LA Times Crossword 5 Aug 20, Wednesday

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Constructed by: Bruce Haight & Blaire Bas
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Well-Rounded

Themed answers are celebrities whose family names are WELL-ROUNDED:

  • 56A Like 17-, 25-, 35- and 48-Across? : WELL-ROUNDED
  • 17A Sitcom pioneer in the first class of inductees to the Television Academy Hall of Fame : LUCILLE BALL
  • 25A Grand Ole Opry comedian for more than 50 years : MINNIE PEARL
  • 35A #2 on Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time : KEITH MOON
  • 48A Winner of 18 Grand Slam tennis titles from 1936 to 1940 : ALICE MARBLE

Bill’s time: 5m 52s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Pitch-altering guitar clamps : CAPOS

A capo is a clamp-like device that is placed around the neck of a guitar or other stringed instrument to shorten the strings, and hence raise the pitch. The full name, rarely used these days, is “capo tasto”, which is Italian for “head tie”.

6 Actor Kinnear : GREG

Greg Kinnear is a favorite actor of mine, probably best recognized for his Oscar-nominated performance in the excellent film “As Good as it Gets” from 1997.

10 Former Fed chair Bernanke : BEN

Ben Bernanke was Chairman of the Federal Reserve for two terms, after being nominated by President George W. Bush in 2006 and renominated by President Barack Obama. It was Bernanke who was in charge of the Fed during the financial crisis of the late-2000s.

13 Jordanian seaport : AQABA

The coastal city of Aqaba is the only seaport in the country of Jordan. The city lies at the very northern tip of the Gulf of Aqaba, which is off the Red Sea.

16 Texter’s “As I see it” : IMO

In my opinion (IMO)

17 Sitcom pioneer in the first class of inductees to the Television Academy Hall of Fame : LUCILLE BALL

Lucille Ball was at the height of her success while she was married to Desi Arnaz. The couple met in 1940 and not long afterwards eloped. Lucy had several miscarriages before she gave birth to her first child in 1951, just one month before her fortieth birthday. A year and a half later, while “I Love Lucy” was garnering large audiences, she became pregnant with her second child, a pregnancy that was written into the television show’s script. In fact, the day that Lucy gave birth on the show, was the same day that she gave birth in real life.

The Television Hall of Fame was formed in 1984. There were seven inductees in that first year, including Lucille Ball, Milton Berle, Norman Lear and Edward R. Murrow.

19 Rte. finder : GPS

A global positioning system (GPS) might point out a route (rte.).

21 Game with a spinoff called DOS : UNO

UNO is a card game that was developed in the early seventies and that has been sold by Mattel since 1992. UNO falls into the shedding family of card games, meaning that the goal is to get rid of all your cards while preventing opponents from doing the same.

22 Milo of “Ulysses” : O’SHEA

“Ulysses” is a 1967 movie based on the famous James Joyce novel of the same name. Milo O’Shea played the lead role of Leopold Bloom. The dialogue in the film is lifted almost word for word from the novel, which is probably why “Ulysses” is noted as the first mainstream film to use the “f***” word.

25 Grand Ole Opry comedian for more than 50 years : MINNIE PEARL

“Minnie Pearl” was the stage name of comedian Sarah Cannon. Pearl was best known for appearing as her “Minnie Pearl” character on the TV show “Hee Haw for over 20 years.

28 Florence and Charlotte : CITIES

Florence is the capital city of the Tuscany region in Italy. Something from or related to Florence is described as “Florentine”. The city is known as “Firenze” in Italian.

The city of Charlotte is the most populous in the state of North Carolina. It was named for the queen consort of King George III of Britain, Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.

30 “Cats” poet : TS ELIOT

“Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats” is a 1939 collection of poems by T. S. Eliot (TSE). The collection of whimsical poetry was a favorite of composer Andrew Lloyd Webber when he was a child. Webber used Eliot’s poems as inspiration for his megahit musical “Cats”.

35 #2 on Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time : KEITH MOON

Keith Moon was the drummer for the Who, the famous rock group from England. Moon was a “bit of a lad” offstage and seemed to have a fixation for destroying televisions and exploding toilets in hotel rooms with cherry bombs. He also was fond of alcohol, with a particular taste for brandy and champagne. Ironically, Moon died due to an overdose of a drug designed to curb alcohol abuse, when he was just 32 years old. He was found dead in a London flat owned by Harry Nilsson. Mama Cass Elliot had been found dead in the same flat four years earlier.

Musician John Bonham is best remembered as the drummer for the English rock band Led Zeppelin. Sadly, Bonham died from alcohol-related asphyxia in 1980 at the age of 32. Such was his influence on the band that Led Zeppelin broke up after Bonham’s passing. In 2016, “Rolling Stone” ranked him number-one on the magazine’s list of the “100 Greatest Drummers of All Time”.

38 Humanities degs. : BAS

The academic studies of human culture are collectively called the humanities. Subjects included in the humanities are languages, literature, philosophy, religion and music.

48 Winner of 18 Grand Slam tennis titles from 1936 to 1940 : ALICE MARBLE

American tennis player Alice Marble won 18 Grand Slam championships in the late 1930s, before turning professional in 1940. After she retired from the sport, Marble worked briefly as an associate editor on “Wonder Woman” for DC Comics. Towards the end of WWII, she worked as a US spy, and was shot in the back by a Nazi agent. Alice Marble had quite the life ….

52 Mad Dog Radio host Chris : RUSSO

Chris “Mad Dog” Russo is a sports radio personality. From 1989 to 2008, Russo co-hosted the radio show “Mike and the Mad Dog” with sports radio talk show host Mike Francesca. Russo then got his own show on Sirius XM called “Mad Dog Unleashed” which airs on the Mad Dog Radio channel.

54 “Mary Poppins” chimney sweep : BERT

The “Mary Poppins” series of children’s novels were written by Australian-born English writer and actress P. L. Travers. Mary Poppins is a magical children’s nanny with a best friend Bert. In the famous 1964 musical film adaptation of the Mary Poppins stories, Poppins is played by Julie Andrews and Bert is played Dick Van Dyke.

55 Baltimore winter hrs. : EST

The Maryland city of Baltimore was founded in 1729. It took its name from Baltimore County, which had been founded 70 years earlier. The “Baltimore” name was chosen in honor of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore who was the proprietor of the Province of Maryland. The peerage was named for Baltimore Manor in County Longford, in the Irish midlands.

60 “Billions” airer, briefly : SHO

“Billions” is a Showtime drama series starring Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis. It’s about a federal prosecutor going after a hedge fund manager in New York. I haven’t seen this one, but hear good things. It must be good, with Giamatti and Lewis starring …

61 Stainless __ : STEEL

In order to resist the tendency to rust, stainless steel (as opposed to carbon steel) has about 11% chromium. Stainless steel does in fact tend to rust, but just not as easily as regular carbon steel.

62 Mrs. Gorbachev : RAISA

Raisa Gorbacheva was the wife of Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. There’s no doubt that Raisa’s charm and personality helped her husband as he worked to change the image of the Soviet Union.

63 Pewter component : TIN

Pewter is a relatively soft alloy that is made up mostly of tin, with some copper, antimony, bismuth and lead.

65 Like a fuzzy navel? : LINTY

“Lint”, meaning “fluff”, is one of those terms that I had to learn when I moved to the US. We call the same thing “fuzz” on the other side of the Atlantic.

Down

1 Pasadena engineering sch. : CALTECH

Caltech is more properly known as the California Institute of Technology, and is a private research-oriented school in Pasadena. One of Caltech’s responsibilities is the management and operation of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. If you watch “The Big Bang Theory” on television like me, you might know that the four lead characters all work at Caltech.

Pasadena, California is famous for hosting the annual Rose Bowl football game, as well as the related Tournament of Roses Parade. The name “Pasadena” was chosen somewhat arbitrarily. A missionary in Michigan supplied a list of translations of the names “Crown of the Valley”, “Key of the Valley” etc, in the Chippewa language when the locals were choosing a name. All of the translations ended in “pasadena” meaning “of the valley”. The word was liked, so it was picked.

2 Display idea that’s a bit fishy? : AQUARIA

“Aquarium” is a Latin word meaning “pertaining to water”, although in Latin the word only existed as a noun with the meaning “drinking place for cattle”. Before the use of the noun “aquarium” (plural “aquaria”) in the context of fish, a tank was sometimes referred to as a marine vivarium.

4 Kin of a Tony : OBIE

The Obies are the Off-Broadway Theater Awards. The Obies have been presented annually since 1956. The recipients used to be chosen by “The Village Voice” newspaper, but now are jointly administered with the American Theatre Wing.

5 Muppet chimp __ Minella : SAL

Sal Minella is a Muppet character. He is the bodyguard for fellow muppet Johnny Fiama who is modeled after Frank Sinatra.

6 “The Wife” Oscar nominee Close : GLENN

Glenn Close is a wonderful actress who has played many varied roles, but is well known for her portrayals of less than wholesome characters. She played the crazy Alex Forrest in “Fatal Attraction”, and Cruella de Vil in “101 Dalmatians”. More recently, Close had a regular role on a TV show called “Damages”. Glenn Close is an avid fan of the New York Mets and regularly sings the national anthem before games.

“The Wife” is a marvelous 2017 film based on the 2003 novel of the same name by Meg Wolitzer. Glenn Close plays the title role, the wife of a narcissistic husband who is selected to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature. However, it is actually “the wife” who has been doing the writing, and the husband who was getting his name on the books.

8 The “E” in BCE : ERA

The designations Anno Domini (AD, “year of Our Lord”) and Before Christ (BC) are found in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. The dividing point between AD and BC is the year of the conception of Jesus, with AD 1 following 1 BC without a year “0” in between. The AD/BC scheme dates back to AD 525, and gained wide acceptance soon after AD 800. Nowadays a modified version has become popular, with CE (Common/Christian Era) used to replace AD, and BCE (Before the Common/Christian Era) used to replace BC.

11 Claudius or Nero : EMPEROR

I find Claudius to be the most fascinating of all the Roman Emperors. Claudius had a lot going against him as he walked with a limp and was slightly deaf. He was put in office by the Praetorian Guard (the emperor’s bodyguards) after Caligula was assassinated. Claudius had very little political experience and yet proved to be very forward-thinking and capable.

Nero was Emperor of Rome from 54 to 68 CE, and towards the end of his reign participated in the Olympic Games in the year 67. The Roman leader raced in a ten-horse chariot, of which he lost control and nearly perished after being thrown from the vehicle. Acting and singing were Olympic events back then, and Nero also took part in those competitions. By all accounts, Nero performed badly in every event in which he vied, and yet somehow still managed to win Olympic crowns that he paraded around Rome on his return from Greece.

12 Margarita preference : NO SALT

No one seems to know for sure who first created the cocktail known as a margarita. The most plausible and oft-quoted is that it was invented in 1941 in Ensenada, Mexico. The barman mixed the drink for an important visitor, the daughter of the German ambassador. The daughter’s name was Margarita Henkel, and she lent her name to the new drink. The basic recipe for a margarita is a mixture of tequila, orange-flavored liqueur (like Cointreau) and lime juice.

15 Calculus calculation : SLOPE

Remember doing calculus at school, and all those derivatives and integrals? Well, you probably also remember that an integral calculates the area under a curve (for example), and a derivative calculates the slope of a tangent at a particular point on a curve.

18 California’s San __ Obispo : LUIS

The city of San Luis Obispo is one of the oldest communities in California. The name “San Luis Obispo” translates as “Saint Louis, the Bishop of Toulouse”. In 1990, San Luis Obispo was the first municipality in the world to ban smoking in all indoor public areas.

23 Of the moon : SELENIC

“Luna” is the Latin word for “moon”, and is the name given to the Roman moon goddess. The Greek equivalent of Luna was Selene. Luna had a temple on the Aventine Hill in Rome but it was destroyed during the Great Fire that raged during the reign of Nero.

25 Dole (out) : METE

To “mete out” is to distribute by allotments. The verb comes from the Old English word “metan” meaning “to measure”, which is also believed to be the root of our word “meter”.

27 Pump name : ESSO

The Esso brand has its roots in the old Standard Oil company as it uses the initial letters of “Standard” and “Oil” (ESS-O). The Esso brand was replaced by Exxon in the US, but ESSO is still used in many other countries.

29 Squid organs : INK SACS

Octopodes and squid have the ability to release a dark pigment into the water as a means of escape. The dark pigment is called cephalopod ink (the squid and octopus belong to the class cephalopoda). The dark color is created by melanin, the same substance that acts as a pigment in human skin.

32 Crete peak: Abbr. : MT IDA

There are two peaks called Mount Ida that are sacred according to Greek mythology. Mount Ida in Crete is the island’s highest point, and is where one can find the cave in which Zeus was reared. Mount Ida in Asia Minor (located in modern-day Turkey) is where Ganymede was swept up by Zeus in the form of an eagle that took him to Olympus where he served as cupbearer to the gods.

33 Electrical unit : OHM

The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm (with the symbol omega) named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm. Ohm was the guy who established experimentally that the amount of current flowing through a circuit is directly proportional to the voltage applied, (V=IR) a relationship that every school kid knows as Ohm’s Law.

36 One of an express lane’s 15 maximum : ITEM

That would be in a grocery store.

38 “SNL” legend John : BELUSHI

John Belushi was one of the original members of the “Saturday Night Live” cast. On the occasion of Belushi’s 30th birthday in 1979, he had the number one film in the country (“Animal House”), the number one album (“The Blues Brothers: Briefcase of Blues”) and he was a star of the highest-rated late night TV show (“Saturday Night Live”). Belushi died in 1982 from a “speedball”, a combined injection of cocaine and heroin.

39 “Friends” co-star : ANISTON

Jennifer Aniston won a 2002 Emmy for playing Rachel on the great sitcom “Friends”. Jennifer’s parents are both actors, and her godfather was the actor Telly Savalas.

43 Hillary’s conquest : EVEREST

Mount Everest was first summited in 1953 by New Zealander Edmund Hillary and Nepalese-Sherpa Tenzing Norgay. Hillary and Norgay were part of an expedition from which two pairs of climbers were selected to make a summit attempt. The first pair were Tom Bourdillon and Charles Evans, and they came within 330 feet of their goal but had to turn back. The expedition sent up the second pair two days later, and history was made on 29 May 1953.

44 Like fast UPS service : NEXT-DAY

United Parcel Service (UPS) is based in Sandy Springs, Georgia and has its own airline that operates out of Louisville, Kentucky. UPS often goes by the nickname “Brown”, because of its brown delivery trucks and brown uniforms.

46 Siamese sounds : MEOWS

The exact origins of the Siamese cat aren’t very clear, but it is believed to be from Southeast Asia. The Siamese takes its name from the sacred temple cats of Thailand (once called Siam).

47 Choir voice : ALTO

In choral music, an alto (plural “alti”) is the second-highest voice in a four-part chorus made up of soprano, contr(alto), tenor and bass. The word “alto” describes the vocal range, that of the deepest female singing-voice, whereas the term “contralto” describes more than just the alto range, but also its quality and timbre. An adult male’s voice (not a boy’s) with the same range as an alto is called a “countertenor”.

49 Bulova rival : ROLEX

My most-prized possession is a beautiful stainless steel Rolex watch that my uncle bought while serving with the RAF in Canada during WWII. Rolex watches were made available to the Canadian servicemen at that time as they were shipping overseas. My uncle brought his Rolex home to Ireland after the war. He needed money one weekend and so sold the watch to my Dad, for five pounds. My Dad gave it to me just before he died, as he knew I loved the watch, and my brothers weren’t interested in it all. Not so long ago I had the watch appraised ($3,000), and my brothers suddenly took a liking to it! Still, it’s not something that will ever be sold, that’s for sure …

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 Bulova paid $4 to have their products advertised.

54 __ B’rith : B’NAI

B’nai B’rith is a Jewish service organization founded in New York City in 1843. “B’nai B’rith” is Hebrew for “Sons of the Covenant”.

58 Jeans brand : LEE

The Lee company that is famous for making jeans was formed in 1889 by one Henry David Lee in Salina, Kansas.

59 Link letters : URL

An Internet address (like NYXCrossword.com and LAXCrossword.com) is more correctly called a Uniform Resource Locator (URL).

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Pitch-altering guitar clamps : CAPOS
6 Actor Kinnear : GREG
10 Former Fed chair Bernanke : BEN
13 Jordanian seaport : AQABA
14 Fishing gear : LURES
16 Texter’s “As I see it” : IMO
17 Sitcom pioneer in the first class of inductees to the Television Academy Hall of Fame : LUCILLE BALL
19 Rte. finder : GPS
20 Receipts : TAKE
21 Game with a spinoff called DOS : UNO
22 Milo of “Ulysses” : O’SHEA
24 Poetic before : ERE
25 Grand Ole Opry comedian for more than 50 years : MINNIE PEARL
28 Florence and Charlotte : CITIES
30 “Cats” poet : TS ELIOT
31 Lacks : HASN’T
32 Forest floor plant : MOSS
34 Flub : ERR
35 #2 on Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time : KEITH MOON
38 Humanities degs. : BAS
40 “Pencils down” : TIME
41 Assumed as fact : GIVEN
45 Assigned a new title : RENAMED
47 Recess : ALCOVE
48 Winner of 18 Grand Slam tennis titles from 1936 to 1940 : ALICE MARBLE
51 __-Mex cuisine : TEX
52 Mad Dog Radio host Chris : RUSSO
53 Unfashionable : OUT
54 “Mary Poppins” chimney sweep : BERT
55 Baltimore winter hrs. : EST
56 Like 17-, 25-, 35- and 48-Across? : WELL-ROUNDED
60 “Billions” airer, briefly : SHO
61 Stainless __ : STEEL
62 Mrs. Gorbachev : RAISA
63 Pewter component : TIN
64 Hot : SEXY
65 Like a fuzzy navel? : LINTY

Down

1 Pasadena engineering sch. : CALTECH
2 Display idea that’s a bit fishy? : AQUARIA
3 Sugar servings at a coffee bar : PACKETS
4 Kin of a Tony : OBIE
5 Muppet chimp __ Minella : SAL
6 “The Wife” Oscar nominee Close : GLENN
7 Apply, as lotion : RUB ON
8 The “E” in BCE : ERA
9 Salon goop : GEL
10 Result of much teasing? : BIG HAIR
11 Claudius or Nero : EMPEROR
12 Margarita preference : NO SALT
15 Calculus calculation : SLOPE
18 California’s San __ Obispo : LUIS
23 Of the moon : SELENIC
25 Dole (out) : METE
26 “Who’s there?” reply : IT’S ME
27 Pump name : ESSO
29 Squid organs : INK SACS
32 Crete peak: Abbr. : MT IDA
33 Electrical unit : OHM
36 One of an express lane’s 15 maximum : ITEM
37 Eye rudely : OGLE
38 “SNL” legend John : BELUSHI
39 “Friends” co-star : ANISTON
42 Elected : VOTED IN
43 Hillary’s conquest : EVEREST
44 Like fast UPS service : NEXT-DAY
45 Least available : RAREST
46 Siamese sounds : MEOWS
47 Choir voice : ALTO
49 Bulova rival : ROLEX
50 Husky : BURLY
54 __ B’rith : B’NAI
57 Aliens, briefly : ETS
58 Jeans brand : LEE
59 Link letters : URL

22 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 5 Aug 20, Wednesday”

  1. Had no idea who 48a was, so had to keep working around and l still can’t remember hearing that name. But it was a pretty good puzzle & theme. Took me about an hour. Not so on the ball today. Hah, be careful & safe.

  2. No errors, but I will admit to looking up a word for “husky”…then and
    only then did I figure out the theme. Actually knew most of the proper
    names this time…and that will date me for sure. Who could forget
    Minnie Pearl and her famous “how-Dee!”?

  3. I struggle a bit with these puzzles – usually about 80% completed. But I learn about some very interesting people like Alice Marble and Hedy Lamarr. Always something new to learn! Stay safe! 😊

  4. No Googles, no errors. Did not know ALICE MARBLE, RUSSO (both sports), or SAL. Haven’t watched the Muppets in ages, but think I should check them out. They always had humor for the adults caring for the kids.

  5. Okay puzzle. No surprises. Nothing spectacular. Got the theme pretty quickly. Puzzles not getting harder as the week progresses.

  6. 26:22 no errors…I spent a long time in the NW corner.
    “Billions” is a good show but if you don’t know the ins and outs of big business it can be very hard to follow sometimes.
    Stay safe😊

  7. 8:02, no errors. Got “Alice Marble” entirely from crosses but, of course, I will now remember her name forever (and … if you believe that one … have I got a deal for you … 😜).

    @Chris C (from yesterday) … I’ve watched about 3/4ths of “Burden of Dreams”. Fascinating!

    1. @Chris C … I finished watching “Burden of Dreams”. Thanks for recommending it! Final take: Kinski and Herzog were both mad (but different 😳). I’ve put “Fitzcarraldo” on my Netflix list. (It’s been a long time since I first saw it.)

  8. Wow, little rough for a Wednesday., it’s a Haight puzzle. Not for Glen. 4 minutes, wowza! No errors. Still took my 12+ minutes … Never heard of BIG HAIR??
    Be safe

  9. 9 mins 53 secs, no errors. Like anonymous, I put NEIL PEART in before KEITH MOON, figuring Moon would be rated higher. I wonder who Rolling Stone thinks #1 is/was? Bonham maybe? Or Peart? Copeland? to me, those are the four in the discussion…

    Wasn’t too happy to see MT IDA ending on a cross with ALICE MARBLE. Proper names are always a bad idea in combination. In fact, I’d say this grid was a bit heavy on the names: ANISTON, BELUSHI, O’SHEA, and the 4, theme names.

    BIG HAIR makes up for some of that with a little comic relief…

  10. Scratched and clawed for a satisfying 100%; thought the puzzle was harder
    than M and T. Pretty challenging and well rounded, like Lucy. Had to make
    several whiteovers.

    Stay safe and well, everybody.

  11. 9:46 no errors

    Figured out the theme in time for it to help, but struggled to nail down the NW corner.

  12. Kind of a tough Wednesday for me; took 14:33 on-line, with one lookup at the end to fix RUtSO. All kinds of things I didn’t know or never heard of: KINNEAR, ALICE MARBLE, RUSSO, SHO and SAL. I put in RatSO before fixing part of it for BELUSHI.

    I knew Keith Moon from having looked at the whole list about six months ago, along with viewing videos…great fun. Bonham definitely belongs as #1 and Moon #1a or #2. Also Ginger Baker at #3 is highly justified…just listen to “Crossroads” live. Never really listened to Rush so I can’t say there, but I’m a huge fan of James Brown’s drummer, Clyde Stubblefield. Here he is at his finest in Boston ’68: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vDXrN-90p0

    Also, big fan of Buddy Rich. I watched him live in Wichita ’74, when I was in the service. The way he made a simple, one bass drum, one tom tom kit sing was just amazing!!

  13. Greetings y’all!!🦆

    No errors. Kinda sad I’ve never heard of Alice Marble. Accomplished athlete and interesting life.

    Dirk– Buddy Rich played a kit that small once? Wow. He was amazing. FWIW– he thought Karen Carpenter was a great drummer and she was!! – altho I’m sure she didn’t make the list. 😐

    Be well ~~⚾️

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