LA Times Crossword 20 Jun 21, Sunday

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Constructed by: David P. Williams
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: Elementary

One set of themed answers (all in the down-direction) are chemical elements, clued by their two-letter symbols. Another set of themed answers (all in the across-direction) use each of those two-letter symbols instead of the letters in the element name:

  • 21A One of four women with an EGOT : WHOOPI AuBERG (Whoopi Goldberg)
  • 27D Au : GOLD
  • 26A “Elizabeth I” Emmy winner : JEREMY FeS (Jeremy Irons)
  • 2D Fe : IRON
  • 31A Joint winner of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award : DIEGO MARnA (Diego Maradona)
  • 55D Rn : RADON
  • 44A “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” dramatist : EUGENe EILL (Eugene O’Neill)
  • 113D Ne : NEON
  • 92A Grammy winner for comedy and banjo playing : STEVE MARSn (Steve Martin)
  • 48D Sn : TIN
  • 98A Emmy-winning comedian/actress : SARAH AgMAN (Sarah Silverman)
  • 40D Ag : SILVER
  • 105A Rami Malek’s Best Actor role : FREDDIE Hg (Freddie Mercury)
  • 49D Hg : MERCURY
  • 117A First living magician with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame : DAVID CuFIELD (David Copperfield)
  • 66D Cu : COPPER

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

Bill’s time: 17m 56s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

6 Subterfuge on ice : 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”.

18 Thick noodle : UDON

Udon noodles are made from wheat-flour and are very popular in Japanese cuisines such as tempura.

19 “No Reservations” host Anthony : BOURDAIN

Anthony Bourdain was a chef, author and television personality from New York City. Bourdain’s celebrity came with the publication of his book “Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly” in 2000. He moved on to host the television shows “Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations” and “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown”. Bourdain was working on an episode of “Parts Unknown” when he committed suicide in 2018 in his Paris hotel room. Sad …

21 One of four women with an EGOT : WHOOPI AUBERG (Whoopi Goldberg)

Whoopi Goldberg’s real name is Caryn Elaine Johnson. Goldberg is multi-talented, and is one of a very short list of entertainers to have won all four major showbiz awards:

  • an Oscar (for “Ghost”)
  • an Emmy (two, for “The View”)
  • a Grammy (for “Thoroughly Modern Millie”, as a producer)
  • a Tony (also for producing “Thoroughly Modern Millie”)

23 Early rotary-winged aircraft : AUTOGIRO

An autogyro (sometimes “autogiro”, or simply “giro”) is an aircraft that uses an unpowered rotor to create lift, and a powered propeller to provide thrust. The first autogyro was flown in 1923 in Spain, where it was invented.

24 “Winning __ everything” : ISN’T

The quotation “Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing” is used a lot in sports. It is widely attributed to Red Sanders, who was football coach for the UCLA Bruins at the time, in 1950.

26 “Elizabeth I” Emmy winner : JEREMY FES (Jeremy Irons)

Jeremy Irons is a much-respected English actor who is noted for his stage, television and film performances. My favorite of these performances is the one that brought him into the limelight, playing Charles Ryder in the 1981 TV adaptation of Evelyn Waugh’s “Brideshead Revisited”. Irons won a Best Actor Oscar for playing Claus von Bülow in 1990’s “Reversal of Fortune”. He is married to Irish actress Sinéad Cusack, and the couple own a castle in County Cork in the south of Ireland.

“Elizabeth I” is a historical mini-series starring Helen Mirren as Elizabeth I, Queen of England. The series has two parts, with the first focusing on Elizabeth’s relationship with the Earl of Leicester (played by Jeremy Irons). The second part centers on the queen’s relationship with the Earl of Essex (played by Hugh Dancy). “Elizabeth I” is great television, and I highly recommend it …

28 Speedy shark : MAKO

The shortfin mako shark can appear on restaurant menus, and as a result the species is dying out in some parts of the world. The mako gets its own back sometimes though, as attacks on humans are not unknown. It is the fastest-swimming shark, and has been clocked at speeds of over 40 miles/hour. And the shark in Ernest Hemingway’s “The Old Man and the Sea”, that’s a mako. “Mako” is the Maori word for “shark” or “shark tooth”.

31 Joint winner of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award : DIEGO MARNA (Diego Maradona)

Diego Maradona had to have been the most famous of Argentina’s soccer players. He was also one of the country’s most controversial sportsmen and was noted for his outspoken manner with journalists, as well as his cocaine addiction.

The International Federation of Association Football (“Fédération Internationale de Football Association” in French) is usually referred to by the acronym “FIFA”. FIFA is the governing body of the game of soccer (association football), and the organizer of the FIFA World Cup held every four years.

36 Magic’s org. : NBA

The Orlando Magic were formed in 1989 as an NBA expansion team. A local paper was asked to run a competition to suggest names for the new team and the community came up with its four top picks of “Heat”, “Tropics”, “Juice” and “Magic”. A committee then opted for “Orlando Magic”. A good choice I think …

38 Martini partner : ROSSI

The company that is today known as Martini & Rossi was started in the mid-1800s in Italy, by Alessandro Martini and Luigi Rossi (and a third partner who sold out years later). From day one it was focused on bottling the fortified wine known as vermouth. Nowadays, the company is also famous for its sparkling wines, and its sponsorship of Grand Prix racing teams. And yes, the famous cocktail is probably named for Mr. Martini.

43 Games go-with : FUN

Fun and games.

44 “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” dramatist : EUGENE EILL (Eugene O’Neill)

Playwright Eugene O’Neill was born in a New York City hotel room in what is now called Times Square, in 1888. That building no longer exists and there is a Starbucks on the site today, but you can go take a look at the commemorative plaque at the Northeast corner of 43rd and Broadway. O’Neill died in 1953, in room 401 of the Sheraton Hotel on Bay State Road in Boston. His last words were, “I knew it. I knew it. Born in a hotel room, and God damn it, died in a hotel room.” Eugene O’Neill won a Pulitzer for his play “Anna Christie”.

“Long Day’s Journey Into Night” is a play by Eugene O’Neill that he wrote in the early 1940s. The play is a tragedy, and somewhat autobiographical. O’Neill stated that he never wanted the play to be staged, but did leave instructions that it could be published 25 years after his death. After the author died in 1953, his widow (actress Carlotta Monterey) countermanded O’Neill’s instructions and authorized publication in 1956. The play premiered that same year, won the 1957 Pulitzer for Drama, and today is regarded by many as O’Neill’s magnum opus.

47 Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, e.g. : OCTAD

In the original Brothers Grimm fairy tale called “Snow White”, the seven dwarfs were not given any names. The names were added for the 1937 classic Disney film “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”. The seven dwarfs are:

  • Doc (the leader of the group)
  • Grumpy (that would be me, according to my wife …)
  • Happy
  • Sleepy
  • Bashful
  • Sneezy
  • Dopey

51 Author Silverstein : SHEL

Author Shel Silverstein had a varied career and did a lot more than write books. Silverstein was a poet, composer, cartoonist and screenwriter among other things. One of his successful children’s books is “The Giving Tree”, which was first published in 1964. “The Giving Tree” tells of a young boy who has a special relationship with a tree in a forest. The message of the book seems to be that the tree provides the little boy with everything he needs.

52 Nothing in Naples : NIENTE

Naples (“Napoli” in Italian) is the third largest city in Italy. The name “Napoli” comes from the city’s Ancient Greek name, which translates as “New City”. That’s a bit of a paradox as today Naples is one of the oldest continuously-inhabited cities in the world.

54 “The Waltons” actor : GEER

Actor Will Geer died in 1978 just after filming the sixth season of “The Waltons”, in which he played Grandpa Zeb Walton. Geer was a noted social activist and was blacklisted in the fifties for refusing to appear before the all-powerful House Committee on Un-American Activities.

56 “Frozen” reindeer : SVEN

“Frozen” is a 2013 animated feature from Walt Disney Studios that is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Snow Queen”. The film is all about the exploits of Princess Anna, the younger sister of Elsa, Snow Queen of Arendelle. Spoiler alert: Prince Hans of the Southern Isles seems to be a good guy for most of the film, but turns out to be a baddie in the end. And, a snowman named Olaf provides some comic relief.

59 Horse trailer? : CART

Horse and cart.

61 Red-wrapped cheese : EDAM

Edam cheese takes its name from the Dutch town of Edam in North Holland. The cheese is famous for its coating of red paraffin wax, a layer of protection that helps Edam travel well and prevents spoiling. You might occasionally come across an Edam cheese that is coated in black wax. The black color indicates that the underlying cheese has been aged for a minimum of 17 weeks.

63 PC panic button : ESC

The escape key (Esc) was originally used just to control computer peripherals. It was a key that allowed the computer operator to stop what the peripheral was doing (cancel a print job, for example). Nowadays the escape key is used for all sorts of things, especially in gaming programs.

64 __ Creed : NICENE

What is known today in the Christian tradition as the Nicene Creed, was originally adopted by the first ecumenical council when it met in 325 AD. The meeting took place in the city of Nicaea, which gave its name to this particular profession of faith. Nicaea is the Greek name of the city that is now called Iznik, and it lies in the northwest of Turkey.

71 Tokyo, before the Meiji Restoration : EDO

“Edo” is the former name of the Japanese city of Tokyo. Edo was the seat of the Tokugawa shogunate, a feudal regime that ruled from 1603 until 1868. The shogun lived in the magnificent Edo Castle. Some parts of the original castle remain and today’s Tokyo Imperial Palace, the residence of the Emperor of Japan, was built on its grounds.

The Meiji period in Japan ran from 1868 to 1912, with “meiji” translating as “enlightened rule”.

72 N. Macedonia is its newest member : NATO

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was founded not long after WWII in 1949 and is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium. The first NATO Secretary General was Lord Ismay, Winston Churchill’s chief military assistant during WWII. Famously, Lord Ismay said the goal of NATO was “to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down.”

North Macedonia is one of the nations that emerged following the breakup of Yugoslavia from 1989 to 1992. It occupies the northern third of the geographic and historical region known as Macedonia, sharing the area with Greece, Bulgaria, Albania, Serbia and Kosovo. North Macedonia used the disputed name “Macedonia” after gaining independence in 1991, but agreed to change the name to “North Macedonia” starting in 2019.

74 Capital of Latvia : EURO

Latvia is one of the former Soviet Socialist Republics (SSRs). People from Latvia are called Letts.

76 Mo. once seventh : SEPT

The month of September is the ninth month in our year, although the name “September” comes from the Latin word “septum” meaning “seventh”. September was the seventh month in the Roman calendar until the year 46 BC when Julius Caesar introduced the Julian calendar. The Julian system moved the start of the year from March 1st to January 1st, and shifted September to the ninth month. The Gregorian calendar that we use today was introduced in 1582.

78 Immortal Babe : RUTH

Jack Dunn was the owner/manager of the Baltimore Orioles back in 1913, when he signed on George Herman Ruth as a pitcher. The other players called Ruth “Jack’s newest babe”, and the name “Babe” stuck.

82 Whaler of fiction : AHAB

Captain Ahab is the obsessed and far from friendly captain of the Pequod in Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick”. The role of Captain Ahab was played by Gregory Peck in the 1956 John Huston film adaptation. Patrick Stewart played Ahab in a 1998 miniseries in which Peck made another appearance, as Father Mapple.

86 Spanish bar food : TAPAS

“Tapa” is the Spanish word for “lid”. There is no clear rationale for why this word came to be used for an appetizer. There are lots of explanations cited, all of which seem to involve the temporary covering of one’s glass of wine with a plate or item of food to either preserve the wine or give one extra space at the table.

88 Kind of trap : BOOBY

The word “booby” has described a silly person since the late 1500s, with the term coming from the Spanish “bobo” meaning “stupid person. By the mid 1800s, schoolboys were pranking each other by setting “booby traps”. The latter innocent term took on a lethal meaning during WWI when it described a device designed to kill someone who triggered it unwittingly.

90 “That’s enough!” : TMI!

Too much information (TMI)

91 Mild cigar : CLARO

A claro is a mild cigar made with light-colored tobacco. The name “claro” comes from the Spanish for “clear”.

92 Grammy winner for comedy and banjo playing : STEVE MARSN (Steve Martin)

Comedian, actor and writer Steve Martin is from Waco, Texas. Martin’s entertainment career started to take off with success as a writer for the “Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour”. He then turned to stand-up comedy and often appeared on “The Tonight Show”. He was, and still is, a popular guest host on “Saturday Night Live”. He is so popular on “SNL” that many mistakenly believe that he was a permanent member of the “Saturday NIght Live” cast.

Comedian Steve Martin is quite the musician. He started playing the banjo when he was in his teens. He played second banjo on a 2001 release of “Foggy Mountain Breakdown” by Earl Scruggs, and that recording won a Grammy for Best Country Instrumental Performance.

95 Islands west of Lisbon : AZORES

The Azores is an archipelago of nine volcanic islands in the North Atlantic lying about 1,000 miles west of Portugal. The Azores are an autonomous region belonging to Portugal.

96 “Buss It” rapper Banks : ERICA

“Erica Banks” is the stage name of rap artist Erica Breaux.

97 One-named singer who directed “Music” (2021) : SIA

“Sia” is the stage name of Australian singer Sia Furler from Adelaide. Sia is a cousin of Australian Christian Rock musician Peter Furler.

“Music” is a 2021 is a musical drama movie written, produced and directed by Australian singer Sia. This one wasn’t received well and won a trio of Golden Raspberry Awards for lead actress Kate Hudson, supporting actress Maddie Ziegler, as well as for Sia herself as director.

98 Emmy-winning comedian/actress : SARAH AGMAN (Sarah Silverman)

Sarah Silverman is a comedian, and also a singer and actress. Her material is very “edgy”, as she takes on social taboos such as racism, sexism and religion. She had a celebrity boyfriend for five years as she started dating Jimmy Kimmel in 2002, soon after Kimmel’s divorce from his first wife.

100 Airport calc. : ETD

Estimated time of departure (ETD)

104 “The Kite Runner” protagonist : AMIR

“The Kite Runner” was the first novel by Khaled Hosseini, published in 2003. The very successful book became an equally successful film released in 2007. “The Kite Runner” tells the story of a young boy named Amir growing up in Kabul, Afghanistan. Author Hosseini is a medical doctor, but after the success of “The Kite Runner” he gave up his practice and is now a full-time writer. His second book, “A Thousand Splendid Suns”, is also a great success.

105 Rami Malek’s Best Actor role : FREDDIE HG (Freddie Mercury)

Freddie Mercury was a British singer-songwriter who was lead singer for the rock group Queen. Mercury wrote many of Queen’s hits, including “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Somebody to Love”, “Don’t Stop Me Now” and “We Are the Champions”. Mercury’s real name was Farrokh Bulsara, and he was born to Parsi parents in Zanzibar (now part of Tanzania) in East Africa. He grew up mainly in India, and arrived in England at the age of 17 after his family fled from the Zanzibar Revolution.

Actor Rami Malek’s big break came with the leading role in the television series “Mr. Robot”. In 2018, Malik gave an Oscar-winning performance playing Freddie Mercury in the hit biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody”. That marked the first time that an actor of Egyptian descent won an Academy Award for Best Actor.

117 First living magician with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame : DAVID CUFIELD (David Copperfield)

“David Copperfield” is the stage name used by illusionist David Kotkin. Copperfield is incredibly successful as a magician. He has grossed over $3 billion in ticket sales in his career, which is more than any other solo entertainer in any field. Copperfield actually owns his own chain of islands in the Bahamas.

120 Galena and others : ORES

Galena is the most commonly used mineral to produce lead. It is a form of lead sulfide. Galena is the state mineral of Missouri and of Wisconsin.

122 Mortarboard dangler : TASSEL

Tasseled mortarboards, or square academic caps, are associated with school graduations all over the world, although traditions do differ. For example in Ireland (where I come from), mortarboards are only worn by female graduates.

123 Field protector : TARP

Originally, tarpaulins were made from canvas covered in tar that rendered the material waterproof. The word “tarpaulin” comes from “tar” and “palling”, with “pall” meaning “heavy cloth covering”.

Down

2 Fe : IRON

The Latin word for “iron” is “ferrum”, which gives us “Fe” as the metal’s chemical symbol.

5 Ideal : EPITOME

The more common meaning of “epitome” is “perfect example of a group, quality, type”. An epitome is also an abstract or summary of a book or article.

6 Adds dialogue to : DUBS

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.

7 Super Bowl LIII MVP Julian : EDELMAN

Julian Edelman is a retired NFL player who spent his professional career with the New England Patriots. Off the field, Edelman is a published author of children’s books. “Flying High” was published in 2016, and a sequel “Flying High 2” came out in 2017.

8 Divided land since 1945 : KOREA

Korea was occupied by the Japanese military from 1910 until Japan surrendered at the end of WWII in 1945. While the UN was working towards a trusteeship administration for Korea, the Soviet Union managed the Korean Peninsula north of the 38th parallel and the US managed the south. The UN’s plans came to naught as the Cold War dictated the establishment of the two separate states of North Korea and South Korea. North Korea invaded the South in 1950, leading to the Korean War. After three years of fighting, the border between the two states became the demarcation line between the two military forces on the day the Armistice Agreement was signed. That line runs diagonally across the 38th parallel, and is better known as the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).

9 Official language of Belize: Abbr. : ENG

Belize was formerly known as British Honduras, which explains why English is the country’s official language. Belize is located on the northeastern coast of Central America, and borders Mexico and Guatemala.

10 Outings with buses : TOURS

We use the term “bus” for a mode of transportation as it is an abbreviated form of the original “omnibus”. We imported “omnibus” via French from Latin, in which language it means “for all”. The idea is that an omnibus is a “carriage for all”.

12 Teen in a tux, often : PROM-GOER

Apparently, the style of men’s evening dress called a “tuxedo” was first worn to a country club event in 1886 in New York. The use of a dark dinner jacket without tails became fashionable at the club with the members, and the tradition spread from there. The country club was located in Tuxedo Park, New York, giving the style of dress its name.

14 Ingenue : NAIF

A naïf is someone who is naive, as “naïf” is the French word for “naive”.

So often in literature, the movies and on stage, there is an innocent woman at the center of the story. Such stock characters came to be known as “ingénues”, a term derived from the French adjective “ingénu” meaning innocent, virtuous, candid and “ingenuous”.

15 Like some straits : DIRE

The be in dire straits is to be in a very difficult situation. The phrase “in dire straits” originated in the world of sail, and is a reference to a vessel navigating a dangerous channel of water, a dire strait.

16 D.C. area airport : BWI

There are three airports serving the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area:

  • Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA)
  • Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)
  • Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI)

Of the three, BWI handles the most passengers.

17 Sweat spot : SAUNA

As my Finnish-American wife will tell you, “sauna” is a Finnish word, and is pronounced more correctly as “sow-nah” (with “sow” as in the female pig).

19 Main squeeze, in slang : BAE

“Bae” is a contemporary term of endearment. It is a pet name that is an abbreviation of “babe, baby”, although I’ve also read that it is an acronym standing for “before anyone else”.

26 South African metropolis, colloquially : JOBURG

Johannesburg (informally “Joburg”) is the most populous city in South Africa. The city developed from a prospecting settlement, and was named after two surveyors: Johannes Meyer and Johannes Rissik.

27 Au : GOLD

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.

31 God of Guatemala : DIOS

Guatemala in Central America became independent from Spain in 1821, first becoming part of the Mexican Empire, and then becoming completely independent two years later.

33 One of four direcciones : ESTE

“Este” (east) is a “dirección” (direction), in Spanish.

39 Lunar plains : SEAS

A mare is a large dark area on the moon. “Mare” is the Latin for “sea. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the Mare Tranquillitatis, the Sea of Tranquility.

40 Ag : SILVER

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

46 “The Elephant Man” (1980) director : LYNCH

David Lynch is a much-respected and lauded American film director. His most famous movies are probably “Eraserhead”, “The Elephant Man”, “Dune” and “Mulholland Drive”. Despite the positive reviews from most critics, I can’t think of one David Lynch film that I’ve really enjoyed …

“The Elephant Man” is a 1980 biopic about Joseph Merrick, a severely deformed man who appeared in a Victorian freak show in London. Merrick is portrayed by John Hurt. Mel Brooks was one of the producers of the film, although his name was left off the credits to avoid audiences anticipating a comedy. “The Elephant Man” is no comedy …

48 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”.

49 Hg : MERCURY

Mercury is the only metallic element that is a liquid at room temperature. Mercury used to be known as “hydrargyrum”, from the Greek “hydr-” meaning “water” and “argyros” meaning “silver”. As a result, Mercury’s modern chemical symbol is “Hg” (for “Hydrargyrum”).

55 Rn : RADON

The noble gases (also “rare gases”) are those elements on the extreme right of the Periodic Table. Because of their “full” complement of electrons, noble gases are very unreactive. The six noble gases that occur naturally are helium, neon, argon, krypton, xenon and radon.

58 First TV channel with 24-hr. news coverage : CNN

CNN (Cable News Network) was launched in 1980 by the Turner Broadcasting System, and was the first television channel in the world to provide news coverage 24 hours a day.

62 La Méditerranée, e.g. : MER

In French, “La Méditerranée” (the Mediterranean) is a “mer” (sea).

66 Cu : COPPER

Copper metal was mined by the ancient Romans, mainly in Cyprus. Because of its origin, the Romans called the metal “aes cyprium” (metal of Cyprus), a term that evolved into the Latin “cuprum”, which in turn became our “copper”. Copper’s element symbol “Cu” comes from the Latin “cuprum”.

67 Whirlybird raisers : ROTORS

“Whirlybird” is an informal word meaning “helicopter”.

68 Cosa __ : NOSTRA

Apparently, “Cosa Nostra” is the real name for the Italian Mafia. “Cosa Nostra” translates as “our thing” or “this thing of ours”. The term first became public in the US when the FBI managed to turn several members of the American Mafia. The Italian authorities established that “Cosa Nostra” was also used in Sicily when they penetrated the Sicilian Mafia in the 1980s. The term “Mafia” seems to be just a literary invention that has become popular with the public.

73 Bass in a band : TUBA

The tuba is the lowest-pitched of all brass instruments, and one of the most recent additions to the modern symphony orchestra (usually there is just one tuba included in an orchestral line-up). “Tuba” is the Latin word for “trumpet, horn”. Oom-pah-pah …

75 “In Flanders Fields” setting, succinctly : WWI

The WWI battlefields in West Flanders, East Flanders (both in Belgium) and French Flanders are often referred to in English as “Flanders Fields”. The phrase was coined by Canadian physician Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae in his 1915 poem “In Flanders Fields”.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

77 Kipling’s Rikki-Tikki-__ : TAVI

In Rudyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book”, one of the short stories is titled “Rikki-Tikki-Tavi”. It is a tale about a mongoose, the brave pet of an English family that protects them from a succession of snakes.

79 Scam : HOSING

“To hose” is a slang term meaning “to cheat, trick”.

81 Shade of green : EMERALD

Emerald is a variety of the mineral beryl that is green in color due to traces of chromium. Beryl containing traces of vanadium are also considered to be emeralds, at least here in the US. “Vanadium emeralds” aren’t recognized as emeralds in Europe.

83 Hippocratic oath prohibition : HARM

The Hippocratic Corpus is a collection of about 70 medical works that were at one time believed to have been written by the Ancient Greek physician Hippocrates, although authorship has been called into question. Within the collection is a document known as the Hippocratic Oath (but again, the authorship has been questioned). The oath is still used today as the basis for oaths taken by medical graduates before they enter into medical practice.

85 One on a fo’c’sle, perhaps : BO’S’N

A boatswain works on the deck of a boat. He or she is unlicensed, and so is not involved in the navigation or handling of the vessel, and instead is in charge of the other unlicensed workers on the deck. “Boatswain” is pronounced “bosun” and this phonetic spelling is often used interchangeably with “boatswain”. The contraction “bo’s’n” is also very popular.

The forecastle (usually abbreviated to “fo’c’sle”) is the forward part of a ship where the sailors’ sleeping quarters are located. The term is also used to describe the upper deck, forward of the foremost mast. The related phrase “before the mast” is used to describe anything related to a ship’s enlisted men, those sailors who are not officers.

87 Union breakers : SECEDERS

Back in the very early 1700s, to secede was to leave one’s companions. In the mid-18th century, the meaning of “secession” took on the current meaning of withdrawing from an organized union. The first such “secession” was the exodus of ministers and members from the Church of Scotland starting in 1733.

89 __ B’rith : B’NAI

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

91 Kingpin : CZAR

The term “czar” (also “tsar”) is a Slavic word that was first used as a title by Simeon I of Bulgaria in 913 AD. “Czar” is derived from the word “caesar”, which was synonymous with “emperor” at that time. We tend to use the “czar” spelling, as opposed to “tsar”, when we describe a person today with great power or authority, e.g. “Drug Czar”.

The word “kingpin” is mainly used figuratively these days, to describe the most prominent member of a group. Back at the start of the 19th century, a kingpin was the largest pin in a bowling game called “kayles”. As a result, the term “kingpin” is also used sometimes in ten-pin bowling to describe the 5-pin, the pin in the center of the triangular array.

93 Afternoon feature : MATINEE

“Matinée” is a French word used to describe a musical entertainment held during the daytime. “Matinée” is derived from the word “matin”, meaning “morning”, although here the term is used in the sense of “daylight”.

95 Yellowfin : AHI TUNA

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.

99 Firenze friends : AMICI

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

101 Window sticker : DECAL

A decal is a decorative sticker. “Decal” is a shortening of “decalcomania”. The latter term is derived from the French “décalquer”, the practice of tracing a pattern from paper onto glass or perhaps porcelain.

103 Santa __, Calif. : CLARA

The Santa Clara Valley, located at the southern end of San Francisco Bay, is better known as “Silicon Valley”. The term “Silicon Valley” dates back to 1971 when it was apparently first used in a weekly trade newspaper called “Electronic News” in articles written by journalist Don Hoefler.

105 Seminoles’ sch. : FSU

Florida State University (FSU) is located in Tallahassee, the state capital of Florida. The school’s athletic teams are known as the Seminoles (sometimes the “‘Noles”). The team name was chosen in 1947 by the students in a vote, and alludes to the Seminole people of Florida.

107 “Lohengrin” heroine : ELSA

“Lohengrin” is a very popular opera by Richard Wagner that was first performed in 1850. Many arias from “Lohengrin” are staples in “Opera’s Greatest Hits” collections. We’ve often heard the “Bridal Chorus” from “Lohengrin”. It’s the tune to “Here comes the bride …”, which is played regularly at the start of wedding ceremonies as the bride walks down the aisle. In the opera, the “Bridal Chorus” is sung not at the start of the ceremony but afterwards, by the women of the wedding party as they accompany newlywed Elsa to the bridal chamber.

108 Morse sounds that can spell “hies” : DITS

Samuel Morse came up with the forerunner to modern Morse code for use on the electric telegraph, of which he was the co-inventor. Morse code uses a series of dots and dashes to represent letters and numbers. The most common letters are assigned the simplest code elements e.g. E is represented by one dot, and T is represented by one dash. When words are spelled aloud in Morse code, a dot is pronounced as “dit”, and a dash is pronounced as “dah”.

The word “hies” in Morse code is “…./.././…”

113 Ne : NEON

Neon was discovered in 1898 by two British chemists Sir William Ramsay and Morris Travers. They chilled a sample of air, turning it into a liquid. They then warmed that liquid and separated out the gases that boiled off. Along with nitrogen, oxygen and argon (already known), the pair of scientists discovered two new gases. The first they called “krypton” and the second “neon”. “Krypton” is Greek for “the hidden one” and “neon” is Greek for “new”.

115 Econ. indicator : GDP

A country’s Gross National Product (GNP) is the value of all services and products produced by its residents in a particular year. GNP includes all production wherever it is in the world, as long as the business is owned by residents of the country concerned. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is different, although related, and is the value of all services and goods produced within the borders of the country for that year.

118 Blood, slangily : FAM

Family (fam).

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Market division : AISLE
6 Subterfuge on ice : DEKE
10 High-quality : TOP-END
16 Makes the rounds for rounds : BARHOPS
18 Thick noodle : UDON
19 “No Reservations” host Anthony : BOURDAIN
21 One of four women with an EGOT : WHOOPI AUBERG (Whoopi Goldberg)
23 Early rotary-winged aircraft : AUTOGIRO
24 “Winning __ everything” : ISN’T
25 Butt heads : TUSSLE
26 “Elizabeth I” Emmy winner : JEREMY FES (Jeremy Irons)
27 “… going, going, __!” : GONE
28 Speedy shark : MAKO
30 Give in to gravity : SAG
31 Joint winner of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award : DIEGO MARNA (Diego Maradona)
36 Magic’s org. : NBA
38 Martini partner : ROSSI
42 Foot rest? : INSOLE
43 Games go-with : FUN
44 “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” dramatist : EUGENE EILL (Eugene O’Neill)
47 Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, e.g. : OCTAD
48 Sweet __ : TEA
49 Christmas opener? : MERRY …
50 Court exchange : RALLY
51 Author Silverstein : SHEL
52 Nothing in Naples : NIENTE
54 “The Waltons” actor : GEER
56 “Frozen” reindeer : SVEN
57 Screen star, say : ICON
59 Horse trailer? : CART
61 Red-wrapped cheese : EDAM
63 PC panic button : ESC
64 __ Creed : NICENE
67 Countermand : RESCIND
69 Scarcity : DEARTH
71 Tokyo, before the Meiji Restoration : EDO
72 N. Macedonia is its newest member : NATO
74 Capital of Latvia : EURO
75 Threadbare : WORN
76 Mo. once seventh : SEPT
78 Immortal Babe : RUTH
80 Stitched again : RESEWN
82 Whaler of fiction : AHAB
86 Spanish bar food : TAPAS
88 Kind of trap : BOOBY
90 “That’s enough!” : TMI!
91 Mild cigar : CLARO
92 Grammy winner for comedy and banjo playing : STEVE MARSN (Steve Martin)
94 Is for you? : ARE
95 Islands west of Lisbon : AZORES
96 “Buss It” rapper Banks : ERICA
97 One-named singer who directed “Music” (2021) : SIA
98 Emmy-winning comedian/actress : SARAH AGMAN (Sarah Silverman)
100 Airport calc. : ETD
102 In the __ of time : NICK
104 “The Kite Runner” protagonist : AMIR
105 Rami Malek’s Best Actor role : FREDDIE HG (Freddie Mercury)
110 Softly illuminated : LOW-LIT
112 Obstacle : SNAG
116 Conspicuousness : SALIENCE
117 First living magician with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame : DAVID CUFIELD (David Copperfield)
119 Against the flow : UPSTREAM
120 Galena and others : ORES
121 Easy way to win : IN A ROMP
122 Mortarboard dangler : TASSEL
123 Field protector : TARP
124 Church cries : AMENS

Down

1 Fireworks reactions : AAHS
2 Fe : IRON
3 It may be a long one : SHOT
4 Prune : LOP
5 Ideal : EPITOME
6 Adds dialogue to : DUBS
7 Super Bowl LIII MVP Julian : EDELMAN
8 Divided land since 1945 : KOREA
9 Official language of Belize: Abbr. : ENG
10 Outings with buses : TOURS
11 Make more than : OUTEARN
12 Teen in a tux, often : PROM-GOER
13 Unconventional, maybe : EDGY
14 Ingenue : NAIF
15 Like some straits : DIRE
16 D.C. area airport : BWI
17 Sweat spot : SAUNA
19 Main squeeze, in slang : BAE
20 House IDs : NOS
22 Highway toll, e.g. : USER FEE
26 South African metropolis, colloquially : JOBURG
27 Au : GOLD
29 Dad-to-tot talk support : KNEE
31 God of Guatemala : DIOS
32 Small amount to give : INCH
33 One of four direcciones : ESTE
34 Net defender : GOALIE
35 Subtlety : NUANCE
37 Shook, in a way : AGREED
39 Lunar plains : SEAS
40 Ag : SILVER
41 Least well : ILLEST
45 Inspected : EYED
46 “The Elephant Man” (1980) director : LYNCH
48 Sn : TIN
49 Hg : MERCURY
52 Lack of musicality : NO EAR
53 Zap : TASE
55 Rn : RADON
58 First TV channel with 24-hr. news coverage : CNN
60 Swing seat, maybe : TIRE
62 La Méditerranée, e.g. : MER
64 Stick-y spots? : NESTS
65 Think : IDEATE
66 Cu : COPPER
67 Whirlybird raisers : ROTORS
68 Cosa __ : NOSTRA
70 Like old timers? : ANALOG
73 Bass in a band : TUBA
75 “In Flanders Fields” setting, succinctly : WWI
77 Kipling’s Rikki-Tikki-__ : TAVI
79 Scam : HOSING
81 Shade of green : EMERALD
83 Hippocratic oath prohibition : HARM
84 Field or its measure : AREA
85 One on a fo’c’sle, perhaps : BO’S’N
87 Union breakers : SECEDERS
89 __ B’rith : B’NAI
91 Kingpin : CZAR
93 Afternoon feature : MATINEE
94 Invite for dinner, say : ASK OVER
95 Yellowfin : AHI TUNA
99 Firenze friends : AMICI
101 Window sticker : DECAL
103 Santa __, Calif. : CLARA
105 Seminoles’ sch. : FSU
106 Spellbound : RAPT
107 “Lohengrin” heroine : ELSA
108 Morse sounds that can spell “hies” : DITS
109 Fashion line? : HEM
111 Swirl of smoke : WISP
112 Royal address : SIRE
113 Ne : NEON
114 Contents of a monk’s bowl : ALMS
115 Econ. indicator : GDP
117 Point : DOT
118 Blood, slangily : FAM

18 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 20 Jun 21, Sunday”

  1. Thought it was going to be a boring puzzle with the theme just being to answer the abbreviations with the appropriate element, but once I filled in “DAVID CUFIELD” I had that “aha” moment. Knowing which ones were left even helped me fill some.

    1. My “aha” moment was Whoopi(au)berg! Did well after that.
      Got stuck on Sweet ‘tea’ though,
      as I thought ‘pea’: ‘niente’ solved that problem.
      Cheers!

      1. I had an anal problem with Eugene O’Neill, because it didn’t follow the same pattern as the others: the first name was left alone, then the last name was the start of the element!!! I like patterns! I like symmetry!!!! ARGGHH!!!

  2. Over 2 hours and I had TORN for WORN…I would rather have ten errors or a DNF that to struggle through and come up one short👎👎👎👎👎
    44A took me forever to figure out.
    Stay safe😀
    Guess I was just out of my “element” with this one ( someone was eventually going to say it)

  3. By the time I got to Eugene O’Neill, I knew something was going on. I thought it might be a rebus. Then I spent a long time trying to figure out how to put more than one letter in a cell. I never figured that out. I never took chemistry (bad excuse) so I had to look up a lot of the elements. Over an hour with a lot of cheating. Clever enough, but not fun for me.

    1. @Corky
      Then I spent a long time trying to figure out how to put more than one letter in a cell.
      As a rule, the Los Angeles Times never publishes grids that use rebus squares.

  4. 30 mins, 3 sec, no errors, but needed Check Grid help to suss out maybe 8 of them. Lots of tricky clues to throw one off, and the element fills certainly both helped and hindered completion.

  5. 22:21

    I really liked this one! Probably helps that I considered being a chemistry major for about two weeks. Starting with the downs meant I got the elemental quiz first (even though I missed Rn for RADON), so I was ready for WHOOPI(AU/GOLD)BERG when I started the acrosses. I also liked seeing ORE and EMERALD for more mineral content.

    SALIENCE and RESCIND are cool words, too.

  6. Why is the capital of Latvia ‘Euro’? The EU capital is Brussels, every other administrative capitol is in west/central Europe, the capital of Lativia is Riga. I found a reference to Riga being the capital of European culture in 2014 but that’s a bad, bad hint. Use a different clue if you want to use EURO. There are so many that aren’t painfully obtuse.

    1. Money may be referred to as “capital”. So, for example, the capital of the US is the dollar (meaning that it’s measured in dollars). You’ll see this bit of misdirection in more than one crossword puzzle.

  7. @katia – it is referring to money, not a city..

    I got hung up on DIEGO MARNA thinking the ending had to be NEON and just gave up and left it as MARNE… I totally forgot about RADON and I certainly didn’t know who the gentleman was.

    To make it worse, I lost track of NEON and completely missed it in 44A… I got it right but not consciously..

    Goodbye Father’s Day, hello monday.

  8. Very enjoyable Sunday puzzle; took 40:58 with two errors right where I was trying to finish the puzzle. I didn’t know the Rapper ERatA/TAVa/SEtEDERS. Actually I really should have gotten SECEDERS, with a little bit more thought.

    Theme made the theme clues a gimme, except for EUGENEEILL, which I left since I was sure of the crosses and was in a hurry. I did know it was supposed to be ONEIL.

    re capital vs capitol – I was sure I understood this several years back when I researched it, but there’s still some nuance involved. The capitol is only the government building, whereas the capital is the city containing the capitol.
    Also, and in today’s clue, capital can refer to the currency the country uses.

  9. Because I didn’t have time to even look at the Sunday puzzle, I didn’t
    attempt it until this morning (Monday). Whoopi Goldberg was my first
    clue for the theme, and then it wasn’t so hard. But I still had to go to
    the periodic table to decipher some symbols.

    I never heard of David Maradona so that one had me going for awhile.

  10. 46:43 and a few errors. I got most of the themed answers, only messing up on FREDDIEhg and STEVEMARsn – couldn’t figure out FRED who, and assumed that MARTN was acceptable, not relating the TIN element of Sn to him. And, I had HOTONE for 79D “Scam”, and so didn’t pursue changing those two crosses for HOSING.

    I take exception to the spelling of AUTOGiRO, as it “should” be AUTOGyRO, and I didn’t know NAIF.

    The middle section came together better after I replaced NUKE with TASE for 53D “Zap”.

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