LA Times Crossword 14 Dec 21, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Kurt Krauss
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Do, Do Enjoy This One

Themed answers are common phrases that start with a repeated “oo” sound:

  • 17A Tray with egg rolls, fried wontons, etc. : PUPU PLATTER
  • 23A Amorous looks : GOO-GOO EYES
  • 33A Yoga-inspired athletic brand : LULULEMON
  • 48A Yogi’s cartoon buddy : BOO-BOO BEAR
  • 53A Colorful Hawaiian garment : MUUMUU DRESS

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

Bill’s time: 6m 03s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

4 Hwy. with tolls : TPKE

Back in the 15th century, a turnpike (tpk., trke.) was a defensive barrier across a road. By the 17th century the term was used for a barrier that stopped travelers until a toll was paid. By the 18th century a turnpike was the name given to a road with a toll.

14 Hip bones : ILIA

The ilium (plural “ilia”) is the upper portion of the hipbone.

17 Tray with egg rolls, fried wontons, etc. : PUPU PLATTER

In Hawaiian, “pupu” is a word originally meaning “snail”. Nowadays “pupu” denotes many different types of food that are usually served as hors d’oeuvres. A “pupu platter” is a selection of such foods served in a Hawaiian restaurant.

A wonton is a dumpling used in Chinese cooking. Wontons are often boiled and served in a wonton soup.

19 Butler at Tara : RHETT

An oft-quoted exchange takes place between Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler in the movie “Gone with the Wind”. Scarlett says to Rhett, “Sir, you are no gentleman”, to which Rhett replies, “And you, Miss, are no lady.”

21 Bygone Ford : LTD

There has been a lot of speculation about what the abbreviation “LTD” stands for in the car model known as “Ford LTD”. Many say it is an initialism standing for “Luxury Trim Decor”, and others say that it is short for “limited”. Although the car was produced in Australia with the initialism meaning “Lincoln Type Design”, it seems that “LTD” was originally chosen as just three meaningless letters that sound well together.

22 “… thus wide I’ll __ my arms”: “Hamlet” : OPE

Here are some lines spoken by Laertes to Claudius in William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”:

To his good friends thus wide I’ll ope my arms
And, like the kind life-rendering pelican,
Repast them with my blood.

26 Bygone blade : SNEE

A “snee” is a type of dagger formerly used by Scottish highlanders.

28 Cloak-and-dagger org. : CIA

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is the successor to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) formed during WWII. The CIA was chartered by the National Security Act of 1947. The organization is often referred to familiarly as “the Company”.

32 Concert pianos : GRANDS

A grand piano is one with the frame supported horizontally on three legs. An upright piano has the frame and strings running vertically. Grand pianos come in many sizes. For example, the length of a concert grand is about 9 feet, a parlor grand is about 7 feet, and a baby grand is about 5 feet.

33 Yoga-inspired athletic brand : LULULEMON

Lululemon Athletica is a brand of athletic clothing that was founded by Chip Wilson in 1998 and is headquartered in Vancouver. The company’s name is very much associated with the activity of yoga in particular. Every Lululemon store offers a weekly complimentary yoga class.

39 Two-outs-in-a-single-AB stats : DPS

At-bat (AB)

Double play (DP)

40 Mil. awards : DSCS

The Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) is the second-highest honor awarded to members of the US Army. The DSC is equivalent to the Navy Cross and the Air Force Cross.

45 Early Beatle Sutcliffe : STU

Stu Sutcliffe was one of the original four members of The Silver Beatles (as The Beatles were known in their early days), along with John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison. Sutcliffe apparently came up with the name “Beatles” along with John Lennon, as a homage to their hero Buddy Holly who was backed by the “Crickets”. By all reports, Sutcliffe wasn’t a very talented musician and was more interested in painting. He went with the group to Hamburg, more than once, but he eventually left the Beatles and went back to art school, actually studying for a while at the Hamburg College of Art. In 1962 in Hamburg, Sutcliffe collapsed with blinding headaches. He died in the ambulance on the way to hospital, his death attributed to cerebral paralysis.

46 Camera setting : F-STOP

Varying the f-stop in a lens varies how big the lens opening (the aperture) is when a photograph is taken. Smaller apertures (higher f-stop values) admit less light, but result in a greater depth of field (more of the photograph is in focus).

48 Yogi’s cartoon buddy : BOO-BOO BEAR

Boo-Boo Bear was the sidekick to Yogi Bear on the Hanna-Barbera cartoon classic “The Yogi Bear Show”.

Yogi Bear made his debut for Hanna-Barbera in 1958, on “The Huckleberry Hound Show” before he was given his own series. Do you remember that collar that Yogi wore around his neck? That was a little trick from the animators. By using the collar, for many frames all they had to do was redraw everything from the collar up, saving them lots and lots of time. Yogi and Boo-Boo lived in Jellystone Park, and made Ranger Smith’s life a misery.

50 NBA tiebreakers : OTS

Overtime (OT)

51 Muppet chimp __ Minella : SAL

Sal Minella is a Muppet character. He is the bodyguard for fellow muppet Johnny Fiama who is modeled after Frank Sinatra.

53 Colorful Hawaiian garment : MUUMUU DRESS

A muumuu is a loose dress that originated in Hawaii. Many muumuus are brightly colored and made of the same material as the ubiquitous Hawaiian shirt. The word “mu’umu’u” means “cut off” in Hawaiian.

57 “__ Abner” : LI’L

“Li’l Abner” was created and drawn by Al Capp for over 43 years starting in 1934. Al Capp stopped producing the strip in 1977, largely due to illness (he died from emphysema two years later). As the strip finished up, he went so far as to apologize to his long-standing fans, saying that he should have stopped 3-4 years earlier as he felt that the quality of his work had gone down in those latter years. The title character’s full name is “Li’l Abner Yokum”. Despite being referred to as “Li’l”, Abner is 6’ 3” tall.

60 Drooling comics canine : ODIE

Jon Arbuckle is a fictional character, and the owner of Odie from Jim Davis’s comic strip “Garfield”. Garfield is Arbuckle’s orange tabby cat. Odie is his less-than-smart beagle.

Down

1 Tarzan raiser : APE

Kala is the fictional ape that rescues the infant Tarzan from the dangerous leader of the apes. In the Edgar Rice Burroughs novel, Kala is killed a few years later by a hunter, for which Tarzan exacts the ultimate revenge. In the 1999 Disney adaptation of the story, Kala doesn’t die.

2 Home of Lions and Tigers, but not Bears : DETROIT

The Detroit Lions are the NFL team that play home games at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. The team was founded way back in 1929 as the Portsmouth Spartans from Portsmouth, Ohio. The Spartans joined the NFL during the Great Depression as other franchises collapsed. However, the Spartans couldn’t command a large enough gate in Portsmouth so the team was sold and relocated to Detroit in 1934.

The origins of the Detroit Tigers baseball team’s name seems a little unclear. One story is that it was taken from the Detroit Light Guard military unit who were known as “The Tigers”. The Light Guard fought with distinction during the Civil War and in the Spanish-American War. Sure enough, when the Detroit baseball team went into the Majors they were formally given permission to use “The Tigers” name by the Detroit Light Guard.

The Chicago Bears were founded in Decatur, Illinois in 1919 and moved to Chicago in 1921. The Bears are one of only two franchises in the NFL that were around at the time of the NFL’s founding (the other being the Arizona Cardinals, also based in Chicago in 1921).

5 Verb meaning “demote” coined in 2006 : PLUTO

Pluto was discovered in 1930, and was welcomed as the ninth planet in our solar system. Pluto is relatively small in size, just one fifth of the mass of our own moon. In the seventies, astronomers began to discover more large objects in the solar system, including Eris, a “scattered disc object” at the outer reaches. Given that Eris is actually bigger than Pluto, and other objects really aren’t that much smaller, Pluto’s status as a planet was drawn into question. In 2006 there was a scientific definition for a “planet” agreed for the first time, resulting in Pluto being relegated to the status of “dwarf planet”, along with Eris. This relegation led to the word “pluto” being used used as a noun meaning “give a less important position than before”.

6 Nap, to a Brit : KIP

In Britain, a person taking a nap might announce that he or she is going for a “kip”. The term “kip” likely migrated from Ireland, where “kip” was a slang term for a brothel. In Britain, the term “kip” continues to have the relatively innocuous sleeping connotation. In Ireland, the use of “kip” extended over the years as a pejorative term describing perhaps a hotel that is judged to be seedy, or a room that is particularly unclean.

7 Water in la mer : EAU

“La mer” is French for “the sea”.

9 Rhinitis-treating MD : ENT

Rhinitis is irritation and inflammation of the mucous membrane inside the nose. Usually, rhinitis is a result of inhalation of allergens such as pollen and pet dander.

10 Former justice Scalia : ANTONIN

Antonin Scalia was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Reagan in 1986, and was the longest-serving member of the court on the occasion of his passing in 2016. Justice Scalia’s minority opinions were known for the scathing language that he used to criticize the Court’s majority.

15 Initial diner orders? : BLTS

The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second-most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain old ham sandwich.

20 Parmigiana choice : EGGPLANT

Parmigiana (familiarly “parm”) is a dish from southern Italy. The original parmigiana was made with an aubergine (eggplant) filling, with cheese and tomato layers and then baked. Versions originating outside of Italy have replaced the aubergine with breaded cutlets of chicken or veal.

23 Classic sports cars : GTS

In the automotive world, “GT” stands for “Grand Touring” or “Gran Turismo”.

24 Beige hue : ECRU

The color ecru is a grayish, yellowish brown. The word “ecru” comes from French and means “raw, unbleached”. “Ecru” has the same roots as our word “crude”.

29 “No seats” sign : SRO

Standing room only (SRO)

31 Pint at a bar : ALE

A US pint comprises 16 fluid ounces, and an imperial pint is 20 fluid ounces. The term “pint” comes into English via Old French, ultimately from the Latin “picta” meaning “painted”. The name arose from a line painted on the side of a beer glass that marked a full measure of ale.

32 Baseball VIPs : GMS

General manager (GM)

35 File format for digital books : EPUB

EPUB is a standard format used in the publishing of e-books. Books in the EPUB file format have the extension “.epub”.

41 Metal marble : STEELIE

A playing marble made from agate is called just that, an agate. Steelies on the other hand, are made from solid steel.

43 Easter time: Abbr. : SPR

Apparently, we call the season “spring” because it is associated with the period when most plants and flowers “spring up” out of the ground.

46 “Gorillas in the Mist” author Dian : FOSSEY

Dian Fossey carried out her famous study of gorilla populations in the mountain forests of Rwanda. She wrote a 1983 autobiographical account of her work titled “Gorillas in the Mist”, which served as a basis for a 1988 film of the same name starring Sigourney Weaver as Fossey. Sadly, Fossey was found dead in her cabin in Rwanda in 1986, murdered in her bedroom, her skull split open by a machete. The crime was never solved.

48 Data transfer unit : BAUD

In telecommunications, the “baud” unit represents pulses per second. The higher the baud rate of a modem, the faster information can be transferred. The baud unit is named after Émile Baudot, a pioneer in the world of telecommunications.

49 Desert refuge : OASIS

An isolated area of vegetation in a desert is called an oasis (plural “oases”). As water is needed for plant growth, an oasis might also include a spring, pond or small lake. We often use the term “oasis” more generally to describe a haven, a place of rest.

54 “Spy vs. Spy” magazine : MAD

“Spy vs. Spy” is a comic strip that has run in “MAD” magazine continuously since 1961. It was drawn by Antonio Prohias, a refugee from Cuba, until his retirement. The early storyline was very fitting for the times, a statement about the futility of the arms race, detente and the Cold War.

55 Filmmaker Reiner : ROB

The great director and actor Rob Reiner first came to prominence playing “Meathead”, Archie and Edith Bunker’s son-in-law in “All in the Family”. Since then, Reiner has directed a long string of hit movies including, “The Princess Bride”, “Stand by Me”, “This Is Spinal Tap”, “When Harry Met Sally …”, “Misery” and “A Few Good Men”.

56 UCLA URL ending : EDU

The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) gets more applications from potential students than any other university in the country. UCLA also has more students enrolled than any other university in the state.

58 Sign before Virgo : LEO

Leo is the fifth astrological sign of the Zodiac. People born from July 23 to August 22 are Leos.

The astrological sign of Virgo is the sixth sign in the Zodiac, and is associated with the constellation of the same name. The Virgo constellation is related to maidens (virgins), purity and fertility.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Fruity drink suffix : -ADE
4 Hwy. with tolls : TPKE
8 Starring roles : LEADS
13 One in a pod : PEA
14 Hip bones : ILIA
15 Traditional Easter wear : BONNET
16 Series-ending letters : ETC
17 Tray with egg rolls, fried wontons, etc. : PUPU PLATTER
19 Butler at Tara : RHETT
21 Bygone Ford : LTD
22 “… thus wide I’ll __ my arms”: “Hamlet” : OPE
23 Amorous looks : GOO-GOO EYES
26 Bygone blade : SNEE
27 Slight bit, as of color : TINGE
28 Cloak-and-dagger org. : CIA
29 Tour of duty : STINT
30 Big first for a baby : STEP
31 “__ we having fun yet?” : ARE
32 Concert pianos : GRANDS
33 Yoga-inspired athletic brand : LULULEMON
36 Order to relax : AT EASE!
39 Two-outs-in-a-single-AB stats : DPS
40 Mil. awards : DSCS
44 Ending with wind or air meaning “transmitted by” : -BORNE
45 Early Beatle Sutcliffe : STU
46 Camera setting : F-STOP
47 “Phooey!” : DRAT!
48 Yogi’s cartoon buddy : BOO-BOO BEAR
50 NBA tiebreakers : OTS
51 Muppet chimp __ Minella : SAL
52 To this point : AS YET
53 Colorful Hawaiian garment : MUUMUU DRESS
57 “__ Abner” : LI’L
59 Gofer’s job : ERRAND
60 Drooling comics canine : ODIE
61 Having four sharps : IN E
62 They’re not options : NEEDS
63 Like retailers during holiday season : BUSY
64 Self-esteem : EGO

Down

1 Tarzan raiser : APE
2 Home of Lions and Tigers, but not Bears : DETROIT
3 Every last person : EACH ONE
4 Move sneakily : TIPTOE
5 Verb meaning “demote” coined in 2006 : PLUTO
6 Nap, to a Brit : KIP
7 Water in la mer : EAU
8 Truckful : LOAD
9 Rhinitis-treating MD : ENT
10 Former justice Scalia : ANTONIN
11 Diving board site : DEEP END
12 City map lines : STREETS
15 Initial diner orders? : BLTS
18 Response to a judge : PLEA
20 Parmigiana choice : EGGPLANT
23 Classic sports cars : GTS
24 Beige hue : ECRU
25 Not argue with : YIELD TO
26 Waits for further instructions : STANDS BY
29 “No seats” sign : SRO
31 Pint at a bar : ALE
32 Baseball VIPs : GMS
34 “__ as directed” : USE
35 File format for digital books : EPUB
36 Stomach : ABDOMEN
37 Long wait, to some : TORTURE
38 Solver’s smudge : ERASURE
41 Metal marble : STEELIE
42 Just enough snow to cover the ground : COATING
43 Easter time: Abbr. : SPR
45 Auction cry : SOLD!
46 “Gorillas in the Mist” author Dian : FOSSEY
48 Data transfer unit : BAUD
49 Desert refuge : OASIS
51 Catches some rays : SUNS
54 “Spy vs. Spy” magazine : MAD
55 Filmmaker Reiner : ROB
56 UCLA URL ending : EDU
58 Sign before Virgo : LEO

23 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 14 Dec 21, Tuesday”

    1. In the key of E.
      E major is a major scale based on E, consisting of the pitches E, F♯, G♯, A, B, C♯, and D♯. Its key signature has four sharps.

  1. 7:48 2 errors

    Misspelled ILEA -> ILIA, and tried to confine Easter to APR->SPR.

    I like the way the theme answers alternate U-U and OO-OO.

    Using PLUTO as a verb is pretty funny. I’m surprised I haven’t heard it before. Maybe it’s still too soon.

  2. I agree with Anon Mike. Never heard of 5D, but I think it’s a clever synonym of “Demote.” Hip bones (14D) are more than just the ilia. Basically, a good job of puzzle construction, Mr. Krauss.

  3. 11 minutes, 14 seconds, no errors. I did, however, “make a meal out of it” with my slow time. Took a while to work out the repeating-sound theme, the first term of which was a rather obscure Chinese name …

  4. I found this puzzle a pleasant relaxation. The few guesses were proven by the easier crosses. I recall using “googooeyes” when I was younger but it doesn’t seem to be popular today. Does anyone know its source or how it came into fashion? Maybe from the old comic strip Barney Google?

  5. 7:28, no errors.

    @Miles
    by the “90%” thing I mean if I just saw the clues and the number of spaces that I wouldn’t be able to answer 90% of them correctly. Which means I generally need some kind of other cues to get them. Like with this one, I didn’t in a few spots, so it required a great amount of trial and error (WAGs) to complete, hence the rather slow (for Tuesday LAT) time.

  6. 11:13 with no errors or lookups – good for a Tuesday. Had to change GOOGLYEYES>GOOGOOEYES (after I had deduced the theme), MGS>GTS, BYTE>BAUD.

    Having only heard “muumuu” before, I had thought it was spelled with single U’s, so learned something new today.

  7. Mostly easy Tuesday for me; took about 13 minutes on paper with no errors. Decided to switch to paper for a change…still too small a print but I managed. Lots of waiting for crosses for a Tuesday and two rewrites (uLnA to ILIA, Byte to BAUD.)

    Didn’t really know KIP, SAL or PU PU PLATTER. Theme helped for a change. Fun challenge…I was kind of hoping for a doo doo as well 🙂

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