LA Times Crossword 31 Aug 21, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Kurt Krauss
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Waterfront

Themed answers each start with a word that is often FRONTED by WATER:

  • 62A Like oceanside resort property … and what the starts to the answers to starred clues can have? : WATERFRONT
  • 17A *It often runs through the center of town : MAIN STREET (giving “water main”)
  • 39A *Sleeveless shirt : TANK TOP (giving “water tank”)
  • 11D *Monopoly property three squares before Go : PARK PLACE (giving “water park”)
  • 35D *Bit of wishful thinking : PIPE DREAM (giving “water pipe”)

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

Bill’s time: 5m 19s

Bill’s errors: 2

  • TYRE (tire!!!!!)
  • TREY (trei!!!)

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Country singer McCann : LILA

Lila McCann is a country singer who released her first single “Down Came a Blackbird” when she was just 16 years old. The first song made it into the “Billboard” country charts, peaking at number 28.

14 Poet’s “in a trice” : ANON

“Anon” originally meant “at once”, but the term’s meaning evolved into “soon” apparently just because the word was misused over time.

15 Legendary crooner Mel : TORME

Crooner Mel Tormé fronted a vocal quintet in the 1940s called “Mel Tormé and his Mel-Tones”. Tormé set up the group as Frank Sinatra had been having success singing with the Hoboken Four as well as with the Pied Pipers.

17 *It often runs through the center of town : MAIN STREET (giving “water main”)

The most common street name in the US is “Second Street”. “First Street” comes in only at number three, and this is because many cities and towns forgo the use of “First” and instead go with “Main” or something more historical in nature. The spooky “Elm Street” appears on the list at number fifteen.

19 H.S. math class : TRIG

Trigonometry (trig) is a branch of mathematics dealing with triangles, and calculations based on the relationship between a triangle’s angles and the lengths of its sides.

20 Year at the Sorbonne : ANNEE

“Sorbonne” is the name usually used for the old University of Paris, and some of the institutions that have succeeded it. The institution was named for French theologian Robert de Sorbonne who founded the original Collège de Sorbonne in 1257. That’s quite a while ago …

21 Spare in a boot : TYRE

The British spelling of “tyre”, for what we call a “tire” here in North America, was indeed the original spelling. The English started to use “tire” spelling in the 17th century, and then shifted back to the current “tyre” in the 19th century.

In North America we use the word “trunk” for the storage space in the back of a vehicle as that space is reminiscent of the large travelling chest called a “trunk”. Such trunks used to be lashed onto the back of automobiles before storage was integrated. On the other side of the Atlantic, a trunk is known as a “boot”. The original boot was a built-in storage compartment on a horse-drawn carriage on which a coachman would sit.

22 DIY furniture giant : IKEA

The IKEA furniture chain was founded by Ingvar Kamprad in 1943, when he was just 17-years-old. IKEA is an acronym standing for Ingvar Kamprad Elmtaryd Agunnaryd (don’t forget now!). Elmtaryd was the name of the farm where Ingvar Kamprad grew up, and Agunnaryd is his home parish in Sweden.

27 Stereo knob : TREBLE

Monophonic sound (“mono”) is sound reproduced using just one audio channel, which is usually played out of just one speaker. Stereophonic sound is reproduced using two audio channels, with the sound from each channel played out of two different speakers. The pair of stereo speakers are usually positioned apart from each other so that sound appears to come from between the two. Quadraphonic sound (4.0 surround sound) uses four audio channels with the sound played back through four speakers that are often positioned at the corners of the room in which one is listening.

33 Apartment overseer, informally : SUPE

Superintendent (supe)

36 “Homeland” org. : CIA

“Homeland” is a psychological drama on Showtime about a CIA officer who is convinced that a certain US Marine is a threat to the security of the United States. The show is based on a series from Israeli television called “Hatufim” (Prisoners of War”). I highly recommend it …

37 Fruit in a split : BANANA

The banana split was created in Latrobe, Pennsylvania in 1904. This particular sundae was the idea of David Stickler, a young apprentice pharmacist at the Tassel Pharmacy’s soda fountain.

38 Japanese sash : OBI

The sash worn as part of traditional Japanese dress is known as an obi. The obi can be tied at the back in what is called a butterfly knot. The term “obi” is also used for the thick cotton belts that are an essential part of the outfits worn by practitioners of many martial arts. The color of the martial arts obi signifies the wearer’s skill level.

39 *Sleeveless shirt : TANK TOP (giving “water tank”)

“Tank top” is another one of those terms that always catches me out, as it has a different meaning on each side of the Atlantic. In the US, a tank top is a sleeveless shirt, something we would call a “vest” back in Ireland (and the US “vest” is what we call a “waistcoat”). A tank top in Ireland is a sleeveless sweater, which further adds to the confusion. The name “tank top” is derived from “tank suit”, an old name for a woman’s one-piece bathing suit. The use of “tank” for the bathing suit came from “swimming tank”, an obsolete term used in the 1920s for a swimming pool.

41 NYSE listings : COS

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

Company (co.)

45 “Winter Song” musician John : TESH

John Tesh is a pianist and composer, as well as a radio and television presenter. For many years Tesh presented the show “Entertainment Tonight”. For “ET” he once covered the filming of an episode of “Star Trek: The Next Generation”. As part of the piece, he volunteered to act as a Klingon warrior. If you see the “Star Trek: TNG” episode called “The Icarus Factor” in reruns, watch out for John Tesh engaging in ritual torture with Mr. Worf as his victim.

46 Nottingham’s river : TRENT

The River Trent in England is one of the few rivers that flows north for much of its route. The Trent rises in Staffordshire and empties into the River Ouse in Yorkshire.

Nottingham is a city in the East Midlands of England. To us on this side of the Atlantic, perhaps Nottingham is most famous as a setting for the legend of Robin Hood.

55 Root for a luau : TARO

Nowadays, the word “luau” denotes almost any kind of party on the Hawaiian Islands, but to the purist a luau is a feast that always includes a serving of poi, the bulbous underground stems of taro.

57 Supply-and-demand sci. : ECON

Economics (econ.)

60 Turkish coins : LIRAS

The currency of Turkey is the Turkish lira, which is divided into 100 kuruş. In 1927, the Turkish lira replaced the Ottoman lira, which had been in use since 1844.

61 Cheese couleur : BLEU

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.

In French, “bleu” (blue) is “une couleur primaire” (a primary color).

65 Modeling adhesive : EPOXY

Epoxy resins are thermosetting polymers that have high adhesive strength. In order to achieve mechanical and adhesive strength, the epoxy has to cure. The “curing” is a cross-linking reaction that takes place between individual molecules in the material. In some cases, the cross-linking is brought about by mixing the epoxy with a co-reactant known as a “hardener”. In other cases, the epoxy is cured by exposing it to heat.

66 Arrogance, in slang : ‘TUDE

‘Tude (attitude)

67 Fleshy fruit : POME

The Latin word for “fruit” is “pomum”, which gives us the botanical term “pome” that is used for a group of fleshy fruits, including apples and pears.

68 Tivoli’s Villa __ : D’ESTE

The Villa d’Este is a beautiful Renaissance villa situated close to Tivoli near Rome, Italy. It was built by Cardinal Ippolito d’Este, the son of Alfonso I d’Este and Lucrezia Borgia.

Down

1 Rapper Kendrick : LAMAR

Kendrick Lamar is a hip-hop singer from Compton, California. Lamar’s full name is Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, with the singer’s given name honoring Motown artist Eddie Kendricks. Notably, his 2017 album “Damn” won a Pulitzer Prize for Music, becoming the first non-classical or non-jazz album to do so.

2 Mindless : INANE

Our word “inane” meaning “silly, lacking substance” comes from the Latin “inanitis” meaning “empty space”.

4 “Being Julia” co-star Bening : ANNETTE

The marvelous actress Annette Bening is from Topeka, Kansas. Bening has been married to actor Warren Beatty since 1992. The pair married about a year after starring together in the 1991 film “Bugsy”.

“Being Julia” is a 2004 film based on a 1937 Somerset Maugham novel titled “Theatre”. Jeremy Irons plays the character Julia’s husband.

5 Old-time baseball slugger called “Master Melvin” : OTT

At 5′ 9″, baseball legend Mel Ott weighed just 170 lb (I don’t think he took steroids!) and yet he was the first National League player to hit over 500 home runs. Sadly, Ott died in a car accident in New Orleans in 1958 when he was only 49 years old. And, according to Wikipedia, “Ott’s name frequently appears in crossword puzzles, on account of its letter combination and brevity.” True that …

6 Dessert wine : 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.

7 It beats a deuce : TREY

A trey is a three in a deck of cards. The term “trey” can also be used for a domino with three pips, and even for a three-point play in basketball.

A “two” playing card might be called a “deuce”, from the Middle French “deus” (or Modern French “deux”) meaning “two”.

11 *Monopoly property three squares before Go : PARK PLACE (giving “water park”)

Park Place is an expensive property on the Monopoly board that features the streets of Atlantic City, New Jersey.

12 Toledo’s lake : ERIE

Toledo, Ohio lies in the northwest of the state, at the western end of Lake Erie. Toledo was founded as a result of the prosperity that hit the area when the Miami and Erie Canal was constructed in the 19th century connecting Cincinnati to the Great Lakes. Toledo is known as the Glass City as several glass companies originated there, including Owens Corning and Pilkington North America. There is a large exhibition of glass art at the Toledo Museum of Art.

13 Big name in computer games : SEGA

Sega is a Japanese video game company headquartered in Tokyo. Sega actually started out in 1940 as Standard Games and was located in Honolulu, which at that time was a city in the US Territory of Hawaii. The owners moved the operation to Tokyo in 1951 and renamed the company to Service Games. The name “Sega” is a combination of the first two letters of the words “Se-rvice” and “Ga-mes”.

24 Image-transfer item : 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.

26 “Now!” : ASAP!

As soon as possible (ASAP)

29 Staples Center player : LAKER

The Los Angeles Lakers basketball team started out in 1947 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The team chose the Lakers name in honor of the nickname of Minnesota, “Land of 10,000 Lakes”. The Lakers moved to Los Angeles in 1960.

The Staples Center is a sports arena in Los Angeles that opened in 1999. It is home to several sporting franchises, including the LA Lakers and LA Clippers basketball teams and the LA Kings hockey team.

31 Slaughter on the diamond : ENOS

Enos Slaughter has a remarkable playing record in Major League Baseball over a 19-year career. Slaughter’s record is particularly remarkable given that he left baseball for three years to serve in the military during WWII.

32 Pageant body band : SASH

The oldest beauty pageant still operating in the US is the Miss America contest. The Miss America beauty pageant started out as a marketing ploy in the early twenties to attract tourists to the Atlantic City boardwalk after Labor Day. Today, contestants must be between 17 and 24 years of age. Before those limits were introduced, Marian Bergeron won the 1933 title at only 15 years of age.

34 Above, in Berlin : UBER

Berlin is the capital of Germany. It is the nation’s largest city, and is the second-most populous city in the European Union (after London).

35 *Bit of wishful thinking : PIPE DREAM (giving “water pipe”)

In common parlance, a pipe dream is a vain hope for something that is unlikely to take place. The original pipe dreams were visions that were experienced after smoking a pipe filled with opium.

37 B in chem class : BORON

Boron is the chemical element with the atomic number of 5 and symbol B. It lies over to the right in Group 13 of the Periodic Table of the Elements. Uncombined, elemental boron is not found naturally on Earth. The boron that is mined is found in oxide form, and not as uncombined boron.

39 London art gallery : TATE

The museum known as “the Tate” is actually made up of four separate galleries in England. The original Tate gallery was founded by Sir Henry Tate as the National Gallery of British Art. It is located on Millbank in London, on the site of the old Millbank Prison, and is now called Tate Britain. There is also the Tate Liverpool in the north of England that is located in an old warehouse, and the Tate St. Ives in the west country located in an old gas works. My favorite of the Tate galleries is the Tate Modern which lies on the banks of the Thames in London. It’s a beautiful building, a converted power station that you have to see to believe. As of 2018, the Tate Modern was the most visited art museum in the UK.

40 Old salt : TAR

A jack tar, or just “tar”, was a seaman in the service of the British Empire. The term probably arose due to a sailor’s various uses of tar back then, including waterproofing his clothes and using tar in his hair to slick down his ponytail.

43 On the way : EN ROUTE

“En route” is a French term that means “on the way”.

45 Vacation souvenirs : T-SHIRTS

A souvenir is a memento, a token of remembrance. We imported the word “souvenir” from French, in which language it has the same meaning. The term comes from the Latin “subvenire” meaning “to come to mind”, or literally “to come up”.

48 Massage therapeutically : ROLF

Rolfing is a trademarked massage technique developed by Ida Pauline Rolf in the fifties.

53 Bamboo muncher : PANDA

The giant panda is a bear, and so has the digestive system of a carnivore. However, the panda lives exclusively on bamboo, even though its gut is relatively poorly adapted to extract nutrients from plants per se. The panda relies on microbes in its gut to digest cellulose, and consumes 20-30 pounds of bamboo each day to gain enough nourishment.

54 Aromatic compound : ESTER

Esters are very common chemicals. The smaller, low-molecular weight esters are usually pleasant smelling and are often found in perfumes. At the other end of the scale, the higher-molecular weight nitroglycerin is a nitrate ester and is very explosive, and polyester is a huge molecule and is a type of plastic. Fats and oils found in nature are fatty acid esters of glycerol known as glycerides.

55 1/2 fl. oz. : TBSP

Tablespoon (tbsp.)

56 Choir part : ALTO

In choral music, an alto (plural “alti”) is the second-highest voice in a four-part chorus made up of soprano, contr(alto), tenor and bass. The word “alto” describes the vocal range, that of the deepest female singing-voice, whereas the term “contralto” describes more than just the alto range, but also its quality and timbre. An adult male’s voice (not a boy’s) with the same range as an alto is called a “countertenor”.

58 Platte River people : OTOS

The Otoe (also “Oto”) Native American tribe originated in the Great Lakes region as part of the Winnebago or Siouan tribes. The group that would become the Otoe broke away from the Winnebago and migrated southwestward, ending up in the Great Plains. In the plains the Otoe adopted a semi-nomadic lifestyle dependent on the horse, with the American bison becoming central to their diet.

The Platte River used to be called the Nebrakier, which is an Oto word meaning “flat river”. Indeed, the state of Nebraska takes its name from “Nebrakier”. For a while it was also called the River Plate as “plate” is the French word “flat”. Later this became “Platte”, the phonetic spelling of the French “plate”.

63 Bar staple : RYE

For whiskey to be labelled as “rye” in the US, it has to be distilled from at least 51% rye grain. In Canada however, a drink called rye whiskey sometimes contains no rye at all.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Country singer McCann : LILA
5 Chose : OPTED
10 Imitates : APES
14 Poet’s “in a trice” : ANON
15 Legendary crooner Mel : TORME
16 Red inside : RARE
17 *It often runs through the center of town : MAIN STREET (giving “water main”)
19 H.S. math class : TRIG
20 Year at the Sorbonne : ANNEE
21 Spare in a boot : TYRE
22 DIY furniture giant : IKEA
23 Took five : RESTED
25 Clutch : GRASP
27 Stereo knob : TREBLE
30 Corporate department : SALES
33 Apartment overseer, informally : SUPE
36 “Homeland” org. : CIA
37 Fruit in a split : BANANA
38 Japanese sash : OBI
39 *Sleeveless shirt : TANK TOP (giving “water tank”)
41 NYSE listings : COS
42 Undo legislatively : REPEAL
44 Place for a ring : EAR
45 “Winter Song” musician John : TESH
46 Nottingham’s river : TRENT
47 Goofs : ERRORS
49 Stuff, as a turkey : DRESS
51 Zero chance : NO HOPE
55 Root for a luau : TARO
57 Supply-and-demand sci. : ECON
60 Turkish coins : LIRAS
61 Cheese couleur : BLEU
62 Like oceanside resort property … and what the starts to the answers to starred clues can have? : WATERFRONT
64 Football’s QB rating, for one : STAT
65 Modeling adhesive : EPOXY
66 Arrogance, in slang : ‘TUDE
67 Fleshy fruit : POME
68 Tivoli’s Villa __ : D’ESTE
69 Headliner : STAR

Down

1 Rapper Kendrick : LAMAR
2 Mindless : INANE
3 Meat cuts : LOINS
4 “Being Julia” co-star Bening : ANNETTE
5 Old-time baseball slugger called “Master Melvin” : OTT
6 Dessert wine : PORT
7 It beats a deuce : TREY
8 Come forth : EMERGE
9 Put a damper on : DETER
10 Craftsperson : ARTISAN
11 *Monopoly property three squares before Go : PARK PLACE (giving “water park”)
12 Toledo’s lake : ERIE
13 Big name in computer games : SEGA
18 Fortuneteller : SEER
24 Image-transfer item : DECAL
26 “Now!” : ASAP!
28 Coal holder : BIN
29 Staples Center player : LAKER
31 Slaughter on the diamond : ENOS
32 Pageant body band : SASH
33 Database command : SORT
34 Above, in Berlin : UBER
35 *Bit of wishful thinking : PIPE DREAM (giving “water pipe”)
37 B in chem class : BORON
39 London art gallery : TATE
40 Old salt : TAR
43 On the way : EN ROUTE
45 Vacation souvenirs : T-SHIRTS
47 Break out : ESCAPE
48 Massage therapeutically : ROLF
50 Put in stitches : SEWED
52 “Are you in __?” : OR OUT
53 Bamboo muncher : PANDA
54 Aromatic compound : ESTER
55 1/2 fl. oz. : TBSP
56 Choir part : ALTO
58 Platte River people : OTOS
59 Preceded in line by only one person : NEXT
63 Bar staple : RYE

18 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 31 Aug 21, Tuesday”

  1. Missed the tense on 58D and had OTOE which left me with DE ETE for 68A.

    Puzzle was a bit tricky in places. Especially for a tuesday.

  2. 10ish minutes with 2 errors (missed the OTOS/DESTE)

    My condolences to Bill Butler for his “Oh no, I’m an American!” moment with TIRE instead of TYRE

    1. At Bill J. – LOL. There is no safe harbour for Bill and his American spelling of tyre. The horror! ;-D>

    1. Toured the Villa D’Este in 1971 on a trip to Italy, Austria and (then) Yugoslavia. The gardens and the fountains were incredible and the fact that all the 100’s of fountains are all powered by gravity alone really made me do a double take.

  3. Had 1 error – TiRE instead of TYRE; which means TREi was also wrong.
    Had REcalL before REPEAL, leAd before STAR.
    ASAP should be an abbrev.

  4. Oops. Missed the same TYRE. I didn’t love TREI but rushed by it w/o thinking it through. A different down word (more common) would have made it more obvious.

  5. Gotta pass on this one. Given a wad of proper nouns (a country singer, a rapper, and an actor) right out of the chute at 1A, I lost interest immediately. I appreciate skilled constructors for CrossWORD puzzles; the others can keep their boring, tedious CrossNAME efforts.

  6. 7 mins 38 sec, no errors, no issues (beside annoyance with a few “convenient alternate spelling” entries, like OTOS. Shouldn’t that be OTOE or OTOES?)

  7. Got the puzzle done early but didn’t get a chance to see Bill’s
    answers or the other comments until late in the afternoon. Made
    the same mistake as a lot of others….Otoe instead Otos so left me
    with Deete for 68A. At least I’m in good company.

  8. Slightly tricky Tuesday for me; took 10:31 with the same error as Bill: TiRE. I glanced at it twice as I passed by but decided to leave it… Also had to fix SEWEn/s/D and OTOe/S a bunch of times before I felt satisfied. I still didn’t get the banner and after glancing around I finally did a “check-grid” to (re)find TiRE.

  9. Greetings y’all!!!!🤗

    One error, darn it!!! Same as Mary S and Anon Mike and Ray C! OTOE seemed right but DE ETE didn’t, but I kept it….

    Not a bad Tuesday otherwise. I liked the two Mels crossing at OTT/TORME.

    Be well~~⚾️

    1. A rare, (and welcome) Carrie sighting! I’d like to think of Ott/Torme as a melding. Please forgive me for my pun(ish)ing ways!

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