LA Times Crossword 30 May 20, Saturday

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Constructed by: Brian E. Paquin
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 6m 49s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

16 Poirot portrayer in “Death on the Nile” : USTINOV

Peter Ustinov was a fabulous actor from England. Above and beyond acting, he was multi-talented and I remember him as a great guest on the talk show circuit.

17 Mondale’s 1984 running mate : FERRARO

Geraldine Ferraro came to national attention in 1984 when she became the first woman chosen by a major political party as candidate for Vice President. Democrats Ferraro and Walter Mondale were defeated in a landslide by the incumbent Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush.

Walter Mondale served as US Vice president under President Jimmy Carter. Mondale was also the Democratic candidate defeated by President Ronald Reagan in 1984, losing in the biggest landslide in the country’s history. Mondale only won electoral votes in his home state of Minnesota and in the District of Columbia.

20 Fenders, e.g. : GUITARS

The company that made Fender electric guitars was founded in Fullerton, California in 1946, by Leo Fender.

22 Mil. rank in Clue : COL

Colonel Mustard is one of the suspects in the board game “Clue”.

24 Flowering desert plant : YUCCA

Yuccas are a genus of shrubs and trees that live in hot and dry areas of North and South America. One of the more famous species of Yucca is the Joshua tree. Yuccas has a unique pollination system, with moths transferring pollen from plant to plant.

30 Orator’s stage : DAIS

A dais is a raised platform for a speaker. The term “dais” comes from the Latin “discus” meaning a “disk-shaped object”. I guess that the original daises had such a shape.

50 Uber offerings : RIDES

Uber is a ridesharing service that was founded in 2009 and is based in San Francisco. The service is somewhat controversial and has been described as an illegal taxicab operation. Central to Uber’s service is the company’s mobile app, which can use the client’s GPS location to help find the nearest available ride. Uber’s main competitor is Lyft.

56 Like the L.A. Times Building : ART DECO

The headquarters of the “Los Angeles Times” newspaper is located in an art deco building that was opened in 1935.

59 Early name in aviation : ORVILLE

Wilbur was the older of the two Wright brothers, and he was born in 1867 in Millville, Indiana. By the time that Orville was born in 1871, the family was living in Dayton, Ohio. The Wrights spent a few years of their youth back in Richmond, Indiana, before settling in Dayton for the rest of their lives. The brothers both died in Dayton; Wilbur in 1912 and Orville in 1948.

Down

1 Spruce up, as a building front : REFACE

Our verb “to spruce up” means “to make trim or neat”. The term comes from the adjective “spruce”, meaning “smart, neat”. In turn, the adjective comes from “spruce leather”, which was a Prussian leather that was used in England in the 15th and 16th centuries to make a popular style of jerkin that was widely considered to look quite smart.

2 Home of Silicon Forest : OREGON

The area surrounding Portland, Oregon between Beaverton and Hillsboro is often referred to as Silicon Forest due to the number of hi-tech companies located therein. Silicon Forest is home to mainly subsidiaries of companies like Intel, Hewlett-Packard, Xerox and Epson.

5 Old food label abbr. : RDA

Recommended Daily Allowances (RDAs) were introduced during WWII, and were replaced by Recommended Daily Intakes (RDIs) in 1997.

6 Two-time 1990s French Open champ __ Bruguera : SERGI

Sergi Bruguera is a retired professional tennis player from Spain who enjoyed a high ranking in the mid-1990s. Bruguera was the captain of Spain’s 2018 Davis Cup team.

10 Infomercial kitchen brand : GINSU

Ginsu knives are more famous for their hard-sell television ads than they are for their efficacy in the kitchen. The Ginsu phenomenon took off in the seventies when two brothers found a set of knives called “Eversharp” that were being manufactured in Ohio. The brothers changed the brand name to something more exotic, and Japanese in particular (Ginsu), and then produced ads that made references to Japanese martial arts. I think they made a fortune …

11 Santa __ : ANA

Santa Ana is the county seat of Orange County, California and takes its name from the Santa Ana River that runs through the city.

12 Wit bit : MOT

“Bon mot” translates from French as “good word”. We use “bon mot” (and sometimes just “mot”) to mean “quip, witticism”.

23 Side in a decades-long war : PEPSI

“Cola Wars” is a phrase used to describe the competing marketing campaigns of Coca-Cola and PepsiCo. Coke is winning …

25 Gym exercise : CHIN

A chin-up (also “chin”) is a strength exercise involving a pull-up to the point where the chin reaches a stationary bar held by the hands.

27 Comedian Samberg : ANDY

Andy Samberg is an actor and comedian who was a “Saturday Night Live” cast member from 2005 until 2012. Samberg also plays the lead on the police sitcom “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”.

31 Manuscript mark : STET

“Stet” is a Latin word meaning “let it stand”. In editorial work, the typesetter is instructed to disregard any change previously marked by writing the word “stet” and then underscoring that change with a line of dots or dashes.

35 Eclipses and comets, to some : OMENS

A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes into the shadow cast by the Earth from the light of the Sun, in other words when the Earth is positioned directly between the Sun and the Moon. The more spectacular solar eclipse takes place when the Moon passes in front of the Sun, so that the Earth falls into the shadow cast by the Moon.

Comets and asteroids are similar, both being relatively small celestial bodies orbiting the sun. Comets differ from asteroids in that they have a coma or tail, especially when they are close enough to the sun. The coma and tail are temporary fuzzy atmospheres that develop due to the presence of solar radiation. Comets are sometimes referred to as “dirty snowballs”, a reference to their composition: rock, dust, water ice and frozen gases.

37 Orator’s prowess: Abbr. : RHET

Rhetoric is the art of speaking or writing effectively, primarily with the intent to persuade. Aristotle defined three persuasive techniques that can be used to persuade an audience:

  • Ethos is an ethical appeal, an attempt to convince the audience of the good moral character and credibility of the speaker.
  • Logos is an appeal to logic, an attempt to convince an audience by using logic and reason.
  • Pathos is an emotional appeal, an attempt to convince an audience by appealing to their emotions.

39 “Fish Magic” painter : KLEE

Artist Paul Klee was born in Switzerland, but studied art in Munich in Germany. We can see many of Klee’s works in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. If you get to Bern in Switzerland, even more of them can be seen at the Zentrum Paul Klee that was opened in 2005. Klee’s most celebrated work is his pointillist painting from 1932 called “Ad Parnassum”, which is owned by the Kunstmuseum, also located in Bern.

“Fish Magic” is a 1925 painting by Paul Klee that can be seen in the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It is a work in the surrealist style.

45 Laptop alternative : TABLET

Tablet computers are like a cross between a laptop and a smartphone. Tablets differ from laptops in that they usually have fewer input/output capabilities. They differ from smartphones in that they are larger, and often lack access to a cellular network. We got our first real glimpse of the tablet computing concept in the 1968 movie “2001: A Space Odyssey”. The first really successful tablet computer was Apple’s iPad, which was released not in 2001, but in 2010.

48 Windows forerunner : MS-DOS

MS-DOS (short for “Microsoft Disk Operating System”) was the main operating system used by IBM-compatible PCs in the eighties and for much of the nineties.

49 Jobs in the tech industry : STEVE

Steve Jobs certainly was a business icon in Silicon Valley. I don’t think it is too surprising to learn that the brilliant Jobs didn’t even finish his college education, dropping out of Reed College in Oregon after only one semester. Steve Jobs co-founded Apple in 1976, but in 1985 he was basically fired from his own company during the computer sales slump in the mid-eighties. Jobs then founded NeXT Computer, a company focused on supplying workstations to the higher education and business markets. Apple purchased NeXT in 1996, and that’s how Jobs found himself back with his original company.

55 Taylor of “Six Feet Under” : LILI

Actress Lili Taylor had supporting roles in films like “Mystic Pizza”, “The Haunting” and “Rudy”. She also had a recurring role in the HBO series “Six Feet Under”.

“Six Feet Under” is reportedly a great TV drama aired by HBO, and one that I fully intend to take a look at one day. The “six feet under” is a reference to the show’s storyline that features a family funeral business.

56 Payroll service initials : ADP

Automatic Data Processing (ADP) is an enterprise based in Roseland, New Jersey that provides business services to companies. The company was founded back in 1949 by Henry Taub as Automatic Payrolls, Inc.

57 Feeder of un lago : RIO

In Spanish, a “lago” (lake) is usually fed by a “rio” (river).

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Cowboys, at times : ROPERS
7 Can really bring it : HAS GAME
14 Modern book case? : E-READER
16 Poirot portrayer in “Death on the Nile” : USTINOV
17 Mondale’s 1984 running mate : FERRARO
18 Newborn : NEONATE
19 Fightin’ : AGIN
20 Fenders, e.g. : GUITARS
22 Mil. rank in Clue : COL
23 Emergency : PINCH
24 Flowering desert plant : YUCCA
28 Go after : ENSUE
30 Orator’s stage : DAIS
32 Sweetie pie : HON
33 What an inspiration may do : SPRING TO MIND
37 Makes big bucks : RAKES IN THE MONEY
40 Standing up to criticism : HOLDING WATER
41 Compass dir. : ENE
42 Campus leader : DEAN
43 Tree houses : NESTS
47 Abounds : TEEMS
50 Uber offerings : RIDES
52 Limit : CAP
53 Spook : STARTLE
55 Ear part : LOBE
56 Like the L.A. Times Building : ART DECO
59 Early name in aviation : ORVILLE
61 Reworked : DID OVER
62 Brandished : WIELDED
63 Enter into and control : POSSESS
64 Is : EXISTS

Down

1 Spruce up, as a building front : REFACE
2 Home of Silicon Forest : OREGON
3 Risks : PERILS
4 Merit : EARN
5 Old food label abbr. : RDA
6 Two-time 1990s French Open champ __ Bruguera : SERGI
7 Look everywhere : HUNT HIGH AND LOW
8 Headed for Europe, maybe : ASEA
9 Account : STORY
10 Infomercial kitchen brand : GINSU
11 Santa __ : ANA
12 Wit bit : MOT
13 Time of anticipation : EVE
15 Inaccuracies usually considered acceptable : ROUNDING ERRORS
21 Cry of anticipatory excitement : I CAN’T WAIT!
23 Side in a decades-long war : PEPSI
25 Gym exercise : CHIN
26 Road repair sight : CONE
27 Comedian Samberg : ANDY
29 Put in the lineup : USED
31 Manuscript mark : STET
34 Peeled-off item : RIND
35 Eclipses and comets, to some : OMENS
36 Added : MORE
37 Orator’s prowess: Abbr. : RHET
38 Top-drawer : A-ONE
39 “Fish Magic” painter : KLEE
44 Tells off : SCOLDS
45 Laptop alternative : TABLET
46 Barrels or bolts : SPEEDS
48 Windows forerunner : MS-DOS
49 Jobs in the tech industry : STEVE
51 Macabre : EERIE
54 Breezes through : ACES
55 Taylor of “Six Feet Under” : LILI
56 Payroll service initials : ADP
57 Feeder of un lago : RIO
58 NFL stats : TDS
60 Bug : VEX

22 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 30 May 20, Saturday”

  1. No errors. Went rather quickly for a Saturday.. I Remember the GINSU steak knives commercial when I was young… “And if you act now, we’ll throw in these 7 ginsu steak knives, no extra cost!”.. I still remember the Gerispeed commercials. I think the guys name was Joe Sweiback or something like that. That guy could talk!

    Be safe

  2. No errors. I thought it was pretty easy for a Saturday puzzle. I sort of
    scratched my head over “holding water.”

  3. LAT: About 15 minutes without error. Hardly broke a sweat. Expect more of a challenge for Saturday morning when I have the time to struggle. Could never match Bill though.

  4. Not bad for Saturday. At least l got it done without floundering, like usual, and having to work around everything. Stay careful.

  5. I had the same gut reaction to “chin”, but, as a verb, “to chin” means “to
    draw one’s body up so as to bring one’s chin level with or above (a horizontal bar) with one’s feet off the ground, as an exercise” [copied just now from the dictionary], and I think that’s what the setter had in mind. Still kind of awkward, IMHO.

  6. I was feeling smug about this Saturday puzzle until I read the many comments on how easy it was! Anyway, a fun puzzle.

  7. Thank you for those that have expressed concern. Still really going through all the stress, mainly needing to find an ample money source and needing to get in a place where I can have some health problems looked into. More or less for all the stress and negativity, I notice I get a lot of stress and negativity coming from being online and simply sharing my thoughts on these puzzles and from some of the puzzles themselves (likely just gonna need to sh*tlist certain constructors so doing crosswords remains fun to me), so I decided to step away for a while and probably won’t post too frequently into the future.

    8:24, no errors on this, roughly half the time of yesterday’s you-know-what for those that want to know…

    1. @glen

      Well, I will miss your first response of all with a great time and no errors. Looked for it every day before I even started the puzzle. Take care.

  8. I did not expect to finish this puzzle when I first looked down the clues, clueless. Again, it was the long answers that saved my bacon, as they seemed obvious. Finished with no errors, but “chin” caused a triple-take. Had my 9th xword anniversary this month, and I can’t believe how far I’ve come.
    Glad to see you’re still alive and kickin’, Glenn, and look forward to your future sporadic posts.

    1. Re “like an escaped convict in the woods”: I like your description … 😜.

      That “I” was my last letter, as well. “PINCH” made perfect sense, but “SERGI” is a very odd spelling that made me pause for some time. (Apparently, it’s Catalan.)

  9. Like the rest of you, not too hard for a Sat. I got hung up in the NW corner because I had “riders” instead of “ropers”. Then I realized I had “rides” already for 50A, so I changed it. AND it was a fun one!

  10. I also had a little trouble getting the i in Sergi as I had it as Serge for awhile until I realized pinch had to be right.

    As to Potsdam yesterday. I guess my interest in WWII history became useful remembering the Potsdam Conference in which Stalin met with Harry Truman along with Churchill and his successor, Clement Attlee to work out the administration of post war Germany.

  11. OK, I got off to a bad start by having “roundoff” instead of “rounding”. Eventually I fixed that, but I still couldn’t believe “used” works for “put in the lineup”. In fact I still don’t. ADP” was new to me.

    1. Curious. I also had “roundoff” before “rounding” and my one-square error on Tuesday’s Tim Croce puzzle involved using “EDP” (“Electronic Data Processing”?) instead of “ADP” (“Automatic Data Processing”).

      As for “USED”, though, I can imagine someone saying, “Use me, coach! Put me in the lineup!”

      – A Nonny Muss

  12. Lots of clues and answers just seemed “off” to me. Like “chin” and “has game” and “neonate.” Seemed like the puzzle was really reaching to make those fit/work.

  13. Pretty quick Saturday for me; took me 37 minutes with no errors. I felt so good about how things were going that I made time for a snack, which ate up about 5 minutes.

    I put in a “Ed” at the end of DIDOVER which caused that to take longer than necessary. Also, I had to change mDr to mDa to RDA, and like everyone else SERGe to SERGI to finish. Still, a pretty fun puzzle.

    re ORVILLE – According to my paper, today is the day in 1912 that Wilbur passed away from Typhoid fever.

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