LA Times Crossword 24 Sep 18, Monday

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Constructed by: Bruce Venzke & Gail Grabowski
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Word to Word

Themed answers are common phrases in the format “X to X”, where X is a repeated word:

  • 17A. How canvassers usually work : DOOR TO DOOR
  • 27A. How page-turners are often read : COVER TO COVER
  • 48A. How apartment leases sometimes run : MONTH TO MONTH
  • 62A. How pistol duelers typically stand : BACK TO BACK

Bill’s time: 5m 05s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5. Female WWII gp. : WAAC

The Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) was formed in 1942, and the unit was converted to full status the following year to become the Women’s Army Corps (WAC). Famously, General Douglas MacArthur referred to the WACs as his “best soldiers”, saying they worked harder, complained less and were better disciplined than men. The WACs were disbanded in 1978 and the serving members were integrated into the rest of the army.

9. Ink cartridge color : CYAN

Four-color printing uses four different color inks: cyan, magenta, yellow and black. The black ink is also known as the “key”. The first letters of the colors (with black being ”key”) give the more common name for four-color printing, namely CMYK.

13. ” … calm, __ bright”: “Silent Night” : ALL IS

The beautiful Christmas carol “Silent Night” was first performed in Austria in 1818, with words by a priest, Father Joseph Mohr, and melody by an Austrian headmaster, Franz Xaver Gruber. The carol was in German and called “Stille Nacht”. The English translation that we use today was provided to us by an American bishop in 1859, John Freeman Young from Florida.

15. Stone of “La La Land” : EMMA

The actress Emma Stone is from Scottsdale, Arizona. Stone really came to prominence with her performance in the 2010 high school movie called “Easy A”. She won the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in the 2016 movie “La La Land”. Now one of the most sought-after actresses in Hollywood, Stone values her privacy and works hard to maintain a low profile. Good for her, I say …

“La La Land” is a 2016 romantic musical film starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone as a musician and actress who fall in love in “La La Land” (Los Angeles, i.e. “LA”). The film was written and directed by Damien Chazelle, who had found success two years earlier with the musical drama “Whiplash”. “La La Land” won a record-breaking seven Golden Globes and tied the record number of Oscar nominations at fourteen, winning six.

16. Revolutionary spy Nathan : HALE

Nathan Hale fought for the Continental Army during the American Revolution, and was most famous for operating as a spy against the British. It was Nathan Hale who uttered the words, just before he was hanged by his British captors, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country”.

17. How canvassers usually work : DOOR TO DOOR

To canvass is to pass through a group of people in order determine opinions. At the start of the 16th century, “to canvass” meant “to toss in a canvas sheet for the purpose of sifting”. This meaning evolved into the figurative usage “to examine carefully”. Nowadays, the word “canvass” can describe both the determination of support for a political candidate, as well as the solicitation of votes.

21. Golf’s “Big Easy” Ernie : ELS

Ernie Els is a South African golfer. Els a big guy but he has an easy fluid golf swing that has earned him the nickname “The Big Easy”. He is a former World No. 1 and has won four majors: the US Open (1994 & 1997) and the British Open (2002 & 2012).

24. Sauce with falafel : TAHINI

“Tahini” is the Arabic name for a paste made from ground sesame seeds. Tahini is a major ingredient in hummus, one of my favorite dishes.

Falafel is a ball of ground chickpeas or fava beans that has been deep fried and served in pita bread. I love chickpeas, but falafel is often too dry to me …

32. Prop for Chaplin : CANE

Charlie Chaplin earned the nickname “The Tramp” (also “Little Tramp”) from the much-loved character that he frequently played on the screen. Chaplin was much-respected as a performer. The great George Bernard Shaw referred to him as “the only genius to come out of the movie industry”.

35. Lodge logo animal : ELK

The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) was founded in 1868, and is a social club that has about a million members today. It started out as a group of men getting together in a “club” in order to get around the legal opening hours of taverns in New York City. The club took on a new role as it started to look out for poor families of members who passed away. The club now accepts African Americans as members (since the seventies) and women (since the nineties), but atheists still aren’t welcome.

37. Novelist Tolstoy : LEO

The Russian author Leo Tolstoy is best known for his novels “War and Peace” and “Anna Karenina”. He also wrote the much-respected novellas “Hadji Murad” and “The Death of Ivan Ilyich”.

38. Tallahassee sch. : FSU

Florida State University (FSU) is located in Tallahassee, the state capital of Florida. The school’s athletic teams are known as the Seminoles (sometimes “the ‘Noles”). The team name was chosen in 1947 by the students in a vote, and alludes to the Seminole people who originally lived in the state. Most of the Seminole now live in Oklahoma, after their forced relocation by the US government in the 1840s.

Tallahassee isn’t only the county seat of Leon County, it is the capital city of Florida. Tallahassee was chosen as the state capital because it was equidistant from the cities of St. Augustine and Pensacola, which had been the capitals of the earlier French and British colonies of East Florida and West Florida.

40. Thanksgiving mo. : NOV

Thanksgiving Day was observed on different dates in different states for many years, until Abraham Lincoln fixed the date for the whole country in 1863. Lincoln’s presidential proclamation set that date as the last Thursday in November. In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt moved the holiday to the fourth Thursday in November, arguing that the earlier date would give the economy a much-needed boost.

45. “Double Fantasy” collaborator Yoko : ONO

“Double Fantasy” is an album released by John Lennon and Yoko Ono on 17 November 1980. Three weeks later, John Lennon was gunned down by Mark Chapman outside Lennon’s apartment building in New York City.

52. Hebrew greeting : SHALOM

“Shalom” is a Hebrew word meaning “peace” that is also used to mean “hello” and “goodbye”.

59. “__ the ramparts … ” : O’ER

The words “o’er the ramparts we watched” come from “The Star Spangled Banner” written by Francis Scott Key.

60. Org. that publishes the newsletter GoGreen! : EPA

“GoGreen!” is a monthly email newsletter from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

61. Fictional estate near Atlanta : TARA

In Margaret Mitchell’s novel “Gone with the Wind”, Scarlett O’Hara’s home is the Tara plantation. Tara was founded not far from the Georgia city of Jonesboro by Scarlett’s father, Irish immigrant Gerald O’Hara. Gerald won the square mile of land on which Tara was built in an all-night poker game. He named his new abode after the Hill of Tara back in his home country, the ancient seat of the High King of Ireland. Rhett’s rival for the affections of Scarlet is Ashley Wilkes who lives at the nearby Twelve Oaks plantation.

67. Count who composed “One O’Clock Jump” : BASIE

Count Basie’s real given name was “William”. Count Basie perhaps picked up his love for the piano from his mother, who played and gave him his first lessons. Basie’s first paying job as a musician was in a movie theater, where he learned to improvise a suitable accompaniment for the silent movies that were being shown. Basie was given the nickname “Count” as he became lauded as one of the so-called “Jazz royalty”. Others so honored are Nat “King” Cole and Duke Ellington.

“One O’Clock Jump” is a 1938 jazz instrumental written by Count Basie that became the theme song for the Count Basie Orchestra.

69. Boxer Oscar __ Hoya : DE LA

Oscar De La Hoya is a boxer from East Los Angeles who won a gold medal at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. As a professional, De La Hoya won ten world titles in varying weight classes from super-featherweight to middleweight.

Down

1. 1978 Egyptian co-Nobelist Anwar : SADAT

Anwar Sadat was the third President of Egypt right up to the time of his assassination in 1981. Sadat won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1978 along with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin for the role played in crafting the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty of 1978 at Camp David. It was this agreement that largely led to Sadat’s assassination three years later.

2. “Welcome to Maui!” : ALOHA!

Maui is the second largest of the Hawaiian islands. It is sometimes called the “Valley Isle” as it is composed of two volcanoes to the northwest and southeast of the island, each with numerous beautiful valleys carved into them.

4. Round Table title : SIR

King Arthur (and his Round Table) probably never really existed, but his legend is very persistent. Arthur was supposedly a leader of the Romano-British as they tried to resist the invasion of the Anglo-Saxons in the late 5th and early 6th centuries.

6. Latin “I love” : AMO

“Amo, amas, amat” translates from Latin as “I love, you love, he/she/it loves”.

7. Invoice figure : AMOUNT

An invoice is an itemized bill. The term comes from the Middle French “envois” meaning “dispatch (of goods)”. The root verb is “envoyer”, which translates as “to send”.

8. Use the HOV lane : CARPOOL

In some parts of the country, one sees high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes. Out here in California we refer to them as carpool lanes.

9. Frito-Lay snacks with a speedy cat mascot : CHEETOS

Cheetos snacks were developed by the same guy who created Fritos, hence the similarity in name. They’ve been on the market since 1948, and up until the turn of the century the name was written as “Chee-tos”. Oh, and Cheetos contain pork enzymes, so vegetarians beware!

14. Courtroom transcript pro : STENO

Stenography is the process of writing in shorthand. The term comes from the Greek “steno” (narrow) and “graphe” (writing).

18. Antipasto morsel : OLIVE

Antipasto is the first course of a meal in Italy. “Antipasto” translates as “before the meal”.

23. Osso __: veal dish : BUCO

“Osso” is the Italian word for bone, as in the name of the dish “osso buco” (bone with a hole), which features braised veal shanks.

28. Keebler sprite : ELF

The famous Keebler Elves have been appearing in ads for Keebler since 1968. The original head of the elves was J. J. Keebler, but he was toppled from power by Ernest J. Keebler in 1970. The Keebler Elves bake their cookies in the Hollow Tree Factory.

31. Answer the invite, briefly : RSVP

RSVP stands for “répondez s’il vous plaît”, which is French for “answer, please”.

32. Skelton’s Kadiddlehopper : CLEM

Clem Kadiddlehopper was a character played by comedian Red Skelton. Clem was inspired by a real person named Carl Hopper, who was one of Skelton’s neighbors in his hometown of Vincennes, Indiana.

Red Skelton was an American comedian who started out in show business as a teenager working with the circus. Skelton had a very successful career on radio before moving to television in the early fifties. His popularity only began to fade in the early seventies, when he had difficulty appealing to younger audiences. Skelton spent less time performing in his latter years and turned to his other great love, which was painting.

39. Crazy Eights cousin : UNO

In my youth I remember being taught a great card game by a German acquaintance of mine, a game called Mau Mau. Years later I discovered that UNO is basically the same game, but played with a purpose-printed deck instead of the regular deck of playing cards that’s used for Mau Mau. I hear that Mau Mau is derived from the game called Crazy Eights.

The card game called Crazy Eights is named for the former military designation “Section 8”. Section 8 referred to a category of discharge from the US military, reserved for personnel deemed mentally unfit for duty.

42. WWII vessels : PT BOATS

PT boats were motor torpedo boats, small speedy vessels that used torpedoes as their primary weapon against large surface ships. The “PT” stands for “Patrol Torpedo”. The most famous PT boats that served during WWII were probably PT-41 that carried General Douglas MacArthur and his family from Corregidor to Mindanao in his escape from the Philippines, and PT-109 that was commanded by Lieutenant John F. Kennedy, future President of the United States.

47. “Eureka!” : AHA!

“Eureka” is the Greek for “I have found it”, and is the motto of the state of California. The motto was chosen as a nod to the discovery of gold in the state.

49. E to E, in music : OCTAVE

I find that terminology in music can be confusing. My way of looking at an octave (my way … don’t shout at me!) is thinking of a piano keyboard. In the key of C, the seven notes of the octave are C, D, E, F, G, A, B (or “do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti”). These are all white keys. Most of these “white notes” are separated by whole tones, so there is room to add a “semitone” in between most of them, and these are the black keys (C-sharp for example). There is room for five black keys in an octave, and 7 + 5 adds up to 12. I assume we use the term “octave” because we often add an eighth note on the end “to bring us back to do” as the song says (do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti, do … or … C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C). That eighth note is really the first note in the next octave up.

54. Ref. to a prior ref. : OP CIT

“Op. cit.” is short for “opus citatum”, Latin for “the work cited”. Op. cit. is used in footnotes to refer the reader to an earlier citation. It is similar to ibid, except that ibid refers the reader to the last citation, the one immediately above.

56. Govt. accident investigator : NTSB

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is responsible for the investigation of major accidents involving transportation. Included in this broad definition is the transportation of fluids in pipelines. The organization is independent in that it has no ties to other government agencies or departments so that its investigations can be viewed as “impartial”. The NTSB also earns a little money for the US as it hires out its investigation teams to countries who don’t have the necessary resources available on their own soil.

57. Island near Maui : OAHU

Oahu has been called “The Gathering Place”, although the word “O’ahu” has no translation in Hawaiian. It seems that “O’ahu” is simply the name of the island. One story is that it is named after the son of the Polynesian navigator who first found the islands. The island is made up of two volcanoes, Wai’anae and Ko’olau, joined together by a broad valley, the O’ahu Plain.

Maui is the second largest of the Hawaiian islands. It is sometimes called the “Valley Isle” as it is composed of two volcanoes to the northwest and southeast of the island, each with numerous beautiful valleys carved into them.

59. Pod in gumbo : OKRA

Gumbo is a type of stew or soup that originated in Louisiana. The primary ingredient can be meat or fish, but to be true gumbo it must include the “holy trinity” of vegetables, namely celery, bell peppers and onion. Okra used to be a requirement but this is no longer the case. Okra gave the dish its name as the vernacular word for the African vegetable is “okingumbo”, from the Bantu language spoken by many of the slaves brought to America.

63. “Snow White” collectible : CEL

In the world of animation, a cel is a transparent sheet on which objects and characters are drawn. In the first half of the 20th century the sheet was actually made of celluloid, giving the “cel” its name.

Disney’s 1937 masterpiece “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” was the first cel-animated feature film. It is still one of the top ten box office hits in North America, adjusting for inflation. The film was a massive, expensive undertaking in the 1930s, and Walt Disney even had to mortgage his house to help with financing.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Answer with attitude : SASS
5. Female WWII gp. : WAAC
9. Ink cartridge color : CYAN
13. ” … calm, __ bright”: “Silent Night” : ALL IS
15. Stone of “La La Land” : EMMA
16. Revolutionary spy Nathan : HALE
17. How canvassers usually work : DOOR TO DOOR
19. Correct a script, say : EDIT
20. Satisfied sounds : AHS
21. Golf’s “Big Easy” Ernie : ELS
22. Raised-baton strokes, in music : UPBEATS
24. Sauce with falafel : TAHINI
26. Desk tray words : IN-OUT
27. How page-turners are often read : COVER TO COVER
32. Prop for Chaplin : CANE
35. Lodge logo animal : ELK
36. Total failures : LOSERS
37. Novelist Tolstoy : LEO
38. Tallahassee sch. : FSU
40. Thanksgiving mo. : NOV
41. Blows volcano-style : ERUPTS
45. “Double Fantasy” collaborator Yoko : ONO
47. At the peak of : ATOP
48. How apartment leases sometimes run : MONTH TO MONTH
51. Prepare (oneself), as for a jolt : BRACE
52. Hebrew greeting : SHALOM
56. “Definitely!” : NO DOUBT!
59. “__ the ramparts … ” : O’ER
60. Org. that publishes the newsletter GoGreen! : EPA
61. Fictional estate near Atlanta : TARA
62. How pistol duelers typically stand : BACK TO BACK
65. Close tightly : SHUT
66. At any time : EVER
67. Count who composed “One O’Clock Jump” : BASIE
68. Depresses, with “out” : BUMS
69. Boxer Oscar __ Hoya : DE LA
70. Catches on to : GETS

Down

1. 1978 Egyptian co-Nobelist Anwar : SADAT
2. “Welcome to Maui!” : ALOHA!
3. Wade noisily : SLOSH
4. Round Table title : SIR
5. Ties the knot : WEDS
6. Latin “I love” : AMO
7. Invoice figure : AMOUNT
8. Use the HOV lane : CARPOOL
9. Frito-Lay snacks with a speedy cat mascot : CHEETOS
10. When said thrice, “and so on” : YADA
11. Touched down : ALIT
12. Hockey targets : NETS
14. Courtroom transcript pro : STENO
18. Antipasto morsel : OLIVE
23. Osso __: veal dish : BUCO
25. Cooler cubes : ICE
26. Annoying : IRKSOME
28. Keebler sprite : ELF
29. Blow off steam : VENT
30. Suffix with switch : -EROO
31. Answer the invite, briefly : RSVP
32. Skelton’s Kadiddlehopper : CLEM
33. Prefix with dynamic : AERO-
34. Grammar, grammatically, e.g. : NOUN
39. Crazy Eights cousin : UNO
42. WWII vessels : PT BOATS
43. No __ traffic : THRU
44. Pierced with a fork : STABBED
46. Initial stage : ONSET
47. “Eureka!” : AHA!
49. E to E, in music : OCTAVE
50. Pulsate : THROB
53. Car dealer’s offering : LEASE
54. Ref. to a prior ref. : OP CIT
55. Manufactures : MAKES
56. Govt. accident investigator : NTSB
57. Island near Maui : OAHU
58. Percussion instrument : DRUM
59. Pod in gumbo : OKRA
63. “Snow White” collectible : CEL
64. Grocery sack : BAG

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15 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 24 Sep 18, Monday”

  1. Had a Natick, and an actual blank, at NTSB crosses BUMS. I guess I don’t think of “BUMS out” as meaning “depresses.” Must be one of those age things.
    Had raNT before VENT.
    We have no HOV lanes in Upstate NY. Driving up here is actually pretty pleasant.
    Never heard of FSU, but appreciate Bill’s explanation.

  2. About an hour, no errors. Good time for us; but Bill brought his A Game
    and skunked us pretty badly. I didn’t know some of the words, i.e. TAMINI,
    OPCIT and may not have gotten a few others had they not been completed
    by surrounding letters. A pretty easy puzzle to start the week, but very
    enjoyable. The wife did extremely well today and did not leave me much
    to do. A fun one. Feels good to do well.

  3. LAT: 7:46, no errors. Newsday: 7:19, no errors. WSJ: 9:35, no errors; got Friday’s meta okay (though I didn’t grok the double meaning of “space” involved). Did all three last night by the light of a fire in my chimenea (a favorite fall thing).

    This morning’s puzzles … BEQ: 15:12, no errors; involved a couple of unfamiliar things, but not too difficult (and, again, BEQ childishly choose to insert a gratuitous four-letter word in one of his clues – 56A). New Yorker: 28:52, no errors; mostly easy, but I had a tough time in the upper right; had to walk away and do the breakfast dishes to clear my head and fix the problem.

    1. I forgot to mention that I was convinced there was a glaring error in the clue for 4D in today’s New Yorker puzzle … except … I just looked it up and … it’s not an error! In light of that, one might change that clue to “Word whose meaning is unchanged by a prepended ‘D’”. Details tomorrow … 😜

  4. LAT: 4:22, no errors. WSJ: 5:32, no errors. Newsday: 5:11, no errors. BEQ and New Yorker a little later.

    As for BEQ, the vulgar thing is pretty much his MO. As I recall, I once came across a grid where he stenciled one in with black letters.

    1. Well, BEQ is entitled to do as he likes on his own blog, and I’ll continue to do the puzzles that he posts, but I hope that the potty-mouth thing is a phase that he’ll grow out of … 😜

  5. I worked for the officer that commanded the PT boat that took MacArther out of the Philippines and his name was John D Bulkley.

  6. Blazed through this one in 5:10… and of course, still can’t edge Bill’s time! Liked the “- to -” theme. Nice start to the week.

  7. Hello all!!🙃
    No errors on a fun Monday. I was perplexed by EROO — it filled in before I read the clue and I thought it was that one Scandinavian architect we sometimes see!!😀

    Finally sort of learning to cook– at age 60. I signed up with Blue Apron (they were running a special.) They send ingredients and recipe cards for meals! Tonight I made chicken picatta and garlic mashed potatoes for dinner with a friend. I can’t believe I pulled it off!!😊

    Be well ~~🎶

  8. Fats Waller composed a tune he called “Blue Balls.” He played it for Count Basie and Basie arranged it for the closing number on a late night “remote.” The announcer was flustered; he couldn’t use that title. He asked Basie if the tune was sad or moody thinking that’s what the “blue” meant. It didn’t; it referred to the chord sequence. “No, man,” said Basie, “it jumps!” The announcer looked at the clock and blurted out, “Count Basie’s last piece for the night, ‘The One O’Clock Jump.'” I heard this story decades ago. I wonder if it’s true.

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