LA Times Crossword 8 Aug 20, Saturday

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Constructed by: Peter A. Collins
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 7m 42s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Snatch, with “onto” : GLOM …

“Glom” is a slang term meaning “steal”, although it can also be used to mean “latch onto” when used as “glom onto”. The term probably comes from the Scots word “glam” meaning “to snatch at”.

14 Renaissance painter Guido : RENI

Guido Reni was an Italian painter from Bologna who was active in the first half of the 17th century. Reni’s most famous work is probably “Crucifixion of St. Peter”, an altarpiece commissioned in the early 1600s that is now on display in the Vatican.

16 Classic concert halls : ODEA

In ancient Greece an odeon (also “odeum”) was like a small theater, with “odeon” literally meaning a “building for musical competition”. Odea were used in both Greece and Rome for entertainments such as musical shows and poetry readings.

17 Letters followed by a colon : ATTN

Attention (attn.)

22 Scrap : MELEE

Our term “melee” comes from the French “mêlée”, and in both languages the word means “confused fight”.

23 Hoot? : DAMN

Some people don’t “give a hoot, give a damn”.

24 Borgia who was the son of Pope Alexander VI : CESARE

The Borgias were a papal family that was very prominent during the Renaissance in Europe. Two of the Borgias became popes, namely Pope Calixtus III and Pope Alexander VI. Pope Alexander VI had several children, including Cesare and Lucrezia Borgia. Cesare became a cardinal, and was the first cardinal to resign from the post. Lucrezia earned a reputation as a femme fatale, and as such turns up in many artworks, novels and movies.

31 Last Olds made : ALERO

The Oldsmobile Alero was the last car made by General Motors under the Oldsmobile brand. It was produced from 1999 to 2004.

32 Harry’s love : GINNY

In the “Harry Potter” series of books, Ginny Weasley is the sister of Harry’s friend, Ron Weasley. Late in the series, Harry and Ginny become boyfriend and girlfriend. It is revealed in the epilogue that the couple eventually get married and have three children.

33 Translate, perhaps : DUB

If voices needed to be altered on the soundtrack of a film, that means double the work as there needs to be a re-recording. “Dub” is short for “double”, and is a term we’ve been using since the late 1920s. The term has been extended to describe the adding of sound to an otherwise silent film or tape.

34 G.I. component: Abbr. : GOVT

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.

36 Homer Simpson’s mom : MONA

Mona Simpson is a character on “The Simpsons” that has been voiced by a number of actresses over the years, including the wonderful Glenn Close. Mona is Homer Simpson’s mother, and hence Bart’s grandmother. Mona is named for the author Mona Simpson, who is the younger sister of Apple founder Steve Jobs, and wife of “The Simpsons” writer Richard Appel.

37 “… __ the set of sun”: “Macbeth” : ERE

“That will be ere the set of sun” is a line from William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”. It is a line that is spoken by one of the three witches.

38 “Treasure Island” pirate Billy : BONES

I’d say that the most celebrated work from the pen of Robert Louis Stevenson (RLS) is “Treasure Island”, which was originally written as a series for a children’s magazine in 1881. I remember “Treasure Island” as the first “real” novel I read as a youngster …

40 Hall of Fame third baseman who spent 14 seasons with the Cubs : RON SANTO

Ron Santo was a professional baseball player most noted for his appearances as third baseman for the Chicago Cubs. Santo suffered diabetes, something he managed to keep to himself for most of his playing career. After he retired, the disease necessitated the amputation of both his legs and complications from diabetes eventually contributed to his death.

44 En __: on a streak, in slang : FUEGO

A sports player who is doing really well might be said to be “on fire”. Sometimes “on fire” is translated into Spanish and the person is said to be “en fuego”.

52 Bud competitor : MILLER LITE

The first light beer was produced by Chicago’s Meister Brau brewery in the sixties. Miller took over Meister Brau, reformulated the light beer using the same process and became the first of the big breweries to come out with a light beer, “Lite Beer from Miller” introduced in 1973. There really wasn’t a serious competitor to Miller Lite until Anheuser-Busch finally came up with a process and a product in 1982 that they called Bud Light.

53 Frankfurt article : EINE

Frankfurt is the fifth largest city in Germany. The city is more properly called Frankfurt am Main, to distinguish it from Frankfurt an der Oder, a town near the Polish border. Frankfurt is located on the Main River, hence the name.

55 Trucking allowances : TARES

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.

56 Big name in streaming players : ROKU

Roku is a manufacturer of digital media players that allow access to audio and video programming over the Internet that is shown on television. Roku was founded in Los Gatos, California in 2002 by Anthony Wood. Wood chose the company name “Roku” as it is the Japanese word for “six”, and Roku is the sixth company that Wood founded.

58 Hägar’s hound : SNERT

“Hägar the Horrible” is a comic strip that was created by the late Dik Browne and is now drawn by his son, Chris Browne. “Hägar the Terrible” (not “Horrible”) was the nickname given to Dik by his sons. The strip’s title character is a red-bearded Viking living on the Norwegian coast during the Middle Ages. Hägar lives with his overbearing wife Helga, his sensitive son Hamlet, his pretty daughter Honi, and his clever dog Snert.

59 Indirect contributor to Achilles’ vulnerable spot : STYX

Achilles is the protagonist in Homer’s “Iliad”. When Achilles was born, his mother attempted to make him immortal by dipping him into the River Styx. As he was held by the heel as he was immersed, this became the only vulnerable point on his body. Years later he was killed when a poisoned arrow struck him in the heel. That arrow was shot by Paris.

Down

1 What “g” might mean : GRAM

Today, the gram is defined as one thousandth of a kilogram, with the kilogram being equal to the mass of a physical sample preserved by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures. Prior to 1960, the gram was defined as the weight of a cubic centimeter of pure water (at the temperature of melting ice).

2 “Blade Runner 2049” actor Jared : LETO

Jared Leto is an actor and musician. In the world of music, Leto is the lead singer and rhythm guitarist for the rock band 30 Seconds to Mars. In the film world, one of his most critically acclaimed roles was that of a heroin addict in “Requiem for a Dream”. He also appeared in “American Psycho”, “Panic Room” and “Lord of War”. Leto won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his performance in 2013’s “Dallas Buyers Club”, which he portraying a transgender woman.

“Blade Runner 2049” is a 2017 sequel to 1982’s “Blade Runner”. Harrison Ford appears in both movies. Ford has stated that he is open to appearing in another sequel, about which there is a lot of chatter.

10 Musical start : DO RE MI

The sol-fa syllables are: do, re, mi, fa, sol, la & ti.

13 “The Sweetest Taboo” singer : SADE

Singer Sade’s real name is Helen Folasade Adu. Although born in Nigeria, Sade grew up and lives in the UK. She was the lead vocalist for the English group Sade, and adopted the name of the band. The band’s biggest hits were “Smooth Operator” (1984) and “The Sweetest Taboo” (1985).

21 “Quo Vadis” role : NERO

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.

“Quo Vadis” is an epic drama made in 1951 that is a film adaptation of the 1896 novel of the same name written by Henryk Sienkiewicz. At the top of the bill are Robert Taylor and Deborah Kerr, with Peter Ustinov playing Emperor Nero. There was also an uncredited extra making her first appearance on the screen, a young lady by the name of Sophia Loren.

24 Blazer or Cav : CAGER

In the early days of basketball, when a ball went out of bounds possession was awarded to the player who first retrieved the ball. This led to mad scuffles off the court, often involving spectators. As the game became more organized, courts were routinely “caged”, largely because of this out of bounds rule, to limit interaction with the crowd. It’s because of these cages that basketball players are sometimes referred to today as “cagers”.

The Trail Blazers are the NBA franchise in Portland, Oregon. The Blazers joined the league as an expansion team in 1970. A contest used to pick a team name came up with “Pioneers”, but this was dropped as it was already in use at Lewis & Clark College. Team management therefore opted for the fans’ second choice “Trail Blazers”.

The Cavaliers are the professional basketball team based in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavs joined the NBA as an expansion team in 1970.

25 Ecuadoran province once famous for its gold : EL ORO

El Oro is a coastal province in the south of Ecuador. El Oro (meaning “The Gold”) takes its name from the gold production industry. The province is also one of the biggest banana exporters in the world.

26 8-Down feature : SEVEN HILLS
(8D 26-Down’s city : ROME)

Supposedly, there were seven separate settlements on the top of seven hills east of the River Tiber, prior to the founding of the city of Rome. Tradition dictates that Romulus founded Rome on one of these hills, namely Palatine Hill, and the city came to encompass all seven existing settlements. The most famous hill in modern-day Rome is probably Vatican Hill, but it lies outside of the walled ancient city.

28 Word with red or army : … ANTS

Fire ants are stinging ants, and many species are known as red ants. Most stinging ants bite their prey and then spray acid on the wound. The fire ant, however, bites to hold on and then injects an alkaloid venom from its abdomen, creating a burning sensation in humans who have been nipped.

Army ants are a collection of over two hundred different species of ants. Each species is known for aggressively raiding a certain area en masse, foraging for food. Army ants also stay on the move, never building permanent nests.

29 Beverage unit : OUNCE

The original fluid ounce was the volume of a particular liquid that weighed one ounce. The liquid used in Scotland was water. South of the border, the English used an ounce of wine.

30 Blazer or Cav : NBAER

The National Basketball Association (NBA) was founded in 1946 as the Basketball Association of America (BAA). The NBA name was adopted in 1949 following a merger with the rival National Basketball League (NBL). Of the four major sports leagues in North America, the NBA has the highest average annual salary per player.

36 2019 Tom Hanks role : MR ROGERS

“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” is a 2019 film that is based on a 1998 “Esquire” article written by Tom Junod. The movie stars Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers, creator and host of the children’s TV show “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood”. Matthew Rhys plays Lloyd Vogel, a character loosely based on Junod, author of the original article. Good film …

46 Ally Financial Inc., once : GMAC

“GMAC” stands for “General Motors Acceptance Corporation”. General Motors has only a small stake in GMAC now, and indeed the name has been officially changed to Ally Financial. You and I, we are the biggest shareholders in GMAC/Ally today, since the US government gave the bank $12.5 billion to bail it out in 2008-2009.

47 Full of smarm : OILY

The word “smarm” describes insincere flattery. The term comes from a colloquial word “smalm” that was used in the mid-19th century to mean “smear the hair with some sort of styling product”.

48 Eggy dessert : FLAN

Flan (also “crème caramel”) is a delicious dessert comprising a molded custard topped with a clear caramel sauce. The related crème brûlée is a dessert made from molded custard with a hard, burnt caramel layer on top.

49 Cut-up : RIOT

A person who is a cutup or a riot is hilariously funny.

51 First French prime : DEUX

In French, half of “deux” (two) is “un, une” (one).

A prime number is a number greater than 1 that can only be divided evenly by 1 and itself. There are still some unanswered questions involving prime numbers, perhaps most notably Goldbach’s Conjecture. This conjecture dates back to the 1740s and is assumed to be true, but has never been proven. It states that every even integer greater than 2 can be expressed as the sum of two prime numbers.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Snatch, with “onto” : GLOM …
5 Low dams : WEIRS
10 Party lineup : DIPS
14 Renaissance painter Guido : RENI
15 Terse denial : AM NOT!
16 Classic concert halls : ODEA
17 Letters followed by a colon : ATTN
18 Joined a union : GOT MARRIED
20 Making a noticeable difference : MOVING THE NEEDLE
22 Scrap : MELEE
23 Hoot? : DAMN
24 Borgia who was the son of Pope Alexander VI : CESARE
27 Was effusive with flattery : LAID IT ON
31 Last Olds made : ALERO
32 Harry’s love : GINNY
33 Translate, perhaps : DUB
34 G.I. component: Abbr. : GOVT
35 39-Across numbers : CENTS
36 Homer Simpson’s mom : MONA
37 “… __ the set of sun”: “Macbeth” : ERE
38 “Treasure Island” pirate Billy : BONES
39 It’s often on a tag : PRICE
40 Hall of Fame third baseman who spent 14 seasons with the Cubs : RON SANTO
42 Trade : BARTER
43 Sting, say : HURT
44 En __: on a streak, in slang : FUEGO
46 Not staying connected, in a way : GOING OFF THE GRID
52 Bud competitor : MILLER LITE
53 Frankfurt article : EINE
54 For-care connector : ALL I
55 Trucking allowances : TARES
56 Big name in streaming players : ROKU
57 Skin malady : CYST
58 Hägar’s hound : SNERT
59 Indirect contributor to Achilles’ vulnerable spot : STYX

Down

1 What “g” might mean : GRAM
2 “Blade Runner 2049” actor Jared : LETO
3 Airing : ON TV
4 Quick-stop shop : MINIMART
5 Many a golfer’s pre-swing move : WAGGLE
6 Avoid being flat? : EMOTE
7 At great risk : IN THE LINE OF FIRE
8 26-Down’s city : ROME
9 Subs : STAND-INS
10 Musical start : DO RE MI
11 Innocent response : I DIDN’T DO IT
12 Take (off) : PEEL
13 “The Sweetest Taboo” singer : SADE
19 Good to go : READY
21 “Quo Vadis” role : NERO
24 Blazer or Cav : CAGER
25 Ecuadoran province once famous for its gold : EL ORO
26 8-Down feature : SEVEN HILLS
28 Word with red or army : … ANTS
29 Beverage unit : OUNCE
30 Blazer or Cav : NBAER
32 Refined chap : GENT
35 Twists : CONTORTS
36 2019 Tom Hanks role : MR ROGERS
38 Canal craft : BARGE
39 Document part : PAGE
41 Bright, as a patio : SUNLIT
42 Urgent request : BEHEST
45 Say : UTTER
46 Ally Financial Inc., once : GMAC
47 Full of smarm : OILY
48 Eggy dessert : FLAN
49 Cut-up : RIOT
50 Black : INKY
51 First French prime : DEUX

32 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 8 Aug 20, Saturday”

  1. 18:42, no errors. Still in “can’t do crossword” territory and can’t say I’m happy… Can’t complain about the offering today, though.

    1. And I didn’t DNF anything today like the two (Newsday, WSJ) I did yesterday. Even got the Sat Newsday entirely right (though in a little less than 2 hours).

      1. @Glenn …

        You’re probably sick and tired of my comments, but … of course you can do crosswords! But, like everyone else, you have strengths and weaknesses … 🙂.

        It has seemed to me that the difficulty level of the Friday Newsday puzzles is slowly increasing; yesterday’s (21:56, no errors) was no exception … and quite difficult. The entries ISRAIR, STIC, LEGIST, ILLO, NEOS, GRANDCAT, KARACHI, WINN, and ETON were all a bit edgy for one reason or another. My ex, like the queen, has a WELSH Corgi; otherwise, that might have been problematical. HOO-HA is slangy (and perhaps regional?), but it fit. Not an easy puzzle, by any means, and one that involved a fair amount of head-scratching.

        I didn’t have much trouble with yesterday’s WSJ (14:39, no errors), though it also involved some guesses, like PAXIL, AGGRO, RAOUL Dufy, and CRUNK (CRUNK??!!). I did it carefully, so as to have a clean copy to look at (but, so far, I have absolutely no idea about the meta).

        And … what can one say about the Saturday Stumper??!! At the half-hour mark, I had filled in half a dozen answers and was ready to quit! After that, things did pick up and, by some miracle, I finished, error-free, in a little less than an hour; nevertheless, I would say that it was a bear and that my hat is off to anyone who could finish it. The clue “Plant kingdom/animal kingdom connectors” for “BEES” is pretty strange (so strange, that I just re-checked to make sure that’s what it says in the answer key). And I have no idea how “Guy from Charlottesville” gets you “ARLO”. (ARLO Guthrie? ARLO and Janis? Some other ARLO I’ve never heard of?) My Google research has not turned up an appropriate ARLO … 😳.

        1. No I don’t mind reading your comments…

          Saturday Newsday seems to start having a habit of including at least one cryptic clue. That one was it. “Guy from Charlottesville” = chARLOttesville

          1. Oh. My. Thank you! … 😜.

            In my defense: When I Googled “Arlo in Charlottesville”, I got a bunch of hits about various concerts he gave at the Paramount Theater there and I spent some time fixated on the notion that he had some sort of connection with the place. Sometimes, one’s mind gets stuck in a track and just won’t leave it … 😜.

  2. LAT: About 30 minutes with 2 letters resulting in 4 incorrect answers. My major quibble is “waggle” instead of “wiggle” and “am not” instead of “I’m not,” the apostrophe notwithstanding. Never heard of Jared Leto or Guido Reni; I substituted an i for the e in both last names.

  3. I didn’t know anything about golf, so I had “wiggle” which threw me
    off a lot in that section. And I had “get married” instead of “got
    married”….not paying enough attention to the clues I guess. Had the
    long answers right.

    Maybe I’ll do better tomorrow.

  4. Puzzle was very doable for a Saturday. The long answers were easy enough to figure out. I originally had wiggle instead of waggle (I dont golf) and I needed the crosses to get weirs. Whenever there is a pro basketball team clue it can be one of two answers: nbaer or cager. So that was a double gimme. Looking forward to Sunday’s entry.

  5. Oh gosh.. Thought I did good but after the final tally, at least 4 errors.. Mostly centered around 23A… I was thinking one cares or gives a DARN. that threw me off. Then I went for VIPS on 10A.. Then it got worse. 10D became VORERO … I had COSTS for 35A.. So that lead me to IN THE RISE OF FIRE for 7D.. I guess I Thought I was on a roll in my mind .. Until I came to the answers… Then throw in a WIGGLE instead of a WAGGLE.. IMNOT still fit for 15A. I’m taking that one.. You say WAGGLE , I say WIGGLE… Never golfed in my life and don’t follow it so I’m taking that one to the proverbial bank of NAILED IT! (drop mic).

      1. @Rich – If he’s taking a mulligan does that mean he’s in a stew? ;-D>

        Got the puzzle solved with a plethora of strike overs leaving my grid looking as if the Exxon Valdez ran into it.

        On to the 21 X 21 WSJ later today.

  6. 16:11, and, being a non-golfer, I also had WIGGLE instead of WAGGLE. A little research turns up a golfer named Matthew Wolff who is said to have indulged in a “Wolff wiggle” and I would therefore be tempted to argue that an alternate answer is justified, but the clue is “Many a golfer‘s pre-swing move” and “waggle” turns up in a whole lot more references (going all the way back to Ben Hogan), so I see no legitimate way to wiggle (or waggle) out of accepting my error … 😜.

  7. Thought this was a mish-mash of leftovers… I LOVED Jared Leto in Dallas Buyers Club for which he won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar! The Oldsmobile reference should have been OMEGA – get it? The LAST one made… Owned one in ’75 for a few years until I hit a deer! Stay safe!

  8. For those here who do the WSJ daily grid I got a kick out of today’s 21 X 21 pun for 67 Across whose clue read “Officiant at Boris and Natasha’s wedding?” for which the answer was “Blesser of two evils”. That definitely got a laugh out of me. Kudos and a crossword tip of the cap to Andrea Carla Michaels & Tony Orbach.

  9. Two errors because I also fell into the wiggle/waggle trap. I play golf and have never heard of a waggle. Oh well, I’ll take the double bogey.

  10. 39:47 no errors…I have two more words to add to my ever growing list of “never heard of” 44&56A…if we had to pay by the word some of us would be broke😊😊
    Stay safe

    1. Amazing to me how many of these are consistently “never heard of”s for me. But part of crosswording is learning how to work around those things. I admire your persistence on these things.

  11. My hat is off to all of you who solved this puzzle. This was a big DNF for me, with many clues that left me completely in the dark; too many PPN’s, perhaps? Other clues simply left me clueless. It is clear to me that I am still in the learning phase of crosswords; even though I often whip through these offerings without errors, this one kept me humble.

  12. 22:38 5 errors when I hit “Check”.

    There’s a fair number of names in here that I learned from doing crosswords. Such as Sade, the Alero, and Snert. Today I add Guido Reni. Who knows whether he’ll come in handy again.

  13. My smart son-in-law helped us, but had to leave early, so we were
    left with another DNF. Waggle was one of the only ones I was
    completely comfortable with, being a golfer for 70 years, part
    of that time as a teaching pro. Neither bragging nor complaining.

    I did solve the Wonderword and the Jumble words (not the answer) as
    my part in the kindergarten section.

    On to Monday and better days.

    Stay safe and well, everybody.

  14. I wanted to add something about the waggle’s part in a golf swing.

    The waggle is not just a mindless breaking of the wrists to loosen
    the golfer up. The back waggle is a miniature backswing or dry run
    that shows the golfer the path the clubhead is going to take on the
    backswing. The forward waggle returns the clubhead back to and
    on beyond the ball ON THE SAME PATH (critical). The grip and
    setup have to be correct in order to be able to do this.

    It should be noted that the correct swing path is at an angle and
    to the right of the intended line of flight. If a baseball player wants
    to hit the ball over second base, he swings on a path between first
    and second base. Watch the golf pros on TV from the back, esp.
    on short shots. They set up way right, but the ball goes straight.

    Golf 101 that has nothing to do with puzzles.

  15. Hey y’all!! I didn’t do the Saturday puzzle but I always drop in for the comments – entertaining and fun today!!🤗

    Dirk from Friday – re baseball season not playing through due to covid – I have thought the same thing, altho I’ve been a little more hopeful the last few days, as games proceed and (I think) fewer infections arise. Don’t know if you saw the Dodgers-Giants game tonight….poor Johnny Cueto!!🙁

  16. Too tough for me today; got the bottom 2/3, except for parts of the middle, but the top 1/3 was only sparsely filled in. Never heard of RENI, GINNY, LETO or RON SANTO.

    Oh well…have a good weekend everyone.

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