters, which gave me a leg up.
    I’m also in the “who the heck is ABBY DALTON???!!” club. That sounds more like a character name than the actress.
    @Vidwan, you do always have some interesting facts! ? Never thought of towels that way. I guess I don’t tend to think spatially (ie, increased surface area.)
    Hey Nolanski, I’m with you on ABED!! Some of y’all know my aversion to those made-up crosswordese A-words!!! ? TERRIBLE one yesterday: AREEL. Yikes!!
    Hope Dave is back soon ?
    Be well~~™???

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