LA Times Crossword 16 Nov 19, Saturday

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Constructed by: Debbie Ellerin
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 8m 37s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Celebrate Black Friday, say : SHOP

In the world of retail, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving in the US. Black Friday is when many stores start the holiday shopping season, and so offer deep discounts to get ahead of the competition.

5 Data transmission unit : BAUD

In telecommunications, the “baud” unit represents pulses per second. The higher the baud rate of a modem, the faster information can be transferred. The baud unit is named after Émile Baudot, a pioneer in the world of telecommunications.

14 TV show set in a theme park : WESTWORLD

“Westworld” is an HBO series that is based on a 1973 movie of the same name, which was written and directed by novelist Michael Crichton. Westworld is a high-tech theme park populated by androids that interact with the guests.

16 Island along the Au’au Channel : LANAI

Lanai is the sixth largest of the Hawaiian Islands. Lanai was first spotted by Europeans just a few days after Captain Cook was killed on the Big Island of Hawaii in 1779. In 1922, the Hawaiian Pineapple Company bought the whole island of Lanai and turned most of it into the world’s largest pineapple plantation. Since then, Lanai has been known as “The Pineapple Island”. Today, 98% of the island is owned by Larry Ellison, the CEO of Oracle, and 2% is owned by the State of Hawaii.

The ʻAuʻau Channel lies between the Hawaiian islands of Lānaʻi and Maui. The name “ʻAuʻau” translates as “to take a bath”, which is a reference to the tranquil, bath-like conditions that prevail in the channel.

17 Scheming : IN CAHOOTS

To be in cahoots with someone is to in partnership with that person. The exact etymology is unclear, but one suggestion is that it comes from the French “cohorte”, which was used in the US to mean “companion, confederate”.

18 Red Sox slugger David : ORTIZ

The Dominican-American baseball player David Ortiz has the nickname “Big Papi”. After each home run that Ortiz scores, he looks upwards and points to the sky in a tribute to his mother who died in a car crash in 2002 when she was only 46 years old.

19 Spears label : RCA

Britney Spears was the best-selling female artist in the first decade of the 21st century. I didn’t buy one song of hers, and I couldn’t even name one …

20 Epps of “House” : OMAR

Omar Epps is the actor who played Eric Foreman on the excellent television series “House”. Prior to playing Dr. Foreman, Epps had a recurring role playing Dr. Dennis Gant on “ER”. And, in another link to the world of medicine, Epps was born in Savannah, Georgia to single mom, Dr. Bonnie Epps.

I think that “House” is one of the better shows made by Fox television. It is fun for me to see English actor Hugh Laurie in the title role as coming from the other side of the Atlantic I have been watching him in various comedic roles for decades. Famously he played Bertie Wooster opposite Stephen Fry in P.G. Wodehouse’s “Jeeves & Wooster”, as well as one of the bumbling “bad guys” in “101 Dalmatians” (the version starring Glenn Close).

21 Windex unit : SPRITZ

A spritz is a squirt, a brief spray of liquid. The term “spritz” ultimately comes from German, possibly via Yiddish, in which language “spritzen” means “to squirt, spout”. A spritzer is a glass of wine with a spritz of carbonated water, and is a drink we’ve been enjoying since the early sixties.

Windex glass cleaner was introduced in 1933. The formulation that was sold up to the end of WWII had to be packed in metal cans, because it was so flammable.

24 Nickname for “The King of Clay” : RAFA

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”.

26 Goofy image? : CEL

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

Disney’s Goofy first appeared as Dippy Dawg in 1932. Goofy became famous for his “How to …” series of cartoons in the 1940s which dealt with everything from snow skiing to sleeping, and from football to riding a horse. Goofy’s last theatrical appearance was in a 2007 work called “How to Hook Up Your Home Theater”.

27 California wine region : SONOMA

Did you know that there are far more wine grapes produced in Sonoma than Napa? Within Sonoma County some of the more well-known appellations are Chalk Hill, Anderson Valley and Russian River Valley. Personally, when I want to visit the wine country, I head for the Russian River Valley as it’s far less crowded and much more fun than Napa Valley.

30 Tchotchke holder : ETAGERE

An “étagère” is a piece of furniture with open shelves that are often used to display small ornaments. The name is French, coming from “étage” meaning “shelf”. I can’t stand them …

“Tchotchke” is a slang term meaning “cheap, showy trinket”.

33 Beyoncé and Jay-Z, e.g. : POWER COUPLE

Beyoncé Knowles established herself in the entertainment industry as the lead singer with the R&B group Destiny’s Child. She launched her solo singing career in 2003, two years after making her first appearance as an actor. In 2006 she played the lead in the very successful movie adaptation of the Broadway musical “Dreamgirls”. Beyoncé is married to rap star Jay-Z. She is also referred to affectionately as “Queen Bey”, a play on the phrase “the queen bee”.

Jay-Z, as well as being a successful and very rich rap artist, is married to singer Beyoncé. Jay-Z was born Shawn Corey Carter in Brooklyn, New York. As Carter was growing up, he was nicknamed “Jazzy”, a reference to his interest in music. “Jazzy” evolved into the stage name “Jay-Z”. Jay-Z and Beyoncé have a daughter named Blue Ivy Carter, and twins named Rumi and Sir Carter.

40 Swamp gas, essentially : METHANE

The hydrocarbon gas that forms when organic material decays in the absence of air is called “marsh gas” or “swamp gas”. The major component of marsh gas is methane.

45 The “black” in black ice : TAR

Black ice isn’t really black, but rather is transparent and allows the black color of the pavement below to be seen through it. Black ice is a notable hazard in that it forms in relatively dry conditions from moisture in the road surface itself. When that moisture freezes, it expands and creates an icy, transparent film.

49 “The Open Window” author : SAKI

Hector Hugh Munro was a British writer, actually born in Burma. Munro was famous for his short stories, which he published using the pen name “Saki”. His most well-known story is “The Open Window”, which ends with the great line “Romance at short notice was her specialty”.

50 Coat-like garments : FROCKS

A frock is a woman’s dress, but the term “frock” also describes a robe worn by monks. Our use of “frock” comes from the Old French “froc”, which back in the 12th century was the name for a monk’s habit.

57 “I surrender!” : UNCLE

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

58 Place to get some culture? : PETRI DISH

Julius Richard Petri was a German bacteriologist and was the man after whom the Petri dish is named. The petri dish can have an agar gel on the bottom which acts as a nutrient source for the specimen being grown and studied, in which case the dish plus agar is referred to as an “agar plate”.

60 Arabic for “struggle” : JIHAD

In the Islamic tradition, jihad is a duty, and either an inner spiritual struggle to fulfill religious obligations or an outward physical struggle to defend the faith. Someone engaged in jihad is called a “mujahid” with the plural being “mujahideen”. The term “jihad” translates as “striving, struggle”.

62 Tabloid twosomes : ITEMS

An unmarried couple known to be involved with each other might appear in the gossip columns. This appearance as “an item” in the papers, led to the use of “item” to refer to such a couple, but only since the very early seventies.

“Tabloid” is the trademarked name (owned by Burroughs Wellcome) for a “small tablet of medicine”, a name that goes back to 1884. The word “tabloid” had entered into general use to mean a compressed form of anything, and by the early 1900s was used in “tabloid journalism”, which described newspapers that had short, condensed articles and stories printed on smaller sheets of paper.

63 Lot : SLEW

Our usage of “slew” to mean “large number” has nothing to do with the verb “to slew” meaning “to turn, skid”. The noun “slew” came into English in the early 1800s from the Irish word “sluagh” meaning “host, crowd, multitude”.

64 Bruise-resistant potatoes, say, briefly : GMOS

A genetically modified organism (GMO) is one with genetic material that has been altered by genetic engineering. One might argue that the oldest form of genetic engineering is selective breeding, the use of animals or plants with desired traits for the creation of the next generation.

Down

2 House with many layers : HENCOOP

The Old English word “cypa”, meaning “basket”, evolved in the 14th century to the word “coop” to describe a small cage for poultry. We still use “coop” today.

4 Bk. fair organizer : PTA

Parent-Teacher Association (PTA)

7 __ running: more-than-a-marathon race : ULTRA

The term “ultramarathon” describes a race that is longer than the 26.2 miles of a traditional marathon. “Ultra running” falls into two categories. Some races cover a specified distance or route, while others last for a specified time, with the winner covering the most distance in that time.

8 Driller’s deg. : DDS

Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS)

10 Henry VIII’s sixth : PARR

Henry VIII was the English King with the most wives. Well, something rubbed off on his last wife Catherine Parr. She was to become the English Queen with the most husbands! By the time she married Henry, she had been widowed twice. After Henry died, Parr married once again, racking up four husbands in all.

13 Pizzazz : SIZZLE

Pizazz (also “pizzazz”) is energy, vitality. There’s a kind of cool thing about the “pizzazz” spelling, namely that it is the only 7-letter word in English that cannot be played in Scrabble. You can get close by using the Z-tile with the two blank tiles to get to three of the required four Zs, but there’s no way to get to the fourth Z.

21 Course for H.S. exam takers : SAT PREP

Today, the standardized test for admission to colleges is known as the SAT Reasoning Test, but it used to be called the Scholastic Aptitude Test and Scholastic Assessment Test, which led to the abbreviation “SAT”.

28 Funny Anne : MEARA

Anne Meara married fellow comedic actor Jerry Stiller in 1954. The couple’s children are actors Ben and Amy Stiller. Meara co-starred with Carroll O’Connor and Martin Balsam in the eighties sitcom “Archie Bunker’s Place”, a spin-off from “All in the Family”.

29 Fancy suits : ARMANIS

Giorgio Armani is an Italian fashion designer and founder of the company that has borne his name since 1975. Although Armani is famous for his menswear, the company makes everything from jewelry to perfume.

31 “… a grin without a cat!” thinker : ALICE

The Cheshire Cat is a character in Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”. The Cheshire Cat has an expansive grin, and at one point magically disappears in front of Alice, leaving just the grin visible.

Well! I’ve often seen a cat without a grin,’ thought Alice; `but a grin without a cat! It’s the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!

34 Produced some Java : CODED

Java is a programming language that was developed by Sun Microsystems. Java was originally designed for interactive television, but it didn’t fit the needs at the time. Back then, the language was called Oak, named after an oak tree that stood outside the designer’s office. Later it was called Green, and finally named Java, which was simply picked out of a list of random words.

35 x/x : ONE

Algebraically speaking, a variable x divided by the same variable x always produces the number 1.

37 Garden favorite also known as cranesbill : GERANIUM

Geraniums are often referred to colloquially as cranesbills because the fruit capsule of some geranium species resemble the bill of a crane. When ripe, the distinctive shape of the fruit capsule helps it spring open, and in so doing cast the seeds some distance.

40 Peak that last erupted in 1707-’08 : MT FUJI

Mount Fuji is Japan’s highest and most famous mountain. Located just west of Tokyo, Mount Fuji is an active volcano, although its last eruption took place in 1707/1708.

42 Cough drop : 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”.

44 Donates, in a way : TITHES

Traditionally, a tithe is a payment of one tenth of a person’s annual income and is usually given to a church. Tithing is a practice taught in many traditions, and according to a 2002 survey, about 3% of American adults donate 10% or more of their income to a church.

47 First African-American major-league coach Buck : O’NEIL

Buck O’Neil was a first baseman and manager with the Kansas City Monarchs, a team in the Negro American League. He was appointed as a coach with the Chicago Cubs in 1962, making him the first African-American coach in the major leagues.

48 Hanukkah dinner staple : LATKE

A latke is a delicious potato pancake (I’m Irish, so anything made with potato is delicious!).

51 Chowder morsel : CLAM

The type of soup known as “chowder” is possibly named for the pot in which it used to be cooked called a “chaudière”, a French term.

52 Some kicks, so to speak : KEDS

Keds is a brand of athletic shoe first introduced in 1916 by US Rubber. The shoe was originally marketed as a rubber-soled, canvas-topped sneaker. Keds celebrated the company’s centennial with a “Ladies First Since 1916” campaign that focuses on female empowerment.

54 Produce some java : BREW

Back in 1850, the name “java” was given to a type of coffee grown on the island of Java, and the usage of the term spread from there.

55 It may precede and follow yes : SIR

Sir, yes, sir!

58 “Finding Your Roots” airer : PBS

“Finding Your Roots” is a popular TV show in which celebrities are presented with their ancestral histories as compiled by a team of professional genealogists. The long list of celebrities appearing on the show includes Barbara Walters, Condoleeza Rice, Stephen King and LL Cool J. One episode that never aired included the family history of actor Ben Affleck. That episode was pulled when it was discovered that Affleck had persuaded the host to omit information about the actor’s slave-owning ancestors.

59 __ days : DOG

“Dog days” is the name given to the warmest and most humid days of summer. The term derives from the ancient belief that hot weather was caused when Sirius (the Dog Star) was in close proximity to the sun.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Celebrate Black Friday, say : SHOP
5 Data transmission unit : BAUD
9 Jets : SPEWS
14 TV show set in a theme park : WESTWORLD
16 Island along the Au’au Channel : LANAI
17 Scheming : IN CAHOOTS
18 Red Sox slugger David : ORTIZ
19 Spears label : RCA
20 Epps of “House” : OMAR
21 Windex unit : SPRITZ
22 Noble title : LORD
24 Nickname for “The King of Clay” : RAFA
26 Goofy image? : CEL
27 California wine region : SONOMA
30 Tchotchke holder : ETAGERE
33 Beyoncé and Jay-Z, e.g. : POWER COUPLE
36 Symbolic gift, often : DIAMOND RING
38 Corporate espionage target : TRADE SECRET
40 Swamp gas, essentially : METHANE
43 Watch closely : PEER AT
45 The “black” in black ice : TAR
46 Worshipper’s subject : IDOL
49 “The Open Window” author : SAKI
50 Coat-like garments : FROCKS
53 Collars : NABS
56 It can be risky to work without one : NET
57 “I surrender!” : UNCLE
58 Place to get some culture? : PETRI DISH
60 Arabic for “struggle” : JIHAD
61 Repurposed railway, perhaps : BIKE ROUTE
62 Tabloid twosomes : ITEMS
63 Lot : SLEW
64 Bruise-resistant potatoes, say, briefly : GMOS

Down

1 Some cake decorations : SWIRLS
2 House with many layers : HENCOOP
3 Character recognition? : OSCAR NOD
4 Bk. fair organizer : PTA
5 Good time : BOOM
6 Cheering loudly : AROAR
7 __ running: more-than-a-marathon race : ULTRA
8 Driller’s deg. : DDS
9 Farm fare : SLOP
10 Henry VIII’s sixth : PARR
11 Sweet-talk : ENTICE
12 One needing orders : WAITER
13 Pizzazz : SIZZLE
15 “Don’t know her” : WHO?
21 Course for H.S. exam takers : SAT PREP
23 Benefit by : DO WITH
25 Longstanding disputes : FEUDS
28 Funny Anne : MEARA
29 Fancy suits : ARMANIS
31 “… a grin without a cat!” thinker : ALICE
32 Action and adventure : GENRES
34 Produced some Java : CODED
35 x/x : ONE
37 Garden favorite also known as cranesbill : GERANIUM
39 Becomes fond of : TAKES TO
40 Peak that last erupted in 1707-’08 : MT FUJI
41 Be deserving : EARN IT
42 Cough drop : TROCHE
44 Donates, in a way : TITHES
47 First African-American major-league coach Buck : O’NEIL
48 Hanukkah dinner staple : LATKE
51 Chowder morsel : CLAM
52 Some kicks, so to speak : KEDS
54 Produce some java : BREW
55 It may precede and follow yes : SIR
58 “Finding Your Roots” airer : PBS
59 __ days : DOG