LA Times Crossword 17 Aug 21, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Ed Sessa
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Hanging Ivy

Themed answers are HANGING in the down-direction, and each comprises two words starting with IV:

  • 28D Greenery in suspended baskets … or, phonetically, what 3-, 8- or 14-Down is? : HANGING IVY
  • 3D Conscience : INNER VOICE
  • 8D Come and go, e.g., grammatically : IRREGULAR VERBS
  • 14D Essential worth : INTRINSIC VALUE

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

Bill’s time: 5m 11s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Where time is served : JAIL

Both “jail” and “gaol” are pronounced the same way, mean the same thing, and are rooted in the same Latin word for “cave”. The spelling “gaol” is seen quite often in the UK, although it is gradually being replaced with “jail”. The “gaol” spelling has Norman roots and tends to be used in Britain in more formal documentation.

5 Hindu divinity whose name is a homophone for a herding dog : KALI

Kali is a Hindu goddess and the consort of Lord Shiva. The name “Kali” translates as “the black one”.

The collie isn’t actually a breed of dog, but rather the name given to a group of herding dogs that originated in Scotland and Northern England. An obvious (and wonderful) example would be the Border collie. Many dogs classed as collies don’t have the word “collie” in the name of the breed, for example the Old English sheepdog and the Shetland sheepdog.

13 River of Pisa : ARNO

The Arno is the principal river in the Tuscany region of Italy, and passes through the cities of Florence and Pisa. Famously the Arno flooded in 1966, the worst flood in the region for centuries. There were numerous deaths and extensive destruction of priceless art treasures, particularly in Florence.

15 “If you ask me,” to a texter : IMHO

In my humble opinion (IMHO)

16 Vase-making dynasty : MING

The Ming Dynasty lasted in China from 1368 to 1644. The Ming Dynasty oversaw tremendous innovation in so many areas, including the manufacture of ceramics. In the late Ming period, a shift towards a market economy in China led to the export of porcelain on an unprecedented scale, perhaps explaining why we tend to hear more about Ming vases than we do about porcelain from any other Chinese dynasty.

19 BBC nickname, with “the” : … BEEB

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is also known as “the Beeb”, a name given to the network by the great Peter Sellers on the classic British radio comedy called “The Goon Show”. The BBC was founded in 1922, and was the world’s first national broadcasting organization.

21 Mind-boggler : ENIGMA

Our term “enigma” meaning “puzzle, riddle” comes from the Greek “ainigma”, which means the same thing.

24 “What a long week!” : TGIF!

“Thank God It’s Friday” (TGIF) is a relatively new expression that apparently originated in Akron, Ohio. It was a catchphrase used first by disk jockey Jerry Healy of WAKR in the early seventies. That said, one blog reader wrote to me to say that he had been using the phrase in the fifties.

25 Copenhagen’s __ Gardens : TIVOLI

The Tivoli Gardens is a long-established amusement park in Copenhagen that opened for business in 1843. That makes it the second oldest amusement park on the planet. The Danes must like to be amused, as the oldest park is Dyrehavsbakken, also in Denmark.

27 Chef lead-in : SOUS-

The “sous-chef de cuisine” (a French term) is the “under-chef of the kitchen”, the second-in-command.

28 ’50s dance party : HOP

Sock hops were high school dances typically held in the school gym or cafeteria. The term “sock hop” arose because the dancers were often required to remove their shoes to protect the varnished floor in the gym.

32 Christmastime : YULE

Yule celebrations coincide with Christmas, and the words “Christmas” and “Yule” (often “Yuletide”) have become synonymous in much of the world. However, Yule was originally a pagan festival celebrated by Germanic peoples. The name “Yule” comes from the Old Norse word “jol” that was used to describe the festival.

33 What to buy to solve P_T S_J_K : AN A

Pat Sajak took over as host of “Wheel of Fortune” from Chuck Woolery back in 1983 and has been doing the job ever since. Sajak had a short run as a talk show host in 1989/1990 and used to sub quite often for Larry King and Regis Philbin.

34 Elevator guy : OTIS

Elevators (simple hoists) have been around for a long time. What Elisha Otis did was come up with the “safety elevator”, a design that he showcased at the 1853 World’s Fair in New York. At the Fair, Otis would stand on an elevated platform in front of onlookers and order his assistant to cut the single rope holding up the platform. His safety system kicked in when the platform had only fallen a few inches, amazing the crowd. After this demonstration, the orders came rolling in.

37 ’60s civil rights gp. : SNCC

The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) was an organization that was very active in the Civil Rights Movement of the sixties. Apart from organizing protest events, the SNCC did a lot of work driving voter registration throughout the southern states.

38 UCLA’s __-12 Conference : PAC

“Pac-12” is an abbreviation for the Pacific-12 Conference, a college athletic conference in the western US. The Pac-12 has won more NCAA National Team Championships than any other conference. The Pac-12 was founded in 1915 as the Pacific Coast Conference (PCC). Over time as it grew, the conference went by the names Big Five, Big Six, Pacific-8, Pacific-10 and became the Pacific-12 in 2011.

39 Fodder holder : SILO

“Silo” is a Spanish word that we absorbed into English. The term ultimately derives from the Greek “siros”, which described a pit in which one kept corn.

“Fodder”, meaning “animal feed”, is an Old English word for “food”.

43 Kept in the loop, in emails : CC’ED

I wonder if the kids of today know that “cc” stands for carbon copy, and do they have any idea what a carbon copy was? Do you remember how messy carbon paper was to handle? A kind blog reader pointed out to me a while back that the abbreviation has evolved and taken on the meaning “courtesy copy” in our modern world.

45 Dallas NBA team : MAVS

The Mavericks (also “Mavs”) are an NBA franchise in Dallas, Texas. The team was founded in 1980, and the Mavericks name was chosen by fan votes. The choice of “Mavericks” was prompted by the fact that the actor James Garner was a part-owner of the team, and Garner of course played the title role in the “Maverick” television series.

47 Actress MacRae who played Alice Kramden on “The Jackie Gleason Show” : SHEILA

Actress Sheila MacRae was born Sheila Stephens in London, England. She was evacuated as a child to New York City, just before the outbreak of WWII. Stephens married actor and singer Gordon MacRae in 1941. Sheila MacRae is perhaps best known for playing Alice Kramden on “The Jackie Gleason Show” in the 1960s.

51 Role in “Son of Frankenstein” : YGOR

The lab assistant named “Igor” has turned up in many movies in recent decades, and usually appears as the aide to Dr. Frankenstein. Paradoxically, in Mary Shelley’s original novel, Frankenstein had no assistant at all. Further, the lab assistant introduced in 1931 in the first of the “Frankenstein” series of movies was named “Fritz”. Bela Lugosi played a character named “Ygor” in “Frankenstein” sequels in 1939 and 1946, but he was a blacksmith and didn’t work in the lab.

1939’s “Son of Frankenstein” is the third in the series of classic horror films featuring Boris Karloff as the Monster. The prior titles are “Frankenstein” and “Bride of Frankenstein”. The demented blacksmith Ygor is played by Bella Lugosi. Frankenstein’s monster responds to Ygor’s commands, which isn’t a good thing …

57 ESPN MLB analyst : A-ROD

Professional baseball player Alex Rodriguez earned more nicknames than just “A-Rod”. He has been called “the Cooler” by some players as there was a perception that teams went cold when he joined them and hot when he left. He has also been called “A-Fraud” by teammates because of another perception, that he is over-demanding. Rodriguez was in a world of hurt not so long ago, for using illegal performance-enhancing drugs. He retired from baseball in 2016.

60 Hardy’s “___ of the D’Urbervilles” : TESS

The full name of Thomas Hardy’s 1891 novel is “Tess of the d’Urbervilles: A Pure Woman Faithfully Presented”. When it was originally published, “Tess …” received very mixed reviews, largely because it addressed some difficult sexual themes including rape, and sexual double standards (attitudes towards men vs women). I suppose the most celebrated screen adaptation is Roman Polanski’s “Tess” released in 1979. Polanski apparently made “Tess” because his wife, Sharon Tate, gave him Hardy’s novel as her last act before she was murdered by the Manson family. There is a dedication at the beginning of the movie that just says “To Sharon”.

61 Tolkien creatures : ENTS

Ents are tree-like creatures that live in J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth in his series of books “The Lord of the Rings”. “Ent” is an Old English word for “giant”.

62 Greek sandwich : GYRO

A gyro is a traditional Greek dish of meat roasted on a tall vertical spit that is sliced from the spit as required. Gyros are usually served inside a lightly grilled piece of pita bread, along with tomato, onion and tzatziki (a yogurt and cucumber sauce).

Down

1 Door frame segment : JAMB

A door jamb or window jamb is the vertical portion of the frame. The term “jamb” comes from the French word “jambe” meaning “leg”.

2 R&B vocalist India.__ : ARIE

India.Arie is an American soul and R&B singer who was born India Arie Simpson in Denver, Colorado.

4 Captain’s records : LOGBOOKS

The word “logbook” dates back to the days when the captain of a ship kept a daily record of the vessel’s speed, progress etc. using a “log”. A log was a wooden float on a knotted line that was dropped overboard to measure speed through the water.

5 Works by Swiss cubist Paul : KLEES

Artist Paul Klee was born in Switzerland, but studied art in Munich in Germany. We can see many of Klee’s works in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. If you get to Bern in Switzerland, even more of them can be seen at the Zentrum Paul Klee that was opened in 2005. Klee’s most celebrated work is his pointillist painting from 1932 called “Ad Parnassum”, which is owned by the Kunstmuseum, also located in Bern.

In the art movement known as Cubism, objects that are the subject of a painting are broken up and reassembled in an abstract form. The pioneers of the Cubist movement were Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque.

6 Thomas __ Edison : ALVA

Thomas Alva Edison (TAE) was a very successful inventor. He held over a thousand US patents in his name. Included in the list of Edison’s inventions is the phonograph, the movie camera and the long-lasting light bulb. He passed away in 1931. There is a test tube at the Henry Ford Museum that supposedly holds Edison’s last breath. Ford convinced Thomas’s son Charles to seal up a tube of air in the room just after the inventor died, as a memento.

7 Martial artist Bruce __ : LEE

Bruce Lee was born not far from here, in San Francisco, although he was raised in Hong Kong, returning to the US to attend college. Sadly, Bruce Lee died when he was only 32 years old, due to cerebral edema (a swelling of the brain) attributed to adverse reactions to the pain killing drug Equagesic.

10 Kindle download : E-MAG

Amazon’s Kindle line of e-book readers was introduced in 2007. The name “kindle” was chosen to evoke images of “lighting a fire” through reading and intellectual stimulation. I bought myself a Kindle Fire HD several years ago. I started reading e-books for the first time in my life, as well as enjoying other computing options available with the tablet device …

12 Chaplin of “Game of Thrones” : OONA

Oona Chaplin is an actress from Madrid in Spain. Chaplin is getting a lot of airtime these days as she plays Talisa Maegyr on HBO’s hit fantasy series “Game of Thrones”. Oona is the granddaughter of Charlie Chaplin, and is named for her maternal grandmother Oona O’Neill, the daughter of playwright Eugene O’Neill.

18 Cordial flavoring : ANISE

Back in the 14th century, we used the word “cordial” to mean “from the heart”. The most common meaning today is “courteous and gracious”. The original usage also evolved into the name for a drink that “stimulated the heart”. Today’s cordial beverages are strong, sweetened liqueurs.

23 “The Greatest” : ALI

One of Muhammad Ali’s famous most famous lines is “I am the greatest!” So famous is the line that in 1963, Ali released an album of spoken word that had the title “I Am the Greatest!”

25 Sporty sunroofs : T-TOPS

A T-top is a car roof that has removable panels on either side of a rigid bar that runs down the center of the vehicle above the driver.

26 Teensy amounts : IOTAS

Iota is the ninth letter in the Greek alphabet, and one that gave rise to our letters I and J. We use the word “iota” to portray something very small, as it is the smallest of all Greek letters.

27 Church assembly : SYNOD

The word “synod” comes from the Greek word for “assembly, meeting”. A synod is a church council, usually one in the Christian faith.

41 Galley implement : OAR

Galleys were large medieval ships found mainly in the Mediterranean. They were propelled by a combination of sails and oars.

47 Three-handed game : SKAT

When I was a teenager in Ireland, I had a friend with a German father. The father taught us the game of Skat, and what a great game it is. Skat originated in Germany in the 1800s and is to this day the most popular card game in the country. I haven’t played it in decades, but would love to play it again …

49 Grandson of Eve : ENOS

Enos was the son of Seth, and therefore the grandson of Adam and Eve, and nephew of Cain and Abel. According to the ancient Jewish work called the Book of Jubilees, Enos married his own sister Noam.

53 City near Tahoe : RENO

Reno, Nevada was named in honor of Major General Jesse Lee Reno, a Union officer killed in the Civil War. The city has a famous “Reno Arch”, a structure that stands over the main street. The arch was erected in 1926 to promote an exposition planned for the following year. After the expo, the city council decided to keep the arch and held a competition to decide what wording should be displayed, and the winner was “The Biggest Little City in the World”.

Lake Tahoe (often referred to simply as “Tahoe”) is up in the Sierra Nevada mountains, and is located right on the border between California and Nevada. It is the largest alpine lake in the country, and the largest lake in general behind the five Great Lakes. Tahoe is also the second deepest lake, with only the beautiful Crater Lake in Oregon being deeper. Given its location, there are tall casinos that sit right on the shore on the Nevada side of the state line where gambling is legal.

55 “Inside Politics” airer : CNN

“Inside Politics” is a CNN news program that had an original run of over 20 years. It was hosted by Judy Woodruff from 1993 to 2005, and was resurrected in 2014 with John King as host.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Where time is served : JAIL
5 Hindu divinity whose name is a homophone for a herding dog : KALI
9 Spanish kiss : BESO
13 River of Pisa : ARNO
14 More under the weather : ILLER
15 “If you ask me,” to a texter : IMHO
16 Vase-making dynasty : MING
17 “I won’t do this anymore” : NEVER AGAIN
19 BBC nickname, with “the” : … BEEB
20 Scones go-with : TEA
21 Mind-boggler : ENIGMA
22 Lions’ calls : ROARS
24 “What a long week!” : TGIF!
25 Copenhagen’s __ Gardens : TIVOLI
27 Chef lead-in : SOUS-
28 ’50s dance party : HOP
31 Grossed : TOOK IN
32 Christmastime : YULE
33 What to buy to solve P_T S_J_K : AN A
34 Elevator guy : OTIS
35 Sleigh driver : SANTA
37 ’60s civil rights gp. : SNCC
38 UCLA’s __-12 Conference : PAC
39 Fodder holder : SILO
40 Cheap booze : ROTGUT
42 Opposite of NNW : SSE
43 Kept in the loop, in emails : CC’ED
44 Fluctuates : VARIES
45 Dallas NBA team : MAVS
46 Aired again : RERAN
47 Actress MacRae who played Alice Kramden on “The Jackie Gleason Show” : SHEILA
50 Pro : FOR
51 Role in “Son of Frankenstein” : YGOR
54 Dog breeders’ group : KENNEL CLUB
56 Go off the board : DIVE
57 ESPN MLB analyst : A-ROD
58 Military divisions : UNITS
59 Range component : OVEN
60 Hardy’s “___ of the D’Urbervilles” : TESS
61 Tolkien creatures : ENTS
62 Greek sandwich : GYRO

Down

1 Door frame segment : JAMB
2 R&B vocalist India.__ : ARIE
3 Conscience : INNER VOICE
4 Captain’s records : LOGBOOKS
5 Works by Swiss cubist Paul : KLEES
6 Thomas __ Edison : ALVA
7 Martial artist Bruce __ : LEE
8 Come and go, e.g., grammatically : IRREGULAR VERBS
9 Major condition : BIG IF
10 Kindle download : E-MAG
11 Carpentry wedge : SHIM
12 Chaplin of “Game of Thrones” : OONA
14 Essential worth : INTRINSIC VALUE
18 Cordial flavoring : ANISE
23 “The Greatest” : ALI
24 Promote big-time : TOUT
25 Sporty sunroofs : T-TOPS
26 Teensy amounts : IOTAS
27 Church assembly : SYNOD
28 Greenery in suspended baskets … or, phonetically, what 3-, 8- or 14-Down is? : HANGING IVY
29 Perfectly timed : ON CUE
30 Agreements : PACTS
36 Brewpub orders : ALES
37 Unowned, free-ranging pooch : STRAY DOG
39 Weigh station? : SCALE
41 Galley implement : OAR
45 Gives a hoot : MINDS
46 Beats but good : ROUTS
47 Three-handed game : SKAT
48 “Psst! Over __!” : HERE
49 Grandson of Eve : ENOS
50 Move like a bee : FLIT
52 Finished : OVER
53 City near Tahoe : RENO
55 “Inside Politics” airer : CNN

20 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 17 Aug 21, Tuesday”

  1. messed up on 49D. Put ENID in and never looked back… that gave me ARID for 57A and TEDS for 60A… crud!!

    1. The clue referred to Son of Frankenstein. Ygor was played by Bela Lugosi (1939 version).
      8:32, no erros, any time I have < twice Bill's time I am happy

  2. For a Tuesday, this puzzle had my head on Mars. And the theme was in space also. And what was Ygor? Don’t ever remember that.

  3. A good 18:8 with one letter error at 5A/5D. I wasnt sure of the name for either and used cALI/cLEE. I should know better, though. I now recall seeing the KLEE answer before, and we have a local sportswriter named Paul Klee, so I shoulda thunk on it a little more. Should get it right the next time!

  4. No errors, no lookups. I wondered about “ygor”…never saw it
    spelled this way before, but had to go with it to make the
    stray dog.

  5. Never saw “Igor” spelled as “Ygor”. Thought 37D was “Straydog” but still didn’t come up with “Ygor”. Also solved the three blanks in Pat Sajak as “aaa” instead of “an a”. So I didn’t finish an easy puzzle. Disappointed in myself.

  6. 8:41

    The Tolkien creatures were ENTS instead of ORCS for a change. I got the CAVS and MAVS mixed up, which led to all sorts of trouble in the SW. Had no brain power left to even think about whether the theme helped. Hanging IVs sound medical to me.

    1. It should not have affected you, because it was HANGING IVY.

      We got it today, but a very slow time. Guessed at KLEES.

  7. No Googles. Wondered about YGOR, but put him in. Took a guess on MINDS, otherwise could not have got the 2 sports answers of AROD and MAVS. Didn’t get the theme. TGIF and EMAG shoulda been clued as abbrevs. So my only wrong answer was the AaA instead of ANA crossing O a CUE.
    I have been interested in Paul KLEE for decades, even making a drawing in the style of same, so I had better get that one.
    Another thing about TAHOE is that it is covered in rocks, making it difficult to swim or wade in w/o the little slippers they’ll gladly sell to you. It is beautiful.

  8. Just under 17 min. no errors…glad I’m not the only one who struggled a bit with this one😀
    Stay safe and get the shot😀

  9. Did not time it but it was nicely hard/nicely easy! Hope everyone is well ! thanks, as always, Bill, for the fun blog!

  10. No trouble with this Tuesday; finished in 7:12 with no errors or peeks. Didn’t know KALI or SHEILA and only vaguely knew SNCC and ENOS. Had to change ARIa to ARIE to make BEEB work.

    I always tell people my bees are free-range 🙂

    1. I think, if you were on the game show that Pat Sajak hosted and you saw “P_T S_J_K” on the game board, you would buy “an A”.

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