LA Times Crossword 31 Mar 20, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Kevin Christian & Bruce Haight
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Little Girls

Themed answers start with what LITTLE GIRLS are made of, i.e. “SUGAR and SPICE and EVERYTHING NICE”:

  • 59A What the starts of 16-, 24-, 38- and 47-Across make? : LITTLE GIRLS
  • 16A Sweetened, as something harsh to hear : SUGARCOATED
  • 24A Variety, idiomatically, with “the” : SPICE OF LIFE
  • 38A Loaded bakery item : EVERYTHING BAGEL
  • 47A “Don’t make any sudden moves” : NICE AND EASY

Bill’s time: 6m 00s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Fords and Chevys : AUTOS

Industrialist Henry Ford was born in Michigan, and was the son of an Irish immigrant from County Cork. Ford’s most famous vehicle was the one that revolutionized the industry: the Model T. Ford’s goal with the Model T was to build a car that was simple to drive, and cheap to purchase and repair. The Model T cost $825 in 1908, which isn’t much over $20,000 in today’s money.

Louis-Joseph Chevrolet was a Swiss race car driver who co-founded the Cevrolet Motor Car Company in 1911. The company logo to this day is a stylized Swiss cross, in honor of Chevrolet’s Swiss roots.

10 Electric guitarist’s need : AMP

An electric guitar, for example, needs an amplifier (amp) to take the weak signal created by the vibration of the strings and turn it into a signal powerful enough for a loudspeaker.

13 “When __ we three meet again”: “Macbeth” opening line : SHALL

The opening words of William Shakespeare’s play “Macbeth” are spoken by one of the three infamous witches:

When shall we three meet again
In thunder, lightning, or in rain?

21 __ nerve : OPTIC

The optic nerve enters the eyeball at a location on the retina called the optic disc. Because there are no light-sensitive cells at the optic disc, there is a “hole” in our visual field that is called the blind spot. People with normal vision don’t usually notice this blind spot as the brain “fills in” the blind spot with information from the other eye.

23 Daisy __: Li’l Abner’s wife : MAE

Daisy Mae Scragg is a vampish woman who chases Li’l Abner, trying to goad him into marriage. This went on for 15 years in the cartoon strip until creator Al Capp succumbed to public pressure and married the couple at the end of March 1952. The marriage was such a big event that it made the cover of “Life” magazine.

29 “A,” in pilot shorthand : ALFA

The NATO phonetic alphabet is also called the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) phonetic alphabet. It goes Alfa, Bravo, Charlie … X-ray, Yankee, Zulu.

30 Bulova competitor : TIMEX

The Timex Group, a manufacturer of watches, evolved from the Waterbury Clock Company that was founded in 1854 in Waterbury, Connecticut. The company achieved tremendous success in the early sixties largely due to an innovative marketing campaign. Advertisements featured the memorable tagline “Timex – Takes a licking and keeps on ticking”. In 1962, one out of every three watches sold in the US was a Timex.

The world’s first television commercial aired on July 1, 1941 before a baseball game between the Brooklyn Dodgers and the Philadelphia Phillies. It was aired on the New York station WNBT, and watch-maker Bulova paid $9 to have its products promoted.

38 Loaded bakery item : EVERYTHING BAGEL

An everything bagel has everything on it, i.e. a variety of traditional seasonings like poppy seeds, salt, and sesame seeds.

42 “Star __: The Rise of Skywalker” : WARS

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is a 2019 film. It comes third in the “Star Wars” sequel trilogy, and so is also known as “Star Wars: Episode IX”. Even though “The Rise of Skywalker” cost about $275 million to make, it still made a tidy profit.

52 “No more sharing,” briefly : TMI

Too much information (TMI)

55 Island in “Jaws” : AMITY

“Jaws” is a thrilling 1975 movie directed by Steven Spielberg that is based on a novel of the same name by Peter Benchley. The film has a powerful cast, led by Roy Scheider, Richard Dreyfuss and Robert Shaw. “Jaws” was perhaps the first summer blockbuster and had the highest box office take in history up to that time, which was a record that stood until “Star Wars” was released two years later.

56 Bethesda research org. : NIH

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) organization is made up of 27 different institutes that coordinate their research and services. Examples of member institutes are the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Aging.

The community of Bethesda in Maryland lies just northwest of Washington, D.C. The original settlement in the area was called “Darcy’s Store”. a reference to the original store that drew settlers to the location along the toll road between Georgetown and Rockville. The community’s name was changed to Bethesda in 1871 by a local postmaster, after a Presbyterian church called the Bethesda Meeting House. Bethesda is home to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Naval Medical Center. During WWII, Bethesda also hosted the Norwegian Royal Family while their country was occupied by German forces.

57 Mythical man-goat : FAUN

Fauns are regarded as the Roman mythological equivalent of the Greek satyrs, but fauns were half-man and half-goat and much more “carefree” in personality than their Hellenic cousins. In the modern age we are quite familiar with Mr. Tumnus, the faun-like character encountered by the children entering the world of Narnia in C. S. Lewis’s “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”.

58 Cacophony : DIN

“Cacophony” is such a lovely word, a word used to describe a harsh or jarring sound. The term arises from the Greek “kakos” (bad) and “phone” (voice).

59 What the starts of 16-, 24-, 38- and 47-Across make? : LITTLE GIRLS

The nursery rhyme “What Are Little Boys Made Of?” is falling out of favor these days as it is considered sexist by modern standards:

What are little boys made of?
What are little boys made of?
Slugs and snails
And puppy-dogs’ tails,
That’s what little boys are made of.

What are little girls made of?
What are little girls made of?
Sugar and spice
And everything nice,
That’s what little girls are made of.

63 Ltd., across the pond : INC

A company that has incorporated uses the abbreviation “Inc.” after its name. By incorporating, a company forms a corporation, which is a legal entity that has legal rights similar to those of an individual. For example, a corporation can sue another corporation or individual. However, a corporation does not have all the rights of citizens. A corporation does not have the Fifth Amendment right of protections against self-incrimination, for example. It is perhaps understandable that the concept of “corporations as persons” is a frequent subject for debate.

In Britain and Ireland, the most common type of business (my perception anyway) is one that has private shareholders whose liability is limited to the value of their investment. Such a company is known as a private limited company, and has the abbreviation “Ltd.” after the name. If the shares are publicly traded, then the company is a public limited company, and has the letters “plc” after the name.

64 Sooner State natives : OKIES

The 1889 Indian Appropriations Act officially opened up the so called Unassigned Lands, land in Oklahoma on which no Native American tribes had settled. Once the Act was signed, those lands became available for settlement. Those people who settled the same lands illegally, prior to the date specified, were termed “Sooners” as their situation was defined in the “sooner clause” of the Act. “Sooner State” is now a nickname for Oklahoma.

68 Brainy bunch : MENSA

If you ever learned Latin, “mensa” was probably taught to you in lesson one as it’s the word commonly used as an example of a first declension noun. Mensa means “table”. The Mensa organization, for folks with high IQs, was set up in Oxford, England back in 1946. To become a member, you have to have an IQ that is in the top 2% of the population.

Down

1 Black tea from India : ASSAM

Assam is a state in the far northeast of India, and just south of the Himalayas. Assam is noted for its tea, as well as its silk.

2 “Star Trek” lieutenant : UHURA

Lt. Nyota Uhura is the communications officer in the original “Star Trek” television series, and is played by Nichelle Nichols. The role is significant in that Uhura was one of the first African American characters to figure front and center in US television. In a 1968 episode, Kirk (played by William Shatner) and Uhura kiss, the first interracial kiss to be broadcast in the US. Apparently the scene was meant to be shot twice, with and without the kiss, so that network executives could later decide which version to air. William Shatner claims that he deliberately ran long on the first take (with the kiss) and fluffed the hurried second take (without the kiss), so that the network would have no choice.

4 Skin care brand : OLAY

Oil of Olay was developed in South Africa in 1949. When Oil of Olay was introduced internationally, it was given slightly different brand names designed to appeal in different geographies. In Ireland we know it as Oil of Ulay, for example, and in France it is Oil of Olaz.

5 Camera initials : SLR

The initialism “SLR” stands for “single lens reflex”. Usually, cameras with changeable lenses are the SLR type. The main feature of an SLR is that a mirror reflects the image seen through the lens out through the viewfinder, so that the photographer sees exactly what the lens sees. The mirror moves out of the way as the picture is taken, and the image that comes through the lens falls onto unexposed film, or nowadays onto a digital sensor.

6 Old Paris coin : FRANC

The French franc was made up of 100 centimes, before being replaced by the Euro.

8 Shelley’s “__ to the West Wind” : ODE

Percy Bysshe Shelley wrote “Ode to the West Wind” in 1819 when he was living in Florence, Italy. One interpretation of the work is that it expresses his dismay at not being home in England, while another is that it is a lament for the loss of his son who died earlier in the same year.

10 Stradivari’s tutor : AMATI

The first of the Amati family to make violins was Andrea Amati, who lived in the 14th century. He was succeeded by his sons Antonio and Girolamo. In turn, the two brothers were succeeded by Girolamo’s son Nicolo. Nicolo had a few students who achieved fame making musical instruments as well. One was his own son, Girolamo, and another was the famed Antonio Stradivari.

Generations of the Stradivari family produced violins and other stringed instruments, the most famous of which were constructed by Antonio Stradivari.

11 Central idea : MOTIF

A motif is a recurring element in an artistic work or design.

14 Singer Amos : TORI

Tori Amos is an American pianist and singer. She started playing the piano at two years old, and was composing piano pieces by age five. Amos was playing in piano bars (chaperoned by her father) when she was 14. I’m going to have to find some of her music …

17 Pair in a pint : CUPS

A US pint is made from 16 fluid ounces, and an imperial pint is 20 fluid ounces. The term “pint” comes into English via Old French, ultimately from the Latin “picta” meaning “painted”. The name arose from a line painted on the side of a beer glass that marked a full measure of ale.

26 Cassini of fashion : OLEG

French-born American fashion designer Oleg Cassini had two big names particularly associated with his designs. In the sixties he produced the state wardrobe for First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, and he was also the exclusive designer for Hollywood’s Gene Tierney, who was Cassini’s second wife.

30 Noir sleuth : TEC

“Tec” is a slang term meaning “private detective” or “private investigator” (PI).

31 “__ been wrong before” : I’VE

So have I …

32 Zin cousin : CHARD

The Chardonnay grape is believed to have originated in the Burgundy wine region of France. Now it’s grown “everywhere”. Drinkers of California “Chards” seem to be particularly fond of oak flavor, so most Chardonnay wines are aged in oak barrels.

Zinfandel is one of my favorite red wine varietals. It amazes me that the rich and heavy red Zinfandel comes from the same grape as does the sweet White Zinfandel.

36 President pro __ : TEM

“Pro tempore” can be abbreviated to “pro tem” or “p.t.” “Pro tempore” is a Latin phrase that best translates as “for the time being”. It is used to describe a person who is acting for another, usually a superior. The President pro tempore of the US Senate is the person who presides over the Senate in the absence of the Vice President of the US. It has been tradition since 1890 that the president pro tem is the most senior senator in the majority party. The president pro tem ranks highly in the line of succession to the presidency, falling third in line after the Vice President and the Speaker of the House.

37 Hallelujah trio? : ELS

There is a trio of letters L (els) in the word “hallelujah”.

45 Pop star Swift : TAYLOR

Singer Taylor Swift had one of her first gigs at the US Open tennis tournament when she was in her early teens. There she sang the national anthem and received a lot of favorable attention for the performance.

46 Tennis great Arthur : ASHE

The great American tennis player Arthur Ashe spent the last years of his life writing his memoir called “Days of Grace”. He finished the manuscript just a few days before he passed away, dying from AIDS caused by a tainted blood transfusion.

47 First name in 1970s gymnastics : NADIA

Nadia Comaneci won three golds in the 1976 Summer Olympics and was the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of ten in the gymnastics competition. Comaneci published a book called “Letters to a Young Gymnast” in 2003, and now lives in the United States.

48 Cyberchatting : IM’ING

Even though instant messaging (sending and receiving IMs) has been around since the 1960s, it was AOL who popularized the term “instant message” in the eighties and nineties. The “AOL Instant Message” service was known as AIM.

49 __ de Mayo : CINCO

The celebration known as Cinco de Mayo is observed all over the US and in parts of Mexico. Cinco de Mayo is not, as some believe, Mexico’s Independence Day. Independence is celebrated on September 16, whereas Cinco de Mayo is celebrated on May 5th. Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

54 Photo-sharing website, familiarly : INSTA

Instagram (often abbreviated to “Insta”) is a photo-sharing application, one that is extremely popular. Instagram started in San Francisco in 2010. Facebook purchased Instagram two years later, paying $1 billion. The billion-dollar Instagram company had just 13 employees at the time of the sale …

57 Prix __ menu : FIXE

On a restaurant menu, items that are “à la carte” are priced and ordered separately. A menu marked “table d’hôte” (also called “prix fixe”) is a fixed-price menu with limited choice. “Table d’hôte” translates as “table of the host”.

60 ’50s presidential nickname : IKE

“I Like Ike” was a political slogan that originated with the grassroots movement to get Dwight D. Eisenhower (Ike) to run for president in the 1952 presidential election.

61 Aunt in Acapulco : TIA

The Mexican city of Acapulco is on the southwest coast of the country, in the state of Guerrero. The name “Acapulco” translates from the local language into “at the big reeds”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Fords and Chevys : AUTOS
6 Trick : FOOL
10 Electric guitarist’s need : AMP
13 “When __ we three meet again”: “Macbeth” opening line : SHALL
14 Baseball card transaction : TRADE
15 “You think I did it?!” : MOI?!
16 Sweetened, as something harsh to hear : SUGARCOATED
18 Had a bite : ATE
19 Culturally pretentious : ARTY
20 Coffee container : URN
21 __ nerve : OPTIC
23 Daisy __: Li’l Abner’s wife : MAE
24 Variety, idiomatically, with “the” : SPICE OF LIFE
27 Amazes : AWES
29 “A,” in pilot shorthand : ALFA
30 Bulova competitor : TIMEX
32 Give a hoot : CARE
34 Credit in a footnote : CITE
38 Loaded bakery item : EVERYTHING BAGEL
41 Surrender, as land : CEDE
42 “Star __: The Rise of Skywalker” : WARS
43 Molecule parts : ATOMS
44 Recipe instruction : STIR
46 Aid in crime : ABET
47 “Don’t make any sudden moves” : NICE AND EASY
52 “No more sharing,” briefly : TMI
55 Island in “Jaws” : AMITY
56 Bethesda research org. : NIH
57 Mythical man-goat : FAUN
58 Cacophony : DIN
59 What the starts of 16-, 24-, 38- and 47-Across make? : LITTLE GIRLS
63 Ltd., across the pond : INC
64 Sooner State natives : OKIES
65 Jump for joy : EXULT
66 In the past : AGO
67 Rump : REAR
68 Brainy bunch : MENSA

Down

1 Black tea from India : ASSAM
2 “Star Trek” lieutenant : UHURA
3 Worked closely with a partner on a task : TAG-TEAMED
4 Skin care brand : OLAY
5 Camera initials : SLR
6 Old Paris coin : FRANC
7 Horse morsel : OAT
8 Shelley’s “__ to the West Wind” : ODE
9 Batted first : LED OFF
10 Stradivari’s tutor : AMATI
11 Central idea : MOTIF
12 Cake serving : PIECE
14 Singer Amos : TORI
17 Pair in a pint : CUPS
22 Appease : PLACATE
24 Hot : SEXY
25 Makes on the job : EARNS
26 Cassini of fashion : OLEG
28 “No more for us” : WE’RE SET
30 Noir sleuth : TEC
31 “__ been wrong before” : I’VE
32 Zin cousin : CHARD
33 Broadcast : AIR
35 “Time for me to split” : I GOTTA RUN
36 President pro __ : TEM
37 Hallelujah trio? : ELS
39 Bed size : TWIN
40 Life-changing household arrival : BABY
45 Pop star Swift : TAYLOR
46 Tennis great Arthur : ASHE
47 First name in 1970s gymnastics : NADIA
48 Cyberchatting : IM’ING
49 __ de Mayo : CINCO
50 Oversized keyboard key : ENTER
51 Feels poorly : AILS
53 Thinks (over) : MULLS
54 Photo-sharing website, familiarly : INSTA
57 Prix __ menu : FIXE
60 ’50s presidential nickname : IKE
61 Aunt in Acapulco : TIA
62 Great fielding play, say : GEM

16 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 31 Mar 20, Tuesday”

  1. I saw Haight and thought , what is he doing on a Tuesday? But not bad… He got me on FAUN. I was sure 35D was I GOT TO RUN as opposed to I GOTTA RUN. This gave me FOUN. Should have refocused.., A nit on 29A. This clue was carefully worded to avoid a specific military reference but FYI,,, In the military it’s ALPHA not ALFA. Bills reference to ICAO is correct. Thanks Bill… BTW I’ve loved your site for years now.

  2. 16:08 no errors…I went to the grocery store this morning and got just about everything I needed so I hope that’s a good sign

  3. No Googles, no errors. But many not really knowns. AMITY, TORI, CHARD, IMING, INSTA, fielding.
    Had “pic” before AMP.

  4. I’m sure impressed by those times under 6 minutes. I have a pretty good vocabulary, but those times are AWESOME. The only words I had any trouble with were “I’M-ing” and “inc”. Primarily because I’ve stayed away from social media and I misread the clue thinking of the British, not American slant. I’ll never match those times, but I really enjoy the depth of background details of the words. Didn’t Google or Wiki once.

  5. No errors. Went to the store this morning also…lots of empty shelves
    including paper towels, eggs and antiseptic cleaning agents.

  6. 95% today, but enjoyed the puzzle and the effort.

    I have made 3 grocery runs, never left my car and intend to wear my mask more.
    We have yet to be able to buy eggs and paper goods, but have a doctor friend
    that supplies his parents and they supply us. So, getting better on that end.

    I see that diabetics account for 40% of the fatalities in LA, so I am continuing to
    control my sugar level at around 7 for an A1C, virus or no virus.

    Stay safe, stay well, stay inside, wash your hands and don’t touch your face, guys.

    Kudos to the speed demons and it seems to be contagious. It has not “infected” me yet,
    though I am much better than when I started. I find myself thinking of words without
    my dictionary. Pumps me up.

  7. 11 mins 27 sec (right??) and 2 errors at FAUN and INSTA crossing.

    Pilots refer to A as ALPHA, not ALFA, so there’s that. But there’s no reason I should have to take over 11 minutes on a Tuesday….

  8. Tim Croce’s latest mind-bender: 1:16:09, no errors. Another of his lovely creations, filled with the kind of subtle clues that drive you to distraction until you realize that there’s a perfectly good interpretation of each one (an enjoyable process if you can accept that you’re not going to zip through it in four minutes) … 😜.

  9. And … I just got a good belly-laugh out of tomorrow’s NYT puzzle! I did it in 9:34, with no errors, and I won’t say why it amused me so, but I found it extraordinarily clever and funny. (Five weeks from tomorrow, on the 6th of May, those who do that puzzle in syndication will be able to see for themselves what I’m talking about.)

    And, since I’m here … I also just did tomorrow’s Newsday – in 4:47, with no errors (a different kind of ego boost 😜).

  10. Greetings!!🦆

    No errors. Not much to say on this one except my usual outburst: MENSA means STUPID in Spanish!! 😁

    Saw an article today about how we shouldn’t feel pressure to get things done these days. Y’all know how a lot of people who have some extra time now, not going out, feel that they should make something out of the new downtime. Take an online class or paint the kitchen. I like the notion of NOT feeling pressured to accomplish, these being such harrowing times. Works for me….🤗

    Be safe ~~🍸

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