LA Times Crossword 22 Sep 20, Tuesday

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Constructed by: George Jasper
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Space Invaders

Themed answers each include a hidden word, a word that often follows “SPACE”:

  • 51A Iconic video game since 1978, and a hint to the circled letters : SPACE INVADERS
  • 20A Top line of a lawyer’s solicitation ad : NEED LEGAL HELP? (giving “Space Needle”)
  • 31A Gamer’s coin : ARCADE TOKEN (giving “space cadet”)
  • 39A Pesky V-formation fliers : CANADA GEESE (giving “space age”)

Read on, or jump to …
… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 4m 42s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Web site? : ATTIC

An attic or loft is a room or space located below the roof of a building. The term “attic” is a shortened form of “attic story”, the uppermost story or level of a house. This term “attic story” originally applied to a low, decorative level built on top of the uppermost story behind a building’s decorative facade. This use of decoration at the top of buildings was common in ancient Greece, and was particularly important in the Attica style. That Attica style was so called because it originated in the historical region of Attica that encompassed the city of Athens. And that’s how our attics are linked to ancient Greece.

6 Guitarist Atkins : CHET

Chet Atkins was a guitarist famous for playing “smooth” country music that crossed over into the genre of lighter pop music.

10 Director Preminger : OTTO

Otto Preminger was noted for directing films that pushed the envelope in terms of subject matter, at least in the fifties and sixties. Great examples would be 1955’s “The Man with the Golden Arm” that dealt with drug addiction, 1959’s “Anatomy of a Murder” that dealt with rape, and 1962’s “Advise and Consent” that dealt with homosexuality. If you’ve seen these films, you’ll have noticed that the references are somewhat indirect and disguised, in order to get past the censors.

14 Composer called “The March King” : SOUSA

John Philip Sousa was a composer and conductor from Washington, D.C. Sousa was well known for his patriotic marches and earned himself the nickname “The American March King”. He served as a member of the US Marine Band from 1868 to 1875, and after leaving the Marines learned to conduct and compose. One of the Sousa compositions that is well-known around the world is called “The Liberty Bell”, a tune used as the musical theme for BBC Television’s “Monty Python’s Flying Circus”. Sousa also wrote “Semper Fidelis”, which is the official march of the US Marine Corps.

16 Brunch, for one : MEAL

Our word “brunch” is a portmanteau of “breakfast” and “lunch”. The term “brunch” was coined as student slang in Oxford, England in the late 1890s. However, “brunch” described a combined meal closer to the breakfast hour, and the term “blunch” was used for a meal closer to lunchtime.

17 Madison Ave. pro : AD REP

Madison Avenue became the center of advertising in the US in the twenties, and serves as the backdrop to the great TV drama “Mad Men”. There aren’t many advertising agencies left on Madison Avenue these days though, as most have moved to other parts of New York City. The street takes its name from Madison Square, which is bounded on one side by Madison Avenue. The square in turn takes its name from James Madison, the fourth President of the United States.

18 “Night” author 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.

19 Saharan : ARID

The name “Sahara” means “greatest desert” in Arabic. The Sahara is just that, a great desert covering almost 4 million square miles of Northern Africa. That’s almost the size of the United States.

20 Top line of a lawyer’s solicitation ad : NEED LEGAL HELP? (giving “Space Needle”)

The famed Seattle landmark called the Space Needle was built for the 1962 World’s Fair. It stands at a height of 605 feet, and was once the tallest structure west of the Mississippi River.

23 Seafood platter accessory : 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 …

25 AFL partner : CIO

The American Federation of Labor (AFL) was founded in 1886, making it one of the first federations of unions in the country. Over time the AFL became dominated by craft unions, unions representing skilled workers of particular disciplines. In the early thirties, John L. Lewis led a movement within the AFL to organize workers by industry, believing this would be more effective for the members. But the craft unions refused to budge, so Lewis set up a rival federation of unions in 1932, the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO). The two federations became bitter rivals for over two decades until finally merging in 1955 to form the AFL-CIO.

29 Olds luxury car : TORONADO

The Oldsmobile Toronado was a luxury car produced by GM from 1966 to 1992.

31 Gamer’s coin : ARCADE TOKEN (giving “space cadet”)

Our word “arcade” comes from the Latin “arcus” meaning “arc”. The first arcades were passages made from a series of arches. This could be an avenue of trees, and eventually any covered avenue. I remember arcades lined with shops and stores when I was growing up on the other side of the Atlantic. Arcades came to be lined with lots of amusements, resulting in amusement arcades and video game arcades.

The expression “space cadet” is used to describe someone who is eccentric and disconnected from reality. It may even imply that the person is a user of hallucinogens. The phrase has been around since the sixties, and may be derived from the science fiction TV show “Tom Corbett, Space Cadet” which aired in the fifties.

33 Bit of ice hockey deception : DEKE

A deke, also known as a dangle, is a technique used to get past an opponent in ice hockey. “Deke” is a colloquial shortening of the word “decoy”.

34 SUV’s “U,” briefly : UTE

“SUV” is an initialism standing for “sports utility vehicle”, and is a term that was introduced by our marketing friends. Using the phrase “sports utility vehicle” was a very clever way to get us to pay a lot of money for what was essentially a station wagon on a truck chassis, or at least it was back then.

39 Pesky V-formation fliers : CANADA GEESE (giving “space age”)

The Canada goose has quite a distinctive coloring, with a black head and neck broken up by a white “chinstrap”. They thrive in parks that are frequented by humans, and are so successful that they are considered pests by some.

Apparently, birds that fly in a V-formation do so for a couple of reasons. One is that it makes for efficient flight and conserves energy. The leading bird gets no advantage, but every following bird gets to “slipstream” a little. It has been noted that the lead bird drops to the back of the formation when he/she gets fatigued. It’s also thought that the flock can stick together more easily when in formation, so it is more difficult to lose someone along the way.

47 Gold and silver : METALS

Gold is a metallic chemical element with the symbol Au. Gold is extremely unreactive. Silver and other base metals dissolve in nitric acid, and so testing an unknown sample with nitric acid can confirm the presence of gold. This assaying practise gave rise to the figurative use of the term “acid test” to describe any definitive test.

The chemical symbol for the element silver is “Ag”, which comes from the Latin word for silver, which is “argentum”.

48 Rhythmic Ravel classic : BOLERO

Maurice Ravel’s “Boléro” is a remarkable piece of music that has a very insistent theme that just builds and builds, with instruments being added to the mix as the piece develops. Famously, “Boléro” played a significant role in the 1979 film “10” starring Bo Derek, Dudley Moore and Julie Andrews. Not a bad movie …

49 Its symbol is Sn : TIN

The Latin word for tin is “stannum”, and so tin’s atomic symbol is “Sn”. One of the ores used as a source of tin is “stannite”.

50 “Breaking Bad” org. : DEA

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)

The AMC drama “Breaking Bad” is a well-written show about a high school teacher stricken by lung cancer who turns to a life of crime to make money. It turns out that the teacher has a talent for making high-quality crystal meth. The show was created by Vince Gilligan who had spent many years as a producer and writer of “The X-Files”. There is a “Breaking Bad” spin-off show running on AMC called “Better Call Saul” that focuses on the life of lawyer Saul Goodman. To be honest, I enjoyed “Better Call Saul” even more than the original show …

51 Iconic video game since 1978, and a hint to the circled letters : SPACE INVADERS

Space Invaders is one of my favorite video games. It is truly a classic from the good old days (not that I play video games anymore). When Space Invaders was first released in video arcades in Japan in 1978, it was so popular that it caused a shortage of 100-yen coins.

55 “Garfield” dog : ODIE

Jon Arbuckle is a fictional character, and the owner of Odie from Jim Davis’s comic strip “Garfield”. Garfield is Arbuckle’s orange tabby cat. Odie is his less-than-smart beagle.

60 “Ant-Man” star Paul : RUDD

I think Paul Rudd is a very talented actor. He has played a variety of roles in movies but is probably best known on television for playing Phoebe Buffay’s boyfriend and then husband on the sitcom “Friends”.

In the Marvel universe, Ant-Man has been the superhero persona of three different fictional characters: Hank Pym, Scott Lang and Eric O’Grady. In the 2015 film “Ant-Man”, Michael Douglas plays Hank Pym, and Paul Rudd plays Scott Lang.

62 Developer of 51-Across : ATARI
(51 Iconic video game since 1978, and a hint to the circled letters : SPACE INVADERS)

Founded in 1972, electronics and video game manufacturer Atari was once the fastest-growing company in US history. However, Atari never really recovered from the video game industry crash of 1983.

63 Big name in speakers : BOSE

Bose Corporation was founded in 1964 by Amar G. Bose, and is a company that specializes in manufacture of audio equipment.

65 Highest world capital city : LA PAZ

The administrative capital of Bolivia, La Paz, is officially named Nuestra Senora de La Paz (Our Lady of Peace). La Paz is the seat of the Bolivian government, even though the constitutional capital of the country is Sucre.

Down

2 “The Fox and the Hound” fox : TOD

Disney’s 1981 animated feature “The Fox and the Hound” is based on a novel of the same name by Daniel P. Mannix. Both the novel and movie tell the tale of a young fox (Tod) and a young hound (Copper) who are good friends. The fox and hound struggle to maintain their friendship as they grow older, even as their animal instincts kick in and social pressures demand that they become adversaries. Heavy stuff!

5 Provincetown’s peninsula : CAPE COD

Cape Cod is indeed named after the fish. It was first called Cape Cod by English navigator Bartholomew Gosnold in 1602 as his men caught so many fish there.

Provincetown is located at the very tip of Cape Cod. As a major vacation destination, Provincetown has a summer population of up to 60,000 people, dropping to under 3,000 off season. The land now called Provincetown was the original “Cape Cod” back in the early 1600s. It wasn’t until much later that the Cape Cod name was applied to the entire region.

6 R&B singer Green : CEELO

“CeeLo Green” is the stage name of rapper Thomas DeCarlo Callaway. Apparently Green is one of the coaches for the contestants on the singing TV show “The Voice”. That’s all I need to know …

7 In good shape : HALE

Both of the words “hale” and “healthy” derive from the Old English “hal” meaning “healthy”.

8 Vaper’s smoke, for short : E-CIG

An electronic cigarette (also called an “e-cigarette”) is a battery-powered device that resembles a real cigarette. The e-cigarette vaporizes a solution that contains nicotine, forming a vapor that resembles smoke. The vapor is inhaled in a process called “vaping”, delivering nicotine into the body. The assumption is that an e-cigarette is healthier than a regular cigarette as the inhaled vapor is less harmful than inhaled smoke. But, that may not be so …

9 Shakespeare’s Globe, e.g. : THEATRE

The Globe Theatre was built in London in 1599, and was used mainly for staging works by William Shakespeare and his theater company called the Lord Chamberlain’s Men. The theater was destroyed by fire in 1613. A second Globe was built on the site a year later, and it remained open until 1642. The original theater was reconstructed on a nearby site by the Thames and opened in 1997. I had the privilege of seeing a fabulous performance of “As You Like It” in Shakespeare’s Globe (as the new theater is called) about a decade ago. Seeing a play in that remarkable theater is tremendous entertainment, much recommended for anyone visiting London.

10 Certain Nebraskan : OMAHAN

Omaha is the largest city in the state of Nebraska. It is located on the Missouri River, about 10 miles north of the mouth of the Platte River. When Nebraska was still a territory Omaha was its capital, but when Nebraska achieved statehood the capital was moved to the city of Lincoln.

11 Mother in Calcutta : TERESA

Mother Teresa was born in 1910 in the city that is now called Skopje, the capital of Macedonia. At birth she was given the name Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu (“Gonxha” means “little flower” in Albanian). She left home at the age of 18 and joined the Sisters of Loreto, and headed to Loreto Abbey in Rathfarnham in Dublin, Ireland in order to learn English. Her goal was to teach in India, and English was the language used there for instruction by the nuns. After Mother Teresa passed away in 1997 she was beatified by Pope John Paul II. She was canonized by Pope Francis in 2016, and is now known as Saint Teresa of Calcutta.

22 Storied “Fountain of Youth” seeker Ponce de ___ : LEON

Juan Ponce de León was a famous Spanish explorer and conquistador. Ponce de León led the Europeans to Florida, and it was he who gave the state its name (Spanish for “Flowery Land”). He was injured on his last voyage to Florida, supposedly by a poisoned arrow, and died from his wound in Havana, Cuba.

The legend of the Fountain of Youth gained a lot of traction in the 1500s because a story developed that the Spanish explorer Ponce de León traveled to what is now Florida in search of the legendary spring.

23 Rosary sphere : BEAD

The Rosary is a set of prayer beads used in the Roman Catholic tradition. The name “Rosary” comes from the Latin “rosarium”, the word for a “rose garden” or a “garland of roses”. The term is used figuratively, in the sense of a “garden of prayers”.

24 With respect to, in a memo : IN RE

The term “in re” is Latin, and is derived from “in” (in) and “res” (thing, matter). “In re” literally means “in the matter”, and is used to mean “in regard to” or “in the matter of”.

28 Fannie __: mortgage nickname : MAE

The Federal National Mortgage Association is commonly called “Fannie Mae”, a play on the initialism FNMA. Fannie Mae was founded during the Great Depression as part of President Roosevelt’s New Deal.

36 “D’oh!” gesture : HEAD SLAP

“The Simpsons” is one of the most successful programs produced by the Fox Broadcasting Company. Homer Simpson’s catchphrase is “D’oh!”, which became such a famous exclamation that it has been included in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) since 2001. “D’oh!” can be translated as “I should have thought of that!”

37 __ of Man : ISLE

The Isle of Man is a large island located in the middle of the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. I used to spend a lot of time there in my youth, and a very interesting place it is indeed. The Isle of Man is classed as a British Crown Dependency and isn’t part of the United Kingdom at all. It is self-governing and has its own parliament called the Tynwald. The Tynwald was created in AD 979 and is arguably the oldest continuously-running parliament in the world. The inhabitants of the island speak English, although they do have their own language called Manx, which is very similar to Irish Gaeilge and Scottish Gaelic. And then there are those Manx cats, the ones without any tails. I’ve seen lots of them, and can attest that they are indeed found all over the island.

38 Arizona city or landform : MESA

The city of Mesa, Arizona is in effect a suburb of Phoenix. The original settlement of non-Native Americans was founded by Daniel Webster Jones who led a Mormon group from St. George, Utah. The settlement was first called Jonesville, then Fort Utah and eventually Lehi. A second group of Mormons arrived and formed a settlement on top of a nearby mesa. It was this use of a mesa that eventually gave the city its current name.

44 Sonny and Cher, e.g. : POP DUO

Singing duo Sonny & Cher started out in the mid-1960s as backing singers working with Phil Spector. The couple married in 1964, and the next year released their breakthrough numbers “Baby Don’t Go” and “I Got You Babe”. Sonny and Cher divorced in 1975, and dissolved their act that same year. Cher moved onto a successful solo career that continues to this day. Sonny Bono was elected as a US Congressman for California in 1995. Sadly, he didn’t finish his term in the House as he died from injuries sustained in a skiing accident in 1998.

45 Grunge fashion staples : PLAIDS

Tartan is sometimes called “plaid” over here in the US, and is a word not used in the same sense outside of this country. In Scotland, a “plaid” is a blanket or a tartan cloth slung over the shoulder.

Grunge fashion originated in the eighties in Seattle, along with the grunge music genre. The fashion style is associated with a “thrift-store look” and involves a lot of plaid.

52 Alaskan gold rush town : NOME

The Nome Gold Rush of 1899-1909 was remarkable in the ease that the precious metal could be gathered. Many prospectors were finding gold lying in beach sand and were making their fortunes without even having to make a claim.

53 Blood conduit : VEIN

Arteries are vessels that carry blood away from the heart, and veins are vessels carrying blood to the heart.

54 British singer __ Ora : RITA

Rita Ora is a British singer who was born Rita Sahatçiu in Pristina, Yugoslavia to Albanian parents. The family name “Sahatçiu” comes from a Turkish word meaning “watchmaker”. Rita’s parents changed their name to make it easier to pronounce. So, the family name morphed from “watchmaker” to “time”, which is “ora” in Albanian.

58 __ of Good Feelings : ERA

The Era of Good Feelings lasted from about 1816 to 1824, during the administration of President James Monroe. The term described the feeling of bipartisanship that permeated politics at that time, largely due to President Monroe deliberately downplaying differences between the parties in Washington. One can only dream …

59 Jazz trumpeter Gillespie, familiarly : DIZ

Dizzy Gillespie was a musician from Cheraw, South Carolina who was best known as a jazz trumpeter. Gillespie was also known for playing a “bent” trumpet, one with the bell projecting upwards at a 45-degree angle. The unusual configuration of the instrument came about accidentally, when a pair of dancers fell on it during a birthday party. The damage to the instrument caused a change in the tone which Gillespie liked, so he left it as is.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Web site? : ATTIC
6 Guitarist Atkins : CHET
10 Director Preminger : OTTO
14 Composer called “The March King” : SOUSA
15 Per person : EACH
16 Brunch, for one : MEAL
17 Madison Ave. pro : AD REP
18 “Night” author Wiesel : ELIE
19 Saharan : ARID
20 Top line of a lawyer’s solicitation ad : NEED LEGAL HELP? (giving “Space Needle”)
23 Seafood platter accessory : BIB
25 AFL partner : CIO
26 Advertising come-on : TEASER
27 Make beloved : ENAMOR
29 Olds luxury car : TORONADO
31 Gamer’s coin : ARCADE TOKEN (giving “space cadet”)
33 Bit of ice hockey deception : DEKE
34 SUV’s “U,” briefly : UTE
35 Leveling device : SHIM
39 Pesky V-formation fliers : CANADA GEESE (giving “space age”)
43 Thumbs-up : APPROVAL
47 Gold and silver : METALS
48 Rhythmic Ravel classic : BOLERO
49 Its symbol is Sn : TIN
50 “Breaking Bad” org. : DEA
51 Iconic video game since 1978, and a hint to the circled letters : SPACE INVADERS
55 “Garfield” dog : ODIE
56 Executes : DOES
57 Hot under the collar : RILED
60 “Ant-Man” star Paul : RUDD
61 Let off, as steam : EMIT
62 Developer of 51-Across : ATARI
63 Big name in speakers : BOSE
64 Reject as false : DENY
65 Highest world capital city : LA PAZ

Down

1 “__ matter of fact … ” : AS A
2 “The Fox and the Hound” fox : TOD
3 Retrace one’s steps : TURN BACK
4 “Aha!” : I SEE!
5 Provincetown’s peninsula : CAPE COD
6 R&B singer Green : CEELO
7 In good shape : HALE
8 Vaper’s smoke, for short : E-CIG
9 Shakespeare’s Globe, e.g. : THEATRE
10 Certain Nebraskan : OMAHAN
11 Mother in Calcutta : TERESA
12 Followed, as a suspect : TAILED
13 Grizzled veteran : OLD PRO
21 Desperate, as straits : DIRE
22 Storied “Fountain of Youth” seeker Ponce de ___ : LEON
23 Rosary sphere : BEAD
24 With respect to, in a memo : IN RE
28 Fannie __: mortgage nickname : MAE
29 Wreck completely : TOTAL
30 Signed off on : OKED
32 Casserole fish : TUNA
35 Ready-go link : SET
36 “D’oh!” gesture : HEAD SLAP
37 __ of Man : ISLE
38 Arizona city or landform : MESA
39 Apple center : CORE
40 Steered clear of : AVOIDED
41 In the center of : AMID
42 Colonel’s aspiration, perhaps : GENERAL
43 Soak up : ABSORB
44 Sonny and Cher, e.g. : POP DUO
45 Grunge fashion staples : PLAIDS
46 Ebb : RECEDE
49 Evoking a “Yum!” : TASTY!
52 Alaskan gold rush town : NOME
53 Blood conduit : VEIN
54 British singer __ Ora : RITA
58 __ of Good Feelings : ERA
59 Jazz trumpeter Gillespie, familiarly : DIZ

21 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 22 Sep 20, Tuesday”

  1. 6:26, no errors. From the looks of it, I started to enter “A POP” before “EACH” and “VENT“ before “EMIT”, but neither misstep lasted long.

    And, once again I’m writing this on a gossamer slip of virtual paper and casting it into a digital sea, in hopes that it will mysteriously reappear in a few hours … 😜

  2. Also had ADman before ADREP.

    This was difficult due to the blurry print job on my paper. As it is,because of my age (not just a number), I often have to compare before and after clue numbers to determine the clue numbers as they are so small; so, this was a giant step harder.

    No errors or Googles, but many unknowns: DEKE (thought that was a fraternity man), LAPAZ, TOD (sounds interesting), RITA, PLAID. Scotsmen also call that a “plaidie.”

    I don’t think Upstate New Yorkers find CANADA GEESE pesky. We often set up little parks, even near restaurants, to feed them on their trip. And the wonderful sound! A sign of the change of seasons. Whenever someone calls them Canadian Geese, we point out they don’t need a passport.

  3. We are back from our three-week evacuation and it was
    some adventure. We spent one week in Baton Rouge, one
    week in Natchez, MS at a camp, a third week back in BR
    and one night in Lake Charles, all free lodging at our two
    daughters’ homes. We then got power back and are home.

    You should see the debris here; the Category 4 hurricane came
    right over us and the wind gusted to 150 mph. I would have
    liked to have heard it, but glad we weren’t here. We had no damage
    to the house, but lost 5 trees. Our close neighbor lost 20!

    Only got to work a few puzzles, but stayed in the 90 to 100%
    range. Good for geezers.

    Hope you are all well. Keep up the virus-protection measures.

    1. Only people I know that call ’em “UTEs” are crossword constructors.

      Same as calling cucumbers “CUKEs” – and yes you’ll see that in crosswords.

  4. No errors at the end, but started out with quite a few of the same
    miscues as some of the other commenters: i.e. adman for adrep
    and Coronado instead of Toronado, etc., but a good puzzle over all.

    I think this will appear in a few hours….I hope.

  5. Typical Tuesday “no-peek” puzzle. Did not look at the long clues until puzzle was complete. When Space Invaders was complete (finally) got the theme. As Gerry Marsden (of Gerry and the Pacemakers) would say… “I Like It, I Like It”

  6. 8 mins 12 secs, and no errors. Jealous of all these sub-5-minute solves I’m seeing so regularly now. I just can’t get there, and this year, I rarely find myself between 5 and 6 minutes on the easy Monday and Tuesday grids.

  7. Hi folks!!🦆

    John, wonderful to hear from you! I’m very glad that you’re back and your house is okay. Shame about the trees! 😯

    Good puzzle today. I liked the diversity of the fill. Just couldn’t get out of the NW!!! I had APHID for ATTIC and stuck to it; finally had to peek for that one. I guess I was thinking “web SIGHT” instead of web site. Then for some reason I thought Providence instead of Provincetown!! Finally figured that out. No errors other than the ATTIC incident…..

    DODGERS WON THE NL WEST!! ⚾️⚾️⚾️⚾️

    Be well ~~⚾️

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