LA Times Crossword 24 Jul 21, Saturday

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Constructed by: Jake Houston
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: None

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

Bill’s time: 9m 13s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Original airer of “The Flintstones” : ABC

I once had the privilege of spending an afternoon in the room (Bill Hanna’s den) where Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera came up with the idea of “The Flintstones” …

4 Frat Pack brother of Luke : OWEN

The phrase “Frat Pack” grew out of the Rat Pack, and later the Brat Pack. Frat Pack has been used for two groups of performers. First it was applied to dramatic actors Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Edward Norton and Ryan Phillippe who had worked with each other in several films. The term is more regularly used for comedy actors Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Owen Wilson, Luke Wilson, Will Ferrell, Vince Vaughn and Steve Carell.

8 Where a queen may be crowned : PROM

A prom is a formal dance held upon graduation from high school (we call them “formals” over in Ireland). The term “prom” is short for “promenade”, the name given to a type of dance or ball.

12 Swedish aerospace giant : SAAB

“SAAB” stands for Svenska Aeroplan AB, which translates into English as Swedish Aeroplane Limited. Although we usually think of SAAB as an auto manufacturer, it is mainly an aircraft manufacturer. If you take small hops in Europe you might find yourself on a SAAB passenger plane. The SAAB automotive division was acquired by General Motors in the year 2000, who then sold it to a Dutch concern in 2010. However, SAAB (automotive) finally went bankrupt in 2011. A Chinese consortium purchased the assets of SAAB Automotive in 2012, and so SAAB vehicles are in production again. The new vehicles are using the SAAB name, but cannot use the SAAB griffin logo, the rights to which have been retained by the mother company.

16 Emmy winner Ward : SELA

Actress Sela Ward turns up in crosswords a lot. Ward played Teddy Reed in the TV show “Sisters” in the nineties, and was in “Once and Again” from 1999-2002. I don’t know either show, but I do know Ward from the medical drama “House” in which she played the hospital’s lawyer and Greg House’s ex-partner. That was a fun role, I thought. More recently, Ward played a lead role on “CSI: NY” and was a very welcome and much-needed addition to the cast. And, Ward played Dr. Richard Kimble’s murdered wife in the 1993 film version of “The Fugitive”.

20 Former capital of Myanmar : RANGOON

Yangon is a former capital city of Burma, which is a nation now known as Myanmar. Yangon is sometimes referred to as “Rangoon” in English.

21 Beemer alternative : JAG

Auto manufacturer Jaguar started out as a manufacturer of sidecars for motorcycles back in 1922, when the company was known as the Swallow Sidecar Company (SS for short). The company changed its name to Jaguar after WWII, because of the unfortunate connotations of the letters “SS” in that era (i.e. the Nazi paramilitary organization).

The initialism “BMW” stands for Bayerische Motoren Werke, which translates into Bavarian Motor Works. BMW was making aircraft engines during WWI, but had to cease that activity according to the terms of the Treaty of Versailles. The company then started making motorcycles, and moved into automobile production starting in 1928. BMW moved back into aircraft engine manufacturing during the build-up of the Luftwaffe prior to WWII.

23 Insurance ad woman : FLO

Progressive is a popular auto insurance company, the one that uses the perky character named “Flo” as a spokesperson. Flo is played by comedian and actress Stephanie Courtney.

24 Prayer leaders : IMAMS

An imam is a Muslim leader, and often the person in charge of a mosque and/or perhaps a Muslim community.

27 “I am not strange. I am just not normal” artist : DALI

The famous surrealist painter Salvador Dalí was born in Figueres, Spain. I had the privilege of visiting the Dalí Museum in Figueres some years ago, just north of Barcelona. If you ever get the chance, it’s a “must see” as it really is a quite magnificent building with a fascinating collection.

28 UFC sport : MMA

Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a full-contact combat sport in which competitors use a variety of techniques from a variety of traditional combat sports and martial arts.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is the largest promoter in the world of mixed martial arts competitions. I think the idea is that competitors fight each other in various disciplines to see who is the “best of the best” …

30 Boots, in a way : LOADS

The verb “to boot”, as used in the world of computers, comes from the phrase “pull oneself up by one’s bootstraps”. The idea is that the software that has to be loaded before a computer can do anything useful is called a “bootstrap load”.

31 Hubbard movement : SCIENTOLOGY

L. Ron Hubbard wrote a self-improvement book in 1950 called “Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health”. A few years later, he used the concepts in the book as he founded his Church of Scientology.

35 Reality show with auctioneers : STORAGE WARS

“Storage Wars” is a reality TV show about buyers looking for great deals when storage lockers are opened and the contents auctioned off due to non-payment of rent.

36 Illustrations on some old maps : SEA MONSTERS

Medieval maps frequently included images of monsters, almost invariably sea monsters. Some experts believe that these sea monsters were actually representations of what the cartographer actually believed was living in the oceans.

38 Talk acronym : TED

The acronym “TED” stands for “Technology, Entertainment and Design”. TED is a set of conferences held around the world by a non-profit group called the Sapling Foundation. The conference subjects are varied, and the meetings are often led by big names such as Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Bill Gates and Jane Goodall. The Sapling Foundation then makes recordings of the conferences available for free online with the intent of disseminating the ideas globally. These conferences are known as “TED Talks”. There are also TEDx events, which are locally-run talks presented under license from TED.

47 Gilbert and Sullivan princess : IDA

“Princess Ida; or, Castle Adamant” is a Gilbert & Sullivan comic opera. It was first performed in 1884 at the Savoy Theatre in London that was famous for staging the duo’s works.

48 Theater pickups, on signs : TIX

Tickets (tix)

49 Multitalented Jessel of vaudeville : GEORGIE

Georgie Jessel was an actor and singer who originated the title role in the play “The Jazz Singer”, two years before Al Jolson appeared in the movie adaptation. Jessel was also in high demand as an MC at entertainment and political gatherings, earning him the nickname “Toastmaster General of the United States”.

51 Italian tubes : ZITI

Cylindrical pasta is known in general as “penne”, and there are many variants. For example, ziti is a particularly large and long tube with square-cut ends. “Penne” is the plural of “penna”, the Italian for “feather, quill”.

55 U.K. prime minister during the Suez Crisis : EDEN

Sir Anthony Eden served as Britain’s Foreign Secretary during WWII, and then as Prime Minister from 1955-57. I think it’s fair to say that Eden doesn’t have a great reputation as a statesman. He was proud of his stance in favor of peace over war, so his critics characterized him as an appeaser. His major stumble on the world stage occurred with the Suez Crisis in 1956. Egypt’s President Nasser unilaterally nationalized the Suez Canal causing war to be declared on Egypt by Britain, France and Israel. Within a few months political pressure from the US and the USSR caused the allies to withdraw, bolstering Egypt’s national reputation. Eden never recovered from the loss of face at home, and it is felt that the stress even affected his health. Eden resigned in January 1957.

56 MIT __: business school : SLOAN

MIT’s School of Management is named for MIT graduate Alfred P. Sloan, a former chairman of General Motors.

Down

1 Lindgren who wrote the Pippi Longstocking tales : ASTRID

Pippi Longstocking appears as the heroine in a series of books written by Swedish author Astrid Lindgren. Lindgren was quite the activist, very well known in the circles working for children’s and animal rights, In particular, Lindgren campaigned heavily against corporal punishment.

2 Grand __ : BAHAMA

Grand Bahama is the largest island in the Bahamas chain. It only lies 56 miles off the coast of Florida. The Spanish gave the island the name of “Gran Bajamar”, which means “Great Shallows”.

4 “Hedda Gabler” setting, now : OSLO

Oslo, the capital of Norway, is an ancient city that was founded around 1048. The medieval city was destroyed by fire in 1624 and was rebuilt by the Danish-Norwegian king Christian IV and renamed to Christiana. In 1877 there was an official change of the spelling of the city’s name to “Kristiana”, and then more recently in 1925 the name was restored to the original Oslo. Things have almost gone full circle and now the center of Oslo, the area that would have been contained by the original medieval walls, has apparently been renamed to Christiana.

“Hedda Gabler” is a play by the great Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen that was first published in 1890. Considered one of the greatest theater roles, the title character of Hedda Gabler is sometimes referred to as the female Hamlet.

6 New Haven alum : ELI

Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut was founded in 1701, making it the third-oldest university in the US. Originally called the Collegiate School, it was renamed to Yale University in honor of retired merchant Elihu Yale, who made generous contributions to the institution. Yale University’s nickname is “Old Eli”, in a nod to the benefactor.

7 Title woman in an André Breton novel : NADJA

“Nadja” is a 1928 surrealist novel by French writer and poet André Breton.

8 MADD ad, e.g. : PSA

Public service announcement (PSA)

Candace Lightner lost her 13-year-old child to a drink-driver in 1980. Soon after, Lightner formed the group Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

10 Noted fly swallower : OLD LADY

There was an old lady who swallowed a fly.
I dunno why she swallowed that fly,
Perhaps she’ll die.

There was an old lady who swallowed a spider,
That wiggled and wiggled and tickled inside her.
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly …

There was an old lady who swallowed a bird;
How absurd, to swallow a bird!
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider …

There was an old lady who swallowed a cat.
Imagine that, she swallowed a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird …

There was an old lady who swallowed a dog.
What a hog! To swallow a dog!
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat …

There was an old lady who swallowed a goat.
Just opened her throat and swallowed a goat!
She swallowed the goat to catch the dog …

There was an old lady who swallowed a cow.
I don’t know how she swallowed a cow!
She swallowed the cow to catch the goat…

There was an old lady who swallowed a horse –
She’s dead, of course.

15 Set of sheets : REAM

A ream is 500 sheets of paper. As there were 24 sheets in a quire, and 20 quires made up a ream, there used to be 480 sheets in a ream. Ever since the standard was changed to 500, a 480-sheet packet of paper has been called a “short ream”. We also use the term “reams” to mean a great amount, evolving from the idea of a lot of printed material.

18 Head of the LAPD? : LOS

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) is the third-largest local law enforcement agency in the country, after New York PD and Chicago PD. Among other things, LAPD is famous for creating the first Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team in the US, in 1965.

22 Actress Sarah Michelle __ : GELLAR

Actress Sarah Michelle Gellar is perhaps best known for playing the title role on the TV show “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”. Gellar married fellow actor Freddie Prinze Jr. in 2002.

25 Rap genre : GANGSTA

Gangsta rap is a type of hip hop music with lyrics that reflect the violent lifestyle experienced by some inner-city youth.

28 Barcelona-born surrealist : MIRO

Joan Miró was a Spanish artist. He immersed himself in Surrealism, so much so that Andre Breton, the founder of the movement, said that Miró was “the most Surrealist of us all”. There are two museums dedicated to Miró’s work. The Fundació Joan Miró is in his native Barcelona, and the Fundació Miró Mallorca is in Palma de Mallorca, where the artist spent much of his life.

32 Global networking pioneer : COMSAT

COMSAT (the Communications Satellite Corporation) is a telecommunication enterprise noted for its satellite communication services. COMSAT started out in 1963 as a public company, one that was federally funded and government regulated. The government’s intent in creating COMSAT was to develop an international commercial satellite network to facilitate global communications.

33 Parisian bean? : TETE

In French, Marie Antoinette lost her “tête” (head) in “la Révolution française” (the French Revolution).

37 Xanax maker : PFIZER

Pfizer is a pharmaceutical company based in New York City that was founded in 1849 by cousins Charles Pfizer and Charles Erhart. Pfizer has an impressive list of successful products that includes Lipitor (to lower cholesterol), Viagra (to help with erectile dysfunction) and Celebrex (an anti-inflammatory). Oh, and a very effective COVID-19 vaccine.

Xanax is a brand of the anti-anxiety drug alprazolam. It is one of the most commonly misused prescription drugs in the US, with wide acceptance in the illegal recreational drug market.

41 __-sense: superhero asset : SPIDEY

“Spidey-sense” is a term used to describe one’s intuition or instinct, especially when sensing something that might be dangerous. The term arises from the comic book hero Spider-Man’s ability to sense danger before others.

42 “__ here”: “Poltergeist” : THEY’RE

“Poltergeist” is a 1982 film co-written and produced by Steven Spielberg that tells of a family whose home is invaded by scary ghosts. Tobe Cooper directed, as Spielberg was prevented from doing so due to his contract on the film “E.T. the Extraterrestrial” that was released at almost the same time as “Poltergeist”.

A poltergeist is a spirit or ghost that makes its presence known by making noises or by moving objects. The term “Poltergeist” is German, coming from “poltern” meaning “to rumble” or “to make a noise”, and “Geist”, the German for “ghost” or “spirit”.

46 Rapper __ Def : MOS

“Mos Def” is the former stage name of actor and rapper Dante Terrell Smith-Bay, now known as Yasiin Bey. Mos Def is one of the few rap stars who is really making a name for himself in the world of movies. He received critical acclaim for roles in 2003’s “The Italian Job” , 2005’s “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”, and for a featured role in an episode of television’s “House”.

50 Choice word? : EENY

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Catch the tiger/monkey/baby by the toe.
If it hollers/screams let him go,
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe, you are it!

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Original airer of “The Flintstones” : ABC
4 Frat Pack brother of Luke : OWEN
8 Where a queen may be crowned : PROM
12 Swedish aerospace giant : SAAB
14 __ system : SOLAR
16 Emmy winner Ward : SELA
17 Metaphor for nonstop action : THRILL RIDE
19 Throws in : ADDS
20 Former capital of Myanmar : RANGOON
21 Beemer alternative : JAG
23 Insurance ad woman : FLO
24 Prayer leaders : IMAMS
25 Coach’s strategy : GAME PLAN
27 “I am not strange. I am just not normal” artist : DALI
28 UFC sport : MMA
30 Boots, in a way : LOADS
31 Hubbard movement : SCIENTOLOGY
35 Reality show with auctioneers : STORAGE WARS
36 Illustrations on some old maps : SEA MONSTERS
37 Uses a lot? : PARKS
38 Talk acronym : TED
39 It’s behind you : PAST
43 Emergency building section : FIRE AREA
46 Transform : MORPH
47 Gilbert and Sullivan princess : IDA
48 Theater pickups, on signs : TIX
49 Multitalented Jessel of vaudeville : GEORGIE
51 Italian tubes : ZITI
53 Higher education? : BIBLE STUDY
55 U.K. prime minister during the Suez Crisis : EDEN
56 MIT __: business school : SLOAN
57 Forward thinker : SEER
58 Fishing boat tools : RODS
59 Marine hazard : EDDY
60 Lock-changing aid? : DYE

Down

1 Lindgren who wrote the Pippi Longstocking tales : ASTRID
2 Grand __ : BAHAMA
3 Earthly : CARNAL
4 “Hedda Gabler” setting, now : OSLO
5 Showing signs of age : WORN
6 New Haven alum : ELI
7 Title woman in an André Breton novel : NADJA
8 MADD ad, e.g. : PSA
9 Warnings : RED FLAGS
10 Noted fly swallower : OLD LADY
11 Stonewallers? : MASONS
13 “Not a good idea at all” : BIG MISTAKE
15 Set of sheets : REAM
18 Head of the LAPD? : LOS
22 Actress Sarah Michelle __ : GELLAR
25 Rap genre : GANGSTA
26 Rude losers : POOR SPORTS
28 Barcelona-born surrealist : MIRO
29 Nasty : MEAN
32 Global networking pioneer : COMSAT
33 Parisian bean? : TETE
34 Due : OWED
35 Like some knives : SERRATED
36 Got hitched : SAID “I DO”
37 Xanax maker : PFIZER
40 Contended : ARGUED
41 __-sense: superhero asset : SPIDEY
42 “__ here”: “Poltergeist” : THEY’RE
44 Kids : RIBS
45 Kick out : EXILE
46 Rapper __ Def : MOS
49 Smiling, probably : GLAD
50 Choice word? : EENY
52 Helpful connections : INS
54 Gym specimen : BOD

15 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 24 Jul 21, Saturday”

  1. I wanted to leave a comment for Mary about Thursday’s ? puzzle, knowing that she is not
    into sports and the genre is baseball. The comedy routine requires no knowledge of the
    sport in order to enjoy it. It is about a first baseman named WHO, was done by Bud Abbot
    and Lou Costello back in the 1940’s. It is worth your time to watch it; it is titled “Who’s On First”,
    is hilarious and just brilliantly timed, especially by Costello, who was the comedian and driving
    force of the team. Mary, I hope you will Google it, watch and enjoy it.

  2. LAT: Bottom right side caused me to almost give up after having had little trouble with the rest of the puzzle. Never heard of “spidey-sense.”

  3. 13:21, no errors on this. Despite the usual problems breaking into these things (most grids get a lot easier when you have footholds of things you’re sure about), I had BADMISTAKE for a while.

    For those who want to know: WSJ: 13:36, no errors. Puns on other phrases and Olympic events. Very nice grid, and still get amazed how my writing times are double/triple my online times for these big grids. Newsday: 52 minutes, 1 in retrospect dumb error. OVERVALUE and NETREFEREE stood for probably too long. Croce: 40 minutes, no errors. Nothing too over wrought in this one.

    Overall, can’t really complain about how Saturday went. Especially since I tend to look forward to that day more as of late. (These hard puzzles get very fun once you figure out how to do them.)

  4. No errors at the end but had to look up a couple of proper
    names. Did not know “mma” but got it trough cross letters.
    Not too bad for a Saturday puzzle.

  5. 10:32

    According to comic book lore, one of the superpowers gained by Peter Parker when he was bitten by a radioactive spider (along with super strength and agility) was the ability to sense danger approaching. So sometimes, Spiderman might say: Gotta go! My spidey sense is tingling!

  6. 20:24 and DNF, with 8 left unfinished in the bottom center and right.

    Most of these I had to read and consider multiple times. Very few sprung to mind. Can’t say I had a good time with this one.

    Looking back at my solving record, I have not had one “purple patch” of success this entire year, with 4 or 5 “brown marks” on my spreadsheet.

  7. Just under 1/2 hour …no errors…for a Saturday puzzle I’ll take it.
    Very tactful explanation of 25D😀
    Stay safe😀

  8. Good run today.. was stuck on CARNAL being earthly??? Still don’t get the connection other than it’s an emotion maybe??
    NADJA was new to me but fell with crosses.

    1. Carnal is earthly in terms of physical fleshly desires. It’s a word often brought out in religious terms as opposed to “spiritual” which is one that looks in terms of what is to come in an afterlife instead.

      1. @Glenn – You made me think of the film by Mike Nichols with Jack Nicholson, Ann-Margret, Candice Bergen and very surprise casting of Art Garfunkel called “Carnal Knowledge” which opened in 1971 which basically followed the sexual lives (their maturation or lack there of) over the years. This was not a feel good movie in any sense of the word and, for the time, it was fairly shocking stuff featuring main stream, box office names laying their neuroses bare for all to see.

    1. A bit of a head-scratcher in the S Central and NW sections – 36:35 with a lookup for the MIT business school (I should have recalled it!).

      NW fell in place after changing BADMISTAKE to BIGMISTAKE, not second-guessing my SAAB answer, and figuring out BAHAMA (CANYON and CAYMAN wouldn’t work).

      The S Central section just wouldn’t come, so looked up SLOAN, which then changed EVICT>EXILE, GRIN>GLAD, ELSE>EENY, TIDE>EDDY, and then filled in BIBLESTUDY. Sheesh!

  9. Slightly trick Saturday for me; took 34:55 with no peeks or errors. I had a bit of trouble not knowing OWEN, IDA, RODS, NADJA or PFIZER, but managed those with crosses and guesses. The real posers were OLD LADY, which I never heard of, and the spelling of SPID(er, ie, ey) to get the cross (D?E) to work. I finally went with LOAD, as the only thing that could make sense for the first and slapped my tete when I saw that DYE was needed for the second.

    So, fun puzzle, since I solved it 🙂

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