LA Times Crossword 23 Aug 21, Monday

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Constructed by: Fred Piscop
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Down in Front!

Themed answers each start with a synonym of “DOWN”:

  • 59A Cry to one blocking your view at a concert … and a hint to the answers to starred clues : DOWN IN FRONT!
  • 17A *Hitchhiked : BUMMED A RIDE
  • 11D *Something kept to avoid attention : LOW PROFILE
  • 29D *Dressing with Buffalo wings : BLUE CHEESE

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

Bill’s time: 4m 27s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 __ Pujols, fourth MLBer to reach 6,000 total bases : ALBERT

Albert Pujols is a professional baseball player who made his Major League debut with the St. Louis Cardinals in 2001. Pujols is a native of the Dominican Republic, and moved to the US in 1996. His play has earned him the nickname “The Machine”.

11 Area for experiments : LAB

Our term “laboratory”, often shortened to “lab”, comes from the Medieval Latin word “laboratorium” meaning “place for labor, work”. This in turn comes from the Latin verb “laborare” meaning “to work”.

14 __ Raton, Fla. : BOCA

The name of the city of Boca Raton in Florida translates from Spanish as “Mouse Mouth”. There doesn’t seem to be a definitive etymology of the name but one plausible explanation is a nautical one. “Boca”, as well as meaning “mouth” can mean “inlet”. “Ratón”, as well as meaning “mouse” was also used to describe rocks that chewed away at a ship’s anchor cable. So possibly Boca Raton was named for a rocky inlet.

33 Señor’s squiggle : TILDE

The tilde diacritical mark (~) is very much associated with the Spanish language. We use the name “tilde” in English, taking that name from Spanish. Confusingly, the word “tilde” in Spanish is used more generally to mean “accent mark, diacritic”, of which a “~” is just one. What we call a “tilde” in English is usually referred to as a “virgulilla” or “tilde de la eñe” in Spanish.

35 Put money in, as a parking meter : FED

An early patent for a parking meter, dated 1928, was for a device that required the driver of the parked car to connect the battery of his or her car to the meter in order for it to operate!

38 Board game with nine rooms : CLUE

Clue is a board game that we knew under a different name growing up in Ireland. Outside of North America, Clue is marketed as “Cluedo”. Cluedo was the original name of the game, introduced in 1949 by the famous British board game manufacturer Waddingtons. There are cute differences between the US and UK versions. For example, the man who is murdered is called Dr. Black (Mr. Boddy in the US), one of the suspects is the Reverend Green (Mr. Green in the US), and the suspect weapons include a dagger (a knife in the US), and a spanner (a wrench in the US). I think it’s a fabulous game, a must during the holidays …

42 Judicial orders : WRITS

A writ is an order issued by some formal body (these days, usually a court) with the order being in “written” form. Warrants and subpoenas are examples of writs.

43 Zesty dip for tortilla chips : SALSA

“Tortilla” translates literally from Spanish as “little cake”.

49 CNN journalist Hill : ERICA

Erica Hill was the co-anchor of “CBS This Morning”, and before that she was co-anchor of CBS’s “The Early Show”. Hill moved in 2008 to NBC News and co-hosted the weekend edition of “Today”. She moved to CNN in 2016.

53 Beers served with lime : CORONAS

The Mexican beer called Corona is the biggest-selling imported beer in the United States.

63 Apple device featuring Siri : IPHONE

Siri is a software application that works with Apple’s iOS operating system. “Siri” is an acronym standing for Speech Interpretation and Recognition Interface. Voice-over artist Susan Bennett revealed herself as the female American voice of Siri a few years ago. The British version of Siri is called Daniel, and the Australian version is called Karen. Also, “Siri” is a Norwegian name meaning “beautiful woman who leads you to victory”, and was the name the developer had chosen for his first child.

64 Italian wine region : ASTI

Asti is in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy. It is perhaps most famous for its Asti Spumante sparkling white wine. Moscato d’Asti is produced from the same grape (Moscato Bianco). Moscato is a much sweeter wine with a lower alcohol content, and is usually served as a dessert wine.

Down

1 Recedes, like the tide : EBBS

Tides are caused by the gravitational pull of the moon on the oceans. At neap tide, the smaller gravitational effect of the sun cancels out some of the moon’s effect. At spring tide, the sun and the moon’s gravitational forces act in concert causing more extreme movement of the oceans.

3 Wile E. Coyote’s supplier : ACME

The Acme Corporation is a fictional company used mainly by Looney Tunes, and within the Looney Tunes empire it appears mostly in “Road Runner” cartoons. Wile E. Coyote is always receiving a new piece of gear from Acme designed to finally capture the Road Runner, but the equipment always leads to his downfall.

5 Trees with catkins : ALDERS

Alders are deciduous (i.e. not evergreen) trees with fruit called catkins. The tree carries both male and female catkins that look very similar to each other, but the male catkin is longer than the female. Alders are pollinated by wind usually, although bees can play a role.

7 Granola __ : BAR

The names “Granola” and “Granula” were trademarked back in the late 1800s for whole-grain foods that were crumbled and baked until crisp. Granola was created in Dansville, New York in 1894.

8 Prefix with dermis : EPI-

The epidermis is the outermost layer of the skin. The thickest piece of epidermal tissue in humans is on the soles of the feet and the palms, and measures about 1.5 mm. The thinnest measures 0.1 mm, and that would be the human eyelid.

28 Venus de __ : MILO

The famous Venus de Milo is so named as she was discovered in the ruins of the ancient city of Milos, on the Aegean island of the same name. I’ve been lucky enough to see the statue, in the Louvre in Paris, and was surprised at how tall it is (6 ft 8 in tall).

29 *Dressing with Buffalo wings : BLUE CHEESE

Being a bit of a French speaker (admittedly, a very poor one), the term “bleu cheese” has always kind of irritated me. I would prefer that we use either “blue cheese” or “fromage bleu” and not mix the languages, but then I can be annoyingly picky! It’s said that blue cheese was probably discovered accidentally, as molds tend to develop in the same conditions that are best for storing cheese. The blue mold in the cheese is introduced by adding Penicillium spores before the cheese is allowed to set. And yes, it’s the same mold that is used to produce penicillin, the antibiotic.

There are a few stories about how Buffalo wings were first developed, most of them related to the Anchor Bar in Buffalo, New York. If you’re looking for Buffalo wings on a menu in Buffalo, you’ll note that in and around the city they’re just referred to as “wings”.

32 Dog doc : VET

“Vet” is an abbreviation for “veterinarian”, a professional who treats animals for disease and injury. The word “veterinary” comes from the Latin “veterinae” meaning “working animals, beasts of burden”.

34 Biscotti flavoring : ANISE

What we know in this country as “biscotti” are more properly called “biscotti di Prato”. A biscotto is a twice-baked, almond-flavored confection that originated in the Italian city of Prato. Modern versions of biscotti often contain anise or cinnamon in addition to the almond flavoring.

47 Book with maps : ATLAS

The famous Flemish geographer Gerardus Mercator published his first collection of maps in 1578. Mercator’s collection contained a frontispiece with an image of Atlas the Titan from Greek mythology holding up the world on his shoulders. That image gave us our term “atlas” that is used for a book of maps.

52 Many a jayvee player : SOPH

The term “sophomore” has been used for a student in the second year of university since the 1680’s. The original meaning of the word was “arguer”. The term has Greek roots, from two Greek words that have been artificially combined in English. The Greek “sophos” means “wise”, and “moros” means “foolish”.

Junior varsity (JV, jayvee)

56 Start the kitty : ANTE

The pot in a card game has been referred to as “the kitty” since the 1880s. It’s not certain how the name “kitty” evolved but possibly it comes from “kit”, the necessary equipment for the game.

60 Abbott and Costello’s first baseman : WHO

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello made up the comedy duo Abbott and Costello who were immensely popular in the forties and fifties. Even when I was growing up in Ireland and knew nothing about baseball, I was rolling around the floor listening to Abbott and Costello’s famous “Who’s on First?” comedy routine. Can you name all the players?

First Base: Who
Second Base: What
Third Base: I Don’t Know
Left field: Why
Centerfield: Because
Pitcher: Tomorrow
Catcher: Today
Shortstop: I Don’t Care/I Don’t Give a Darn

61 Oui’s opposite : NON

“Oui” is “yes” in French, and “non” is “no”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Periods of history : ERAS
5 __ Pujols, fourth MLBer to reach 6,000 total bases : ALBERT
11 Area for experiments : LAB
14 __ Raton, Fla. : BOCA
15 Ballerina, at times : LEAPER
16 Bullfight “Bravo!” : OLE!
17 *Hitchhiked : BUMMED A RIDE
19 Take the gold : WIN
20 Took the wheel : STEERED
21 Drained of energy : SAPPED
23 Firebug’s crime : ARSON
26 Changes direction : TURNS
27 Create a raised logo on, say : EMBOSS
31 “My pleasure” : LOVE TO
33 Señor’s squiggle : TILDE
34 Said further : ADDED
35 Put money in, as a parking meter : FED
38 Board game with nine rooms : CLUE
39 Picture within a picture : INSET
40 Heap, as of wood : PILE
41 Weeding tool : HOE
42 Judicial orders : WRITS
43 Zesty dip for tortilla chips : SALSA
44 Line in pressed pants : CREASE
46 Movie theater feature : SCREEN
47 Throbbed : ACHED
49 CNN journalist Hill : ERICA
51 Doctoral candidate’s project : THESIS
53 Beers served with lime : CORONAS
58 Tell a tall tale : LIE
59 Cry to one blocking your view at a concert … and a hint to the answers to starred clues : DOWN IN FRONT!
62 Classifieds, e.g. : ADS
63 Apple device featuring Siri : IPHONE
64 Italian wine region : ASTI
65 Go out with : SEE
66 Skimpy swimsuits : THONGS
67 Wanton look : LEER

Down

1 Recedes, like the tide : EBBS
2 Sports blowout : ROUT
3 Wile E. Coyote’s supplier : ACME
4 “The __”: “What she’s having” : SAME
5 Trees with catkins : ALDERS
6 Takes charge : LEADS
7 Granola __ : BAR
8 Prefix with dermis : EPI-
9 Wine list heading : REDS
10 Picked up the check : TREATED
11 *Something kept to avoid attention : LOW PROFILE
12 Sci-fi visitor : ALIEN
13 Gives a little : BENDS
18 Clear of data, e.g. : ERASE
22 Erect, with “up” : PUT …
24 Golden-ager : OLDSTER
25 Network junctions : NODES
27 Mark with acid : ETCH
28 Venus de __ : MILO
29 *Dressing with Buffalo wings : BLUE CHEESE
30 Tribute in verse : ODE
32 Dog doc : VET
34 Biscotti flavoring : ANISE
36 “If all __ fails … ” : ELSE
37 Faculty head : DEAN
39 Nest egg acronym : IRA
40 Four, for most golf holes : PAR
42 “Way to go, team!” : WE DID IT!
43 Winter neck warmer : SCARF
45 Hi-__ audio : RES
46 Biscuits at teas : SCONES
47 Book with maps : ATLAS
48 Reprimand : CHIDE
50 Cake topping : ICING
52 Many a jayvee player : SOPH
54 Taken by mouth : ORAL
55 Carrot, on a snowman : NOSE
56 Start the kitty : ANTE
57 Mix, as a liquid : STIR
60 Abbott and Costello’s first baseman : WHO
61 Oui’s opposite : NON

12 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 23 Aug 21, Monday”

  1. Like @Mary S. Also, didn’t notice theme. Didn’t know Pujois or lime with CORONA, cuz I neither drink or watch sports (except an occasional horse).

  2. 4:13 1 error, because I was so sure I had spelled BLEU CHEESE right.

    Didn’t make sense of the theme until after I was done. Are we supposed to feel down because Monday is at the front of the week.

  3. Wonderful time, Lou lu. I am very glad for you. Be proud, easy or not.

    The wife and I also had good luck. She got all but 10 complete words before
    I even looked at it and I was able to get the rest in about your time for the
    total puzzle.

  4. Tried going as fast as possible and accidentally put in AdDers, which I couldn’t find until I did a “check-grid.” So, 9:13 with one dumb error.

    Yeah, with Albert Pujols on the Dodgers payroll, amongst others, they’ll be paying a luxury tax of $17.2M and still only 2nd place in the NL West 🙂

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