LA Times Crossword 20 Sep 19, Friday

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Constructed by: Kathy Wienberg & Lewis Rothlein
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Skip Ad

Themed answers are common phrases in which we SKIP the letter sequence AD:

  • 47D Ubiquitous YouTube button … and a hint to four long Across answers : SKIP AD
  • 20A What included a top hat, for Lincoln? : GETTYSBURG DRESS (from “Gettysburg Address”)
  • 26A Unvarnished inventions? : BARE-NAKED LIES (from “Barenaked Ladies”)
  • 43A Citi Field catcalls? : FLUSHING MEOWS (from “Flushing Meadows”)
  • 53A Joe-induced speaking clarity? : CAFFEINE DICTION (from “caffeine addiction”)

Bill’s time: 8m 44s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 “… harmony in the motion and magnitude of the __ … “: Copernicus : ORBS

Nicolaus Copernicus was an astronomer active during the Renaissance. Copernicus was the first person to propose that the Earth and the planets revolved around the Sun.

14 Stable newborn : FOAL

There are lots of terms to describe horses of different ages and sexes, it seems:

  • Foal: horse of either sex that is less than one year old
  • Yearling: horse of either sex that is one to two years old
  • Filly: female horse under the age of four
  • Colt: male horse under the age of four
  • Gelding: castrated male horse of any age
  • Stallion: non-castrated male horse four years or older
  • Mare: female horse four years or older

15 Particle in a beam : MOTE

A mote is a speck of dust.

16 Lifetime parent : A AND E

The A&E television network used to be a favorite of mine, with the “A&E” standing for “arts and entertainment”. A&E started out airing a lot of the old classic dramas, as well as biographies and arts programs. Now there seems to be more reality TV, with one of the flagship programs being “Dog the Bounty Hunter”. A slight change of direction I’d say …

Lifetime is a pay TV channel with programming aimed at women, and programming featuring women in leading roles.

17 Asian tourist city : AGRA

Agra is a medieval city on the banks of the river Yamuna in India. Agra was also the capital of the Mughal Empire from 1556 to 1658. The city is home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites:

  • The Taj Mahal: the famous mausoleum built in memory of Mumtaz Mahal.
  • Agra Fort: the site where the famous Koh-i-Noor diamond was seized.
  • Fatehpur Sikri: a historic city that’s home to well-preserved Mughal architecture.

19 Lengthy sentence : RUN-ON

A “run-on sentence” is one in which two separate clauses are linked without appropriate conjugation. Two examples would be:

Today’s crossword is really tough I can’t finish.
Today’s crossword is really tough, I can’t finish.

More acceptable sentences would be:

Today’s crossword is really tough. I can’t finish.
Today’s crossword is really tough; I can’t finish.
Today’s crossword is really tough, so I can’t finish.

20 What included a top hat, for Lincoln? : GETTYSBURG DRESS (from “Gettysburg Address”)

I admit to having profound respect and admiration for great speeches delivered by great men and women. Forgive me as I reproduce here the full text of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address:

Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that “all men are created equal.”

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of it, as a final resting place for those who died here, that the nation might live. This we may, in all propriety do. But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow, this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have hallowed it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here; while it can never forget what they did here.

It is rather for us the living, we here be dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.

23 Prohibition __ : ERA

The 18th Amendment to the US Constitution was a great victory for the temperance movement (the “dry” movement), and in 1919 ushered in the Prohibition era. Highly unpopular (with the “wet” movement), Prohibition was repealed in 1933 by the 21st Amendment.

24 Support gp. founded under FDR : USO

The United Service Organization (USO) was founded in 1941 at the request of President Franklin D. Roosevelt “to handle the on-leave recreation of the men in the armed forces”. A USO tour is undertaken by a troupe of entertainers, many of whom are big-name celebrities. A USO tour usually includes troop locations in combat zones.

25 Like Yosemite’s El Capitan : SHEER

El Capitan is a stunning vertical rock formation in Yosemite National Park in California. The top of El Capitan has been used as the take-off point for many BASE jumps, parachute jumps made by diving off the top of the rock face. The National Park Service put a stop to the practise in 1999. Soon afterwards, a BASE jumper made an illegal jump to protest the ban. She died …

26 Unvarnished inventions? : BARE-NAKED LIES (from “Barenaked Ladies”)

Barenaked Ladies is a Canadian alternative rock band. The somewhat quirky name chosen by the band tends to reflect the group’s concert style. The band is noted for kidding around on stage with lots of banter between songs. They’re also noted for composing and performing the catchy theme song for the hit sitcom “The Big Bang Theory”.

31 P&L report column : YTD

On an income statement, a profit & loss figure (P&L) might be year-to-date (YTD).

37 One often stands alone in a split : PIN

In ten pin bowling, a split takes place when the number-one pin (headpin) is knocked down with the first ball and two or more non-adjacent pins are left standing. The most difficult split to deal with is the infamous 7-10 split, where just the rear pins at the extreme right and left remain standing.

40 Gp. inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017 : ELO

The Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) is a symphonic rock group from the north of England.

41 They’re often seen on trees : KIN

Those would be family trees.

43 Citi Field catcalls? : FLUSHING MEOWS (from “Flushing Meadows”)

Flushing Meadows is a park in Queens in New York City. It is home to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center (home for the US Open), Citi Field (home for the New York Mets), the Queens Zoo and several other significant venues. The park was created in the late thirties as the site of the 1939/1940 New York World’s Fair.

48 “The Night They Invented Champagne” composer : LOEWE

Frederick Loewe was a composer who was best known for his collaborations with the lyricist Alan Jay Lerner, the most famous of which were “My Fair Lady”, “Gigi” and “Camelot”.

“The Night They Invented Champagne” is a song from the 1958 musical film “Gigi”.

In the lovely musical film “Gigi”, released in 1958, the title song is sung by Louis Jourdan who plays Gaston. My favorite number though, has to be “Thank Heaven for Little Girls” sung by Maurice Chevalier. Many say that “Gigi” is the last in the long line of great MGM musicals. It won a record 9 Academy Awards, a record that only lasted one year. Twelve months later “Ben Hur” won 11 Oscars. In the 1958 film, Gigi was played by the lovely Leslie Caron. A few years earlier, “Gigi” was a successful stage play on Broadway. Chosen for the title role on stage was the then-unknown Audrey Hepburn.

49 Mentalist Geller : URI

Uri Geller’s most famous performance is perhaps his uncomfortable failure on “The Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson in 1973. Carson “hijacked” Geller on live television by providing him with spoons to bend and watches to start, none of which had been available to Geller before the show aired. Clever!

50 Sch. in Manhattan : KSU

Kansas State University (KSU) was founded as the Kansas State Agricultural College in 1863 during the Civil War. The main KSU campus is located in the city of Manhattan, which is 56 miles northwest of Topeka, Kansas.

53 Joe-induced speaking clarity? : CAFFEINE DICTION (from “caffeine addiction”)

The first successful process for removing caffeine from coffee involved steaming the beans in salt water, and then extracting the caffeine using benzene (a potent carcinogen) as a solvent. Coffee processed this way was sold as Sanka here in the US. There are other processes used these days, and let’s hope they are safer …

58 Food stamp? : USDA

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) classifies meat into eight different grades:

  • Prime
  • Choice
  • Select
  • Standard
  • Commercial
  • Utility
  • Cutter
  • Canner

59 67, for Beethoven’s Fifth : OPUS

Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 5” has one of the most recognizable openings in the whole of the classical repertoire, and comprises just four simpel notes. The work is sometimes referred to as the “Fate Symphony”, and that opening motif as a representation of Fate knocking at the door.

62 Olive Oyl’s mother : NANA

E. C. Segar’s cartoon character Olive Oyl had quite a large family. Her mother is Nana Oyl, and her father Cole Oyl. Olive’s brother is Castor Oyl, and she has uncles named Otto Oyl and Lubry Kent Oyl (my favorite!).

Down

1 18 or 21, typically : OF AGE

The 26th Amendment to the US Constitution sets the minimum age for voting at 18 years and was adopted in 1971. The main driving force behind the 24th Amendment was the dissatisfaction expressed by young American men who were conscripted to fight in the Vietnam War even though they didn’t have the right to vote, as they were under 21 years of age.

2 Court rival of Rafael : ROGER

Roger Federer is a Swiss tennis player considered by many to be the greatest tennis player of all time. Federer is married to former tennis pro Mirka Vavrinec. The couple are parents to two sets of twins.

Rafael “Rafa” Nadal is a Spanish tennis player. He is noted for his expertise on clay courts, which expertise earned him the nickname “The King of Clay”.

3 Bill for shots : BAR TAB

When we run a “tab” at a bar, we are running a “tabulation”, a listing of what we owe. Such a use of “tab” is American slang that originated in the 1880s.

4 Picket fence piece : SLAT

Back in the late 17th century, a picket was a pointed stake used militarily to defend against attacking forces, and charging cavalry in particular. Ultimately, the term “picket” comes from the French verb “piquer” meaning “to pierce”. The term “pickets” then became the name for troops posted in the front lines, watching for the enemy. A picket line is a unit of soldiers lined up as a team of lookouts. The first use of “picket line” in the sense of labor disputes appeared just after the end of WWII.

7 Classic accusation : ET TU?

It was Shakespeare who popularized the words “Et tu, Brute?” (meaning “And you, Brutus?”). They appear in his play “Julius Caesar”, although the phrase had been around long before he penned his drama. It’s not known what Julius Caesar actually said in real life (if anything at all) as he was assassinated on the steps of the Senate in Rome.

8 Moccasin leather : DEERSKIN

“Moc” is short for “moccasin”, a type of shoe. The moccasin is a traditional form of footwear worn by members of many Native American tribes.

9 Asked for ID : CARDED

Identity document (ID)

10 Victory wreath : LAUREL

In the Ancient Olympic Games, the winner of an event was awarded an olive wreath. When the games were revived in 1896, the winners were originally given a silver medal and an olive branch, with runners-up receiving a bronze medal and a laurel branch. The tradition of giving gold, silver and bronze medals began at the 1904 Summer Olympic Games held in St. Louis, Missouri.

11 Lestat de Lioncourt creator : ANNE RICE

Anne Rice is an American author of erotic and Gothic novels. Rice was born Howard Allen O’Brien (no wonder she changed her name!). Her famous series of novels “The Vampire Chronicles” centers on her character Lestat de Lioncourt, a French nobleman who was turned into a vampire in the 18th century. One of the stories, “Interview with the Vampire”, was adapted for the big screen in 1994 and features Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt and others in a star-studded cast. Not my kind of movie though, as I don’t do vampires …

13 YMCA part : MEN’S

The YMCA (“the Y”) is a worldwide movement that has its roots in London, England. There, in 1844, the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) was founded with the intent of promoting Christian principles through the development of “a healthy spirit, mind and body”. The founder, George Williams, saw the need to create YMCA facilities for young men who were flocking to the cities as the Industrial Revolution flourished. He saw that these men were frequenting taverns and brothels, and wanted to offer a more wholesome alternative.

21 Mongolian tents : 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.

The East Asian nation of Mongolia lies between Russian to the north and China to the south. With an area of over 600,000 square miles and a population of about 3 million people, Mongolia is the most sparsely populated sovereign nation on the planet. Almost half of the Mongolian populace lives in the capital city of Ulan Bator.

22 Butter used to deep-fry samosas : GHEE

Ghee is clarified butter used in South Asian cuisines. “Ghee” comes from Sanskrit, and translates as “sprinkled”.

A samosa is quite a tasty appetizer. It is usually a triangular-shaped savory that often has a vegetarian filling. The word “samosa” is primarily used on Indian menus, and the name comes from “sanbosag”, the name for the dish in Persia.

29 Geological time span : EON

Geological time is divided into a number of units of varying lengths. These are, starting from the largest:

  • supereon
  • eon (also “aeon”)
  • era
  • period
  • epoch
  • age

30 Scandinavian roofing material : SOD

A sod roof was a traditional design of roof used for log cabins in Scandinavia. The sod is placed over several layers of birch bark. Actually, it’s the birch bark that prevents water from dripping into the structure below, so the covering might be more accurately described as a “birch-bark roof”.

34 Whistle-blower : REF

Back in the early 17th century, a referee was someone who examined patent applications. We started using the same term for a person presiding over a sporting event in the 1820s. “Referee” is a derivative of the verb “to refer”, and literally describes someone who has the authority to make a decision by “referring to” a book, archive etc.

35 Down with the flu : ILL

Influenza (the “flu”) is an ailment that is caused by a virus. The virus is readily inactivated by the use of soap, so washing hands and surfaces is especially helpful in containing flu outbreaks.

37 Pesto ingredients : PINE NUTS

Pesto sauce is more completely called “pesto alla genovese”, i.e. pesto from Genoa. A traditional recipe calls for crushed garlic, pine nuts, salt, basil leaves, parmesan cheese and olive oil. Yum …

38 Poker-faced : STOIC

Zeno of Citium was a Greek philosopher famous for teaching at the Stoa Poikile, the “Painted Porch”, located on the north side of the Ancient Agora of Athens. Because of the location of his classes, his philosophy became known as stoicism (from “stoa”, the word for “porch”). We get our adjective “stoic”, meaning “indifferent to pleasure or pain”, from the same root.

39 Nave seat : PEW

A pew is a bench in a church, one usually with a high back. The original pews were raised and sometimes enclosed seats in the church used by women and important men or families. “Pew” comes from the Old French “puie” meaning “balcony, elevation”.

41 New Zealand bird : KIWI

The kiwi is an unusual bird in that it has a highly developed sense of smell and is the only one of our feathered friends with nostrils located at the tip of its long beak.

42 Reception aids : AERIALS

We tend to use the term “aerial” and “antenna” interchangeably. Strictly speaking, the aerial is the top part of an antenna. The lead-in is the lower part of the antenna, the part providing the electrical connection between the aerial and the instrument, radio or TV.

44 1959 Fiestas hit : SO FINE

The Fiestas were an R&B group from Newark, New Jersey. They were somewhat of a one-hit wonder, given that their only really successful song was “So Fine” from 1959.

53 Prop for Chaplin : CANE

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

54 The Bard’s river : AVON

William Shakespeare is referred to as the Bard of Avon, as he was born and raised in the lovely town of Stratford-upon-Avon in the English Midlands.

55 Biblical hunter : ESAU

Esau, was the grandson of Abraham and the twin brother of Jacob, the founder of the Israelites. When Esau was born to Isaac and Rebekah, the event was described with “Now the first came forth, red all over like a hairy garment”. Esau is portrayed later in life as being very different from his brother Jacob, as a hunter and someone who loves the outdoor life.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 “… harmony in the motion and magnitude of the __ … “: Copernicus : ORBS
5 Out, perhaps : ABED
9 Maintain : CLAIM
14 Stable newborn : FOAL
15 Particle in a beam : MOTE
16 Lifetime parent : A AND E
17 Asian tourist city : AGRA
18 Initial game payment : ANTE
19 Lengthy sentence : RUN-ON
20 What included a top hat, for Lincoln? : GETTYSBURG DRESS (from “Gettysburg Address”)
23 Prohibition __ : ERA
24 Support gp. founded under FDR : USO
25 Like Yosemite’s El Capitan : SHEER
26 Unvarnished inventions? : BARE-NAKED LIES (from “Barenaked Ladies”)
31 P&L report column : YTD
32 Symbol of ease : PIE
33 Part of a baby’s repertoire : COO
34 Stops lying? : RISES
37 One often stands alone in a split : PIN
38 Devote, as time : SPEND
40 Gp. inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017 : ELO
41 They’re often seen on trees : KIN
42 Disposed of : ATE
43 Citi Field catcalls? : FLUSHING MEOWS (from “Flushing Meadows”)
48 “The Night They Invented Champagne” composer : LOEWE
49 Mentalist Geller : URI
50 Sch. in Manhattan : KSU
53 Joe-induced speaking clarity? : CAFFEINE DICTION (from “caffeine addiction”)
57 Get around : AVOID
58 Food stamp? : USDA
59 67, for Beethoven’s Fifth : OPUS
60 Invisible turnout? : NO ONE
61 Unlikely : TALL
62 Olive Oyl’s mother : NANA
63 Wound up : ENDED
64 Goes after : SUES
65 Go around in circles? : EDDY

Down

1 18 or 21, typically : OF AGE
2 Court rival of Rafael : ROGER
3 Bill for shots : BAR TAB
4 Picket fence piece : SLAT
5 Assembled : AMASSED
6 Small chocolate-covered candy : BONBON
7 Classic accusation : ET TU?
8 Moccasin leather : DEERSKIN
9 Asked for ID : CARDED
10 Victory wreath : LAUREL
11 Lestat de Lioncourt creator : ANNE RICE
12 Promises at the altar : I DOS
13 YMCA part : MEN’S
21 Mongolian tents : YURTS
22 Butter used to deep-fry samosas : GHEE
27 Agreement word : AYE
28 Mimicry : APING
29 Geological time span : EON
30 Scandinavian roofing material : SOD
34 Whistle-blower : REF
35 Down with the flu : ILL
36 Deep South cuisine : SOUL FOOD
37 Pesto ingredients : PINE NUTS
38 Poker-faced : STOIC
39 Nave seat : PEW
41 New Zealand bird : KIWI
42 Reception aids : AERIALS
44 1959 Fiestas hit : SO FINE
45 Followed : HEEDED
46 Confused mess : MUDDLE
47 Ubiquitous YouTube button … and a hint to four long Across answers : SKIP AD
51 Squeak or creak : SOUND
52 Take back : UNSAY
53 Prop for Chaplin : CANE
54 The Bard’s river : AVON
55 Biblical hunter : ESAU
56 Atmosphere : TONE

21 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 20 Sep 19, Friday”

    1. Or, something like “doing that would be a tall order”.

      We did very poorly, a little less than half. Just too hard and no help from the surrounding
      letters or from the dictionary. A lot like Thursday’s, it seemed.

  1. 0 errors. Was completing in order by acrosses until I got to SE corner, where it got too tricky. The theme worked for me, but to incorporate it, I guess it made for an easy puzzle for a Friday.
    19A: “Lengthy sentence” hit home, as I am reading a Henry James novel.
    Re 48A notes: I have a friend named Gigi, named after Leslie Caron, if you will. When I met her, I said “I assume you were not born before 1958.” She was born that same year! My sister Carrie was named after Jennifer Jones, if you will, who played Carrie in the classic film. Not the Stephen King story!
    65A: I live on Eddy Street in Chicago. Not so close to water, but it runs to the Chicago River, and used to run from Lake Michigan before the landfill. So there must have been an eddy in one of those places. Where I am, Eddy Street sits on a ridge, high and dry.

  2. LAT: 15:39, no errors. Newsday: 15:50, no errors. WSJ: 18:13, no errors; so far, I’m stuck on the meta (and I’m stuck on another one from 2016). New Yorker: 11:23, no errors; about as easy as could be. Croce later.

    I seem to be having scrambled brains for breakfast. Too many puzzles in too many days. Perhaps it’s time for another trip to the mountains. (Psalm 121, KJV: “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.”)

    1. And … I took another look at today’s WSJ meta and got it. I still don’t understand the one from 2016 … but solving it doesn’t get me a chance at a mug, so what is there to motivate me? … 😜

    2. And … with lunch under my belt, I got the meta from that 2016 WSJ puzzle. (I was pretty obtuse not to have seen it immediately … 😳.)

  3. LAT: 18:55, 2 errors. WSJ: 19:30, no errors. No idea per usual on the meta. Found what I think I was supposed to find, but no idea on what to do with it. Newsday: 21:46, no errors. New Yorker: 16:19, no errors.

  4. This was a toughie! I couldn’t complete it until I finally changed
    “barefacedlies” to “barenakedlies”. But once that was done, no
    errors. Does that count?

  5. Got everything but 16A. Had no idea what “lifetime parent” meant. The rest was tough going for a while, but had my break though toward the finish.

  6. I watched Popeye after school every day, back in the dinosaur days, and I have no memory of Olive Oyl having any family except Sweet Pea. I must have assumed O.O. rose from the sea, like Venus.

  7. 20:22, and 2 errors. I had MANS for the YMCA instead of MENS.

    This grid was a bit of a grind, with the punny fills and stretch of a theme.

  8. 19:57. Very late to the party today…tonight. Fun puzzle though. Good theme.

    CAFFEINE adDICTION is a myth. I’ve been drinking my daily coffee religiously for 35 years nonstop and without fail – sometimes imperiling women and children in my relentless and often desperate pursuit of my morning caffeine boost…..and I’m still not addicted. 🙂

    Dirk – I am absolutely torn watching the flooding going on in Houston from Tropical Storm Imelda. I’m torn between being so glad not to be in it and feeling awful seeing what some of those people are going through….again. It’s so random. Some areas survived Harvey just fine, but just got obliterated by Imelda. The area I lived in was flooded by Harvey but was untouched by Imelda. Houston is flat as a pancake and a variation of how much rain falls where can be the difference of which bayou fills up first and what areas flood. It’s crazy. It’s a problem that should have been addressed a couple of generations ago by the city planners and developers. I guess they were making too much money to worry about those pesky drainage issues.

    Best –

  9. Tough Friday for me today; took about an hour with 2 errors. Got everything except the SE corner in about 42 minutes and struggled with that for another 18 minutes, along with one other square. In retrospect, one of the errors is just silly, since I actually took a class at KSU, while on temporary duty in the Army. I had nSU instead, after nyU. Also did 2!! alphabet rolls for rTD, which should have been YTD.

    Still, clever puzzle and pretty fair, except maybe for NANA, OPUS and UNSAY….grrr!! Also A and E, is just not fair to non teevee owners….I mean who even bothers trying to know something like that.

    @Jeff – My sympathies; I can certainly imagine mixed feelings watching this new tragedy from a distance. With a lot warmer temperatures, we should probably expect this to continue. Hopefully the city will be able to mitigate the drainage problems in anticipation.

    Also, it looks like Lorena is going to douse my relatives in San Diego and possibly have a bit left over for Las Vegas…another green desert and grasshoppers.

  10. Greetings y’all!!🦆

    DNF, by which I mean I left blank squares– I could NOT grok that SE corner and just gave up. I had put UNSAY but I erased it, thinking no, THEY WOULDN’T!! … but they did. 😣 Didn’t know NANA and didn’t think of OPUS. I did get the themed answers pretty easily.

    The brilliant Gettysburg Address is interesting in that, at the time it was delivered, few recognized its significance. Lincoln supposedly spoke in a sort of hoarse voice and was hard to hear. It didn’t make much of an impression on the audience– they were still settling in to listen by the time the speech was over.

    Hey Dirk!! From yesterday– suppose you mail me some of those strawberries?! Sounds nice. Glad your sales are going well, too.👍

    Be well~~🚋⚾️

  11. Over an hour. Sigh. SE corner stumped me. Other than that, had Goo instead of Coo. Have been watching a lot of instructional videos on YouTube, so that helped. Pine nuts really threw me. Never knew they used sod in Scandinavia for roofing. Seems weird. Fun puzzle, though.

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