LA Times Crossword 25 Aug 19, Sunday

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Constructed by: Pam Amick Klawitter
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: Literal Literature

Themed clues are each a common type of book. The equivalent themed answer is a potential title of that type of book, if considered LITERALLY:

  • 21A Pop-up book? : HOW TO MAKE PERFECT TOAST
  • 33A Match book? : ONLINE DATING PRIMER
  • 64A Blue book? : A HISTORY OF THE SMURFS
  • 94A Text book? : MESSAGING DONE RIGHT
  • 112A Address book? : BEST SPEECHES OF ALL TIME

Bill’s time: 15m 17s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 It can have pins at the end of it : LANE

Bowling has been around for an awfully long time. The oldest known reference to the game is in Egypt, where pins and balls were found in an ancient tomb that is over 5,000 years old. The first form of the game to come to America was nine-pin bowling, which had been very popular in Europe for centuries. In 1841 in Connecticut, nine-pin bowling was banned due to its association with gambling. Supposedly, an additional pin was added to get around the ban, and ten-pin bowling was born.

5 El __ : CID

Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar was known as El Cid Campeador, which translates as “The Champion” or perhaps “The Lord, Master of Military Arts”. El Cid was a soldier who fought under the rule of King Alfonso VI of Spain (among others). However, he was sent into exile by the King in 1080, after acting beyond his authorization in battle. El Cid then offered his services to his former foes, the Moorish kings, After a number of years building a reputation with the Moors, he was recalled from exile by Alfonso. By this time El Cid was very much his own man. Nominally under the orders of Alfonso, he led a combined army of Spanish and Moorish troops and took the city of Valencia on the Mediterranean coast in 1094, making it his headquarters and home. He died in Valencia, quite peacefully, in 1099.

8 Pop’s Mama : CASS

Cass Elliot (born “Ellen Cohen”) was one of the four singers in the Mamas and the Papas, a sensational group from the sixties. “Mama Cass” was performing sold-out concerts in London in 1974 when she was found dead one morning, having had a heart attack. She was only 32 years old. Eerily, Elliot died in the same flat (on loan from Harry Nilsson) in which the Who’s drummer Keith Moon would die just four years later.

12 Printer handle : EPSON

Seiko Epson is a Japanese company, and one of the largest manufacturers of printers in the world. The company has its roots in the watch business, roots that go back to 1942. Seiko was chosen as the official timekeeper for the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo and was asked to supply a timer that produced a printed record. This request brought Seiko into the business of printer production. The company developed the world’s first mini-printer for the 1964 Games and called it EP-101 (with “EP” standing for Electronic Printer). In 1975 Seiko introduced the next generation of EP printers which was called EPSON, from “SON of EP”. Cute, huh?

19 Metz man : HOMME

The city of Metz is in the northeast of France, and close to the German border. Given the proximity to Germany, Metz has both a strong German tradition and a strong French tradition. Metz was handed over to the French following WWI, after nearly 50 years of German rule. It quickly fell back into German hands in 1940 during WWII, with many German officers delighted to have back the city of their birth. Perhaps because of this long association with Germany, the US Army under General Patton encountered stiff resistance when liberating Metz in 1944. The cathedral in Metz is home to the largest expanse of stained glass in the world, almost 70,000 square feet in all.

20 __ Khan: “The Jungle Book” tiger : SHERE

In Rudyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book”, the author names his regal tiger character “Shere Khan”. Kipling chose this name as he had met an Afghan Prince in his travels named “Sher Shah Suri”, meaning “The Lion or Tiger King”.

25 Tool usually pluralized : TWEEZER

Tweezers are small metal pincers used in handling small objects. Back in the 1600s, “tweeze” was the name given to the case in which such an implement was kept, and over time the case gave its name to the device itself. “Tweeze” evolved from “etweese”, the plural of “etwee”, which in turn came from “étui “, the French word for “small case”.

28 Haifa’s home: Abbr. : ISR

Haifa is the third-largest city in Israel and the largest city in the north of the country. Haifa is built on the slopes of Mount Carmel, and is a Mediterranean seaport.

29 Pleasingly dated retail adjective : OLDE

The word “olde” wasn’t actually used much earlier than the 1920s. “Olde” was introduced to give a quaint antique feel to brand names, shop names etc. as in “Ye Olde Shoppe”.

31 Post-WWII pres. monogram : DDE

Dwight D. Eisenhower (DDE) was the 34th US president, but he wanted to be remembered as a soldier. He was a five-star general during WWII in charge of the Allied Forces in the European Theater of Operations (ETO). President Eisenhower died in 1969 at Walter Reed Army Hospital. He was buried in an $80 standard soldier’s casket in his army uniform in a chapel on the grounds of the beautiful Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene, Kansas.

40 Woodard of “Passion Fish” : ALFRE

Alfre Woodard is an actress from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Woodard was nominated for an Oscar for her performance in the 1983 film “Cross Creek”. Off the stage and screen, she is very active in the Democratic Party.

“Passion Fish” is a 1992 film about a former soap opera star who was paralyzed in an automobile accident. The story centers on her relationship with a series of nurses employed to care for her. Mary McDonnell plays the actress, and Alfre Woodard as the nurse with whom the patient finally connects.

43 “The Voice” host Carson : DALY

Carson Daly is a radio and television personality who is perhaps best known today as host of the reality show “The Voice”. If you stay up late enough on New Year’s Eve, you might also know him from NBC’s “New Year’s Eve with Carson Daly”.

“The Voice” is yet another reality television show. It 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”.

45 Diagnostic aid : X-RAY

X-rays were first studied comprehensively by the German physicist Wilhelm Röntgen (also “Roentgen”), and it was he who gave the name “X-rays” to this particular type of radiation. Paradoxically, in Röntgen’s native language of German, X-rays are routinely referred to as “Röntgen rays”. In 1901, Röntgen’s work on X-rays won him the first Nobel Prize in Physics that was ever awarded.

47 King Minos’ land : CRETE

Crete is the largest of the Greek Islands. Crete figures heavily in Greek mythology. Zeus was born in a cave at Mount Ida, the highest peak on the island. Crete was also home to the Labyrinth where the Minotaur was slain by Theseus. Icarus and Daedalus, after having crafted the Labyrinth, escaped from the island using wings that they crafted.

Minos was the King of Crete in Greek mythology, and the son of Zeus and Europa. Minos had an elaborate labyrinth built under the island that was designed by the architect Daedalus and his son Icarus (who famously died trying to escape from the island by “flying” away). In the labyrinth, King Minos kept the Minotaur, a dreadful creature with the head of a bull on the body of a man.

51 Sussex suffix : -ISE

Not only is Noah Webster’s name inextricably linked with his series of dictionaries, but he is also renowned as an advocate for English spelling reform. He argued that “traditional” English is hard to learn, and that it should be simplified and standardized (instead of “standardised”). He published spelling books that were used in schools, and from edition to edition he changed the spelling of words in order to simplify the language. Examples are the use of “s” over “c” in words like “defense” (in Ireland we have defence and defense depending on usage), “-re” became “-er” as in center instead of centre (reversing the influence of French), and he dropped one of the Ls in words like traveler (I learned “traveller”). Mind you, he also spelled “tongue” as “tung”, but he didn’t get very far with that one.

Sussex is a county in the southeast of England that lies right on the English Channel. The county of Sussex has about the same boundaries as the ancient Kingdom of Sussex, a Saxon colony that existed for about five hundred years until the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Hastings, a town on the Sussex coast, was the site of the first battle of the Norman Conquest of England.

53 Hill helper : AIDE

Washington D.C.’s designer Pierre L’Enfant chose the crest of a hill as the site for the future Congress House. He called the location “Jenkins Hill” and “Jenkins Heights”. Earlier records show the name as “New Troy”. Today we call it “Capitol Hill”.

54 Over-the-shoulder garment : SARI

The item of clothing called a “sari” (also “saree”) is a strip of cloth, as one might imagine, unusual perhaps in that is unstitched along the whole of its length. The strip of cloth can range from four to nine meters long (that’s a lot of material!). The sari is usually wrapped around the waist, then draped over the shoulder leaving the midriff bare. I must say, it can be a beautiful item of clothing.

55 Battery parts : TESTS

Tests often come in batteries, as in “a battery of tests”.

57 They’re defined by revolutions: Abbr. : YRS

The Earth takes about 365¼ days to orbit the Sun. And so, by one definition, a year (a tropical year) lasts 365¼ days. As we progress through 365-day years, we get out of sync with the “true” year, and so the sun appears in a slightly different place in the sky at the same time and date, year after year. Pope Gregory XIII decided to deal with this issue when he introduced the Gregorian calendar in 1582. As each 365-day year was falling behind by a quarter of a day, he decided to make a correction on a regular basis. Our modern Gregorian calendar ignores the error until it amounts to a full day. That happens once every four years (4 x ¼), and so we have an extra day in every fourth February (the 29th).

58 Bit of work : ERG

An erg is a unit of mechanical work or energy. It is a small unit, with one joule comprising 10 million ergs. it has been suggested that an erg is about the amount of energy required for a mosquito to take off. The term comes from “ergon”, the Greek word for work.

61 Swiss Miss product : COCOA

Swiss Miss is a brand of cocoa powder and related products sold by ConAgra Foods. The original Swiss Miss product was introduced in the 1950s and sold exclusively to airlines. Back then, airlines were in the habit of making hot cocoa for their passengers. Swiss Miss became so popular on flights that it was later added to grocery store shelves.

64 Blue book? : A HISTORY OF THE SMURFS

The Smurfs are little blue people created in 1958 by the Belgian cartoonist who went by the pen name Peyo. The Smurfs became famous in the US when Hanna-Barbera used them in a children’s cartoon series. The characters are largely a group of males. The original lineup included just one “Smurfette”, who is wooed by almost all of the boy Smurfs. Later, another female was introduced into the mix called Sassette, and still later along came Granny Smurf.

I think we tend to associate the term “blue book” with the Kelley Blue Book that provides valuations for vehicles. The term itself dates back to the 15th century when we started calling an almanac or other publication full of information a “blue book”.

71 Tempe neighbor : MESA

The city of Mesa, Arizona is in effect a suburb of Phoenix. The original settlement of non-Native Americans was founded by Daniel Webster Jones who led a Mormon group from St. George, Utah. The settlement was first called Jonesville, then Fort Utah and eventually Lehi. A second group of Mormons arrived and formed a settlement on top of a nearby mesa. It was this use of a mesa that eventually gave the city its current name.

Tempe is a city in the metropolitan area of Phoenix. The city is named for the Vale of Tempe in Greece.

72 St. Louis summer hrs. : CDT

Central Daylight Time (CDT)

The city of St. Louis, Missouri was settled by French explorers in 1763. Sitting on the Mississippi River, it grew into a very busy port. By the 1850s, it was the second busiest port in the country, with only New York moving more freight. St. Louis was named for Louis IX of France. Louis was canonized in 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII, and was the only French king to be declared a saint.

75 Pool table slab : SLATE

A good pool table has a very flat surface, usually one made from 2-3 ground slabs of slate sourced from quarries in Italy, Brazil or China.

78 Fivers : ABES

The US five-dollar bill is often called an “Abe”, as President Abraham Lincoln’s portrait is on the front. An Abe is also referred to as a “fin”, a term that has been used for a five-pound note in Britain since 1868.

80 “The Lion King” villain : SCAR

In the 1994 movie “The Lion King”, the protagonist is Simba, the lion cub born to Mufasa and Sarabi. The main antagonist is Scar, Simba’s uncle and Mufasa’s brother. Simba is voiced by Matthew Broderick, and Scar is voiced by Jeremy Irons.

88 “The Haj” novelist : URIS

“The Haj” is a novel by the very successful American author Leon Uris. Set in Palestine in the first half of the 20th century, the novel follows the life of a Palestinian named Ishmael against the backdrop of the political events taking place in the area in that period of time.

89 “Get on it now!” : ASAP!

As soon as possible (ASAP)

91 Eros, in Rome : AMOR

The name of Eros, the Greek god of love, gives rise to our word “erotic” meaning “arousing sexual desire”. Eros was referred to in Latin as both “Amor” (meaning “love”) and “Cupid” (meaning “desire”).

93 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.

99 Picasso output : ARTE

Artist Pablo Picasso’s full name was Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso, a name he was given right from birth. Got that?

100 Recipient of much Apr. mail : IRS

April 15th wasn’t always Tax Day in the US. The deadline for returns was March 1st from 1913-18, when it was moved to March 15th. Tax Day has been April 15th since 1955.

101 Morales of “Ozark” : ESAI

The actor Esai Morales is best known in the world of film for the 1987 movie “La Bamba”, which depicted the life of Ritchie Valens and his half-brother Bob Morales (played by Esai). On the small screen, Morales plays Lt. Tony Rodriguez on “NYPD Blue” and Joseph Adama on “Caprica”.

“Ozark” is an excellent TV crime show starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney as a married couple who relocate from Chicago to the Missouri Ozarks. The couple fall foul of Mexican drug lord after a money laundering scheme goes awry. The show is set at lake resort in the Ozarks, although filming actually takes place at lakes in the Atlanta area in order to take advantage of tax breaks offered by the State of Georgia.

102 “Leaves and Navels” artist : ARP

Jean Arp was a French artist renowned for his work with torn and pasted paper, although that wasn’t the only medium he used. Arp was the son of a French mother and German father and spoke both languages fluently. When he was speaking German he gave his name as Hans Arp, but when speaking French he called himself Jean Arp. Both “Hans” and “Jean” translate into English as “John”. In WWI Arp moved to Switzerland to avoid being called up to fight, taking advantage of Swiss neutrality. Eventually he was told to report to the German Consulate and fill out paperwork for the draft. In order to get out of fighting, Arp messed up the paperwork by writing the date in every blank space on the forms. Then he took off all of his clothes and walked with his papers over to the officials in charge. Arp was sent home …

105 Schoolyard pal in a Paul Simon song : JULIO

“Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard” is a 1972 song written and recorded by Paul Simon. It’s all about two boys who get arrested for having broken some law or other.

Singer-songwriter Paul Simon’s career took off when he was partnered with Art Garfunkel. Simon was the really the writing powerhouse of Simon & Garfunkel, and wrote most of their big hits, including “The Sound of Silence”, “Mrs. Robinson”, and “Bridge over Troubled Water”. Simon has had three wives, including actress Carrie Fisher (1983-1984), and singer Edie Brickell whom he wed in 1992.

107 Short-legged hunter : BASSET

The basset hound wouldn’t be my favorite breed of dog, to be honest. Basset hounds have a great sense of smell with an ability to track a scent that is second only to that of the bloodhound. The name “basset” comes from the French word for “rather low”, a reference to the dog’s short legs.

110 Rudolph Valentino’s “Blood and Sand” co-star : LILA LEE

Lila Lee was a popular actress in the days of silent movies. Lee’s most successful role was Carmen in 1922’s “Blood and Sand”, in which she appeared opposite Rudolph Valentino.

“Blood and Sand” is 1922 silent film starring Rudolph Valentino, Lila Lee and Nita Naldi. It is based on a 1909 novel of the same name (in Spanish, “Sangre y arena”) by Vicente Blasco Ibáñez. The film was remade in 1941, with Tyrone Power and Rita Hayworth in the cast. The blood and sand of the title is found in the bullring.

115 Zellweger of “Cold Mountain” : RENEE

Renée Zellweger’s big break came in the 1996 movie “Jerry Maguire”. A few years later, Zellweger followed that up with a string of successes in “Bridget Jones’ Diary” (2001), “Chicago” (2002) and “Cold Mountain” (2003). My wife and I love watching her play Bridget Jones, and as someone coming from Britain and Ireland, I have to say that Zellweger does a remarkable job with the accent. She worked hard to perfect that accent, and of course she had a voice coach. She also went “undercover” and worked as a temp in an office for three weeks fine-tuning her skills.

The novel “Cold Mountain” was written in 1997 by Charles Frazier. It’s the tale of a deserter in the Civil War named W. P. Inman and his trek home to his beloved Ada Monroe, who lives in the rural community of Cold Mountain in North Carolina. The plot has been compared with Homer’s “The Odyssey”, which tells of the long journey home of Odysseus to Ithaca after the Trojan War. In the 2003 film adaptation of the same name, Ada Monroe is played by Nicole Kidman, and Inman is played by Jude Law.

120 Small strings : UKES

The ukulele (uke) originated in the 1800s and mimicked a small guitar brought to the Hawaiian Islands by Portuguese immigrants.

Down

1 Christine of “The Blacklist” : LAHTI

Christine Lahti is an actress probably best known for playing Dr. Kate Austen on the TV medical drama “Chicago Hope”. If you read “The Huffington Post” you might run across her as well, as Lahti is a contributing blogger.

“The Blacklist” is an entertaining, albeit a little formulaic, crime drama TV show starring James Spader and Megan Boone. Spader plays a successful criminal who surrenders to the FBI in order to help catch a “blacklist” of high-profile criminals.

4 Art Deco icon : ERTE

“Erté” was the pseudonym of French (Russian-born) artist and designer Romain de Tirtoff. Erté is the French pronunciation of his initials “R.T.” Erté’s diverse portfolio of work included costumes and sets for the “Ziegfeld Follies” of 1923, productions of the Parisian cabaret show “Folies Bergère”, as well as the 1925 epic movie “Ben-Hur”. Erté’s most famous work by far is an image titled “Symphony in Black”. It depicts a tall and slender woman dressed in black, holding a black dog on a leash.

5 Dante translator John : CIARDI

John Ciardi was a Bostonian who was mainly known as a poet. Ciardi wrote a textbook on how to read, write and teach poetry titled “How Does a Poem Mean?”. He also published a famous translation of Dante’s “Divine Comedy”.

7 Shoddy pair? : DEES

There’s a pair of letters D (dees) in the word “shoddy”.

8 Tummy-tightening garment : CORSET

A corset is a close-fitting undergarment that is stiffened with a material such as whalebone. Corsets are more usually worn by women, to shape the body. The word “corset” is a diminutive of the Old French “cors” meaning “body”.

9 Clock radio toggle : AM/FM

Amplitude modulation/frequency modulation (AM/FM)

10 Barrie’s bosun : SMEE

In J. M. Barrie’s play and novel about Peter Pan, Smee is one of Captain Hook’s pirates and is his Hook’s bosun and right-hand man. Smee is described by Barrie as being “Irish” and “a man who stabbed without offence”. Nice guy! Captain Hook and Smee sail on a pirate ship called the Jolly Roger.

A boatswain works on the deck of a boat. He or she is unlicensed, and so is not involved in the navigation or handling of the vessel, and instead is in charge of the other unlicensed workers on the deck. “Boatswain” is pronounced “bosun” and this phonetic spelling is often used interchangeably with “boatswain”. The contraction “bo’s’n” is also very popular.

11 UGA’s conf. : SEC

Southeastern Conference (SEC)

The University of Georgia (UGA) is primarily located in Athens, Georgia. UGA was founded in 1785 and was the nation’s first state-chartered university. UGA’s sports teams are called the Georgia Bulldogs.

12 Book before Job : ESTHER

Esther was a Jewish queen, wife of the Persian king Ahasuerus, and the heroine of the Book of Esther in the Bible. By the way, Esther is the only book in the Bible that doesn’t mention the word “God”.

13 Fifth-most populous U.S. city : PHOENIX

As of 2018, the most populous cities in the US are:

  1. New York
  2. Los Angeles
  3. Chicago
  4. Houston
  5. Phoenix
  6. Philadelphia
  7. San Antonio
  8. San Diego
  9. Dallas
  10. San Jose

16 Cousin of com : NET

The .net domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:

  • .com (commercial enterprise)
  • .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
  • .mil (US military)
  • .org (not-for-profit organization)
  • .gov (US federal government entity)
  • .edu (college-level educational institution)

22 Thinning layer : OZONE

Ozone gets its name from the Greek word “ozein” meaning “to smell”. It was given this name as ozone’s formation during lightning storms was detected by the gas’s distinctive smell. Famously, there is a relatively high concentration of the gas in the “ozone layer” in the Earth’s stratosphere. This ozone layer provides a vital function for animal life on the planet as it absorbs most of the sun’s UV radiation. A molecule of ozone is made up of three oxygen atoms (O3), whereas a “normal” oxygen (O2) has just two atoms.

32 Fiona or Shrek : OGRE

Princess Fiona is the title character’s love interest in the “Shrek” series of films.

37 Diagnostic aids : MRIS

An MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) machine uses powerful magnetic fields to generate its images so there is no exposure to ionizing radiation (such as X-rays). We used MRI equipment in our chemistry labs at school, way back in the days when the technology was still called Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Imaging (NMRI). Apparently the marketing folks didn’t like the term “nuclear” because of its association with atomic bombs, so now it’s just called MRI.

38 Steinbeck’s “__ of Eden” : EAST

John Steinbeck considered “East of Eden” his magnum opus. Most of the storyline takes place near Salinas, just south of where I live here in the Bay Area. Two of the characters in the story are brothers Cal and Aron Trask, representative of the biblical Cain and Abel.

41 Linney of “Ozark” : LAURA

The wonderfully talented actress Laura Linney is a native New Yorker from Manhattan. The performances of hers that I most admire are in “The Truman Show” and “Love Actually” on the big screen, and in the HBO miniseries “John Adams” on the small screen.

“Ozark” is an excellent TV crime show starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney as a married couple who relocate from Chicago to the Missouri Ozarks. The couple fall foul of Mexican drug lord after a money laundering scheme goes awry. The show is set at lake resort in the Ozarks, although filming actually takes place at lakes in the Atlanta area in order to take advantage of tax breaks offered by the State of Georgia.

47 Magna __ : CARTA

The Magna Carta is a landmark document issued in England in 1215. It represents the first time that an English king had to submit to the will of his subjects, a group of barons who sought to limit the powers of the monarchy. In particular the Magna Carta calls out that no freeman could be punished except through the law of the land. And famously, the Magna Carta was an inspiration for the United States Constitution.

50 Pub pick : STOUT

The term “stout” was first used for a type of beer in the 1600s when was used to describe a “strong, stout” brew, and not necessarily a dark beer as it is today.

54 Burglars’ targets : SAFES

The crime of burglary is the breaking into and entering of a building with the intent to steal. The actual theft itself is a separate crime.

58 First name in the beauty aisle : ESTEE

Estée Lauder was a very successful businesswoman, and someone with a great reputation as a salesperson. Lauder introduced her own line of fragrances in 1953, a bath oil called “Youth Dew”. “Youth Dew” was marketed as a perfume, but it was added to bathwater. All of a sudden women were pouring whole bottles of Ms. Lauder’s “perfume” into their baths while using only a drop or two of French perfumes behind their ears. That’s quite a difference in sales volume …

62 Richard’s songwriting partner : OSCAR

Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II were extremely successful writers of Broadway musicals in the forties and fifties. Rodgers composed the music and Hammerstein wrote the lyrics for hit shows such as “Oklahoma!”, “Carousel”, “South Pacific”, The King and I” and “The Sound of Music”.

63 Starfleet VIPs : CMDRS

In the “Star Trek” universe, Starfleet is a military service maintained by the United Federation of Planets. Famously, Starfleet is also tasked with deep-space exploration, “to boldly go where no man has gone before …”

75 __ dunk : SLAM

In basketball, a player makes a slam dunk by jumping up and powering the ball downward into the basket with his or her hands over the rim. The term “slam dunk” was coined by Chick Hearn, an announcer for the L.A. Lakers. The NBA even holds an annual Slam Dunk Contest.

79 North Atlantic hazard : BERG

An iceberg is a large piece of freshwater ice that is floating freely after having broken away from a glacier or ice shelf. Out use of “iceberg” comes from the Dutch word for the same phenomenon “ijsberg”, which translates literally as “ice mountain”.

81 Tight-knit squad : CADRE

A cadre is most commonly a group of experienced personnel at the core of a larger organization that the small group trains or heavily influences. “Cadre” is a French word meaning “frame”. We use it in the sense that a cadre is a group that provides a “framework” for the larger organization.

85 Slangy convertible : RAGTOP

“Ragtop” is slang for a convertible automobile.

86 Grenoble gal pal : AMIE

Grenoble is a city at the foot of the French Alps. The Winter Olympic Games were held there in 1968.

90 Hymnal that’s often richly illustrated : PSALTER

In the Christian tradition, a “psalter” is a book devoted primarily to the Bible’s Book of Psalms, with other liturgical material usually included.

92 Oater regulars : HORSES

The term “oater” that is used for a Western movie comes from the number of horses seen, as horses love oats!

93 Con man’s cohort : SHILL

A shill is someone planted, perhaps in an audience, with the job of feigning enthusiasm.

104 Cheats at blind man’s buff : PEEKS

The children’s game blind man’s buff is sometimes known as blind man’s “bluff”, although the latter name is derivative of the former. The word “buff” in this context is related to the term “buffet”, and describes a small push. I guess the idea is that the blindfolded player is groping around, trying to find the other players and given them a buff, a small push.

105 Wrangler, e.g. : JEEP

Chrysler’s Jeep Wrangler is a direct descendent of the military “Jeep” vehicle that the US military relied on heavily during WWII.

106 Middies’ sch. : USNA

The term “middy” comes from “midshipman”.

Midshipman is the junior-most ranking officer in many navies. Back in the 1800s, a midshipman was an experienced seaman who worked or slept “amidships”.

The United States Naval Academy (USNA) is located in Annapolis, Maryland. The USNA was founded in 1845 and educates officers for both the US Navy and the US Marine Corps. The motto of the USNA is “Ex Scientia Tridens”, which translates as “From Knowledge, Sea Power”.

107 Toucan’s pride : BEAK

The toucan is a brightly-marked bird with a large, colorful bill. The name “toucan” comes into English via Portuguese from the Tupi name “tukana”. The Tupi were an indigenous people of Brazil.

109 Detective show that spawned “Baretta” : TOMA

“Toma” is a crime drama that ran for one season in the mid-seventies. It stars Tony Musante as New Jersey police detective David Toma. When Musante left the show, actor Robert Blake was recast in the title role. The producers decided to restructure the show while maintaining Blake as the lead. The new show was given the title “Baretta”, with Blake playing Tony Baretta.

“Baretta” is a detective show that originally aired from 1975 to 1978. Robert Blake played the title role of Tony Baretta, a New Jersey cop who lived in an apartment with his pet cockatoo named Fred. Famously, Blake ended up on the wrong side of the law in his real life. He was tried and acquitted of the 2001 murder of his wife, but found liable for her wrongful death in a 2005 civil suit.

112 Real estate ad abbr. : BRS

An apartment (apt) might have one bedroom (br).

114 Fidget spinners, evidently : FAD

A fidget spinner is toy that supposedly can be used for stress relief. Sales of fidget spinners really took off in 2017, although versions of the toy existed back in the early nineties.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 It can have pins at the end of it : LANE
5 El __ : CID
8 Pop’s Mama : CASS
12 Printer handle : EPSON
17 Declare to be true : AVER
18 Math class ratio : SINE
19 Metz man : HOMME
20 __ Khan: “The Jungle Book” tiger : SHERE
21 Pop-up book? : HOW TO MAKE PERFECT TOAST
25 Tool usually pluralized : TWEEZER
26 “According to whom?” retort : SAYS ME!
27 “Don’t be __!” : A HERO
28 Haifa’s home: Abbr. : ISR
29 Pleasingly dated retail adjective : OLDE
31 Post-WWII pres. monogram : DDE
32 Black cat, to some : OMEN
33 Match book? : ONLINE DATING PRIMER
40 Woodard of “Passion Fish” : ALFRE
43 “The Voice” host Carson : DALY
44 One eliciting yawns : BORE
45 Diagnostic aid : X-RAY
46 Silver finish? : -WARE
47 King Minos’ land : CRETE
49 Does the 96-Down for : CATERS
51 Sussex suffix : -ISE
52 Has regrets about : RUES
53 Hill helper : AIDE
54 Over-the-shoulder garment : SARI
55 Battery parts : TESTS
57 They’re defined by revolutions: Abbr. : YRS
58 Bit of work : ERG
59 Some HDTVs : RCAS
61 Swiss Miss product : COCOA
64 Blue book? : A HISTORY OF THE SMURFS
70 Sign of vacancy? : STARE
71 Tempe neighbor : MESA
72 St. Louis summer hrs. : CDT
73 Leave in the dust by overtaking? : LAP
75 Pool table slab : SLATE
78 Fivers : ABES
80 “The Lion King” villain : SCAR
82 Almanac fodder : DATA
83 Facebook chuckle : LOL
84 Removes for good : ERASES
87 Bygone royals : TSARS
88 “The Haj” novelist : URIS
89 “Get on it now!” : ASAP!
91 Eros, in Rome : AMOR
92 Didn’t let out, as one’s breath : HELD
93 Chanel product : SCENT
94 Text book? : MESSAGING DONE RIGHT
99 Picasso output : ARTE
100 Recipient of much Apr. mail : IRS
101 Morales of “Ozark” : ESAI
102 “Leaves and Navels” artist : ARP
105 Schoolyard pal in a Paul Simon song : JULIO
107 Short-legged hunter : BASSET
110 Rudolph Valentino’s “Blood and Sand” co-star : LILA LEE
112 Address book? : BEST SPEECHES OF ALL TIME
115 Zellweger of “Cold Mountain” : RENEE
116 Lions’ prides : MANES
117 Gobs of : MANY
118 “Yeah, yeah, I get it” : OK, OK
119 Practices in a ring : SPARS
120 Small strings : UKES
121 Put in : ADD
122 Litter cries : MEWS

Down

1 Christine of “The Blacklist” : LAHTI
2 Declares : AVOWS
3 More up-to-date : NEWER
4 Art Deco icon : ERTE
5 Dante translator John : CIARDI
6 Tats : INK
7 Shoddy pair? : DEES
8 Tummy-tightening garment : CORSET
9 Clock radio toggle : AM/FM
10 Barrie’s bosun : SMEE
11 UGA’s conf. : SEC
12 Book before Job : ESTHER
13 Fifth-most populous U.S. city : PHOENIX
14 Scorch : SEAR
15 Relative of -ish : … OR SO
16 Cousin of com : NET
18 Dog attractor : SMELL
19 Period of great popularity : HEYDAY
22 Thinning layer : OZONE
23 Striker of a polymer ball : PADDLE
24 Mess (with) : TAMPER
30 Was discontinued : ENDED
32 Fiona or Shrek : OGRE
33 Finds in mines : ORES
34 Grill, maybe : EATERY
35 Flanged girder : I-BAR
36 Pay attention to : NOTICE
37 Diagnostic aids : MRIS
38 Steinbeck’s “__ of Eden” : EAST
39 Deli selections : RYES
40 Out of whack : AWRY
41 Linney of “Ozark” : LAURA
42 Caught this morning : FRESH
47 Magna __ : CARTA
48 Hardship : RIGOR
49 Treatments for breaks : CASTS
50 Pub pick : STOUT
54 Burglars’ targets : SAFES
56 Unit of wheat : EAR
58 First name in the beauty aisle : ESTEE
60 Word with clean or unglued : COMES …
62 Richard’s songwriting partner : OSCAR
63 Starfleet VIPs : CMDRS
65 End of a believer? : -IST
66 “Because,” to a kid : REASON
67 Pain in the neck : HASSLE
68 Highway alert : FLARE
69 Attended as an observer : SAT IN
74 It’s behind you : PAST
75 __ dunk : SLAM
76 Misplace : LOSE
77 Worry word : ALAS
79 North Atlantic hazard : BERG
81 Tight-knit squad : CADRE
82 Conveyer of tears : DUCT
85 Slangy convertible : RAGTOP
86 Grenoble gal pal : AMIE
87 Reacts to trouble : TENSES
90 Hymnal that’s often richly illustrated : PSALTER
92 Oater regulars : HORSES
93 Con man’s cohort : SHILL
95 Surfaces : ARISES
96 Things to do after dinner : DISHES
97 Kitchen work spot : ISLAND
98 In a carefree manner : GAILY
102 How great minds think : ALIKE
103 Cut again, as grass : REMOW
104 Cheats at blind man’s buff : PEEKS
105 Wrangler, e.g. : JEEP
106 Middies’ sch. : USNA
107 Toucan’s pride : BEAK
108 Teen breakout : ACNE
109 Detective show that spawned “Baretta” : TOMA
111 Chem class model : ATOM
112 Real estate ad abbr. : BRS
113 Bird in some Australian place names : EMU
114 Fidget spinners, evidently : FAD

10 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 25 Aug 19, Sunday”

  1. LAT: 29:19, no errors. Newsday: 15:17, no errors, easier than usual (and I’m not trying to be a contrarian – it’s just that all the Yogi Berra quotes in it were very familiar to me). Washington Post: 23:09, no errors; very creative theme. Universal: 17:07, no errors; a pleasant cruise in calm waters … 😜.

  2. 1 hour and 17 seconds no errors….some of the theme answers didn’t make a lot of sense to me but with the help of crosses we got um

  3. According to “Star Trek” creator Gene Roddenberry, Starfleet was NOT a military organization! It’s main purpose was peaceful exploration of our galaxy. Gene chose to use naval titles as he felt that some sort of recognizable chain of command would be necessary, and since they were on a ship (albeit a spaceship), it seemed appropriate. Richard Arnold, former assistant to Gene Roddenberry.

  4. I took “battery parts” clue wrong and put “posts”, which of course made
    2 other words wrong. Mea culpa. But it was still an entertaining puzzle.

    1. As you wish … your call … 😜

      And, as for our reporting our results here, I will only say … this we do in emulation of Bill …

  5. You are as wrong as possible with regard to calendar reform. The Julian calendar (in approx. 50 BC) added the leap year. The year is approx. 365.2422 days long and so by 1580 required a correction of I believe 11 days removed and as the 365.25 day calendar of Julius Caesar was too long by 0.0078 days, Pope Gregory’s astronomers – employed to calculate the proper date of Easter – removed three leap years every 400 years, those not divisible by 400 ! Our present-day calendar is now only 0.0003 days too long! Incidentally, I am a great admirer of present-day Ireland. Most Western countries could benefit with the intelligent, civilised (sp. intentional) leadership of Leo in these very dark times!

  6. Re 51A notes: The Chicago Tribune implemented phonetic spelling in the early part of the 20th century, staying with it for several decades. One example was “thru” for “through.” And in order to reduce the bulky “Greater Chicago Metropolitan Area” construct, they used and advocated “Chicagoland.” Of course, once in a while, you’d hear someone say “Greater Chicagoland Metropolitan Area”!
    No errors on puzzle. Many erasures though, as I have the flu. It took me at least 1.5 hrs to do it!

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