LA Times Crossword 4 Aug 19, Sunday

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Constructed by: C.C. Burnikel
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: Walk-off

Themed answers each include the hidden word “BAT” flipped in the opposite direction:

  • 118D Something flipped after a walk-off home run … and in the nine longest Down answers : BAT
  • 3A Hacker’s coup : DATA BREACH
  • 5A SunTrust Park player : ATLANTA BRAVE
  • 11A Presidential moniker : HONEST ABE
  • 15A Genre from Mississippi : DELTA BLUES
  • 40A Heart rhythm manager : BETA BLOCKER
  • 66A University of California city : SANTA BARBARA
  • 74A “Sweet Love” R&B singer : ANITA BAKER
  • 79A Annual Arizona football game : FIESTA BOWL
  • 82A Almost : JUST ABOUT

Bill’s time: 17m 59s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Org. with the slogan “No More Victims” : MADD

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).

5 Addis __ University : ABABA

Addis Ababa is the capital city of Ethiopia. The city is relatively young, having being founded in 1886 by Emperor Menelik II. Addis Ababa holds an important position within the nations of Africa as it is home to many international organizations that are focused on the continent.

10 Thunder god : THOR

In Norse mythology, Thor was the son of Odin. Thor wielded a mighty hammer and was the god of thunder, lightning and storms. Our contemporary word “Thursday” comes from “Thor’s Day”.

21 State since 1846 : IOWA

What is now the state of Iowa was part of the French colony known as New France, until it was acquired by the US in the Louisiana Purchase. The state’s name comes from the Ioway Native American people who lived there at the time Europeans started exploring the area.

25 Big name in women’s apparel : ANN TAYLOR

There was no actual person called “Ann Taylor” associated with the Ann Taylor line of clothes. The name was chosen by the marketing professionals because “Ann” was considered to be “very New England” back in 1954 when the stores first opened, and “Taylor” suggested that clothes were carefully “tailored”.

27 “Ozark” or “Fargo” : DRAMA

“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.

“Fargo” is a TV series inspired by the 1996 film of the same name by the Coen brothers. The small-screen version first aired in 2014, with the credits including Joel and Ethan Coen as executive producers. Each season of the show features a new cast. The 2014 cast is led by Billy Bob Thornton, the 2015 cast by Kirsten Dunst, and the 2017 cast by Ewan McGregor. Each episode, and indeed the original film, includes the on-screen claim that “This is a true story”. However, that claim is in fact untrue.

28 Young Darth : ANI

Darth Vader is (to me) the most colorful antagonist in the “Star Wars” universe. Born as Anakin “Ani” Skywalker, he was corrupted by the Emperor Palpatine, and turned to “the Dark Side”. In the original films, Darth Vader was portrayed by English bodybuilder David Prowse, and voiced by actor James Earl Jones. Jones asked that he go uncredited for the first two “Star Wars” films, feeling that his contributions were insufficient to warrant recognition. I disagree …

29 Goose that sometimes nests in lava fields : NENE

The nene is a bird that is native to 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. The nene was named State Bird of Hawaii in 1957.

35 Job for Sam Spade : CASE

Private detective Sam Spade is the main character in Dashiell Hammett’s novel “The Maltese Falcon”. Famously, Spade was played by Humphrey Bogart in the 1941 film adaptation directed by John Huston.

38 Two-time NBA Finals MVP : BRYANT

Kobe Bryant played basketball for the LA Lakers. Kobe Bryant got his name from a menu, would you believe? His parents were in a Japanese restaurant and liked the name of “Kobe” beef, the beef from around the city of Kobe on the island of Honshu in Japan.

39 Asian fusion restaurant chain : NOBU

Nobu Matsuhisa is celebrity chef from Japan. Nobu was invited to open a Japanese restaurant in Lima, Peru in 1973, and while in South America developed his own Peruvian-Japanese fusion cuisine. He moved to the US a few years later, and now there are “Nobu” and “Matsuhisa” restaurants all over the world.

41 Glad offering : TRASH BAG

Glad is a company making plastic products, especially food containers and trash bags. Glad was launched in 1963 to make Glad Wrap, a polyethylene wrap used to preserve food.

46 Multi-platinum Steely Dan album : AJA

Steely Dan’s heyday was in the seventies when they toured for a couple of years, although the group mainly focused on studio work. The band was formed in 1972 and broke up in 1981. The core of the band reunited in 1993, and is still performing today despite the passing of founding member Walter Becker in 2017. Steely Dan’s best-selling album is “Aja” (pronounced like “Asia”), which was released in 1977.

49 Language in the Tai family : LAO

Lao, the language of Laos, does not use spaces between words (or periods!), although this is apparently changing. Spaces are used between sentences and clauses.

50 City near 66-Down : OJAI
(66D University of California city : SANTA BARBARA)

The city of Ojai, California is located just northwest of Los Angeles. One of the city’s claims to fame is that according to the TV shows “The Bionic Woman” and “The Six Million Dollar Man”, Jaime Sommers and Steve Austin grew up in Ojai and were childhood sweethearts!

54 Orchestra pitch setter : OBOE

When you hear an orchestra tuning before a performance, you’ll note (pun!) that the oboe starts off the process by playing an “A”. The rest of the musicians in turn tune to that oboe’s “A”.

55 Fourth-down play : PUNT

That would be football.

56 Unbearably confident : COCKSURE

To be cocksure is to be confident, as assured as a “cock”. English author D. H. Lawrence introduced us to a female version of the term: “hensure”.

58 Instruction Alice followed : EAT ME

In Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, Alice follows the white rabbit down a rabbit hole and finds a bottle labelled “DRINK ME”. When she drinks the contents, it causes her to shrink. She also sees a cake adorned with the words “EAT ME” written using currants, and when she eats the cake she grows so big she finds it hard to stand up. After eating the cake, she utters the words, “Curiouser and curiouser”.

69 Run-D.M.C.’s “You Be __” : ILLIN’

Run-DMC was a hip hop group from Queens, New York. The trio took its name from two of the group’s members: Joseph “Run” Simmons and Darryl “DMC” McDaniels.

75 “The Matrix” role : NEO

Neo is the character played by Keanu Reeves in “The Matrix” series of films.

The 1999 movie sensation “The Matrix” was meant to be set in a nondescript urban environment. It was actually shot in Australia, as one of the co-producers of the film was the Australian company, Village Roadshow Pictures. You can pick up all sorts of clues about the location when watching the film, including a view of Sydney Harbour Bridge in a background shot. Also, traffic drives along on the left and there are signs for the “lift” instead of an “elevator”.

78 Food since the Han Dynasty : TOFU

“Tofu” is a name for bean curd, and is a Japanese word meaning just that … bean that has curdled. Tofu is produced by coagulating soy milk, using either salt or something acidic. Once the protein has coagulated, the curds are pressed into the familiar blocks. Personally I love tofu, but my wife, she absolutely hates it …

The Han Dynasty was the second imperial dynasty of China and lasted from 206 BC to 220 AD. It came after the Qin Dynasty, and before the Three Kingdoms.

81 “Casino” co-star : DE NIRO

“Casino” is a 1995 Martin Scorsese film. One of the movie’s stars is Robert De Niro, someone who collaborated with Scorsese in eight films in all, “Casino” being the last. The Tangiers Hotel in the movie was actually the Stardust Resort and Casino, which operated in Las Vegas from 1958 until 2006.

82 Like ripe mangoes : JUICY

The delicious mango is the national fruit of India, Pakistan and the Philippines. Almost half of the world’s supply of mangoes comes from India.

87 Chocolat chaud need : LAIT

In French, one might add “lait” (milk) to “chocolat chaud” (hot chocolate).

88 It has colorful suspects : CLUE

Clue is a board game that we knew under a different name growing up in Ireland. Outside of North America, Clue is marketed as “Cluedo”. Cluedo was the original name of the game, introduced in 1949 by the famous British board game manufacturer Waddingtons. There are cute differences between the US and UK versions. For example, the man who is murdered is called Dr. Black (Mr. Boddy in the US), one of the suspects is the Reverend Green (Mr. Green in the US), and the suspect weapons include a dagger (a knife in the US), and a spanner (a wrench in the US). I think it’s a fabulous game, a must during the holidays …

90 __ Khan : KUBLAI

Kublai Khan was the leader of the Mongol Empire from 1260 to 1294. Kublai Khan was a grandson of Genghis Khan. Kublai Khan had a summer garden at Kanadu, which famously was the subject of the 1797 poem “Kubla Khan” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

92 Crazy Taxi publisher : SEGA

“Crazy Taxi” is a Sega video game in which players are taxi drivers racing to get their passengers to their destinations as quickly as possible.

93 Summer hrs. in Buffalo : EDT

Eastern Daylight Time (EDT)

Buffalo is the second-most populous city in the state of New York. The city takes its name from Buffalo Creek that runs through the metropolis (although the waterway is called Buffalo River within the city). The source of the name Buffalo Creek is the subject of much speculation, but one thing is clear, there were never any bison in the area.

96 Deli order : BLT

The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second-most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain old ham sandwich.

98 Put a Singer to work : SEW

Isaac Singer was not only an inventor, but also an actor. For much of his life, profits made from his inventions supported him while he pursued his acting career. Singer didn’t actually invent the sewing machine, and never claimed to have done so. What he did do though, was to invent a version of the machine that was practical and easily used in the home.

99 Track tie : DEAD HEAT

A race ending in a dead heat ends in a tie. A heat is one of a series of races, and it might be described as “dead” is there is no decisive outcome, if there is a tie.

104 Drone, e.g. : BEE

Drone bees and drone ants are fertile males of the species, whose sole role in life seems to be to mate with a queen.

105 “Mae West Lips Sofa” sculptor : DALI

“Mae West Lips Sofa” is a sculpture by Salvador Dalí that is well described by its title. It is a sofa that the artist designed to look like the lips of actress Mae West. There are several versions of the work that can be seen in various museums around the world.

107 Thai chili sauce : SRIRACHA

Sriracha hot chile sauce is named for the coastal city of Si Racha in eastern Thailand, where the recipe likely originated. Here in North America, we are most familiar with the Sriracha sold in a red bottle with a green that is made by Huy Fong Foods in the city of Irwindale, California. The manufacturer was founded by Vietnamese refugee David Tran, who escaped from Vietnam in 1978 on a Taiwanese freighter called the Huey Fong, after which he named his new company.

109 Saves, with “away” : SALTS

To salt away is to put aside safely for the future, and usually refers to something of value like money. The use of “salt” here is a figurative usage of the verb in the sense of preserving, as in salting meat for a future meal.

113 “Hold on a sec,” in texts : BRB

Be right back (brb)

119 Early life stage : LARVA

The larva is an intermediate stage in the development of an insect. All four stages are embryo, larva, pupa and imago.

121 Haka dancers : MAORI

The Haka is a war dance used by the Maori people of New Zealand. Famously, the New Zealand rugby team performs a haka before each of their matches.

122 “American Psycho” author __ Easton Ellis : BRET

“American Psycho” is a comedy horror film released in 2000 that is based on a 1991 novel of the same name by Bret Easton Ellis. I don’t do horror, comedic or not …

123 Ancient France : GAUL

The Gauls were a Celtic race, with Gaul covering what is now known as France and Belgium. We use the term “Gallic” today, when we refer to something pertaining to France or the French.

124 Prime minister after Major : BLAIR

Tony Blair was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom for ten years, from 1997 to 2007. Blair moved his Labour Party from the left towards the center, utilizing the moniker “New Labour”. Under his leadership, Labour won a landslide victory in 1997 and was comfortably elected into power again in 2001 and 2005. Blair stepped down in 2007 and Gordon Brown took over as prime minister. Labour was soundly defeated at the polls in the next general election, in 2010.

Sir John Major succeeded Margaret Thatcher as Conservative Party leader in 1990 and was Prime Minister of Britain until 1997. 1997 was the year that Tony Blair swept to power as leader of the Labour Party.

125 Nubian Museum city : ASWAN

The Egyptian city of Aswan lies in the south of the country, on the River Nile. Aswan is famous for its stone quarries, going back to ancient times. The most celebrated granite rock from the area is called syenite. Stone from Aswan was shipped northwards along the Nile and used in the construction of the pyramids. From ancient times right up to 1970, the annual flooding of the Nile was a significant event in Egypt. The flooding allowed the deposition of fertile silt far beyond the banks of the river, helping the region’s agriculture. However, the flooding was unpredictable. So the Aswan Dam was built in the sixties and from 1970 the flooding was brought under control.

Nubia is a region shared by Egypt and Sudan that lies along the Nile river. The name “Nubia” comes from the Nuba people who settled in the area in the 4th century.

127 Bar worker: Abbr. : ATTY

Attorney (atty.)

128 Cigna rival : AETNA

When the healthcare management and insurance company known as Aetna was founded, the name was chosen to evoke images of Mount Etna, the Italian volcano.

The health care management company known as Cigna was formed in 1982 by a merger of two insurance companies. One was Connecticut General (CG) and the other Insurance Company of North America (INA).

129 “Frozen Fever” queen : ELSA

“Frozen Fever” is a 2015 animated short film, and a sequel to the 2013 Disney hit feature “Frozen”.

Down

1 Canasta play : MELD

The card game called canasta originated in Uruguay apparently, with “canasta” being the Spanish word for “basket”. In the rummy-like game, a meld of seven cards or more is called a canasta.

3 Hacker’s coup : DATA BREACH

A computer hacker is a computer expert, and in particular one who uses that expertise to solve problems with hardware and software. So, the original use of the term “hacking” was very positive. Since the 1980s, the term “hacker” is more commonly used for an expert in subverting computer security.

5 SunTrust Park player : ATLANTA BRAVE

SunTrust Park is the baseball stadium that has been home to the Atlanta Braves since 2017. The Braves had been playing in Turner Field since 1997, which was a stadium built for the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.

6 Rodeo mount : BRONC

A bronco (also “bronc”) is a horse that is untamed. In Mexican Spanish “bronco” is a word for “horse”, and in the original Spanish “bronco” means “rough, rude”.

9 Yemen’s principal port : ADEN

Aden is a seaport in Yemen that is located on the Gulf of Aden by the eastern approach to the Red Sea. Aden has a long history of British rule, from 1838 until a very messy withdrawal in 1967. A native of Aden is known as an Adeni. Some believe that Cain and Abel are buried in the city.

10 “The Princess and the Frog” princess : TIANA

“The Princess and the Frog” is an animated feature released in 2009 by Walt Disney Studios. The film is set in New Orleans in the twenties. A waitress called Tiana kisses a prince who had been turned into a frog, and then she herself turns into a frog.

11 Presidential moniker : HONEST ABE

Abraham Lincoln was the sixteenth President of the US. There are several stories told about how he earned the nickname “Honest Abe”. One story dates back to early in his career as a lawyer. Lincoln accidentally overcharged a client and then walked miles in order to right the wrong as soon as possible.

13 Pro __ : RATA

“Pro rata” is a Latin phrase meaning “in proportion”.

15 Genre from Mississippi : DELTA BLUES

The delta blues genre of music originated in the Mississippi Delta, and was first recorded in the late twenties.

16 Bow-toting god : EROS

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”).

17 Sun. delivery : SER

Our word “sermon” comes from the Latin “sermonem” meaning “discourse, talk”. The literal translation of “sermonem” is “a stringing together of words”, from the Latin “serere” meaning “to join”, as in the related word “series”.

19 Yellow Teletubby with a curly antenna : LAA-LAA

“Teletubbies” is a children’s television show produced by the BBC in the UK and shown over here on PBS. The show attracted a lot of attention in 1999 when Jerry Falwell suggested that one of the Teletubbies characters (Tinky Winky) was a homosexual role model for children.

30 Quito’s land: Abbr. : ECUA

The full name of the capital city of Ecuador is San Francisco de Quito. Quito is the second highest administrative capital city in the world, after La Paz, Bolivia.

33 European pear : ANJOU

The Anjou pear is a cultivar of the European Pear. The Anjou is thought to have originated in Belgium or France (Anjou is a province in the Loire Valley of western France).

34 Sweetly, to Salieri : DOLCE

If you’ve seen the brilliant 1984 movie “Amadeus”, you’ll have seen the composer Salieri portrayed as being very envious and resentful of the gifted Mozart. It is no doubt true that two composers fought against each other, at least on occasion, but the extent of the acrimony between the two has perhaps been exaggerated in the interest of theater. Mozart and his wife had six children, but only two survived infancy. The youngest boy was called Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, born just five months before his father died. Franz was to become a gifted composer, teacher, pianist and conductor, helped along the way by lessons from his father’s supposed rival, Antonio Salieri. In addition to the Mozarts, Salieri also taught such luminaries as Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Liszt and Franz Schubert

36 Game designer Rubik : ERNO

What was originally called the “Magic Cube” became better known as “Rubik’s Cube”, and was named for its inventor Ernő Rubik. Rubik’s Cube is the world’s biggest selling puzzle game, with over 350 million sold in just over 30 years.

38 Delicate trinket : BIJOU

The noun “bijou” (plural “bijoux”) is used for a small expensive trinket. “Bijou” is French for “jewel”.

40 Heart rhythm manager : BETA BLOCKER

Beta blockers are drugs used primarily to manage cardiac arrhythmia and hypertension. Basically, beta blockers interfere with the fight-or-flight response.

42 Hickok’s last hand, reportedly : ACES UP

In 1876, Wild Bill Hickok was playing poker in a saloon in the town of Deadwood in the Black Hills in the Dakota Territory. For once, the gunfighting lawman was sitting with his back to the door, something he almost always avoided. He had twice tried to change seats to give him a view of the door, but his card-playing comrades weren’t obliging. An enemy of Wild Bill’s named Jack McCall then was able to enter the saloon without being noticed. He walked up to the table and shot Hickok in the back of the head, killing him instantly. The hand that Hickok was holding contained four black cards, two aces and two eights. Since the killing, black aces and eights in a poker hand have been referred to as the “dead man’s hand”.

43 Texas school, informally : A AND M

Texas A&M is the seventh largest university in the country, and was the first public higher education institute in the state when it accepted its first students in 1876. The full name of the school was the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas (hence “A&M”) and its primary mission used to be the education of males in the techniques of farming and military warfare. That’s quite a combination! Because of the agricultural connection, the college’s sports teams use the moniker “Aggies”. Texas A&M is also home to the George Bush Presidential Library.

44 “Somebody That I Used to Know” singer : GOTYE

Gotye is the stage name of Belgian-Australian singer Wally De Backer. The stage name comes from the French name “Gauthier” meaning “Walter” (Wally).

45 Dwarf wearing specs : DOC

In the original Brothers Grimm fairy tale called “Snow White”, the seven dwarfs were not given any names. The names were added for the 1937 classic Disney film “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”. The seven dwarfs are:

  • Doc (the leader of the group)
  • Grumpy (that would be me, according to my wife …)
  • Happy
  • Sleepy
  • Bashful
  • Sneezy
  • Dopey

48 Punic Wars fighters : ROMANS

The Punic Wars were a series of three conflicts fought between ancient Rome and Ancient Carthage. With Carthage on the North African coast and Rome on the east coast of Italy, the Punic wars were largely an attempt to control the western Mediterranean Sea and were centered on the island of Sicily.

53 Jacuzzi feature : JET

“Jacuzzi” is one of those brand names that has become so much associated with the product that it is often assumed to be a generic term. The Jacuzzi company was founded in 1915 by the seven(!) Jacuzzi brothers in Berkeley California. The brothers, who were Italian immigrants, pronounced their name “ja-coot-si”, as one might suspect when one realizes the name is of Italian origin. The company started off by making aircraft propellers and then small aircraft, but suspended aircraft production in 1925 when one the brothers was killed in one of their planes. The family then started making hydraulic pumps, and in 1948 developed a submersible bathtub pump so that a son of one of the brothers could enjoy hydrotherapy for his rheumatoid arthritis. The “hydrotherapy product” took off in the fifties with some astute marketing towards “worn-out housewives” and the use of celebrity spokesman Jack Benny.

55 Nana and Toto : PET DOGS

In J.M. Barrie’s play and novel about Peter Pan, Peter takes Wendy Darling and her two brothers on adventures on the island of Neverland. Back in the real world, the Darling children are taken care of by a nanny, a Newfoundland dog called Nana. It is Nana who takes Peter Pan’s shadow away from him as he tries to escape from the Darling house one night.

Toto is Dorothy’s dog in the film “The Wizard of Oz”, and in the original book “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” by L. Frank Baum. Toto was played in the movie by a dog called Terry, but Terry’s name was soon changed to Toto in real life due to the success of the film.

57 Ping producer : SONAR

The British developed the first underwater detection system that used sound waves. Research was driven by defence demands during WWI, leading to production of working units in 1922. This new sound detection system was described as using “supersonics”, but for the purpose of secrecy the term was dropped in favor of an acronym. The work was done under the auspices of the Royal Navy’s Anti-Submarine Division, so ASD was combined with the “IC” from “superson-ic-s” to create the name ASDIC. The navy even went as far as renaming the quartz material at the heart of the technology “ASDivite”. By the time WWII came along, the Americans were producing their own systems and coined the term SONAR, playing off the related application, RADAR. And so, the name ASDIC was deep-sixed …

59 __ chi : TAI

More correctly called “t‘ai chi ch‘uan”, tai chi is a martial art that is mostly practiced to improve overall health and increase longevity.

61 St. Peter’s Basilica sculpture : PIETA

The Pietà is a representation of the Virgin Mary holding in her arms the dead body of her son Jesus. The most famous Pietà is undoubtedly the sculpted rendition by Michelangelo that is located in St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. That particular sculpture is thought to be the only work that Michelangelo signed. In some depictions of the Pietà, Mary and her son are surrounded by other figures from the New Testament. Such depictions are known as Lamentations.

64 Movement in Brahms’ Serenade No. 1 : MINUET

A minuet is a dance that originated in France. At some point, the middle section of the minuet was routinely scored for just a trio of instruments. The resulting composition was known as a minuet and trio. In the Classical Era, a minuet and trio was often chosen as the third movement of a symphony.

Johannes Brahms was a leading German composer during the Romantic period. Brahms is one of the “Three Bs”, often grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven.

66 University of California city : SANTA BARBARA

The University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) is one of the 10 campuses in the UC system. UCSB joined the UC system in 1944, although the school was founded as a teachers’ college in 1891.

68 Throat lozenge : TROCHE

A troche is a medicinal lozenge, like a pastille, and is usually circular in shape. “Troche” ultimately derives from the Greek word for “wheel”.

70 Molokai memento : LEI

Molokai is the fifth largest of the Hawaiian Islands. Famously, Molokai was home to a leper colony that was managed by Father Damien, a Roman Catholic priest from Belgium. Father Damien cared for the victims of Hansen’s Disease (then known as “leprosy”) for sixteen years before succumbing to the illness himself in 1889. Father Damien was declared a saint in 2009.

73 Winner at Gettysburg : MEADE

George Meade was a career army officer with a depth of experience in civil and military operations even before the onset of the Civil War. During the war he rose to the level of commander of the Army of the Potomac, and is best remembered for leading the Union forces that defeated General Robert E. Lee at Gettysburg in 1863.

74 “Sweet Love” R&B singer : ANITA BAKER

Anita Baker is an R&B and soul singer who was raised in Detroit, Michigan. Baker’s most successful song is the Grammy-winning “Sweet Love” that was released in 1986.

77 AA flying rival : UAL

United Airlines (UAL) has a complicated history, but can trace its roots back to Aviation Enterprises, founded in 1944 and later called Texas International. The first use of the “United” name in the company’s history was when airplane pioneer William Boeing merged his Boeing Air Transport with Pratt & Whitney to form the United Aircraft and Transport Corporation (UATC) in 1929. The Air Mail Act of 1934 required that UATC be broken up into United Aircraft (which became United Technologies), the Boeing Aircraft Company and United Air Lines.

79 Annual Arizona football game : FIESTA BOWL

The Fiesta Bowl is a college football bowl game played every year at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona.

83 Domed Asian shelters : YURTS

A yurt is a wood-framed dwelling that is used by nomads in the steppes of Central Asia. Although a yurt is a substantial structure, it is also extremely portable.

85 Swinton of “Burn After Reading” : TILDA

Tilda Swinton is an English actress, quite famous in her native land. Swinton made a big name for herself outside the UK when she played the “baddie” in the 2007 movie “Michael Clayton”, opposite the “goodie” played by George Clooney.

“Burn After Reading” is a 2008 black comedy from the Coen Brothers that really disappointed (I thought). It had a great cast, headed by George Clooney, Brad Pitt, John Malkovich and the lovely Frances McDormand, but it just did not deliver. Die-hard Coen Brothers fans might want to take a look though.

91 Sausage at tailgate parties : BEER BRAT

A bratwurst (sometimes “brat” in the US) is a German sausage. The name comes from “brät-” meaning “finely chopped meat”, and “Wurst” meaning “sausage”.

94 Piques, as an appetite : WHETS

The words “whet” and “pique” can both be used in the sense of sharpening or awaking one’s interest or desire.

97 Washington port : TACOMA

Tacoma is a city on Puget Sound in the state of Washington. The city took its name from Mount Rainier that is nearby, as the peak used to be known as Mount Tahoma and Mount Tacoma.

108 NFL Network analyst Michael __ : IRVIN

Michael Irvin played football for the Dallas Cowboys. I don’t follow American Football (forgive me!) but did see Irvin on “Dancing with the Stars” on television, and he acquitted himself quite well.

109 Lee whom nobody doesn’t like : SARA

In 1935, businessman Charles Lubin bought a chain of three bakeries in Chicago called Community Bake Shops, and soon expanded the operation into seven stores. Lubin introduced a cream cheesecake that he named after his daughter who was only 8-years-old at the time, Sara Lee Lubin. The cheesecake was a hit and he renamed the bakeries to Kitchen of Sara Lee. The business was bought out by Consolidated foods in 1956, but the brand name Sara Lee persists to this day, as does Ms. Sara Lee herself who now goes by the name Sara Lee Schupf.

112 Island off Tuscany : ELBA

I had a lovely two-week vacation in Tuscany once, including what was supposed to be a two-night stay on the island of Elba. I had envisioned Elba as a place full of history, and maybe it is, but it is also overrun with tourists who use it as a beach getaway. We left after one day and we won’t be going back again …

115 Some S&L plans : IRAS

Savings and Loan (S&L)

116 Grammy winner Turner : TINA

“Tina Turner” is the stage name used by Anna Mae Bullock, the “Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll”. Turner has always loved Europe and moved there in the eighties. She now splits her time between her homes in England, France and Switzerland.

117 Sched. uncertainty : TBD

To be determined (TBD)

118 Something flipped after a walk-off home run … and in the nine longest Down answers : BAT

In baseball, a player who has hit a home run might celebrate with a bat flip. The player tosses the bat so that it rotates several times before landing on the ground.

120 Mirror Pond product : ALE

Mirror Pond Pale Ale is a beer made by the Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Oregon. The beer is named for a small lake called Mirror Pond that was formed by damming the Deschutes River.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Org. with the slogan “No More Victims” : MADD
5 Addis __ University : ABABA
10 Thunder god : THOR
14 Tributes in verse : ODES
18 Inbox pileup : EMAIL
20 Made level, with “up” : TRUED …
21 State since 1846 : IOWA
22 Present : HERE
23 Mucho : LOTSA
24 Ski resort hangout : LODGE
25 Big name in women’s apparel : ANN TAYLOR
27 “Ozark” or “Fargo” : DRAMA
28 Young Darth : ANI
29 Goose that sometimes nests in lava fields : NENE
31 Lies for, maybe : ABETS
32 On an even keel : BALANCED
35 Job for Sam Spade : CASE
37 Remote battery : AAA
38 Two-time NBA Finals MVP : BRYANT
39 Asian fusion restaurant chain : NOBU
41 Glad offering : TRASH BAG
45 Become defunct : DIE
46 Multi-platinum Steely Dan album : AJA
47 Type of sale : CLEARANCE
49 Language in the Tai family : LAO
50 City near 66-Down : OJAI
52 Challenge in court : OBJECT
54 Orchestra pitch setter : OBOE
55 Fourth-down play : PUNT
56 Unbearably confident : COCKSURE
58 Instruction Alice followed : EAT ME
60 Rapid-fire : SPEEDY
62 “Hmm … doubt it” : UH … NO
63 Withdrawal site : ATM
65 Cry at a shearing : BAA!
66 “I’m good with it” : SUITS ME
67 Streamed, perhaps : ON TV
69 Run-D.M.C.’s “You Be __” : ILLIN’
71 Pretended to be : APED
72 “You don’t have to remind me” : I’M AWARE
75 “The Matrix” role : NEO
76 Big ball of energy : SUN
78 Food since the Han Dynasty : TOFU
81 “Casino” co-star : DE NIRO
82 Like ripe mangoes : JUICY
84 “Well done, sista!” : ATTA GIRL!
87 Chocolat chaud need : LAIT
88 It has colorful suspects : CLUE
90 __ Khan : KUBLAI
92 Crazy Taxi publisher : SEGA
93 Summer hrs. in Buffalo : EDT
94 Knock response : WHO’S THERE?
96 Deli order : BLT
98 Put a Singer to work : SEW
99 Track tie : DEAD HEAT
101 105-Across output : ARTE
102 Modifies to fit : ADAPTS
104 Drone, e.g. : BEE
105 “Mae West Lips Sofa” sculptor : DALI
107 Thai chili sauce : SRIRACHA
109 Saves, with “away” : SALTS
111 Cause of some nodding : BORE
113 “Hold on a sec,” in texts : BRB
114 Lunar path : ORBIT
117 Acknowledges the applause : TAKES A BOW
119 Early life stage : LARVA
121 Haka dancers : MAORI
122 “American Psycho” author __ Easton Ellis : BRET
123 Ancient France : GAUL
124 Prime minister after Major : BLAIR
125 Nubian Museum city : ASWAN
126 Have the nerve : DARE
127 Bar worker: Abbr. : ATTY
128 Cigna rival : AETNA
129 “Frozen Fever” queen : ELSA

Down

1 Canasta play : MELD
2 Love in Spain : AMOR
3 Hacker’s coup : DATA BREACH
4 Consternation : DISMAY
5 SunTrust Park player : ATLANTA BRAVE
6 Rodeo mount : BRONC
7 Theater group : AUDIENCE
8 Plead with : BEG
9 Yemen’s principal port : ADEN
10 “The Princess and the Frog” princess : TIANA
11 Presidential moniker : HONEST ABE
12 Beat consistently : OWN
13 Pro __ : RATA
14 “Now I remember” : OH YEAH
15 Genre from Mississippi : DELTA BLUES
16 Bow-toting god : EROS
17 Sun. delivery : SER
19 Yellow Teletubby with a curly antenna : LAA-LAA
26 Humiliate : ABASE
30 Quito’s land: Abbr. : ECUA
33 European pear : ANJOU
34 Sweetly, to Salieri : DOLCE
36 Game designer Rubik : ERNO
38 Delicate trinket : BIJOU
40 Heart rhythm manager : BETA BLOCKER
42 Hickok’s last hand, reportedly : ACES UP
43 Texas school, informally : A AND M
44 “Somebody That I Used to Know” singer : GOTYE
45 Dwarf wearing specs : DOC
48 Punic Wars fighters : ROMANS
51 “You don’t have to remind me” : I KNOW IT
53 Jacuzzi feature : JET
55 Nana and Toto : PET DOGS
57 Ping producer : SONAR
59 __ chi : TAI
61 St. Peter’s Basilica sculpture : PIETA
64 Movement in Brahms’ Serenade No. 1 : MINUET
66 University of California city : SANTA BARBARA
68 Throat lozenge : TROCHE
70 Molokai memento : LEI
72 Sat at a light : IDLED
73 Winner at Gettysburg : MEADE
74 “Sweet Love” R&B singer : ANITA BAKER
77 AA flying rival : UAL
79 Annual Arizona football game : FIESTA BOWL
80 Prompts : URGES
82 Almost : JUST ABOUT
83 Domed Asian shelters : YURTS
85 Swinton of “Burn After Reading” : TILDA
86 Bar code? : LAW
89 Dryer unit : LOAD
91 Sausage at tailgate parties : BEER BRAT
94 Piques, as an appetite : WHETS
95 Locks up? : HAIR
97 Washington port : TACOMA
100 Remove : DELETE
103 Sentence fragment : PHRASE
106 Humble : LOWLY
108 NFL Network analyst Michael __ : IRVIN
109 Lee whom nobody doesn’t like : SARA
110 Long tale : SAGA
112 Island off Tuscany : ELBA
115 Some S&L plans : IRAS
116 Grammy winner Turner : TINA
117 Sched. uncertainty : TBD
118 Something flipped after a walk-off home run … and in the nine longest Down answers : BAT
120 Mirror Pond product : ALE

16 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 4 Aug 19, Sunday”

  1. LAT: 19:45, 2 errors. At least this one was close to acceptable and the only nit to pick was 39A-34D in comparison to the last two or three Sundays and yesterday. Newsday: 23:23, 1 error. WaPo: 21:01, no errors. 32×20. Guess the clues were easier to compensate for more of them? I don’t know.

    @Dave, @Carrie
    The issue isn’t with the use of the word “pigtails”. It’s the plural case of the word used as a clue compared to the singular case used in the answer. As one can have a single plait, one can also have a single pigtail. Pigtail = PLAIT. Pigtails = PLAITS. Not Pigtails = PLAIT as the puzzle had. This was simply an editing fail.

    @Dave
    I’ll address the other comment later, as I don’t have the time right now.

    1. Hey Glenn!
      I agree it is confusing — I was referring to (what sounded like) your saying that pigtails aren’t worn by humans. Maybe I mis read your comment!

  2. LAT: 21:53, with a one-square error due to a restaurant chain I never heard of and a strange (and apparently lifelong) inability to correctly spell a certain Italian word 😜. (I think Glenn had the same problem.)

    Newsday: 17:24, no errors.

    Universal 21×21: 25:40, no errors. Clever theme.

    WP: Perhaps I’ll get to it later. For now, I don’t have time to fill in 524 more empty squares … 😜.

    @Glenn …

    About the “plait” issue: When I saw that “plait” fit, I went with it, assuming that it referred to a style (like a “bob” or a “pageboy” or a “mullet”), so that to have your hair “in a plait” meant to have it “in pigtails”. And, after the fact, when I tried to find evidence for this on Google, it appeared that there may be some. But the issue is completely outside my area of competence. Perhaps others will weigh in.

    And, as for my other comments, please understand that I’m not trying to pick a fight; I’m honestly baffled by your criticism of yesterday’s cluing and would like to try to understand. Respond if you have time …

    1. Washington Post: 30:34, no errors (and not one misstep). It’s difficult for me to be negative about any crossword puzzle, especially a work of art like this one – marvelously constructed and with a very appropriate theme – but ultimately, it was just … boring: Read a clue. Write in the answer. Repeat until finished. And … its sheer size (20×32) made for a lot of squinting at the paper. So … I’m impressed by the final grid. I didn’t hate doing it. I got an certain kind of ego boost out of it. But I didn’t feel that it was much of a puzzle.

      @Glenn … I’ll look at your response from yesterday later. It was a long day … 😳.

  3. 54:11 no errors….NYT 0721(listed as 0728) ….48:53 with one error(I didn’t know what an English football powerhouse was)….not a bad Sunday

  4. 34:34. Nice way to end the week. I don’t think I had my head completely in this one as I needed HON_ST_BE before I could figure out HONEST ABE…sheesh. I had a few other embarrassing moments as well. I used Tony’s hunt and peck method virtually the entire grid.

    I put SRIRACHA sauce on almost anything. I remember they had a lawsuit near their plant a few years ago because the aroma of garlic was so strong that the neighborhood was complaining. I still see it on the shelves so I guess they worked it out.

    Regarding yesterday’s bifurcated (I think I last used that word on my SAT’s) discussion on how good or bad yesterday’s puzzle was, here’s my take: Bill finished the puzzle in 7 minutes, and many many others finished it just fine. So it’s not like the puzzle was not doable.

    Will Shortz himself said it best when addressing this kind of issue when he said “these are CLUES [I capitalize for emphasis] to an answer. They are not necessarily synonyms or dictionary definitions. They are just hints as to what should go into those squares.” To me, that gives a setter quite a bit of latitude when cluing IMO. Some are gimmies, but many are designed to make you think – and think outside the box. If you look at MENSA exams, those questions ALL look like that – outside the box thinking. If you take issue with the Norris/Shortz form of oblique cluing, I recommend you avoid a MENSA exam. They’re worse….or better.

    Bottom line, I just take the philosophy that I don’t blame other people if I don’t know something. Similarly, I don’t blame the setters if I don’t figure out something understandable to others. I just try to learn and be better the next time. No one is grading these. There is no crossword police building a rap sheet on me (that I’m aware of…). If you’re not having fun with a puzzle, just move on. But don’t blame the setters. They’re trying to make these fun, informative, and interesting. If they were all easy, who would want to do them?

    I really should go on tv with this stuff….

    Best –

  5. Sunday puzzle difficult for me and took a long time: 4 errors
    counting 2 squares….dulce instead of dolce and Elea instead of
    Elba….sheesh, I guess! Duh!!

  6. 28 mins 14 sec, no errors.

    Really a “stretch” for C.C., if we’re using baseball terminology: I solved 118D with easy crosses, and never even SAW the clue; guess I “missed the sign”, huh? All that “clever and cute” effort just goes unnoticed. I’m a big baseball fan (Go SF Giants), and pretty much spit sunflower seed shells at this one.

    Bill: in your explanation for this “reacher” you noted 118A. The clue goes Down.

    1. Spent my early childhood in Bend, Oregon and have many pleasant memories of playing in Drake Park and the nearby Mirror Pond…

  7. Felt well-rested and alert so I saw how close I could get to the speedsters’ times. Not even close- 45 minutes. Yet I can’t imagine how I could have been quicker. I stand in awe of you speed demons.
    To my credit: No errors.

  8. Had “aggie” in and never thought of A & E. How dumb is that? So……that little section never got fixed. But did everything else. It was a good workout for a Sunday.

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