LA Times Crossword 29 May 21, Saturday

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Constructed by: Freddie Cheng
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: None

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

Bill’s time: 10m 03s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 153-year-old group that became unisex nationally in 1993 : ELKS

The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) was founded in 1868, and is a social club that has about a million members today. It started out as a group of men getting together in a “club” in order to get around the legal opening hours of taverns in New York City. The club took on a new role as it started to look out for poor families of members who passed away. The club now accepts African Americans as members (since the seventies) and women (since the nineties), but atheists still aren’t welcome. The list of US presidents that have been members of the BPOE includes Presidents Eisenhower, Harding, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy and Ford.

17 “The Sound of Music” song opener : DOE, A DEER

Doe, a deer, a female deer
Ray, a drop of golden sun
Me, a name I call myself
Far, a long, long way to run
Sew, a needle pulling thread
La, a note to follow Sew
Tea, a drink with jam and bread
That will bring us back to Do

18 Stronger-than-steel material : KEVLAR

Kevlar is a remarkably strong synthetic fiber that was introduced by DuPont in 1965. The material was developed as a lightweight substitute for steel. Kevlar fits the bill, as an equal weight of the synthetic fiber is five times stronger than the alloy. One of the downsides of Kevlar is that its strength degrades when exposed to sunlight.

19 Like protozoans : ONE-CELLED

Protozoans are single-celled organisms that were traditionally grouped with animals. Nowadays, protozoans are considered a group by themselves, and neither animals, plants nor fungi. The term “protozoa” translates as “first animals”.

22 “Casablanca” café : RICK’S

The fictional Rick’s Café Américain is the main setting used in the movie “Casablanca”, with the café owner played by Humphrey Bogart. Should you ever visit Morocco, you might try visiting Rick’s Café Casablanca, an establishment opened in 2004 that largely recreates the look and feel of the memorable movie set.

23 Sushi bar fare : EEL

“Unagi” is the Japanese term for” freshwater eel”, and “anago” is the term for “saltwater eel”.

30 Second sight, say, briefly : ESP

Extrasensory perception (ESP)

35 Adobe file format : PDF

Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format introduced by Adobe Systems in 1993. PDF documents can be shared between users and read using many different applications and platforms, making them more universally accessible than documents saved by one particular program.

39 Jazzman Saunders : MERL

Merl Saunders was a piano and keyboard musician. Saunders was good friends with Jerry Garcia and often played with the Grateful Dead.

42 Salt’s companion : MATEY

“Sea dog” and “old salt” are familiar terms for a sailor, especially one that has lots of experience.

43 Drink with a 2021 Peeps variety : PEPSI

Yep, PepsiCo announced a Peeps-flavored version of Pepsi.

Peeps are marshmallow candies usually in the shapes of chicks and bunnies, primarily sold around the Easter holiday. Peeps were introduced in 1952 by a Russian immigrant called Sam Born whose company “Just Born” makes the candies to this day. The original candies were yellow and hand-shaped to look like little chicks, hence the name “Peeps”.

45 2019 pop biopic : ROCKETMAN

“Rocketman” is a very entertaining musical biopic about the life of Elton John. The title role is taken by English actor Taron Egerton, who actually did a great job singing the songs in the film himself. The movie’s title comes from Elton John’s 1972 hit record “Rocket Man”.

53 Seat of Ohio’s Montgomery County : DAYTON

Dayton is a city in the southwest of Ohio that is famously home to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The city is also referred to as the “Birthplace of Aviation”, as it was in Dayton that Orville and Wilbur Wright built and improved the Wright Flyer. The Wright Flyer made the first controlled and sustained flight of a powered, heavier-than-air aircraft in 1903 in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

54 Growth chart nos. : HTS

Height (ht.)

Down

2 Canadian coins : LOONIES

The common loon (also “great northern diver”) is the provincial bird of Ontario, and the state bird of Minnesota. The loon once appeared on Canadian $20 bills and also appears on the Canadian one-dollar coin, giving the coin the nickname “the loonie”.

3 Shinbone neighbor : KNEECAP

The patella is the kneecap. The bone’s Latin name is “patella”, which is a diminutive form of “patina”, the word for “pan”. The idea is that the kneecap is pan-shaped.

4 IHOP servings : STACKS

The International House of Pancakes (IHOP) was founded back in 1958. IHOP was originally intended to be called IHOE, the International House of Eggs, but that name didn’t do too well in marketing tests.

5 Jump on the ice : AXEL

An axel is a forward take-off jump in figure skating. The maneuver was first performed by Norwegian Axel Paulsen at the 1882 World Figure Skating championships.

6 “The Sinner” Golden Globe winner Jessica : BIEL

Jessica Biel is an actress who was known by television audiences Mary Camden on “7th Heaven”. Biel’s first film role was playing Peter Fonda’s granddaughter in “Ulee’s Gold”. Biel married singer and actor Justin Timberlake in 2012.

“The Sinner” is a crime drama series starring Bill Pullman as police Detective Harry Ambrose. The series is structured so that Ambrose investigates a new crime every season, and so is supported by a different cast each season. The title, and the story in the first season, is taken from a 1999 novel by German author Petra Hammesfahr.

9 Vetoes : NOES

The verb “veto” comes directly from Latin and means “I forbid”. The term was used by tribunes of ancient Rome to indicate that they opposed measures passed by the Senate.

11 Apt slogan on merchandise featuring MLB slugger Aaron Judge : ALL RISE

Aaron Judge is a baseball outfielder who was selected as 2017’s American League Rookie of the Year. Judge is a big guy. He weighs 282 pounds, and is 6 foot 7 inches tall.

24 African currency whose singular form is part of its country’s name : LEONES

Leones are the currency of Sierra Leone. The Leone was introduced in 1964 to replace the British West African pound. The move was a practical one, as the Leone is a decimal currency and replaces the old British system of pounds, shillings and pence.

28 Less likely to chillax : ANTSIER

The word “antsy” embodies the concept of “having ants in one’s pants”, meaning being nervous and fidgety. However, “antsy” has been used in English since the 1830s, whereas “ants in the pants” originated a century later.

“Chillax” is a slang term meaning “chill and relax”. Who’da thunk it …?

29 Roentgen cousins : RADS

A rad is a unit used to measure radiation levels that is largely obsolete now. The “rad” has been superseded by the “rem”.

32 Foldable auto convenience : JUMP SEAT

A jump seat on an aircraft is more correctly called an auxiliary crew station. Jump seats usually fold away. A jump seat in a cockpit might be used by a trainee pilot, for example. The seats occupied by most of the flight attendants also fold away, and can be termed jump seats. Jump seats used to be found on some automobiles, and are still found in London taxi cabs.

33 Aerial : ANTENNA

We tend to use the term “aerial” and “antenna” interchangeably. Strictly speaking, the aerial is the top part of an antenna. The lead-in is the lower part of the antenna, the part providing the electrical connection between the aerial and the instrument, radio or TV.

An antenna’s job is to convert electrical power into radio waves, and radio waves into an electrical signal. The first antennas were built by the German physicist Heinrich Hertz in 1888.

42 Two of the Spice Girls : MELS

The five members of the English pop group the Spice Girls are:

  • Scary Spice (Melanie Brown, or Mel B)
  • Baby Spice (Emma Bunton, and my fave!)
  • Ginger Spice (Geri Halliwell)
  • Posh Spice (Victoria Beckham)
  • Sporty Spice (Melanie Chisholm, or Mel C)

44 Shakespearean standard-bearer : IAGO

Iago is the schemer in Shakespeare’s “Othello”. He is a soldier who fought alongside Othello and feels hard done by, missing out on promotion. Iago hatches a plot designed to discredit his rival Cassio by insinuating that Cassio is having an affair with Desdemona, Othello’s wife.

46 Gael, for one : CELT

The Celts are a very broad group of people across Europe who are linked by common languages. The original Celts were largely absorbed by other cultures, although a relatively modern revival of the “Celtic identity” is alive and well in Britain and Ireland. Such Celtic peoples today are mainly found in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Brittany in France.

A Gael is anyone of a race that speaks or spoke one of the Erse tongues. 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).

47 Foe of CONTROL on “Get Smart” : KAOS

The satirical comedy series called “Get Smart” was the creation of Mel Brooks and Buck Henry, and starred Don Adams as Agent 86, Maxwell Smart. Agent 86 worked for the spy agency CONTROL, alongside the lovely Agent 99. CONTROL’s sworn enemy was the criminal organization called KAOS. Smart’s shoe phone was a hilarious prop used in almost every episode. When Smart dialed the number 117, the shoe converted into a gun. Cool stuff …

49 “The Last Jedi” villain : REN

Kylo Ren is the son of Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa in the “Star Wars” universe. The character’s birth name was Ben Solo. He was trained as a Jedi knight by his uncle, Luke Skywalker. However, Ben came to embrace the Dark Side, and changed his name to Kylo Ren. Ren is played by actor Adam Driver.

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is a 2017 movie from the “Star Wars” film franchise, and the second installment of the “Star Wars” sequel trilogy. The title character is Luke Skywalker, played by Mark Hamill. Ah, but is Luke in fact the “last Jedi”?

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 153-year-old group that became unisex nationally in 1993 : ELKS
5 Core muscles : ABS
8 Get some air : INHALE
14 Assuring word on a cleaning product label : NONTOXIC
16 Fuel-carrying ship : COALER
17 “The Sound of Music” song opener : DOE, A DEER
18 Stronger-than-steel material : KEVLAR
19 Like protozoans : ONE-CELLED
21 Prefix with motor : SERVO-
22 “Casablanca” café : RICK’S
23 Sushi bar fare : EEL
25 Cruise stop : PIER
26 Salt sources : SEAS
27 Quirks : MANNERISMS
30 Second sight, say, briefly : ESP
31 Perfectly executed : DONE TO A TEE
32 “All peachy!” : JUST DANDY!
33 Targets of some blocking software : ADULT SITES
35 Adobe file format : PDF
38 Dangerous things to be behind : ENEMY LINES
39 Jazzman Saunders : MERL
40 Instruction unit : STEP
41 “Sure!” : YEP!
42 Salt’s companion : MATEY
43 Drink with a 2021 Peeps variety : PEPSI
45 2019 pop biopic : ROCKETMAN
48 Cowering : IN FEAR
50 As it happens : REAL-TIME
51 Cause to lose it : ENRAGE
52 Like a clean shave : CLOSE-CUT
53 Seat of Ohio’s Montgomery County : DAYTON
54 Growth chart nos. : HTS
55 Sales crew members : REPS

Down

1 Score some political points for : ENDORSE
2 Canadian coins : LOONIES
3 Shinbone neighbor : KNEECAP
4 IHOP servings : STACKS
5 Jump on the ice : AXEL
6 “The Sinner” Golden Globe winner Jessica : BIEL
7 Insect-resistant home feature : SCREENED-IN PORCH
8 “Gross!” : ICK!
9 Vetoes : NOES
10 Feel sorry for, with “on” : HAVE PITY …
11 Apt slogan on merchandise featuring MLB slugger Aaron Judge : ALL RISE
12 “I need solitude” : LEAVE ME
13 Slips : ERRORS
15 Works with rhyming props? : ODES
20 Having teeth : DENTATE
24 African currency whose singular form is part of its country’s name : LEONES
27 Pretty much : MOSTLY
28 Less likely to chillax : ANTSIER
29 Roentgen cousins : RADS
31 Noted starter? : DULY …
32 Foldable auto convenience : JUMP SEAT
33 Aerial : ANTENNA
34 Cook with batter, usually : DEEP-FRY
35 Loved cheese lovers? : PET MICE
36 Visualize : DREAM UP
37 Bug stoppers : FLY NETS
38 Glimpsed : ESPIED
39 Have some impact : MATTER
42 Two of the Spice Girls : MELS
44 Shakespearean standard-bearer : IAGO
46 Gael, for one : CELT
47 Foe of CONTROL on “Get Smart” : KAOS
49 “The Last Jedi” villain : REN

19 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 29 May 21, Saturday”

    1. Well, no … but isn’t it the opening line in a song from “Sound of Music” and isn’t that a completely logical interpretation of the clue?

      11:26, no errors, no complaints … 😜.

  1. Much easier than the usual Saturday puzzle. No errors. I wasn’t sure
    about “all rise” but I went with it because it fit. As I’m not really
    computer-savvy, I looked up the PDF answer.

  2. LAT: About 45 minutes, no errors. Had a bit of trouble in the NE and SE corners; otherwise it was pretty smooth sailing.

  3. JUMP SEAT got to me early. I had it initially then puttered around until I couldn’t find anything else (SWAP SEAT?). 33A I thought was some kind of ADWARE APP, … so I physically wrote in JUMP and voila!! The rest was history.

    How about SALTS companion.. that had me spinning for a while.. PEPPA?? Nope,.. MATEY!!!!

    1. I had PEPPA, too, but then changed it to PETER and left it because I got distracted and didn’t re-think my answers for 37D, 39D, and 42D – giving me 5 wrong answers. They kind of fit, but with awkward reasoning.

  4. Helen, look at the clue again! I thought the same but it doesn’t say “opening song” it says “song opener” meaning the opening line to one of the many songs!
    Happy Memorial Day weekend, everyone!
    Stay safe! 😊

  5. Onto THEMELESS SATURDAY!!!! I’m dreading it. I’m on a 4 saturdays losing streak with Mr Newman’s crossword

    1. @Anon Mike …

      FWIW … After a long day in the mountains, I picked up what I thought was a different puzzle and finished one corner, idly wondering why it was so difficult, before I finally realized it was actually the Newsday puzzle, which I had meant to put off until morning. So … I went ahead and finished, in 33:34, with no errors, but not without some serious head-scratching. I think misunderstanding what I was walking into may have given me a little psychological edge in working on what I would have to call a “Saturday-Stumper-in-disguise” … 🤨.

  6. 14:43, no errors. No major complaints that wrecked the grid over here. NYT OTOH. Need to finish up the Newsday for another camping trip.

  7. 17:24

    Thanks all for the discussion of nene yesterday.

    Pretty good puzzle, today.

    DENTATE is a cool word.

    I’m glad I got 15D with the crosses, because that clue is diabolical.

  8. 34:10 no errors…the only halfway decent time for today.
    Servo motor was new to me and 16A was also new as I have heard of tankers and oilers but not COALERS and the auto correct refused to take it unless I put it in all caps.
    Stay safe😀

  9. 18 minutes, 2 seconds, no errors. A good challenge, as I had a few overwrites in the bottom right corner. And I ended it up in the top left!!

    Not always *obvious*, but not disingenuous, either.

  10. Not so good today – 25:06 with 5 errors all in the SE corner. I landed on PETER for “Salt’s companion” after removing PEPPA. Didn’t think of a sailor. Then got distracted and didn’t re-think my answers for 37D, 39D, and 42D – giving me 5 wrong answers. They sort of fit, but only with some awkward reasoning. Should have known better and maybe looked up one or two.

  11. Tricky Saturday for me; took 52:41 with a “check-grid” at a near empty NE corner. Everything else was correct but I had to change ugh to ICK and tAkEPITY to HAVEPITY. After that it took another minute to finish.

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