LA Times Crossword 27 Mar 20, Friday

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Constructed by: Brian Herrick
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Windfall

Themed answers each end with a WIND (circled letters) that FALLS from the across-direction to the down-direction:

  • 24D Jackpot, e.g., and a hint to completing four puzzle answers : WINDFALL
  • 1A June event that highlighted Zion in 2019 : NBA DRAFT
  • 5A Revolt : DISGUST
  • 36A Result of a lost feed : DEAD AIR
  • 51A Deep-fried seafood appetizer : CRAB PUFF
  • Bill’s time: 10m 59s

    Bill’s errors: 0

    Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

    Across

    1 June event that highlighted Zion in 2019 : NBA DRAFT

    Professional basketball player Zion Williamson was the number-one pick in the 2019 NBA draft, when he was selected by the New Orleans Pelicans.

    9 Questlove’s do : ‘FRO

    “Questlove” (also “?uestlove”) is the stage name of musician and DJ Ahmir Khalib Thompson. He is the drummer of hip hop band the Roots. The Roots were the house band on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon”, and followed the host when he moved in 2014 to “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”.

    12 “__ is human … ” : TO ERR

    Alexander Pope’s 1709 poem “An Essay on Criticism” is the source of at least three well-known quotations:

    • A little learning is a dangerous thing; Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring.
    • To err is human, to forgive divine.
    • For fools rush in where angels fear to tread.

    14 Asian gambling mecca : MACAU

    Macau (also “Macao”) is an autonomous territory of China located on the Pearl River estuary about 40 miles west of Hong Kong. Macau was a Portuguese colony from the mid-1500s until 1999. It was in fact the first European colony in China, and the last, having been handed back to the Chinese in 1999, two years after Hong Kong was returned by the British. Macau’s economy is driven by tourism and gambling. The territory’s gaming revenue is the highest for any gambling center in the world.

    16 Greek goddesses of the seasons : HORAE

    The Horae of Greek mythology were the goddesses of the seasons. There were several Horae, many of them associated with natural portions of time. Most commonly there were three, and sometimes ten (later twelve) Horae, or “Hours”, associated with the times of the day. For example, Auge was the goddess of first light, Gymnastika was the goddess of the morning hour for exercise, and Dysis was the goddess of sunset.

    17 Anglicized name for Australia’s Uluru : AYERS ROCK

    Ayers Rock was discovered by Europeans in 1873, who gave it its name in honor of Sir Henry Ayers who was the Chief Secretary of South Australia at the time. The Aborigines call the landmark “Uluru”, which is the more accepted name these days.

    19 Game response that means no : GO FISH

    Go Fish is a very simple card game, one usually played by children:

    Q. Do you have any queens?
    A. No.
    Q. Go fish!

    23 Sell : HAWK

    The verb “to hawk” has a Germanic origin, and comes from the Low German word “hoken” meaning “to peddle”. A hawker is actually slightly different from a peddler by definition, as a hawker is a peddler that uses a horse and cart, or a van nowadays perhaps, to sell his or her wares.

    25 Disquiet : AGITA

    “Agita” is another name for “acid indigestion”, and more generally for “agitation, anxiety”.

    27 Oscar winner Kazan : ELIA

    Elia Kazan won Oscars for best director in 1948 for “Gentleman’s Agreement” and in 1955 for “On The Waterfront”. In 1999 Kazan was given an Academy Lifetime Achievement Award. He also directed “East of Eden”, which introduced James Dean to movie audiences, and “Splendor in the Grass” that included Warren Beatty in his debut role.

    28 Valentine’s Day buys : VASES

    Saint Valentine’s Day was introduced by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD to honor various martyrs with the name Valentine. However, the saint’s day was dropped by the Roman Catholic church in 1969, by Pope Paul VI. Try telling that to Hallmark though …

    34 Wannabe : POSEUR

    “Poseur” is a French word that we absorbed into English in the mid-1800s to describe someone who pretends to be what he or she is not. The root French verb “poser” means “to affect an attitude or pose”.

    45 Tests graded on a scale of 1 to 5: Abbr. : APS

    The Advanced Placement (AP) program offers college-level courses to kids who are still in high school. After being tested at the end of an AP course, successful students receive credits that count towards a college degree.

    50 Maine college town : ORONO

    The town of Orono is home to the University of Maine that was founded in 1862. The college is actually located on an island (Marsh island) lying between the Penobscot and Stillwater rivers. The town of Orono is named after Joseph Orono, a chief of the Penobscot Nation. The school’s athletic teams are named the Maine Black Bears.

    56 Winnipeg NHLers : JETS

    Winnipeg’s professional hockey team is the Winnipeg Jets. The team was founded as the Atlanta Thrashers in 1999 and relocated to the Manitoba city in 2011. The new team name was chosen in honor of Winnipeg’s former professional hockey team called the Jets, a franchise that was founded in the city in 1972 but relocated to become the Phoenix Coyotes in 1996.

    59 Texter’s “But … ” : OTOH …

    On the other hand (OTOH)

    64 Connecticut college town : FAIRFIELD

    The town of Fairfield, Connecticut is home to a pair of colleges, both of which are private Roman Catholic schools. Fairfield University is a Jesuit school that was founded in 1942. Sacred Heart University was founded in 1963.

    66 “My name is … ” site : ID TAG

    Identity document (ID)

    68 LAX abbr. : ETD

    Estimated time of departure (ETD)

    Los Angeles International Airport is the sixth busiest airport in the world in terms of passenger traffic, and the busiest here on the West Coast of the US. The airport was opened in 1930 as Mines Field and was renamed to Los Angeles Airport in 1941. On the airport property is the iconic white structure that resembles a flying saucer. This is called the Theme Building and I believe it is mainly used as a restaurant and observation deck for the public. The airport used to be identified by the letters “LA”, but when the aviation industry went to a three-letter standard for airport identification, this was changed to “LAX”. Apparently, the “X” has no significant meaning.

    70 Disney’s “Moana” was translated into it : MAORI

    The Māori are the indigenous people of New Zealand. They are eastern Polynesian in origin and began arriving in New Zealand relatively recently, starting some time in the late 13th century. The word “māori” simply means “normal”, distinguishing mortal humans from spiritual entities. The Māori refer to New Zealand as “Aotearoa”.

    “Moana” is a 2016 animated feature film and the 56th animated Disney movie. The title character is the daughter of a Polynesian chief who heads off in search of the demigod Maui, hoping that he can save her people.

    71 __ gratias : DEO

    The phrase “Deo gratias”, meaning “Thanks be to God”, is heard repeatedly during the Latin Mass in the Roman Catholic faith.

    72 Second opening? : NANO-

    “Nanosecond” is more correctly abbreviated to “ns” (as opposed to “nsec”) and really is a tiny amount of time: one billionth of a second.

    73 Flanders et al. : NEDS

    Ned Flanders lives next door to Homer Simpson on TV’s “The Simpsons”. Ned is voiced by actor Harry Shearer, and has been around since the very first episode aired in 1989.

    Down

    2 “Electric __”: 1984 dance-pop song : BOOGALOO

    “Electric Boogaloo” is a song recorded in 1984 by duo Ollie & Jerry (Ollie E. Brown and Jerry Knight). The title is a reference to the electric boogaloo dance style that originated in the seventies.

    3 Sprays from cans : AEROSOLS

    Strictly speaking, the term “aerosol” defines a suspension of either liquid droplets or solid particles in a gas. A good example of an aerosol is smoke. We tend to use the “aerosol” to describe what comes out of a spray can, even though the liquid droplets usually fall out of the gas and don’t stay suspended.

    6 Salchow support : ICE SKATE

    The salchow jump in figure skating is named for Swedish skater Ulrich Salchow, who invented the move.

    7 “Waitress” composer Bareilles : SARA

    Sara Bareilles achieved success with her 2007 “Love Song” with the help of the iTunes online store. In one week in June of that year, iTunes offered the song as “free single of the week” and it quickly became the most downloaded song in the store, and from there climbed to the number spot in the charts.

    “Waitress” is a 2015 musical by Sara Bareilles that is based on a 2007 movie of the same name starring Keri Russell in the title role. Both stage show and film are about a waitress and pie chef who is in an unhappy marriage, and who becomes pregnant. Feeling trapped, she sees a pie contest and its grand prize as her way out of her failed marriage.

    8 “The Planets” composer Holst : GUSTAV

    Despite the Scandinavian-sounding name, Gustav Holst was born in Britain and was the most English of classical composers. His most famous work is the orchestral suite known as ‘The Planets”. The suite has seven movements, one for each of the planets known at the time (1914-1916) except Earth. Pluto was discovered during Holst’s lifetime, but decades after he had completed his masterpiece. Anyway, Pluto was relegated from the league of planets …

    11 Winery fixture : OAK CASK

    Oak barrels are sometimes used to store wine during fermentation and aging. The oak wood has a profound effect, usually changing the wine’s color, flavor and texture. If the wine is stored in stainless steel barrels, then a similar effect can be achieved by adding oak chips or staves to the liquid.

    13 Outdoorsy retailer : REI

    REI is a sporting goods store, with the initialism standing for Recreational Equipment Inc. REI was founded in Seattle by Lloyd and Mary Anderson in 1938 as a cooperative that supplies quality climbing gear to outdoor enthusiasts. The first full-time employee hired by the Andersons was Jim Whittaker, who was the first American to climb Mount Everest.

    14 Island thanks : MAHALO

    In Hawaiian, “mahalo” means “thank you” and “mahalo nui loa” translates as “thank you very much”.

    18 Baltic capital : RIGA

    Riga is the capital city of Latvia. The historical center of Riga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, declared as such because of the city’s magnificent examples of Art Nouveau architecture.

    20 “__ Walks in Beauty”: Byron poem : SHE

    “She Walks in Beauty” is one of the most famous poems written by Lord Byron. The poem is very descriptive of an elegant and beautiful woman. He wrote it the day after seeing his cousin, who was in mourning, walking by in a black dress set with spangles. The opening lines are:

    She walks in beauty, like the night
    Of cloudless climes and starry skies

    22 Car ad fig. : MSRP

    Manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP)

    24 Jackpot, e.g., and a hint to completing four puzzle answers : WINDFALL

    A windfall is a piece of good fortune, like a piece of fruit that has fallen from the tree when the wind blows.

    30 __ generis : SUI

    “Sui generis” is a Latin expression meaning “of its own kind”. The term can be used in a number of fields, and in philosophy it refers to an idea which cannot be included in a wider concept, and idea of its own kind.

    32 Western treaty gp. : OAS

    The Organization of American States (OAS) was founded in 1948, and has its headquarters in Washington, D.C. Not all of the independent states in the Americas are members. Cuba was barred from participation in the organization after a vote in 1962. Honduras had her membership suspended after the country’s 2009 coup.

    37 Daft Punk, for one : DUO

    Daft Punk is an electronic music duo from Paris, France.

    38 Shoe brand first made for an NBA star : AIR JORDAN

    Air Jordan is a Nike brand of shoe (and other apparel), endorsed by NBA great Michael Jordan. The silhouette of a basketball player that features on Air Jordans is known as the “jumpman” logo.

    44 Sumptuous : POSH

    No one really knows the etymology of the word “posh”. The popular myth that “posh” is actually an acronym standing for “port out, starboard home” is completely untrue, and is a story that can actually be traced back to the 1968 movie “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”. The myth is that wealthy British passengers travelling to and from India would book cabins on the port side for the outward journey and the starboard side for the home journey. This trick was supposedly designed to keep their cabins out of the direct sunlight.

    45 Allergy medicine discontinued in the U.S. : ACTIFED

    Actifed is a medication (now discontinued in the US) that combines an antihistamine with a nasal decongestant. Famously, the drug was included in the medical kits used by the Apollo astronauts. Our marketing friends jumped on the opportunity to hire former astronauts to appear in Actifed advertising.

    49 Money symbolized by a stylized L : POUNDS

    The official name of the currency of the UK is the pound sterling (plural “pounds sterling”). The most plausible suggestion for the etymology of the term “sterling” is that it derives from the Old English “steorra” meaning “star”, with the diminutive “-ling”. The resulting “little star” or “sterling” referred to a silver penny used by the English Normans. The pound sterling is the world’s oldest currency still in use.

    52 Crude dude : BOOR

    Back in the early 1500s, a boor was a rustic person, a peasant farmer, someone associated with the countryside. The term “boor” ultimately comes from the Latin “bos” meaning “cow, ox”. By the mid-1500s, someone described as boorish was considered rude in manner, which is our usage today.

    53 Northern seabird : PUFFIN

    Puffins are seabirds that are found in the North Atlantic and North Pacific oceans. They feed primarily by diving into the water to catch fish, and are known for their ability to swim underwater using a “flying” technique.

    61 John/Rice musical : AIDA

    The rock musical “Aida” is based on Giuseppe Verdi’s original opera. It premiered in 1998 and is still performed today. Music is by Elton John and lyrics are by Tim Rice.

    65 Southeast Asian language : 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.

    67 PFCs, e.g. : GIS

    The initialism “GI” stands for “Government Issue”, and not “General Infantry” as is widely believed. “GI” was first used in the military to denote equipment made from Galvanized Iron and during WWI, incoming German shells were nicknamed “GI cans”. Soon after, the term GI came to be associated with “Government Issue” and eventually became an adjective to describe anything associated with the Army.

    Private First Class (PFC)

    Complete List of Clues/Answers

    Across

    1 June event that highlighted Zion in 2019 : NBA DRAFT
    5 Revolt : DISGUST
    9 Questlove’s do : ‘FRO
    12 “__ is human … ” : TO ERR
    14 Asian gambling mecca : MACAU
    15 Pasture : LEA
    16 Greek goddesses of the seasons : HORAE
    17 Anglicized name for Australia’s Uluru : AYERS ROCK
    19 Game response that means no : GO FISH
    21 Like mockumentaries : SATIRIC
    22 Sailboat staff : MAST
    23 Sell : HAWK
    25 Disquiet : AGITA
    26 Messy roommate : SLOB
    27 Oscar winner Kazan : ELIA
    28 Valentine’s Day buys : VASES
    29 Parts : ROLES
    31 Seeing right through : ONTO
    33 “Shame!” : TSK!
    34 Wannabe : POSEUR
    36 Result of a lost feed : DEAD AIR
    39 Free from : RID OF
    41 Get ready to play : SUIT UP
    45 Tests graded on a scale of 1 to 5: Abbr. : APS
    48 “Oh __!”: insult reaction : SNAP
    50 Maine college town : ORONO
    51 Deep-fried seafood appetizer : CRAB PUFF
    54 Thin opening : SLOT
    56 Winnipeg NHLers : JETS
    57 End of a toast : … TO YOU
    58 This is one : CLUE
    59 Texter’s “But … ” : OTOH …
    60 To such an extent (as) : IN SO FAR
    62 Thin : NARROW
    64 Connecticut college town : FAIRFIELD
    66 “My name is … ” site : ID TAG
    68 LAX abbr. : ETD
    69 Brainstorms : IDEAS
    70 Disney’s “Moana” was translated into it : MAORI
    71 __ gratias : DEO
    72 Second opening? : NANO-
    73 Flanders et al. : NEDS

    Down

    1 Utmost degree : NTH
    2 “Electric __”: 1984 dance-pop song : BOOGALOO
    3 Sprays from cans : AEROSOLS
    4 It’s on tap : DRAFT BEER
    5 __ trip : DAY
    6 Salchow support : ICE SKATE
    7 “Waitress” composer Bareilles : SARA
    8 “The Planets” composer Holst : GUSTAV
    9 User of 28-Across : FLORIST
    10 Speaks from memory : RECITES
    11 Winery fixture : OAK CASK
    13 Outdoorsy retailer : REI
    14 Island thanks : MAHALO
    18 Baltic capital : RIGA
    20 “__ Walks in Beauty”: Byron poem : SHE
    22 Car ad fig. : MSRP
    24 Jackpot, e.g., and a hint to completing four puzzle answers : WINDFALL
    30 __ generis : SUI
    32 Western treaty gp. : OAS
    35 Hwys. : RDS
    37 Daft Punk, for one : DUO
    38 Shoe brand first made for an NBA star : AIR JORDAN
    40 Happening in film : ON-SCREEN
    42 In close combat : TOE-TO-TOE
    43 Hard to work with : UNTOWARD
    44 Sumptuous : POSH
    45 Allergy medicine discontinued in the U.S. : ACTIFED
    46 Rotate inward while walking, as one’s foot : PRONATE
    47 Gets married : SAYS I DO
    49 Money symbolized by a stylized L : POUNDS
    52 Crude dude : BOOR
    53 Northern seabird : PUFFIN
    55 Afternoon __ : TEA
    61 John/Rice musical : AIDA
    63 Edge : RIM
    65 Southeast Asian language : LAO
    67 PFCs, e.g. : GIS

    22 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 27 Mar 20, Friday”

    1. @Carrie
      To answer your question, a lot of online programs will produce a competition score to enable people to casually compete against one another. It’s a lot like the crossword contests like the ACPT (and others like the one I did a week ago). There’s a scheme used that takes into account the number of words you get and penalizes you for the number of letters you ask for in the software and then factors in the time you do it in too. In clicking “Reveal Grid”, you essentially asked for every one of the letters in the grid, hence the score of zero.

      I looked up the scheme the current software at the LAT uses:

      Here is the default scoring mechanism: You get 10 points for each correct word completed. Revealing letters or words will cost you points. For each square you reveal, you lose 1 point(s), but you can still get the 10 points if you get the word right. You get no points for a word if you reveal it entirely. The target time to complete this puzzle is 15 minutes. When you complete the puzzle, you will get a bonus of 15 points for every full minute under the target. There is no penalty for going over the time limit.

    2. I was stuck in SW corner for awhile but when Fairfield came to me it all fell together. I screwed up on DAY trip. I went for DAD trip cuz I thought it was what my kids accuse me of. That left me guessing that AYERSROCK was ODERSROCK which left me with MOHALO instead of MAHALO. Me and my dad trips. It was fun.

    3. I don’t understand:
      1) why your answer to some clues are NOT THE SAME as the amount of space allotted to your indicated answer…such as 1 across and 15 across.
      2) Why your explanations sometimes (as today) don’t include all the clues.

      1. Thelma, on this blog, bill doesn’t do a write-up for every answer, just the ones he thinks are interesting or maybe not common knowledge.

    4. 18:18, no errors. (The puzzle really wasn’t that hard; I just did it at the end of another long day, with some interruptions and much internally generated confusion.)

      Still no comment section on the NYT blog: 14:36, no errors.

      My internet connection is showing signs of stress (due to an increase in home usage, I suppose).

      Time for another long walk (before the predicted rain begins) … 😜.

    5. 1:08:50 with no errors…this was IMO one of the toughest LAX crosswords in a very long time
      @Thelma..the four answers that you are referring to go across and then down where the circles are hence the clue WINDFALL…IHope I said that right

    6. The Response is Go Fish. There shouldn’t be a ‘No’ in the explanation of 19 A. The person being asked either hands over the card(s) or says Go Fish.

      1. Yeah, but when the constructor’s trying to be cute and clever, they’ll use any kind of misdirection they can use to “manufacture difficulty”. That surely WAS a bullsh*t clue.

        1. Nonsense, @Allen! The clue was “Game response that means no” and that’s exactly what “GO FISH” means in response to the question, “Do you have any queens?”

          I think @Cindy’s comment was in response to Bill’s commentary, which was a little off kilter.

          Misdirection is a big part of what crosswords are all about – one of the things those who really appreciate them love – and it is most definitely not “bullsh*t “.

      1. @Steve … There is a Wordplay column today; it was written by someone named Caitlin Lovinger, rather than by Deb Amlen. (I got to it from the NYT crossword app.)

    7. 18:53. Saw the theme relatively early. NYT Thursday-ish. Electric BOOGALOO? Really?? I kept trying to put “Electric Avenue”, but it didn’t fit. It was also from 1983 as I found out, not 1984.

      61D I just had a “D”. Then I filled in AIDA because it’s always AIDA, not because I knew the answer.

      Steve and Nonny – Deb Amlen writes Wordplay during the week. Caitlin Lovinger does the weekend write ups. I guess Deb took this Friday off so Caitlin filled in.

      No NYT comments. Did today’s NYT puzzle in 24:59. I was proud of that time until I saw Bill and Nonny’s times. Grrr

      I actually had an in person work related meeting yesterday. I put real clothes on and everything. I almost felt normal for a couple of hours. I also felt like a criminal. I expect a SWAT team at my door any minute. Strange times beget strange decisions by our leaders. I’ll just leave it at that before I work myself into a lather….again.

      Best –

    8. Thank god for Thus. puzzle because I didn’t do well with this one. I never get the gimmicks. NYT use to do a lot of them.

      Jeff: Gee, had I known you needed detergent I actually saw some bottles. I need some myself.

      Carrie: I go to the Gelson’s in Century City. Since the mall is closed the only thing open is Gelson’s. Senior hour is 7 AM I think. I went about 10:30AM Sat. Good luck!

      1. Thank you Kay!🤗 My old stomping grounds!! I grew up at Olympic and Westwood boulevards. I’m 62, but could probably con my way into senior hour except that I’m never up that early!! 😁 I’ll try my Gelsons on Monday– I think it’s pretty well stocked too, comparatively speaking.

    9. One would want “port out/starboard home” when sailing from England to India and back, not to avoid the sun (through a stateroom porthole!), but to see the coast while traveling in both directions. I believe this explanation has merit and should not be dismissed out of hand.

    10. Could only do 75% today, a real DNF. I found it very hard. No posting errors, but
      too many unknown words to post. I am satisfied with our effort. I heard from a
      puzzler friend who has had difficulty on several recent ones and so have we. A
      little too hard, in my judgement.

      We have used the Wal Mart grocery program twice now and got all but 2 items today;
      missed 8 items on the first trip. It is very well organized, the computer system is fairly
      easy to use and I was in and out in like 15 minutes each time, never leaving the car.
      I recommend it.

      Come on Monday and Tuesday and be easy.

      Kudos to all. Stay safe, well and inside!

    11. 20:30 and DNF: 6 assorted problems in the top middle and the CRABPUFFIN. It didn’t fully dawn on me that the “windfalls” ended the entry crossing them; a big failing of these stunts. I say, either make the fill work for as long as it changes direction or just don’t bother.

      Coming to the end of a particularly poor two week period now for me. I’m about fed up.

    12. Googles: 12. Didn’t really know: 9.
      Unbelievable. The ugliest puzzle I’ve seen in months.

      Had to take my husband to the clinic. I had to stay outside, while he went through a tent in front of the building.
      My Iowa sister wanted me to send her tp by mail. What happened to Sears catalogues and telephone books? Oh well. We still get plenty of junk mail, that can be used, if only to insult it. This puzzle would do.

    13. Kind of hard Friday for me; clock says 33:49 but I cheated like hell, mostly in the SW but also in several other locations. That’s the trouble with doing a hard one on-line, the incredible urge to cheat when it’s just a mouse click away…

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