LA Times Crossword 28 Jul 20, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Jerry Edelstein
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Paperback

Themed answers each end with a word that is often followed by -PAPER:

  • 58A Softcover book, and what the last words of the answers to starred clues can have : PAPERBACK
  • 18A *TV coverage of city events, say : LOCAL NEWS (giving “newspaper”)
  • 23A *Metaphorical boundary that shouldn’t be crossed : LINE IN THE SAND (giving “sandpaper”)
  • 30A *”That’ll be the day” : WHEN PIGS FLY (giving “flypaper”)
  • 41A *Jerusalem prayer site : WESTERN WALL (giving “wallpaper”)
  • 47A *Phrase used by experts : TECHNICAL TERM (giving “term paper”)

Bill’s time: 5m 40s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Big name in farm equipment : DEERE

John Deere invented the first commercially successful steel plow in 1837. Prior to Deere’s invention, farmers used an iron or wooden plow that constantly had to be cleaned as rich soil stuck to its surfaces. The cast-steel plow was revolutionary as its smooth sides solved the problem of “stickiness”. The Deere company that John founded uses the slogan “Nothing Runs Like a Deere”, and has a leaping deer as its logo.

14 __Valdez: oil-spill ship : EXXON

The Exxon Valdez was an oil tanker that famously went aground in Prince William Sound in Alaska in 1989, spilling hundreds of thousands of crude oil. The ship was repaired after the incident and went back into service under the new name “Exxon Mediterranean”.

15 Palm tree berry : ACAI

Açaí (pronounced “ass-aye-ee”) is a palm tree native to Central and South America. The fruit has become very popular in recent years and its juice is a very fashionable addition to juice mixes and smoothies.

16 Gucci of fashion : ALDO

Gucci was founded in Rome, in 1921, by Guccio Gucci. Guccio’s son Aldo took over the company after his father’s death in 1953. It was Aldo who established the international presence for the brand and opened the company’s first overseas store, in New York City.

17 Disney World’s __ Center : EPCOT

EPCOT Center (now just called “Epcot”) is the theme park beside Walt Disney World in Florida. EPCOT is an acronym standing for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, and is a representation of the future as envisioned by Walt Disney. Walt Disney actually wanted to build a living community for 20,000 residents at EPCOT, but he passed away without that vision being realized.

20 Author of macabre fiction : POE

The celebrated American writer Edgar Allan Poe (EAP) was born “Edgar Poe” in 1809 in Boston. Poe’s father abandoned Edgar and his two siblings after the death of their mother. As a result, Edgar was taken into the home of the Allan family in Richmond, Virginia. His foster parents gave the future author the name “Edgar Allan Poe”.

21 Container weight : TARE

Tare is the weight of a container that is deducted from the gross weight to determine the net weight, the weight of the container’s contents.

22 Start of a choosing rhyme : EENIE …

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Catch the tiger/monkey/baby by the toe.
If it hollers/screams let him go,
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe, you are it!

27 Creamy pastry : ECLAIR

The name for the pastry known as an “éclair” is clearly French in origin. The French word for lightning is “éclair”, but no one seems to be too sure how it came to be used for the rather delicious bakery item.

37 Geologic time frames : EONS

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

39 Nobelist Wiesel : ELIE

Elie Wiesel was a holocaust survivor, and is best known for his book “Night” that tells of his experiences in Auschwitz and Buchenwald. Wiesel was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986. He was also the first recipient of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum Award, which was later renamed the Elie Wiesel Award in his honor.

40 Drunkard : SOT

Our word “sot” comes from the Old English “sott”, meaning “fool”. The word “sot” started to be associated with alcohol and not just foolery in the late 1500s. The derivative term “besotted” means “muddled with drunkenness”, or more figuratively “infatuated”.

41 *Jerusalem prayer site : WESTERN WALL (giving “wallpaper”)

The Western Wall (also called “the Wailing Wall”) is a remnant of an ancient wall that surrounded the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. The wall is a sacred site for the faithful, and has been a place for prayer and pilgrimage for centuries. The term “Wailing” was assigned in English as many Jewish people came to the site to mourn the destruction of the Temple.

45 Scot’s cap : TAM

A tam o’shanter is a man’s cap traditionally worn by Scotsmen. “Tams” were originally all blue (and called “blue bonnets”) but as more dyes became readily available they became more colorful. The name of the cap comes from the title character of the Robert Burns poem “Tam O’Shanter”.

60 Censor : BLEEP

The original “censor” was an officer in ancient Rome who had responsibility for taking the “census”, as well as supervising public morality.

64 Middle East ship, perhaps : OILER

In geographical terms there are three “Easts”. “Near East” and “Middle East” are terms that are often considered synonymous, although “Near East” tends to be used when discussing ancient history and “Middle East” when referring to the present day. The Near/Middle East encompasses most of Western Asia and Egypt. The term “Far East” describes East Asia (including the Russian Far East), Southeast Asia and South Asia.

Down

2 Montreal MLBer before 2005 : EXPO

The Washington Nationals (“Nats”) started out life as the Montreal Expos in 1969, and were the first Major League Baseball team in Canada. The Expos moved to Washington in 2005 becoming the Nats.

4 Piglet’s joey pal : ROO

In A. A. Milne’s “Winnie-the-Pooh” collection of stories, Pooh has many friends in the Hundred Acre Wood. Besides Christopher Robin, who doesn’t actually live in the woods, the list includes Piglet, Eeyore, Kanga, Roo, Rabbit, Tigger and Owl.

5 Tolkien talking tree : ENT

Ents are tree-like creatures that live in J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth in his series of books “The Lord of the Rings”. “Ent” is an Old English word for “giant”.

6 __ Lama : DALAI

The Dalai Lama is a religious leader in the Gelug branch of Tibetan Buddhism. The current Dalai Lama is the 14th to hold the office. He has indicated that the next Dalai Lama might be found outside of Tibet for the first time, and may even be female.

7 Nut from an oak : ACORN

These days, we don’t usually consider acorns as a foodstuff. But in days past, many cultures around the world have used acorns as food. Usually, bitter tannins that occur in acorns need to be leached out in water. Acorn meal can be a substitute for grain flour, which can then be used to make bread. Acorns have also been used as a substitute for coffee, especially when coffee was rationed. Notably, acorn coffee was brewed up by Confederates during the American Civil War, and by Germans during World War II.

9 Acapulco aunt : 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”.

11 Colleague of Ruth and Sonia : ELENA

Elena Kagan was the Solicitor General of the United States who replaced Justice John Paul Stevens on the US Supreme Court. That made Justice Kagan the first female US Solicitor General and the fourth female US Supreme Court justice. I hear she is a fan of Jane Austen, and used to reread “Pride and Prejudice” once a year. Not a bad thing to do, I’d say …

12 Astronomer Hubble : EDWIN

Edwin Hubble was an American astronomer who is perhaps most associated with the Hubble Space Telescope, which was named in his honor. Hubble made several important discoveries. For example, he showed that several spiral “nebulae” were not in fact gaseous bodies within our galaxy, and rather were spiral “galaxies” that existed beyond the bounds of our own Milky Way galaxy.

21 Actress Garr : TERI

Actress Teri Garr had a whole host of minor roles in her youth, including appearances in nine Elvis movies. Garr’s big break came with the role of Inga in “Young Frankenstein”, and her supporting role in “Tootsie” earned Garr an Academy Award nomination. Sadly, Teri Garr suffers from multiple sclerosis. She is a National Ambassador for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

24 McShane and McKellen : IANS

Ian McShane is an English actor who is famous in his homeland, and to PBS viewers in the US, for playing the title role in “Lovejoy”. In this country, he is perhaps better known for playing the conniving saloon owner on the HBO western drama “Deadwood”.

Sir Ian McKellen is a marvelous English actor, one who is comfortable playing anything from Macbeth on stage to Magneto in an “X-Men” movie. On the big screen, McKellen is very famous for playing Gandalf in “The Lord of Rings”. In the UK, Sir Ian is noted for being at the forefront of the campaign for equal rights for gay people, a role he has enthusiastically embraced since the eighties.

26 “2001” computer : HAL

In Arthur C. Clarke’s “Space Odyssey” (famously adapted for the big screen as “2001: A Space Odyssey”) the computer system that went rogue was called HAL 9000, or simply “HAL”. HAL stands for “Heuristically programmed ALgorithmic computer”. Even though Clarke denied it, there’s a good argument that can be made that the acronym HAL is a veiled reference to IBM, the big player in the world of computing at the time of the novel’s publication (1968). The acronym HAL is just a one-letter shift from the initials “IBM”.

32 Army NCO : SGT

A non-commissioned officer (NCO) might be a sergeant (sgt.) or a corporal (cpl.).

36 “Electric” fish : EELS

“Electrophorus electricus” is the biological name for the electric eel. Despite its name, the electric “eel” isn’t an eel at all, but rather what is called a knifefish, a fish with an elongated body that is related to the catfish. The electric eel has three pairs of organs along its abdomen, each capable of generating an electric discharge. The shock can go as high as 500 volts with 1 ampere of current (500 watts), and that could perhaps kill a human.

41 Lloyd or Paul of Cooperstown : WANER

Paul and Lloyd Waner were two brothers who played Major League Baseball. The brothers played together in the 1920s and 1930s for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Paul earned himself the nickname “Big Poison”, while Lloyd had the moniker “Little Poison”.

Cooperstown is a village in New York that is famous as the home to the Baseball Hall of Fame. The village was named for Judge William Cooper, the founder of Cooperstown and the father of the noted writer James Fenimore Cooper.

42 Former U.K. recording giant : EMI

EMI was a British music company, with the initialism standing for Electric and Musical Industries.

44 N.Y. Mets’ division : NLE

National League East (NLE)

The New York Mets baseball team was founded in 1962 as a replacement for two teams that the city had lost, namely the Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Giants. For several years the Mets played very poorly, finishing no better than second-to-last in their division. Then along came the “Miracle Mets” (aka “Amazin’ Mets”) who beat the Baltimore Orioles in 1969 to claim the World Series in a huge upset.

47 Hoglike animal : TAPIR

All four species of tapir are endangered. Even though the tapir looks much like a pig, it is more closely related to the horse and the rhinoceros.

48 Skype appointment : E-DATE

The main feature of the Skype application when introduced was that it allows voice communication to take place over the Internet (aka VoIP). Skype has other features such as video conferencing and instant messaging, but the application made its name from voice communication. Skype was founded by two Scandinavian entrepreneurs and the software necessary was developed by a team of engineers in Estonia. The development project was originally called “Sky peer-to-peer” so the first commercial name for the application was “Skyper”. This had to be shortened to “Skype” because the skyper.com domain name was already in use.

49 Thicket of trees : COPSE

A copse is a small stand of trees. The term “copse” originally applied to a small thicket that was specifically grown for cutting.

51 Shaped like a rainbow : ARCED

Sunlight reflected by airborne water droplets can produce rainbows. The water droplets act as little prisms, dispersing the white light into its constituent colors. Sometimes we see double rainbows. If we look carefully, we can see that the order of the colors in the first and second arcs is reversed.

52 “Great” quintet : LAKES

A well-known mnemonic for remembering the names of the Great Lakes is HOMES, an acronym standing for Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie and Superior.

59 Tot’s food-catching chest protector : BIB

The word “bib” comes from the Latin “bibere” meaning “to drink”, as does our word “imbibe”. So, maybe a bib is less about spilling the food, and more about soaking up the booze …

60 Hope or Newhart : BOB

I remember my first non-business visit to Los Angeles. I was a typical tourist and bought a map showing the homes of the stars and drove around Beverly Hills absorbing all the glitz. At one point I drove past a Rolls Royce that was stopped in oncoming traffic, waiting to make a left turn. The window was down, and the driver was puffing away on a big cigar. It was none other than Bob Hope. Seeing him there right beside me; that was a big thrill …

Bob Newhart is a comedian and actor who starred in two very successful sitcoms: “The Bob Newhart Show” in the seventies, and “Newhart” in the eighties. He first captured the public’s attention with an album of comedic monologues released in 1960 titled “The Button-Down Mind of Bob Newhart”. That album went to number one in the Billboard pop album charts, and won the 1961 Album of the Year Grammy. Remarkable …

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Big name in farm equipment : DEERE
6 Silly : DAFT
10 Flow very slowly : SEEP
14 __Valdez: oil-spill ship : EXXON
15 Palm tree berry : ACAI
16 Gucci of fashion : ALDO
17 Disney World’s __ Center : EPCOT
18 *TV coverage of city events, say : LOCAL NEWS (giving “newspaper”)
20 Author of macabre fiction : POE
21 Container weight : TARE
22 Start of a choosing rhyme : EENIE …
23 *Metaphorical boundary that shouldn’t be crossed : LINE IN THE SAND (giving “sandpaper”)
27 Creamy pastry : ECLAIR
29 Paintings and such : ART
30 *”That’ll be the day” : WHEN PIGS FLY (giving “flypaper”)
34 Amazement : AWE
37 Geologic time frames : EONS
38 Octogenarian’s 80, e.g. : AGE
39 Nobelist Wiesel : ELIE
40 Drunkard : SOT
41 *Jerusalem prayer site : WESTERN WALL (giving “wallpaper”)
45 Scot’s cap : TAM
46 Honks at, say : ALERTS
47 *Phrase used by experts : TECHNICAL TERM (giving “term paper”)
53 Be mad about : ADORE
54 Historical times : ERAS
55 Library contents: Abbr. : BKS
58 Softcover book, and what the last words of the answers to starred clues can have : PAPERBACK
60 Censor : BLEEP
62 “__ miracle!” : IT’S A
63 “Got it!” : I SEE!
64 Middle East ship, perhaps : OILER
65 Marsh growth : REED
66 Kings and queens : BEDS
67 Word with laugh or dance : BELLY …

Down

1 Thought-provoking : DEEP
2 Montreal MLBer before 2005 : EXPO
3 Like A+ work : EXCELLENT
4 Piglet’s joey pal : ROO
5 Tolkien talking tree : ENT
6 __ Lama : DALAI
7 Nut from an oak : ACORN
8 Gem surface : FACET
9 Acapulco aunt : TIA
10 Most sensible : SANEST
11 Colleague of Ruth and Sonia : ELENA
12 Astronomer Hubble : EDWIN
13 Sat for a photo : POSED
19 Suspicious : LEERY
21 Actress Garr : TERI
24 McShane and McKellen : IANS
25 Little bite : NIP
26 “2001” computer : HAL
27 Female sheep : EWES
28 Half a toy train? : CHOO
31 Fuel in a tank : GAS
32 Army NCO : SGT
33 Lawyer’s charge : FEE
34 Source of a ringing warning : ALARM BELL
35 Go limp : WILT
36 “Electric” fish : EELS
39 Big pitcher : EWER
41 Lloyd or Paul of Cooperstown : WANER
42 Former U.K. recording giant : EMI
43 “Darn!” : RATS!
44 N.Y. Mets’ division : NLE
45 Needle eye insert : THREAD
47 Hoglike animal : TAPIR
48 Skype appointment : E-DATE
49 Thicket of trees : COPSE
50 Halt : CEASE
51 Shaped like a rainbow : ARCED
52 “Great” quintet : LAKES
56 Ship’s spine : KEEL
57 Quick-footed : SPRY
59 Tot’s food-catching chest protector : BIB
60 Hope or Newhart : BOB
61 Falsehood : LIE

20 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 28 Jul 20, Tuesday”

  1. No errors. About 10 minutes.. Interesting read in WIKI on the Waner brothers. They had an older brother Ralph who was shot by his ex-wife when he was on a date with his girlfriend having a steak dinner..

    Be safe!!

    1. @ anon mike

      If you think the Waner story is interesting check out Ty Cobb’s family. His mother killed his father and was acquitted of murder.

  2. I restarted my crossword habit in March after a long absence and only do one a day, but as I was working on this today I had a great feeling of deja vu. I started thinking of the answers that I have seen this year at least twice already and came up with a short list: ACAI, ACORN, ADORE, AGE, ARCED, ART, AWE, BEDS, BIB, BOB, DAFT, DEERE, EELS, ELENA, ELIE, EMI, EONS, ERAS, EWER, EWES, FEE, GAS, HAL, IANS, LEERY, LIE, KEEL, NIP, POE, POSED, RATS, REED, SANEST, SGT, SOT, SPRY, TAM, TARE, & TIA (note, list may not be all inclusive or totally accurate as it is from memory).

    So, not a complaint, just an observation (and I can only guess about the deja vu of those who do multiple crosswords per day let alone those that create them) but could this puzzle have been created with the (over) use of those words in mind?

    1. @Chris C … I think of words like that as the “glue” that allows more interesting things to be stuck together to form a crossword puzzle. If anyone here would like to try some puzzles with less repetitive “glue”, try Tim Croce’s puzzles (but be prepared to find them a lot more difficult).

    2. Words tend to repeat themselves rather much in crosswords, especially ones with a number of vowels or weird letter combinations. (Main reason ETSY shows up so much as complained about below.) Comes with the other rules involved in crosswords. I do probably 40-50 a week (plus stuff in books, been doing Fireball stuff lately), and definitely notice a large degree of repetitiveness. Less so with things like Fireball, Sat Newsday and Croce (yeah I finish them all, albeit rarely error free). But still you aren’t going to get away with repetitiveness.

      If you need more crosswords, here’s an HTML file that will download. It’s a simple page with a listing of crossword sites. Hopefully it will be useful.
      https://www.dropbox.com/s/ajeiu5tfbx1qe3j/crosswords.html?dl=1

  3. Ta dah! Started doing LA Times crossword ( channeling my dear, deceased father) in March when our state shut down. First one I’ve done in the space of a cup of coffee without my good friend Google!

  4. 5:45, no errors. Tried to use “WAILING WALL” instead of “WESTERN WALL” before I realized that it wouldn’t fit. And I’d never heard of the “WANER” brothers. Otherwise, no problems.

  5. You got me on 41 across, I put in wailing wall and didn’t
    realize the possibility of any alternatives, which of course led to some mistakes down.

    Hiss Boo!
    Eddie

  6. Did not know WANER brothers but have heard of “Little/Big Poison.” It all filled in with the cross rows!!
    Stay safe everyone! 🙂

  7. Nice easy puzzle. No surprises. Again, not much of a challenge. Hopefully they will come as the week progresses.

  8. Easy puzzle. Didn’t know Hubble’s first name, EDWIN.

    I hold that men seem to be against ETSY to the same extent that I am against sports references. Too bad, in both cases. I waited a long time before I saw ETSY appear in a crossword. In other words, the usual misogyny.

    I have collected pictures for a file of the most common crosswords, 580 of them from ABBA to ZOLA.

    1. @Jane …

      For the record: I am a man. I have absolutely no problem with seeing “ETSY” in a puzzle. (I don’t really object to sports references, either – but I do, often, have trouble understanding such references … 😜.)

      And your collection sounds most interesting … 😜.

  9. 6:24 no errors

    I was hoping that the “metaphorical boundary that shouldn’t be crossed” would be MORALEVENTHORIZON, but that didn’t fit. Also thought first of WAILINGWALL.

  10. Back on a PAPER grid, I slashed through this grid in 6:01, with no errors, and few issues. Had one major writeover, with WAILING WALL becoming WESTERN WALL with help from down fills… other than that it went exceedingly smooth.

  11. Smooth and easy here as well. I sure don’t mind seeing repeat words or
    anything else that will help us to solve it. It doesn’t have to be hard, just
    solveable.

    Stay safe and well, everybody. Our state of LA, including our Parish of
    Calcasieu, is seeing spikes in COVD-19 cases and deaths and it is a little
    more concerning than when it first started. We are staying in the house
    except for a few rare outages, washing our hands and wearing our masks.

  12. Wailing Wall. Sounds like something out of a Harry Potter novel. (Akin to the Whomping Willow, which did figure prominently in a couple of the books).

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