LA Times Crossword 3 Jul 21, Saturday

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Constructed by: Julian Lim
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: None

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

Bill’s time: 13m 00s

Bill’s errors: 2

  • ROUGH (tough)
  • MARIS (Matis!)

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Image problem, for short : BAD PR

Public relations (PR)

10 New Balance competitor : PUMA

Puma is a German company that sells athletic shoes worldwide. The company is most famous for its line of soccer boots.

New Balance is a footwear manufacturer based in Boston, Massachusetts.

14 “__ Terrace at Night”: van Gogh work : CAFE

Quite a few years ago now, I had the privilege of living just a short car-ride from the beautiful city of Arles in the South of France. Although Arles has a long and colorful history, the Romans had a prevailing influence over the city’s design. Arles has a spectacular Roman amphitheater, arch, circus as well as old walls that surround the center of the city. In more modern times, it was a place Vincent van Gogh often visited, and was where he painted many of his most famous works, including “Cafe Terrace at Night” and “Bedroom in Arles”.

Vincent van Gogh was a Dutch post-impressionist painter who seems to have had a very tortured existence. Van Gogh only painted for the last ten years of his life, and enjoyed very little celebrity while alive. Today many of his works are easily recognized, and fetch staggering sums in auction houses. Van Gogh suffered from severe depression for many of his final years. When he was only 37, he walked into a field with a revolver and shot himself in the chest. He managed to drag himself back to the inn where he was staying but died there two days later.

15 Honda line : ACURA

Acura is the luxury brand of the Honda Motor Company. As an aside, Infiniti is the equivalent luxury brand for the Nissan Motor Company, and Lexus is the more luxurious version of Toyota’s models.

16 Like some unresolved NBA games : IN OT

In overtime (in OT)

17 Yamuna River city : AGRA

Agra is a medieval city on the banks of the river Yamuna in India. Agra was also the capital of the Mughal Empire from 1556 to 1658. The city is home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites:

  • The Taj Mahal: the famous mausoleum built in memory of Mumtaz Mahal.
  • Agra Fort: the site where the famous Koh-i-Noor diamond was seized.
  • Fatehpur Sikri: a historic city that’s home to well-preserved Mughal architecture.

18 Duran Duran lead singer Simon : LE BON

Simon Le Bon is lead singer with the English band Duran Duran. Le Bon is a passionate sailor and garnered a lot of attention when his yacht lost its keel in the 1985 Fastnet race. Before Le Bon and his crew could be rescued, they spent 40 minutes trapped underwater inside the hull. The incident didn’t deter Le Bon from sailing though, and not long after he came third in the 1985-1986 Whitbread Round the World Race.

21 Plain, in Spain : LLANO

Llano is the Spanish word for “plain, flat region”.

22 Actress Condor of “To All the Boys” films : LANA

Actress Lana Condor played Lara Jean “LJ” Song-Covey in the “To All the Boys” series of teenage romance films. Condor was born Tran Dong Lan in Vietnam, but grew up in the US as the adopted daughter of a Chicago couple. Condor has been partnered since 2015 with actor Anthony De La Torre, who played young Jack Sparrow in “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales”.

The “To All the Boys” films are a series of teenage romance dramas based on a trilogy of novels of the same name by Jenny Han. The series title is a reference to five letters written by a young lady to boys that she had crushes on. She never plans to mail the letters, but they get sent out anyway.

25 New user’s need: Abbr. : ACCT

Account (acct.)

26 Kids’ rhyme starter : BAA, BAA …

The old English nursery rhyme “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep” is usually sung as:

Baa, baa, black sheep,
Have you any wool?
Yes, sir, yes, sir,
Three bags full;
One for the master,
And one for the dame,
And one for the little boy
Who lives down the lane.

The tune that accompanies the rhyme is a variant of the French melody “Ah! Vous dirai-je, Maman”, which we know best in English as the tune for “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”.

27 Argentinian aunts : TIAS

Argentina is the second largest country in South America (after Brazil), and the world’s largest Spanish-speaking nation. The name “Argentina” comes from the Latin “argentum”, the word for “silver”. It is thought that the name was given by the early Spanish and Portuguese conquerors who also named the Rio de la Plata (the “Silver River”). Those early explorers got hold of lots of silver objects that they found among the native population.

38 “Rock and Roll All __”: Kiss hit : NITE

“Rock and Roll All Nite” is a 1975 song by the heavy metal band Kiss. By the following year, it was firmly established as the group’s signature song.

KISS is a hard rock band from New York City. They are the group whose band members use all that scary face paint and wear wacky outfits on stage.

44 Linear : ONE-D

The dimension of an object is defined as the minimum number of coordinates needed to specify each point in the object. Therefore, a line is one-dimensional, as you only need an x-coordinate to specify a particular point on the line. A surface is two-dimensional, as you need both an x-coordinate and a y-coordinate to locate a point on the surface. The inside of a solid object is then three-dimensional, needing an x-, y- and z-coordinate to specify a point, say within a cube.

45 “Last Night of the World” musical : MISS SAIGON

“Miss Saigon” is a musical that premiered in London in 1989, and one that is based on Puccini’s opera “Madame Butterfly”. “Miss Saigon” was written by Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil, the duo responsible for “Les Misérables”. We saw both shows in London during their heyday, and I much preferred “Miss Saigon”. Back then the big thing was to have a big “special effect” in a stage musical, and for “Miss Saigon” this is the landing of a life-size helicopter on the stage. At the performance we attended there was an announcement that “the helicopter was broken”, so we had a fun time watching actors running around pretending there was a helicopter in that climactic scene …

51 Madeira cousin : PORT

Portugal’s city of Oporto (“Porto” in Portuguese) gave its name to port wine in the late 1600s. Oporto was the seaport through which most of the region’s fortified red wine was exported.

Madeira is a Portuguese-owned archipelago that lies to the southwest of mainland Portugal. Madeira is famous for its fortified wine, which is known as Madeira wine.

52 2004 World Golf Hall of Fame inductee Aoki : ISAO

Isao Aoki is one of Japan’s greatest golfers. Aoki’s best finish in a major tournament was runner-up to Jack Nicklaus in the 1980 US Open.

The World Golf Hall of Fame is located near St. Augustine, Florida. Two other halls of fame were merged into the World Golf Hall of Fame over the years. The PGA of America’s Hall of fame was incorporated in the 1980s, and the LPGA Tour Hall of Fame in 1998.

56 Asian country that’s seventh-largest in the world : INDIA

The vast Asian country of India takes its name from the Indus River. The name “Indus” in turn comes from the Sanskrit “Sindhu” that can be translated as “a body of trembling water”. India is the second-most populous country in the world (after China), and the most populous democracy.

57 Magazine founder Eric : UTNE

The “Utne Reader” is known for aggregation and republishing of articles on politics, culture and the environment from other sources in the media. It was founded in 1984 by Eric Utne, with management taken over by Eric’s wife Nina Rothschild Utne in 1990.

58 Note in a proof : STET

“Stet” is a Latin word meaning “let it stand”. In editorial work, the typesetter is instructed to disregard any change previously marked by writing the word “stet” and then underscoring that change with a line of dots or dashes.

59 Circus prop : STILT

The Circus Maximus was an ancient stadium used for chariot racing in Rome. It was the first such stadium built by the Romans, and was the largest ever to be built in the whole of the Roman Empire. The Circus Maximus was over 2,000 feet long and just under 400 feet wide, and could house about 15,000 spectators. There is very little of the original structure remaining and the site is now used as a major park. It was the Circus Maximus and similar “circa” that gave rise to our contemporary word “circus” describing an arena used by clowns, acrobats, etc.

Down

1 Ancient Egyptian amulet : SCARAB

Scarabs were amulets in ancient Egypt. Scarabs were modelled on the dung beetle, as it was viewed as a symbol of the cycle of life.

2 Storied Asian structure : PAGODA

Pagodas are tiered (“storied”) towers found in various parts of Asia that are usually built for religious purposes.

3 Guinea’s home : AFRICA

Guinea lies north of Liberia on the west African coast. Like much of Africa, it was for many years a French Colony (as “French Guinea”). Guinea declared independence in 1958, but has suffered from autocratic rule since then, and is now one of the poorest countries in Africa.

4 Research site for deep thinking? : SEALAB

SEALAB I, II and II were man-made habitats built by the US Navy designed to advance the technology needed for humans to live and work underwater for extended periods. SEALAB I was lowered to a depth of just under 200 feet off the coast of Bermuda in 1964. Four divers (“aquanauts”) stayed in SEALAB for 11 days, before the experiment was halted due to the approach of a tropical storm.

6 Fast Amtrak option : ACELA

The Acela Express is the fastest train routinely running in the US, as it gets up to 150 mph at times. The service runs between Boston and Washington D.C. via Baltimore, Philadelphia and New York. Introduced in 2000, the brand name “Acela” was created to evoke “acceleration” and “excellence”.

Amtrak is the name used commercially by the National Railroad Passenger Corporation. “Amtrak” comes from a melding of the words “America” and “track”.

7 UAE’s most populous city : DUBAI

Dubai is one of the seven emirates that make up the federation known as the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The two largest members of the UAE (geographically) are Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the only two of the seven members that have veto power over UAE policy.

10 Language in which most words rhyme : PIG LATIN

Pig Latin is in effect a game. One takes the first consonant or consonant cluster of an English word and moves it to the end of the word, and then adds the letters “ay”. So, the Pig Latin for the word “nix” is “ixnay” (ix-n-ay), and for “scram” is “amscray” (am-scr-ay).

12 Round bakery snack : MOONCAKE

A mooncake is a pastry from Chinese cuisine. The confection is associated with the Mid-Autumn or Moon Festival, hence the name.

13 Times up : AT-BATS

That would be baseball.

24 __ cum laude : MAGNA

When an academic degree is awarded, a level of distinction can be noted depending on the degree of success achieved by the student. There are three types of honor, each with a Latin name:

  • cum laude: meaning “with honor” (literally “with praise”)
  • magna cum laude: meaning “with great honor”
  • summa cum laude: meaning “with highest honor”

30 Radar anomaly : UFO

Scientists have been using radio waves to detect the presence of objects since the late 1800s, but it was the demands of WWII that accelerated the practical application of the technology. The British called their system RDF standing for Range and Direction Finding. The system used by the US Navy was called “Radio Detection And Ranging”, which was shortened to the acronym “RADAR”.

33 Yoga type : HATHA

Hatha yoga is a yoga system developed in 15th century India. Traditional Hatha yoga is a more “complete” practice than often encountered in the west, involving not just exercise but also meditation and relaxation. “Hatha” is a Sanskrit word meaning “force”.

34 Spode offering : CHINA SET

Spode is a brand of pottery made in Stoke-on-Trent in the north of England. The company was founded by Josiah Spode in 1770. Spode is noted for its fine bone china, and indeed Josiah Spode came up with the first successful formulation for bone china. Bone china is so called because one of the main components is bone ash derived from animal bones.

35 Excessive negativity, in modern lingo : HATERADE

An extremely negative person might be described as having drunk the “haterade”, a play on the beverage “Gatorade”.

43 Heart of a meal : ENTREE

“Entrée” means “entry” in French. An entrée can be something that helps one get “a way in”, an interview for example perhaps helped along by a recommendation letter. In Europe, even in English-speaking countries, the entrée is the name for the “entry” to the meal, the first course. I found the ordering of meals to be very confusing when I first came to America!

45 He blasted 61 in ’61 : MARIS

Roger Maris (whose original family name was “Maras”) was the son of Croatian immigrants. It was Maris’s single-season record of 61 home runs that Mark McGwire broke in 1998 (hitting 70 that season). Maris’s own record of 61 runs (from 1961) beat the previous record of 60 set in 1927 by Babe Ruth.

47 Jeddah native : SAUDI

Jeddah (also “Jidda”) is a Saudi Arabian city on the west coast of the country. Jeddah is the largest port city on the Red Sea, and is the second largest city in Saudi Arabia.

48 Magic symbol from the Latin for “seal” : SIGIL

A sigil is a seal or signet. The term comes from the Latin “sigillum” meaning “little sign”. In the world of astrology, a sigil is a symbol that is supposed to have great power.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Decompression chambers? : SPAS
5 Image problem, for short : BAD PR
10 New Balance competitor : PUMA
14 “__ Terrace at Night”: van Gogh work : CAFE
15 Honda line : ACURA
16 Like some unresolved NBA games : IN OT
17 Yamuna River city : AGRA
18 Duran Duran lead singer Simon : LE BON
19 Chunk : GLOB
20 Foment : ROIL
21 Plain, in Spain : LLANO
22 Actress Condor of “To All the Boys” films : LANA
23 Outbreak of spots? : AD CAMPAIGN
25 New user’s need: Abbr. : ACCT
26 Kids’ rhyme starter : BAA, BAA …
27 Argentinian aunts : TIAS
28 Decision-making conformity : GROUPTHINK
34 Tidy sum : CHUNK OF CHANGE
37 Is in contention for : HAS A SHOT AT
38 “Rock and Roll All __”: Kiss hit : NITE
39 Again and again? : THRICE
44 Linear : ONE-D
45 “Last Night of the World” musical : MISS SAIGON
49 Dessert request always filled : TART
50 Be in store : AWAIT
51 Madeira cousin : PORT
52 2004 World Golf Hall of Fame inductee Aoki : ISAO
53 Difficult : ROUGH
54 Foment, with “up” : STIR …
55 Start to cure? : PEDI-
56 Asian country that’s seventh-largest in the world : INDIA
57 Magazine founder Eric : UTNE
58 Note in a proof : STET
59 Circus prop : STILT
60 Turned item : PAGE

Down

1 Ancient Egyptian amulet : SCARAB
2 Storied Asian structure : PAGODA
3 Guinea’s home : AFRICA
4 Research site for deep thinking? : SEALAB
5 Places with bases : BALLPARKS
6 Fast Amtrak option : ACELA
7 UAE’s most populous city : DUBAI
8 Point of eating? : PRONG
9 Wouldn’t shut up : RAN ON
10 Language in which most words rhyme : PIG LATIN
11 Loosening, in a way : UNLACING
12 Round bakery snack : MOONCAKE
13 Times up : AT-BATS
24 __ cum laude : MAGNA
29 “Holy cow!” : OOH!
30 Radar anomaly : UFO
31 Poll fig. : PCT
32 “We’re done here” : THAT’S THAT
33 Yoga type : HATHA
34 Spode offering : CHINA SET
35 Excessive negativity, in modern lingo : HATERADE
36 Not surprised : USED TO IT
38 Restaurant policy, at times : NO TIPS
40 Shreds : RIPS UP
41 “Ain’t no choice for me” : I GOTTA
42 Prepping for pie, as apples : CORING
43 Heart of a meal : ENTREE
45 He blasted 61 in ’61 : MARIS
46 Flat refusal : I WON’T
47 Jeddah native : SAUDI
48 Magic symbol from the Latin for “seal” : SIGIL

16 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 3 Jul 21, Saturday”

  1. No errors but had a few Google look-ups and had to change
    my mind quite a few times. i.e. changed ‘had a stab at” to
    “had a shot at”….and corrected my spelling of Saigon.

    “Times up” was a head-scratcher until I found “puma.”
    Hard one for me today and I’m pleased that I finished.

  2. Bill, how did you get MARIS wrong!? One of the few answers I knew was absolutely correct! 😂
    Stay safe!! 😊

  3. Like Bill, I missed Maris. I have no excuse. Bill always said his weakness is American sports.

    I also missed MOON CAKE and LANA.. I had LARA , so that gave me MOOR CAKE..
    Just by chance, I looked up MOOR CAKE. It’s a bakery in the UK!! Boom!!

  4. Given the grid layout, surprisingly solvable for me today – 24:43 with no errors or lookups. Generally worked it from the middle out. Had a few changes: TIED>INOT, GEE>OOH, RILE>STIR, PEELING>CORING; and some partial starts that changed. Guessed at MISSSAIGON after a few letters were filled in. Knew it was Roger Maris’ 61 because of a Jeopardy! clue about a week ago. Mostly, it just took working around the ones I didn’t know until there were enough other letters to conjure up the answer.

  5. A Saturday puzzle in under 30 min. with no errors…I’ll take it!!!😀
    While I was working this one someone with very broken English called and said they were from Medicare…what I told them was rated R…you can’t get away from that garbage even on a Saturday and the DO NOT CALL LIST has become obsolete.
    Stay safe😀

  6. 20:47

    A puzzle that had me thinking, from the intimidating, yet beautiful array of white space barely broken by a swirl of black, to the final realization that TOUGH should be ROUGH and of course! That’s why 61 in 61 sounded familiar!

    Also liked seeing MOONCAKE.

  7. 16:09 and error-free. I felt lucky to escape. This one was full of a bunch of “casual language” that was difficult to navigate.

  8. A random observation on another topic: I guess the last month or so at Newsday has been an anomaly – I guess to get rid of some old puzzles or something. Last two weeks have kinda been back to the old non-Stumper level (37 mins/no errors on today’s).

  9. Somewhat tricky for me; took 46:34 with no errors or peeks. Being a BIG baseball fan, I just had to get “He blasted 61 in ’61”, but since I didn’t really become a fan until about 1978, I swam around a bit. Finally when I changed tOUGH to ROUGH it became obvious. NOTIPS and HATERADE took awhile as well.

    Challenging but very fun! Especially since I was finally able to finish a Saturday without errors again.

    Giants – Still the best team in baseball, even with those pesky Dodgers and Red Sox right on their tail. 🙂

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