LA Times Crossword 5 Sep 18, Wednesday

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Constructed by: Gary Schlapfer & C.C. Burnikel
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Football Moves

Themed clues can be interpreted as moves made in American football:

  • 18A. BLOCK : CITY SQUARE
  • 23A. CATCH : HIDDEN SNAG
  • 37A. KICK : CHAMPAGNE EFFECT
  • 49A. PASS : FREE TICKET
  • 58. RUN : HOSE MISHAP

Bill’s time: 8m 40s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Tot’s drink, to the tot : WAWA

A tot drinks “wawa” (water), perhaps out of a sippy cup.

10. Fifth Avenue landmark : SAKS

Saks Fifth Avenue is a high-end specialty store that competes with the likes of Bloomingdale’s and Neiman Marcus. The original Saks & Company business was founded by Andrew Saks in 1867. The first Saks Fifth Avenue store was opened on Fifth Avenue in New York City in 1924. There are now Saks Fifth Avenue stores in many major cities in the US, as well in several locations worldwide.

16. Lint collector : TRAP

Lint”, meaning “fluff”, is one of those terms that I had to learn when I moved to the US. We call the same thing “fuzz” on the other side of the pond …

17. Sci-fi princess with a twin brother : LEIA

Princess Leia is Luke Skywalker’s twin sister in the original “Star Wars” trilogy and was played by Carrie Fisher. Carrie Fisher has stated that she hated the famous “cinnamon bun hairstyle” that she had to wear in the films, as she felt it made her face look too round. She also had to to sit for two hours every day just to get her hair styled. Two hours to get your hair done? It takes me just two seconds …

26. Picnic crasher : ANT

Our term “picnic” comes from the French word that now has the same meaning, namely “pique-nique”. The original “pique-nique” was a fashionable potluck affair, and not necessarily held outdoors.

28. Harrison of “My Fair Lady” : REX

Rex Harrison was an English actor who played many memorable roles on stage and screen. On stage, Harrison famously played Henry VIII in “Anne of the Thousand Days” and Professor Higgins in “My Fair Lady”. His best known film appearances were in “Anna and the King of Siam”, “The Ghost and Mrs. Muir”, “My Fair Lady”, “Cleopatra” and “Doctor Dolittle”. Harrison was married six times. He had an affair with actress Carole Landis during his second marriage, and Harrison’s refusal to get a divorce led to Landis’s suicide. His fifth wife was actress Rachel Roberts. Years after the couple divorced, Roberts also committed suicide after repeated attempts to win back Harrison’s affection.

30. Tiny Lab, e.g. : PUP

The Labrador (Lab) breed of dog has been around at least since 1814. The breed comes in three registered colors: black, yellow and chocolate.

33. “But seriously folks … ” is one : SEGUE

A segue is a transition from one topic to the next. “Segue” is an Italian word that literally means “now follows”. It was first used in musical scores directing the performer to play into the next movement without a break.

37. KICK : CHAMPAGNE EFFECT

Champagne is made primarily using Pinot noir and Pinot Meunier grapes (both of which are mainly used to make red wine), as well as white Chardonnay grapes. Rosé Champagne is made from a blend of all three grapes, Blanc de noir Champagne from solely Pinot noir and Pinot Meunier, and Blanc de blanc from 100% Chardonnay.

44. Many a dad joke : PUN

I tell dad jokes all the time, just to annoy the kids …

  • I’m reading a book about anti-gravity. It’s impossible to put down!
  • If you see a robbery at an Apple Store does that make you an iWitness?
  • A termite walks into a bar and asks, “Is the bar tender here?”
  • Two guys walk into a bar, the third one ducks.
  • What’s the best part about living in Switzerland? I don’t know, but the flag is a big plus.

45. Transparent art surface : 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.

46. MADD message, e.g. : PSA

Public service announcement (PSA)

Candace Lightner lost her 13-year-old child to a drink driver in 1980. Soon after, Lightner formed the group Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

48. __ Lingus : AER

Aer Lingus is my favorite airline! Well, the service isn’t that great, but when I get on board an Aer Lingus plane I feel like I am back in Ireland. Aer Lingus is the national airline of Ireland, with “Aer Lingus” being a phonetic spelling of the Irish “aer-loingeas” meaning “air fleet”. These days Aer Lingus can only lay claim to the title of Ireland’s oldest airline as it is no longer the biggest. That honor goes to the controversial budget airline called Ryanair.

52. Legend automaker : ACURA

The Acura Legend model of car was sold as the Honda Legend over in Japan.

58. RUN : HOSE MISHAP

A snag is a pull or a tear in a fabric. A snag, particularly in stockings, might lead to a run. And on the other side of the Atlantic, a “run” is called a “ladder”.

61. Its oxide makes Mars red : IRON

The surface of the planet Mars has a very high iron oxide content, so Mars is red because it is rusty!

62. Retired tennis pro Kournikova : ANNA

Not only is Anna Kournikova a world class tennis player, but she is also a model. She apparently has a lot of fans because her name is one of the most commonly searched for terms on Google’s search engine …

63. Bartlett entry : QUOTE

“Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations” is a popular reference work containing tons of quotations. Bartlett’s was first issued in 1855, and as such is the longest-lived collection of quotations that we have available to us. The book started as a private list of quotes gathered by John Bartlett who ran the University Bookstore in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He kept the list as he was always being asked “who said?” by customers.

65. Woodpecker’s tool : BEAK

Woodpeckers peck into wood for several reasons. Firstly, pecking in to wood can reveal food, usually insects or insect larvae. Secondly, pecking can also create a hole that can be used for nesting. Thirdly, pecking can send messages to other woodpeckers, often declaring territory and sometimes attracting a mate.

Down

4. Pong maker : ATARI

Do you remember the arcade video game that was like a game of tennis, with paddles moving up and down to hit what looked like a ball, over what looked like a net? Well, that was Pong. The arcade version of Pong was introduced in 1972, with Atari selling a home version through Sears for the Christmas market in 1975.

8. Emmy-winning ESPN reporter Bob : LEY

Bob Ley works as a sportscaster with ESPN. Ley has worked with ESPN longer than any other on-air employee.

11. Riyadh resident : ARAB

Riyadh is the capital of Saudi Arabia, and is located near the center of the country. The name “Riyadh” translates from Arabic as ‘the gardens”.

12. Pecan pie syrup : KARO

Karo is a brand of corn syrup, an industrially manufactured sweetener derived from corn. The brand was introduced in 1902 by the Corn Products Refining Company.

19. College courtyard : QUAD

A university often features a central quadrangle (quad).

24. Counter offer? : SALE

When we sit at a counter in a diner say, there’s a connection with money lenders. Back in the mid-1300s, a counter was the table used by a money lender doing business. The term “counter” came into English from Latin via French, ultimately from “computare” meaning “to count”.

25. Goddess of victory : NIKE

Nike was the Greek goddess of victory, and was often referred to as “the Winged Goddess of Victory”. The athletic shoe company Nike uses the “Nike swoosh” as its logo, a logo that is inspired by the goddess’ wing.

26. Music rights gp. : ASCAP

ASCAP (the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) collects licence fees for musicians and distributes royalties to composers whose works have been performed. BMI (Broadcast Music Incorporated) provides the same service.

27. ’60s jacket style : NEHRU

A Nehru jacket is very like a regular suit jacket, except that the collar buttons at the neck. It was originally created in the 1940s in India, and then marketed as the Nehru jacket in the west in the sixties. The name Nehru was lifted from Jawaharlal Nehru, the prime minister of India from 1947 to 1964.

30. Apartment used for overnight trips to the city : PIED-A-TERRE

A pied-à-terre is a secondary living space or temporary accommodation, often somewhere to live in a big city that is some distance away from a primary residence. “Pied-à-terre” is French for “foot on the ground”.

31. “I give up!” : UNCLE!

To say uncle is to submit or yield. This peculiarly American use of “uncle” dates back to the early 1900s, but nobody seems to know how “uncle!” came to mean “stop!”

32. Saint at a gate : PETER

In the Christian tradition, Saint Peter is often depicted as the keeper of the gates of heaven. This depiction arises from a passage in the Gospel of Matthew:

I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hell will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.

36. Juilliard deg. : MFA

The Juilliard School, now located in the Lincoln Center in New York City, was founded in 1905 as the Institute of Musical Art. The school was named in honor of Augustus D. Juilliard, a successful textile merchant who left a substantial amount of money for the purpose of advancing music in the US. The immense popularity of the school is perhaps illustrated by its acceptance rate. In 2007 the school had 2,138 applications, and only 162 students were admitted. That’s an acceptance rate of well under 10%.

38. Away from the wind : ALEE

Alee is the direction away from the wind. If a sailor points into the wind, he or she is pointing aweather.

39. Beaufort scale word : GALE

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.

40. Cereal bit : FLAKE

The Kellogg Company was founded in 1906 by Will Keith Kellogg as the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Company. Will established the enterprise while working with his brother John Harvey Kellogg at his Battle Creek Sanitarium. The brothers created corn flakes as a health food for patients at the sanitarium.

46. Pontius __ : PILATE

Pontius Pilate was the judge at the trial of Jesus Christ and the man who authorized his crucifixion. Over the years, many scholars have suggested that Pilate was a mythical character. However, a block of limestone was found in 1961 in the modern-day city of Caesarea in Israel, and in the block was an inscription that included the name of Pontius Pilate, citing him as Prefect of Judea.

50. Lake near California’s Squaw Valley : TAHOE

The Squaw Valley ski resort is in the Lake Tahoe area of California. Squaw Valley was the site of the 1960 Winter Olympics. These were the first Winter Games to be televised live, which gave Squaw Valley a huge commercial boost.

52. Queequeg’s captain : AHAB

Captain Ahab is the obsessed and far from friendly captain of the Pequod in Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick”. The role of Captain Ahab was played by Gregory Peck in the 1956 John Huston film adaptation. Patrick Stewart played Ahab in a 1998 miniseries in which Peck made another appearance, as Father Mapple.

Queequeg is a character in Herman Melville’s classic tale “Moby Dick”. Queequeg is the chief harpooner on the boat. He is also the son of a South Sea chieftain, and a cannibal who is covered in tattoos.

54. Military sch. whose mascot is Bill the Goat : USNA

Bill the Goat is the US Naval Academy’s mascot. The first mascot for the school was a gorilla, and then followed a couple of cats, a bulldog and a carrier pigeon. The first goat to make an appearance as a mascot was named El Cid, and that was back in 1893. A goat has been the USNA’s mascot continuously since 1904.

56. Casanova : ROUE

“Roue” is a lovely word, I think, one used to describe a less than lovely man, someone of loose morals. “Roue” comes from the French word “rouer” meaning “to break on a wheel”. This describes the ancient form of capital punishment where a poor soul was lashed to a wheel and then beaten to death with cudgels and bars. I guess the suggestion is that a roue, with his loose morals, deserves such a punishment.

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 …

59. Brightness figs. not measured in watts : IQS

Although it is correct these days to say that the abbreviation IQ stands for “intelligence quotient”, the term was actually coined by German psychologist William Stern, and so is actually an abbreviation for the German “Intelligenz-Quotient”.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Tot’s drink, to the tot : WAWA
5. Side-by-side truck tires : DUALS
10. Fifth Avenue landmark : SAKS
14. Help with a heist : ABET
15. Play direction : ENTER
16. Lint collector : TRAP
17. Sci-fi princess with a twin brother : LEIA
18. BLOCK : CITY SQUARE
20. Abs exercise : LEG RAISE
22. Take out of the packaging : UNBOX
23. CATCH : HIDDEN SNAG
26. Picnic crasher : ANT
28. Harrison of “My Fair Lady” : REX
29. Help : AID
30. Tiny Lab, e.g. : PUP
33. “But seriously folks … ” is one : SEGUE
35. Forest ranger? : ELK
36. Selfish shout : MINE!
37. KICK : CHAMPAGNE EFFECT
41. “What __!”: “I’ve been had!” : A RIP
42. Little chap : LAD
43. Big dipper : LADLE
44. Many a dad joke : PUN
45. Transparent art surface : CEL
46. MADD message, e.g. : PSA
48. __ Lingus : AER
49. PASS : FREE TICKET
52. Legend automaker : ACURA
55. Alternative medicine staple : ALOE VERA
58. RUN : HOSE MISHAP
61. Its oxide makes Mars red : IRON
62. Retired tennis pro Kournikova : ANNA
63. Bartlett entry : QUOTE
64. Gunk : CRUD
65. Woodpecker’s tool : BEAK
66. Go over the limit : SPEED
67. Ball elevators : TEES

Down

1. Outlet site : WALL
2. Busy as __ : A BEE
3. Reason to purchase a new belt : WEIGHT GAIN
4. Pong maker : ATARI
5. Get off the fence : DECIDE
6. Like the name Pat : UNISEX
7. When some local news airs : AT TEN
8. Emmy-winning ESPN reporter Bob : LEY
9. Soon-to-be alumni: Abbr. : SRS
10. Smarted : STUNG
11. Riyadh resident : ARAB
12. Pecan pie syrup : KARO
13. Glasses, informally : SPEX
19. College courtyard : QUAD
21. Campaign pro? : AD REP
24. Counter offer? : SALE
25. Goddess of victory : NIKE
26. Music rights gp. : ASCAP
27. ’60s jacket style : NEHRU
30. Apartment used for overnight trips to the city : PIED-A-TERRE
31. “I give up!” : UNCLE!
32. Saint at a gate : PETER
34. Official behind a catcher : UMP
35. Word with tight or split : … END
36. Juilliard deg. : MFA
38. Away from the wind : ALEE
39. Beaufort scale word : GALE
40. Cereal bit : FLAKE
45. Study a lot in a short time : CRAM
46. Pontius __ : PILATE
47. Checked (out) : SCOPED
49. Come unglued, with “out” : FREAK …
50. Lake near California’s Squaw Valley : TAHOE
51. Throw out : EVICT
52. Queequeg’s captain : AHAB
53. Scoop perch : CONE
54. Military sch. whose mascot is Bill the Goat : USNA
56. Casanova : ROUE
57. Common conjunctions : ANDS
59. Brightness figs. not measured in watts : IQS
60. “What’s goin’ on?” : SUP?

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14 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 5 Sep 18, Wednesday”

  1. No errors, but what is a “scoop perch” = CONE?

    About KARO. My Baltimore grandma came to live with us. I remembered the fellows selling bean pies in the streets of Baltimore, and pecan pies were also made with KARO syrup. We could not convince her that Maple syrup was superior,

  2. LAT: 9:52, no errors. Newsday: 6:11, no errors. WSJ: 12:44, with a one-square error of the “shoulda gone back and looked at that” variety.

  3. 11:58. Felt slower, though. More of a challenge for a Wednesday than I had anticipated. Did this listening in on a conference call.

    I’m embarrassed to admit I had to stare at “the third guy ducked” for 15-20 seconds before I got it. I’ll have to use that one….most likely in a bar.

    @Kay –
    I can’t tell you how nice it feels to know I’m not affected by hurricanes anymore. I’d been dealing with them for 35 years. Even the ones that never hit needed to be monitored etc. It got old. Glad this one (Gordon) seems relatively tame. Harvey actually hit about 200 miles south of me last year. Problem is it moved north and just sat for 5 days. 12 inches of rain/day for 5 days = a lot of rain.

    FWIW it was a year ago yesterday that I first got back after the hurricane and saw the devastation at my then house in Houston. Time flies.

    Best –

  4. Well, what a difference a days makes. I had to really stick with this one. Found it much harder than usual on a Wed. Had “eject” instead of “evict” so the SE wasn’t working. Sometimes I stick with the first word I think about and don’t adjust soon enough. Bad me.

  5. 21mln. And 1 error
    I endEd 30 down with an o which made 67 across toes (elevating balls of feet with toes)? Never heard of piedaterre.
    Also from Baltimore I remember mornings around the breakfast table and karo syrup. Ah the good old days

  6. Very hard and tricky for us. Finally ended up with 4 omissions; a very good
    98% for us, the way we calculate.

    I saw through the “ice cream cone” trick, but had never heard of piedaterre;
    had 8 correct letters, but could not finish the word.

    Good thing I am an avid golfer. because I missed “tees”. Bummer, kinda like my
    real game today. And so it goes, first your money and then your clothes.

    Fun and took a lot of digging and thinking; not quite enough to get it all.

  7. I had a tough time with this puzzle. I just could not get through the slang / argot and tricky clues. For some time I did not think I would finish … but I did. Congratulations to both the constructors who also run another LA crossword blog site.
    Thanks also for the explanation of sccop perch …. I kept guessing ….. I would have clued it as a solid for a hyperbola, ellipse and parabola …. different strokes for different folks.

    Bill, thank you for the dad jokes … I love to tell and remember jokes … but the dad jokes seem easily forgotten …. maybe i dont interact with kids too much ….

    Air India is my favorite airline – that I avoid most religiously. If I ever enter their planes, I know that I would feel like I am in India, and I want to postpone that feeling until I am actually on the ground, out there, and unavoidable entrapped ….

    I am glad I finally finished the top center and upper left of the puzzle.
    Have a nice day, folks.

  8. Somewhat tricky Wednesday; took exactly 21:04, since I had to do it online. Had to bounce around a bit and wait for crosses especially in the top middle. Knew about pied a terre, since this wealthy couple was using one of the apartments in our small complex as one and I’d seen the clue shortly before they moved in, thus cementing the memory. Liked the “scoop perch” clue, which took all of 3 seconds.

    @Jeff – Thanks again for the info on the “real id” license on Saturday. Jeez, I had to look up the bar joke…Doh!

    Off to bed early for my market tomorrow…

  9. Hello folks! 😞
    Two errors!! This week does not bode well so far: I had an error on Monday, and now this! Definitely harder than the average Wednesday, IMO. I couldn’t get ELK, but in truth I was kinda frustrated at that point, and I rather impulsively cheated for it. Probably coulda completed successfully if I’d been a little more patient. Hope things improve on Thursday. 🤔

    Isn’t the captain in The Caine Mutiny called Captain Queeg? Wonder if his name was a nod to some of the names in Moby Dick.🦈

    Be well ~~🦉

  10. The theme was tough for casual crossworders like us. My wife got “cone” though. God I love that woman. 3+ hours and lots of laughs.

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