LA Times Crossword 25 Oct 20, Sunday

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Constructed by: Alan Olschwang
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: A Series of Missteps

Themed answers each include the letter string S-T-R-I-D-E, but in different orders:

  • 27A Many an investment : CALCULATED RISK
  • 44A MTV Video Music Award category : BEST DIRECTION
  • 69A Where many scenes are presented : THEATER DISTRICT
  • 99A Used one’s clout : PULLED STRINGS
  • 119A Freegan’s activity : DUMPSTER DIVING
  • 16D It’s often passed at family meals : BUTTER DISH
  • 76D Records : WRITES DOWN

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

Bill’s time: 17m 17s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 South American rodent : PACA

There are two species of rodents called pacas, and both are found in Central and South America. In some parts, paca is considered a gourmet dish.

5 “Little Man __”: 1991 Foster film : TATE

“Little Man Tate” is a 1991 film directed by and starring Jodie Foster. Foster plays a mother raising her 7-year-old son, who turns out to be a child prodigy.

19 God with a quiver : EROS

The name of Eros, the Greek god of love, gives rise to our word “erotic” meaning “arousing sexual desire”. Eros was referred to in Latin as both “Amor” (meaning “love”) and “Cupid” (meaning “desire”).

A quiver is a container used to carry arrows.

22 Seed-to-be : OVULE

As we all remember from botany class (don’t we?), an ovule is a small structure in many plants that develops into the seed after fertilization.

25 Big game name : ATARI

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.

26 Richest person in the world before Bezos : GATES

Bill Gates is the former CEO of Microsoft, a company that he co-founded with Paul Allen. Gates has been listed as the wealthiest man in the world on several occasions over the past two decades. He now works full-time as co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, alongside his wife Melinda. The Gates’ foundation is the largest transparently-operated charitable foundation in the world.

Jeff Bezos is the founder and CEO of Amazon.com, a company that he set up in his garage in 1994. Bezos used some of the fortune that he made with Amazon to purchase “The Washington Post” in 2013.

31 Sr.-supporting component : IRA

Individual retirement account (IRA)

32 Encl. with postage : SASE

An SAE is a “stamped, addressed envelope”. An SASE is a “self-addressed, stamped envelope”.

33 i-opening company? : APPLE

When Apple chose the letter “I” prefix for the iMac in 1998, that letter “I” stood for “Internet”. Steve Jobs and his marketing team followed up with the message that I also stood for “individual, instruct, inform and inspire”.

34 Revolutionary War name : HALE

Nathan Hale fought for the Continental Army during the American Revolution, and was most famous for operating as a spy against the British. It was Nathan Hale who uttered the words, just before he was hanged by his British captors, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country”.

35 Cambodian cash : RIEL

The Cambodian riel was introduced in 1953, and was taken out of circulation by the Khmer Rouge in 1975 when they completely abolished money on taking control of the country. After the Vietnamese invasion of 1978, money was reintroduced and the Cambodian people are still using the “second” riel. The original riel was divided into 100 centimes, but this was changed to 100 “sen” in 1959.

37 Flag : TIRE

Our verb “to flag” meaning “to tire” was originally used in the sense of something flapping about lazily in the wind. From this it came to mean “to go limp, droop”, and then “to tire”.

39 Slothful sort : IDLER

“Sloth”, meaning “indolence, sluggishness”, comes from the Middle English word “slowe”, the same root for our contemporary word “slow”. The animal, the sloth, is so named as it exhibits slow-moving behavior.

41 Some colas : RCS

Claude A. Hatcher ran a grocery store in Columbus, Georgia. He decided to develop his own soft drink formula when he balked at the price his store was being charged for Coca-Cola syrup. Hatcher launched the Union Bottling Works in his own grocery store, and introduced Royal Crown Ginger Ale in 1905. The Union Bottling Works was renamed to Chero-Cola in 1910, the Nehi Corporation in 1925, and Royal Crown Company in the mid-fifties. The first RC Cola hit the market in 1934.

44 MTV Video Music Award category : BEST DIRECTION

The MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) have been presented annually since 1984, and honor the best in the world of music videos.

48 Invited to the penthouse : ASKED UP

Originally, the term “penthouse” described a modest building attached to a main structure. In fact, in centuries past, the manger in which Jesus was born was often referred to as a penthouse. The modern, more luxurious connotation dates back to the early twenties.

50 Loss nos., perhaps : ESTS

Estimate (est.)

51 British Isles tongue : ERSE

There are actually three Erse languages: Irish, Manx (spoken on the Isle of Man) and Scots Gaelic. In their own tongues, these would be “Gaeilge” (in Ireland), “Gaelg” (on the Isle of Man) and “Gaidhlig” (in Scotland).

The “British Isles” comprise over six thousand islands off the northwest coast of Europe, the two largest being the islands of Great Britain and Ireland. Back in my homeland of Ireland, we’re not too fond of the term “British Isles”, as it tends to awaken memories of the Norman invasion and the Tudor conquest. We tend to go with the term “Britain and Ireland”.

52 Pride letters : LGBT

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT)

60 Sushi serving : AHI

Yellowfin and bigeye tuna are usually marketed as “ahi”, the Hawaiian name. They are both big fish, with yellowfish tuna often weighing over 300 pounds, and bigeye tuna getting up to 400 pounds.

62 K2 locale : ASIA

K2 is the second highest mountain on the planet (at 28, 251 ft), with Mount Everest being higher by over 700 feet. Located on the China-Pakistan border, K2 is known as the “Savage Mountain” as it is relatively difficult to climb. 1 in 4 mountaineers who have attempted to reach the summit have persished. It has never been climbed in winter. The name K2 dates back to what was called the Great Trigonometric Survey, a British survey of the geography of India carried out during the 19th century. Included in this survey were the heights of many of the Himalayan peaks, including Everest. The original surveyor, Thomas Montgomerie, included two peaks he first called K1 and K2. He discovered later that the locals called K1 Masherbrum (the 22nd highest mountain in the world), but the remote K2 had no local name that he could find, so it was christened Mount Godwin-Austen. This name was rejected by the Royal Geographic Society although it does still appear on some maps. So, the most common name used is K2, that original notation in a surveyor’s notebook.

65 Southernmost of the Marianas : GUAM

Guam is a US territory in the western Pacific Ocean, and is the largest of the Mariana Islands. Guam is also the first territory in the United States to see the sun rise on any particular day. As such, the territory has adopted the motto, “Where America’s day begins”. During WWII, the US territory of Guam was occupied by the Japanese for 31 months until it was liberated in the Battle of Guam in July 1944. Of the 18,000 Japanese men holding the island, only 485 surrendered, so almost all perished in the invasion. One Japanese sergeant hid out on the island for an incredible 28 years, finally surrendering in 1972!

“The Marianas” is a familiar name for the Mariana Islands that lie in the Pacific Ocean south of Japan and north of New Guinea. The Mariana Trench (note there is no letter “S” at the end of “Mariana”, the trench) is the lowest elevation on the surface of the Earth’s crust. The Mariana Trench takes its name from the Islands, as it lies just to the east of the Marianas.

66 Goddess of marriage and family : HERA

In Greek mythology, Hera was the wife of Zeus and the goddess of women, marriage, family and childbirth. She was noted for her jealous and vengeful nature, particularly against those who vied for the affections of her husband. The equivalent character to Hera in Roman mythology was Juno. Hera was the daughter of Cronus and Rhea.

68 LBJ beagle : HER

Him and Her were two beagles owned by President Johnson and his family while they were living in the White House. Her died after only a year when she swallowed a stone. Him died at three years of age, when he was hit by a car while chasing a squirrel across the White House lawn.

74 Cornfield call : CAW

A caw is the harsh cry of a crow, and crows might be found in fields of corn …

77 Up start or follower : … SIZE …

Size up or upsize.

83 Subway fare? : HERO

A hero is a submarine sandwich. The hero originated in New York City in the 1800s among Italian immigrants who wanted an Italian sandwich that reminded them of home. The name “hero” was coined in the 1930s, supposedly by a food critic in the “New York Herald Tribune” when he wrote that “one had to be a hero” to finish the gigantic sandwich. Hero is a prevalent term to this day in New York City, reserved for a submarine sandwich with an Italian flavor.

85 West Coast pro : RAM

The Los Angeles Rams are the only franchise to have won NFL championships in three different cities, i.e. Cleveland (1945), Los Angeles (1951) and St. Louis (1999). The Rams were based in Cleveland from 1936 to 1945, in Los Angeles from 1946 to 1994, in St. Louis from 1995 to 2015, and returned to Los Angeles in 2016.

89 Fern seed : SPORE

Ferns are unlike mosses in that they have xylem and phloem, making them vascular plants. They also have stems, leaves and roots, but they do not have seeds and flowers, and reproduce using spores. Spores differ from seeds in that they have very little stored food.

90 First of 12 : ARIES

Aries the Ram is the first astrological sign in the Zodiac, and is named after the constellation. Your birth sign is Aries if you were born between March 21 and April 20, but if you are an Aries you would know that! “Aries” is the Latin word for “ram”.

92 Zap : LASE

The term “laser” is an acronym standing for “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation”. It has been pointed out that a more precise name for laser technology is “light oscillation by stimulated emission of radiation”, but the resulting acronym isn’t quite so appealing, namely “loser”.

94 Cab category : REDS

The cabernet sauvignon (often just “cab”) grape has been around since the 17th century, and is the result of a chance crossing in southwestern France of the cabernet franc and sauvignon blanc grapes.

96 Corporate honcho : SUIT

“Honcho” is a slang term meaning “leader”. The word comes to us from Japanese military, in which language a “hancho” is a “squad” (han) “leader” (cho).

97 Meat-curing compound : NITRITE

There are many different nitrites, but it is sodium nitrite that is used to cure meat. Nitrites help kill bacteria that can develop as the meat is left to cure. The nitrite ion bonds with the iron in the meat creating a reddish-brown color, which turns pink (like cooked ham) when the meat is cooked.

108 Arcade game word : SKEE

Skee-Ball is the arcade game in which you roll balls up a ramp trying to “bounce” it into rings for varying numbers of points. The game was first introduced in Philadelphia, in 1909.

117 Dark-colored cigar : MADURO

A maduro is a cigar made with medium-strength tobacco that is relatively dark in color. “Maduro” is a Spanish word meaning “mature, ripe”.

119 Freegan’s activity : DUMPSTER DIVING

Freeganism is ideology promoting alternative living strategies that incur little or no cost by using resources that are generally discarded in the conventional economy. Notable tactics are “dumpster diving” (searching for discarded food) and “guerrilla gardening” (growing food in city parks).

122 Cell terminal : ANODE

A battery is a device that converts chemical energy into electric energy. A simple battery is made up of three parts: a cathode, an anode and a liquid electrolyte. Ions from the electrolyte react chemically with the material in the anode producing a compound and releasing electrons. At the same time, the electrolyte reacts with the material in the cathode, absorbing electrons and producing a different chemical compound. In this way, there is a buildup of electrons at the anode and a deficit of electrons at the cathode. When a connection (wire, say) is made between the cathode and anode, electrons flow through the resulting circuit from the anode to cathode in an attempt to rectify the electron imbalance.

123 Anaheim athletes, in local sportscasts : HALOS

The Anaheim Angels baseball team is today more correctly called the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (LAA). The “Angels” name dates back to 1961 when the team was founded in the “City of Angels”, Los Angeles. When the franchise moved to Anaheim in 1965 they were known as the California Angels, then the Anaheim Angels, and most recently the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Angels are also known as “the Halos”.

124 Banned orchard spray : ALAR

The chemical name for Alar, a plant growth regulator and color enhancer, is “daminozide”. Alar was primarily used on apples but was withdrawn from the market when it was linked to cancer.

125 Kendrick of “Pitch Perfect” films : ANNA

Anna Kendrick is a marvelous actress whose big break came when she played the sidekick to George Clooney’s character in the very interesting 2009 film “Up in the Air”. Kendrick can sing as well as act, and played a student a cappella singer in the 2012 movie “Pitch Perfect”.

“Pitch Perfect” is an entertaining musical comedy film released in 2012. It’s all about an all-female college a cappella group competing to win a national competition.

126 “Holy moly!” : YOWZA!

The mild expletive “Holy moly!” is a euphemism for “Holy Moses!”

127 Big name in violins : AMATI

The first of the Amati family to make violins was Andrea Amati, who lived in the 14th century. He was succeeded by his sons Antonio and Girolamo. In turn, the two brothers were succeeded by Girolamo’s son Nicolo. Nicolo had a few students who achieved fame making musical instruments as well. One was his own son, Girolamo, and another was the famed Antonio Stradivari.

131 It’s about 30 kilometers from Düsseldorf : ESSEN

Essen is a large industrial city located on the River Ruhr in western Germany. The city experienced major population growth in the mid-1800s that was driven by the iron works established by the Krupp family.

Düsseldorf lies in the west of Germany, fairly close to the border with France. The city is located on the River Rhine.

Down

1 “Goodfellas” Oscar winner : PESCI

Joe Pesci got his big break in movies with a supporting role in “Raging Bull” starring Robert De Niro, earning Pesci an Oscar nomination early in his career. There followed a string of gangster roles played alongside De Niro, namely “Once Upon a Time in America”, “Goodfellas” and “Casino”. But I like Pesci’s comedic acting best of all. He was marvelous in the “Home Alone” films, the “Lethal Weapon” series, and my personal favorite, “My Cousin Vinny”. Pesci gets a mention in the stage musical “Jersey Boys”, which isn’t too surprising as he is one of the show’s producers.

The Martin Scorsese classic “Goodfellas” is a 1990 adaptation of a nonfiction book by Nicholas Pileggi called “Wiseguy”. The film tells the story of a mob family that succumbs to the FBI after one of their own becomes an informant.

6 La Scala solos : ARIAS

La Scala Opera House opened in 1778. It was built on the site of the church of Santa Maria della Scala, which gave the theater its Italian name “Teatro alla Scala”.

7 Pepsi Challenge feature : TASTE TEST

The Pepsi Challenge is a marketing campaign that PepsiCo introduced in 1975 as a tactic in the Cola Wars with the Coca-Cola Company. The challenge itself involves a blind taste test.

8 Uruguay’s Punta del __ : ESTE

Punta del Este is a resort city in southeastern Uruguay that is located about 85 miles east of Montevideo.

9 Chinese dog breed : SHAR-PEI

The shar-pei breed of dog is that one with the wrinkly face and really dark tongue. The breed originated in China, with “shar-pei” being the British spelling of the Cantonese name.

12 Brewed : PERKED

“Perk”, in the sense of brewing coffee, is an abbreviation of “percolate”.

13 Star Wars initials : SDI

One of the positive outcomes of President Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), aka “Star Wars”, was a change in US defense strategy. The new approach was to use missiles to destroy incoming hostile weapons, rather than using missiles to destroy the nation attacking the country. The former doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction went by the apt acronym of MAD …

17 On the protected side : ALEE

Alee is the direction away from the wind. If a sailor points into the wind, he or she is pointing aweather.

18 Melanie’s “Working Girl” role : TESS

“Working Girl” is an entertaining romantic comedy film from 1988 that stars Melanie Griffith and Harrison Ford in the lead roles, with Sigourney Weaver supporting. Apparently, “Working Girl” was remade into a TV series in the nineties with Sandra Bullock starring, but it only aired for 12 episodes.

30 “__ the One”: 1996 Aniston/Diaz movie : SHE’S

“She’s the One” is a 1996 romcom written and directed by, and starring, Ed Burns. Joining Burns at the top of the cast listing are Jennifer Aniston and Cameron Diaz. Burns cast his own partner, actress Maxine Bahns, as his love interest in the film.

38 Long cold spell : ICE AGE

Ice ages are periods in the Earth’s history when there are extensive ice sheets present in the northern and southern hemispheres. One might argue that we are still in an ice age that began 2.6 million years ago, as evidenced by the presence of ice sheets covering Greenland and Antarctica.

42 First female Nobelist : CURIE

Marie Curie lived a life of firsts. She was the first female professor at the University of Paris, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and indeed was the first person to win two Nobel prizes (in Physics in 1903, and in Chemistry in 1911). Most of Curie’s work was in the field of radioactivity, and was carried out in the days when the impact of excessive radiation on the human body was not understood. She died from aplastic anemia, caused by high exposure to radiation. To this day, Curie’s personal papers are kept preserved in lead-lined boxes as they are highly radioactive, even her personal cookbook.

43 Asparagus unit : SPEAR

Asparagus is a perennial flowering plant that is grown mainly for its edible shoots. The shoots must be harvested when they are very young, as they become woody very quickly.

44 Kiss, in Cancún : BESO

Cancún is a city and island on the east coast of Mexico, on the other side of the Yucatan Channel from Cuba. The city is growing rapidly due to its booming tourist business. Cancún is the center of what’s often called “The Mexican Caribbean” or the “Mayan Riviera”.

45 Bk. before Job : ESTH

The only books in the Old Testament named for females are “Ruth” and “Esther”.

46 Monopoly props. : RRS

The four railroad (RR) properties in the Monopoly board game are:

  • Reading Railroad
  • Pennsylvania Railroad
  • B&O Railroad
  • Short Line

47 The Rebels of the SEC, familiarly : OLE MISS

“Ole Miss” is the nickname for the University of Mississippi. The name “Ole Miss” dates back to 1897, the first year a student yearbook was published. The graduating class held a competition to name the yearbook and “Ole Miss” emerged as the winner. The name stuck to the yearbook, and also as a nickname for the school itself. The University of Mississippi sports teams have been known as the Rebels since 1936. Prior to 1936, they were known as the Mississippi Flood.

49 Eco-conscious org. : EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was set up during the Nixon administration and began operation at the end of 1970.

53 Thai dough : BAHT

The baht is the currency of Thailand. One baht is subdivided into 100 satang.

58 Regular hangout : PURLIEU

We use the word “purlieu” to describe the outskirts of any place, or to describe a regular haunt, a place frequently visited. The original use of “purlieu” was for the edges of a forest. More specifically, the purlieu surrounding a forest was subject to the same hunting laws as the forest itself.

61 __ West, wife of DC Comics’ Flash : IRIS

Iris West is a character in the DC Comics universe. She is the wife of Barry Allen, the alter ego of the superhero known as the Flash. In the 2014 TV show “The Flash”, West is portrayed by actress Candice Patton.

67 They may be torn on the field: Abbr. : ACLS

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of four major ligaments that support the knee.

70 Augusta National shrub : AZALEA

Azaleas are very toxic to most animals. If you go to Korea, you might come across “Tug Yonju”, which is azalea wine made from the plant’s blossoms. Azaleas are usually grown as shrubs, but are also seen as small trees, and often indoors.

The Augusta National Golf Club was built on a former plant nursery. As such, each hole on the course is named for a tree or shrub associated with that hole. For example, the par-5 thirteenth hole is named “Azalea”.

71 Musical motif, to Verdi : TEMA

“Tema” is Italian for “motif, theme”.

72 Firewood units : STERES

The stere is a metric measure, although it is not part of the modern metric system. Nowadays the stere is used as a measure for firewood, and is equal to one cubic meter.

73 Finishes up on the green : TAPS IN

That would be golf.

75 Eagle’s home : AERIE

An aerie is an eagle’s nest, and is also known as an “eyrie”. The term “aerie” more generally describes any bird’s nest that is located on a cliff or a mountaintop.

80 Biblical peak : MOUNT SINAI

According to the Bible, Mount Sinai is the mountain on which Moses was given the Ten Commandments. The Biblical Mount Sinai is probably not the mountain in Egypt that today has the same name, although this is the subject of much debate. The Egyptian Mount Sinai has two developed routes that one can take to reach the summit. The longer gentler climb takes about 2 1/2 hours, but there is also the steeper climb up the 3,750 “steps of penitence”.

88 NFL “sixes” : TDS

Touchdown (TD)

91 Determined by the stars, as time : SIDEREAL

Astronomers use sidereal time to know where to locate given stars in the night sky. Sidereal time is a time scale that takes into account the Earth’s rotation relative to stars with a fixed location in the night sky.

93 Pancake-making aids : SPATULAS

A spatula is a tool or implement used for mixing, lifting or spreading. “Spatula” is the Latin name for the tool, and is a diminutive of the word “spatha” meaning “broad, flat blade”. “Spatha” also gives rise to our related term “spade”.

95 Brother of Peter, briefly : ST ANDREW

Andrew the Apostle was the brother of Peter, and one of the twelve apostles of Jesus, according to Christian Bible. Andrew is said to have died by crucifixion. Tradition has it that he refused to be crucified on the same type of cross on which Jesus died. So, he was bound to X-shaped cross (also “saltire”). We commonly refer to such a cross today as a “Saint Andrew’s Cross”.

According to the Christian tradition, Saint Peter was crucified on the orders of Emperor Nero in Rome. Many hold that he requested to be crucified upside down as he felt that he was unworthy to have the same fate as Jesus Christ.

98 Early smartphone : TREO

The Treo is a smartphone that was originally developed by a company called Handspring. Handspring was bought by Palm Inc. Subsequently, the Treo was phased out and replaced by the Palm Pre.

101 Hightails it : LAMS

To be on the lam is to be in flight, to have escaped from prison. “On the lam” is American slang that originated at the end of the 19th century. The word “lam” also means to “beat” or “thrash”, as in “lambaste”. So “on the lam” might derive from the phrase “to beat it, to scram”.

102 Fashion’s Gernreich : RUDI

Rudi Gernreich was a fashion designer from Austria. Gernreich fled Austria due to Nazi influence, and ended up in Los Angeles. He is noted for the design of the monokini, the first topless swimsuit.

109 Invasive vine : KUDZU

Kudzu is a climbing vine that is native to southern Japan and southeast China. “Kudzu” is derived from the Japanese name for the plant, “kuzu”. Kudzu is a vigorously growing weed that chokes other plants by climbing all over them and shielding them from light. Kudzu was brought to the US from Asia for the Japanese pavilion in the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. It was marketed as an ornamental, especially in the southeast of the country, and now is all over the region. Kudzu earned itself the nickname “the vine that ate the South”.

111 Ham it up : EMOTE

The word “ham”, describing a performer who overacts, is a shortened form of “hamfatter” and dates back to the late 1800s. “Hamfatter” comes from a song in old minstrel shows called “The Ham-Fat Man”. It seems that a poorly performing actor was deemed to have the “acting” qualities of a minstrel made up in blackface.

115 Anatomical button type : INNIE

The navel is basically the scar left behind when the umbilical cord is removed from a newborn baby. One interesting use of the umbilicus (navel, belly button) is to differentiate between identical twins, especially when they are very young.

117 Uxmal denizen : MAYA

Uxmal is an ancient Maya city located in present-day Yucatán, Mexico. The most famous structure still standing in Uxmal is the Pyramid of the Magician, a Mesoamerican step pyramid that is over 130 feet tall.

121 Grand Canyon adjective : VAST

The Grand Canyon is in Arizona. The canyon continues to be carved out of layers of rock by the Colorado River. It is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and over a mile deep.

123 “Scots Wha __”: patriotic song : HAE

“Scots Wha Hae” (Scots Who Have) is a song that was commonly used as the unofficial national anthem of Scotland. The lyrics of the song were penned by Robert Burns in 1793. Bruns set those lyrics to a traditional Scottish tune “Hey Tuttie Tatie”, the title of white is supposed to imitate a trumpet.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 South American rodent : PACA
5 “Little Man __”: 1991 Foster film : TATE
9 Minor cuts : SNIPS
14 Blot with a tissue : DAB AT
19 God with a quiver : EROS
20 Times often named for music genres : ERAS
21 Refined, as skills : HONED
22 Seed-to-be : OVULE
23 One : SOLE
24 It’s rarely paid to a car dealer : LIST
25 Big game name : ATARI
26 Richest person in the world before Bezos : GATES
27 Many an investment : CALCULATED RISK
30 Treats with malice : SPITES
31 Sr.-supporting component : IRA
32 Encl. with postage : SASE
33 i-opening company? : APPLE
34 Revolutionary War name : HALE
35 Cambodian cash : RIEL
37 Flag : TIRE
39 Slothful sort : IDLER
41 Some colas : RCS
44 MTV Video Music Award category : BEST DIRECTION
48 Invited to the penthouse : ASKED UP
50 Loss nos., perhaps : ESTS
51 British Isles tongue : ERSE
52 Pride letters : LGBT
54 Skyline feature : SPIRE
55 Store : STASH
57 Rice, e.g. : STAPLE
60 Sushi serving : AHI
62 K2 locale : ASIA
63 “Wanna bet?” : OH YEAH?
65 Southernmost of the Marianas : GUAM
66 Goddess of marriage and family : HERA
68 LBJ beagle : HER
69 Where many scenes are presented : THEATER DISTRICT
74 Cornfield call : CAW
77 Up start or follower : … SIZE …
78 For fear that : LEST
79 Apply forcefully, as the brakes : SLAM ON
83 Subway fare? : HERO
85 West Coast pro : RAM
86 Newspaper supplement, maybe : INSERT
89 Fern seed : SPORE
90 First of 12 : ARIES
92 Zap : LASE
94 Cab category : REDS
96 Corporate honcho : SUIT
97 Meat-curing compound : NITRITE
99 Used one’s clout : PULLED STRINGS
103 Summer wear : TEE
104 69-Across presentation : DRAMA
106 Simplify : EASE
107 Family reunion attendee : AUNT
108 Arcade game word : SKEE
110 Preferred group on the field : A-TEAM
112 Do a rest stop machine’s job : VEND
114 You, in Germany : SIE
117 Dark-colored cigar : MADURO
119 Freegan’s activity : DUMPSTER DIVING
122 Cell terminal : ANODE
123 Anaheim athletes, in local sportscasts : HALOS
124 Banned orchard spray : ALAR
125 Kendrick of “Pitch Perfect” films : ANNA
126 “Holy moly!” : YOWZA!
127 Big name in violins : AMATI
128 It can smell : NOSE
129 Announced : SAID
130 Undo, in a way : ANNUL
131 It’s about 30 kilometers from Düsseldorf : ESSEN
132 Exude : SPEW
133 Relationships : TIES

Down

1 “Goodfellas” Oscar winner : PESCI
2 Loudly cheering : AROAR
3 Formal outfit accessory : COLLAR STAY
4 “Just __ … ” : A SEC
5 Fudge, perhaps : TELL A LIE
6 La Scala solos : ARIAS
7 Pepsi Challenge feature : TASTE TEST
8 Uruguay’s Punta del __ : ESTE
9 Chinese dog breed : SHAR-PEI
10 Waiter’s disappointment : NO TIP
11 Like many an injured arm : IN A SLING
12 Brewed : PERKED
13 Star Wars initials : SDI
14 Places to walk with best friends? : DOG PARKS
15 Be of use to : AVAIL
16 It’s often passed at family meals : BUTTER DISH
17 On the protected side : ALEE
18 Melanie’s “Working Girl” role : TESS
28 Secondhand : USED
29 Quick movement : DART
30 “__ the One”: 1996 Aniston/Diaz movie : SHE’S
36 “We’re good to go” : IT’S SET
38 Long cold spell : ICE AGE
40 Tizzy : LATHER
42 First female Nobelist : CURIE
43 Asparagus unit : SPEAR
44 Kiss, in Cancún : BESO
45 Bk. before Job : ESTH
46 Monopoly props. : RRS
47 The Rebels of the SEC, familiarly : OLE MISS
49 Eco-conscious org. : EPA
53 Thai dough : BAHT
56 Expressions of skepticism : HAHS
58 Regular hangout : PURLIEU
59 Encumbered : LADEN
61 __ West, wife of DC Comics’ Flash : IRIS
64 One who gets what’s coming : HEIR
67 They may be torn on the field: Abbr. : ACLS
70 Augusta National shrub : AZALEA
71 Musical motif, to Verdi : TEMA
72 Firewood units : STERES
73 Finishes up on the green : TAPS IN
74 Stands sound : CHANT
75 Eagle’s home : AERIE
76 Records : WRITES DOWN
80 Biblical peak : MOUNT SINAI
81 Not a dup. : ORIG
82 Takes in and keeps : NETS
84 Poetic contraction : O’ER
87 Improve, as an urban area : REDEVELOP
88 NFL “sixes” : TDS
91 Determined by the stars, as time : SIDEREAL
93 Pancake-making aids : SPATULAS
95 Brother of Peter, briefly : ST ANDREW
98 Early smartphone : TREO
100 Doesn’t bother to check the water first : LEAPS IN
101 Hightails it : LAMS
102 Fashion’s Gernreich : RUDI
105 Chair titles : MADAMS
109 Invasive vine : KUDZU
111 Ham it up : EMOTE
113 Rub off : ERASE
115 Anatomical button type : INNIE
116 “Yipes!” : EGADS!
117 Uxmal denizen : MAYA
118 Auth. unknown : ANON
120 Summer shades : TANS
121 Grand Canyon adjective : VAST
123 “Scots Wha __”: patriotic song : HAE

20 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 25 Oct 20, Sunday”

  1. Thought I had this locked pretty quick.. Then I got to the SW corner.. It’s like I accidently painted myself in a corner with no way out except paint myself and try to blend in… Boy, did I mess that up.. Never heard of SIDEREAL, KADZU, .. Maybe I should have known MADURO and MAYA ,. And of course the YOWZA interpretation. .. Good times!!

  2. 1:08:45 despite a ton of “never heard ofs”,foreign words, and other obscure clues no errors…unless you lived in the roaring 20s I doubt you have ever said “yowza”…119A ,I couldn’t find in any dictionary but google explained it etc etc…the theme didn’t seem to relate to the puzzle…enough ranting.
    Stay safe😀
    Go Ravens.

  3. 29 minutes. Also struggled a bit in the SW corner, but my last bugaboo was the area around 45D and 46D. I had STDIRECTION, but blanked on BEST. I had HOST, CAST, etc. I got the theme about 1/2 way thru and that helped me finish 3 of the long entries. I’ve seen the word PURLIEU before but didn’t know its meaning.

  4. 24:47 no errors

    Enjoyed this one. The theme was even useful. Also felt pleased to a scientific term like SIDEREAL in use. Cool.

  5. Fairly easy solve, although I never noticed the theme.
    Purlieu is a new one to me, I’ll try to use it in a conversation sometime soon.

  6. Would rather know the lesser-known definition of “lather” (which I had to look up) rather than read about what asparagus or a spatula is.

    1. Hi KF – This is Bill’s blog. He provides write-ups on terms he finds interesting and thinks might be interesting to us….it’s at his discretion.

  7. Some nice fill, but puzzled by the theme..seemed weak, as in “what was the point?” Would work better for me as a themeless.

  8. But what is the SEC that Ole Miss are the rebels of?

    Wikipedia says: “The Southeastern Conference (SEC) is an American college athletic conference whose member institutions are located primarily in the South Central and Southeastern United States.”

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