LA Times Crossword 26 Dec 21, Sunday

Advertisement

Constructed by: Ed Sessa
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: Going Green

It’s the day after Christmas. The circled letters in the center of the grid tell us to PLANT A TREE. Circled letters in some down-answers suggest trees that we can plant:

  • 3D Round jewelry item : HOOP EARRING (hiding PEAR tree)
  • 4D Yuletide entrée : CHRISTMAS HAM (hiding ASH tree)
  • 13D Solemn periodic Vatican event : PAPAL MASS (hiding PALM tree)
  • 16D Sub fillers : DELI MEATS (hiding LIME tree)
  • 61D Subject never quite resolved in “When Harry Met Sally…” : PLATONIC LOVE (hiding CLOVE tree)
  • 68D “Oh Happy Day” genre : GOSPEL MUSIC (hiding ELM tree)
  • 78D Atlas feature : MAP LEGEND (hiding MAPLE tree)
  • 80D Adidas Yeezy collaborator : KANYE WEST (hiding YEW tree)

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

Bill’s time: 22m 49s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

4 “My __ Amour”: Stevie Wonder hit : CHERIE

Stevie Wonder wrote “My Cherie Amour” way back in 1966, but it wasn’t released until 1969. The song tells of Stevie’s infatuation with a real woman whom he encountered in the Michigan School for the Blind.

10 Transition point : CUSP

The word “cusp” comes from the Latin “cuspis” meaning “spear, point”. In the world of astrology, a cusp is an imaginary line separating two signs of the zodiac. For example, some whose birthday is between April 16 and April 26 is said to have been born “on the cusp” between the signs Aries and Taurus.

14 Old PC platform : MS-DOS

MS-DOS (short for “Microsoft Disk Operating System”) was the main operating system used by IBM-compatible PCs in the eighties and for much of the nineties. Microsoft introduced the Windows operating environment in 1985 to sit above MS-DOS as a graphical user interface (GUI). That move was made in response to the success of Apple’s GUI released with the Lisa and Macintosh platforms. A court case ensued, one that was eventually settled in court in favor of Microsoft.

19 Antacid brand since the 1800s : ENO

Eno is a brand of antacid that was introduced in the 1850s in Britain by pharmacist James Crossley Eno. Eno used a unique marketing system that made his product an international success. He gave away his product for free to sea captains in his home port city of Newcastle upon Tyne.

20 Mark who plays Luke : HAMILL

Actor Mark Hamill is best known (by far) for playing Luke Skywalker in “Star Wars” movies. That said, fans of “Batman: The Animated Series” will know him as the voice actor behind the Joker.

When the character Luke Skywalker was created for “Star Wars”, he was named “Annikin Starkiller”. Conceptually, he was a 60-year-old war veteran for a while, and also a female at one point. Luke is played by actor Mark Hamill in the “Star Wars” films.

21 Avalon contemporary in pop music : ANKA

Canadian-born Paul Anka’s big hit was in 1957, the song entitled “Diana”. Anka was the subject of a much-lauded documentary film in 1962 called “Lonely Boy”.

Frankie Avalon is a singer and actor who was a famous teen idol. Notably, he teamed up with actress and singer Annette Funicello in a series of “Beach Party” movies in the sixties.

22 “Einstein on the Beach,” e.g. : OPERA

“Einstein on the Beach” is a four-act opera by Philip Glass that premiered in 1975 in Avignon, France. I’m a big fan of Philip Glass’ work, but I’m not sure I’ll be seeing a performance of “Einstein on the Beach”. It takes five hours to perform, and there’s no intermission …

23 Dove’s call : COO

Taxonomically, doves and pigeons are the only members of the order Columbidae. The terms “dove” and “pigeon” are often used interchangeably. Scientifically speaking, dove species tend to be smaller than pigeon species. Colloquially though, many refer to doves as the white or nearly white species in the family.

24 Road safety feature : RUMBLE STRIP

Rumble strips are added to road surfaces to create an audio safety alert by transmitting vibrations into the car through the wheels. The first such safety features were implemented in 1952 on the Garden State Parkway in New Jersey. Rumble strips can be quite inventive, and so there is now a phenomenon known as “a musical road”. For example, you can drive along the Civic Musical Road in Lancaster, California. Grooves cut into the asphalt surface of the road produce vibrations that replicate part of the finale from Rossini’s “William Tell” overture. Hi ho, Silver …!

26 Eponymous engineer Ray : DOLBY

The dolby noise-reduction system was introduced in the 1960s by Dolby Laboratories, founded by engineer Ray Dolby. Basically, that initial Dolby noise-reduction system was designed to reduce background hiss heard on audio tapes.

27 Climactic Wembley Stadium event : CUP FINAL

Wembley Stadium is the second largest such structure in Europe, and is the national stadium used by England’s soccer team. The stadium takes its name from Wembley Park, that part of London in which the stadium is located. The current Wembley Stadium was opened in 2007, and was built on the site of the previous Wembley Stadium that opened in 1923.

29 Big name in camping gear : COLEMAN

William Coffin Coleman started the Coleman Company in 1900, making and selling gasoline pressure lamps in Kingfisher, Oklahoma. The company’s most famous and successful product is the Coleman Lantern, although US Army servicemen also appreciated the Model 520 Coleman Military Burner. The latter became known as the “GI pocket stove”. It was the size of a thermos, burned any kind of fuel, and was very lightweight. According to celebrated war correspondent Ernie Pyle, the GI pocket stove was second only to the jeep in its usefulness to the US soldier.

31 Make up partner : KISS

Let’s kiss and make up.

32 Like some illegal employment practices : AGEIST

Discrimination against senior members of society is referred to as ageism. The term “ageism” was coined in 1969 by Dr. Robert Neil Butler. In 1975, Butler was appointed founding Director of the National Institute on Aging (NIA) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

35 SoFi Stadium NFLer : LA RAM

SoFi Stadium is an arena in Inglewood, California just a few miles from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). It is the home of two NFL teams: the LA Rams and the LA Chargers.

44 Academic hiatuses : GAP YEARS

A hiatus is a break or opening in a material object, or an interruption in time. “Hiatus” is Latin for “opening”.

48 Sorkin of “Days of Our Lives” : ARLEEN

Actress Arleen Sorkin is a retired actress best known for playing Calliope Jones on the daytime soap “Days of Our Lives”. In 1995, Working married Christopher Lloyd, producer of hit shows like “Modern Family” and “Frasier”.

NBC’s “Days of Our Lives” is the second-longest running soap opera on US television, second only to “General Hospital”. “Days …” has been aired since November 1965.

50 Dinsmore of kid lit : ELSIE

“Elsie Dinsmore” is a series of children’s books from author Martha Finley, written between 1867 and 1905. There are 28 volumes in total.

52 Form 1040 fig. : AGI

Adjusted gross income (AGI)

56 “Well, __ that special!”: “SNL” catchphrase : ISN’T

Dana Carvey, along with the likes of Phil Hartman and Kevin Nealon, was part of the new breed of “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) comedians credited with resurrecting the show in the late eighties. One of Carvey’s most popular characters was the Church Lady (“Well, isn’t that special?”), and he became so associated with her that among fellow cast members Carvey was often referred to simply as “the Lady”. Another favorite Carvey character was Garth Algar who went to feature in the “Wayne’s World” movies. Carvey had open-heart surgery in 1997 to clear a blocked artery, but the surgical team operated on the wrong blood vessel. To recover, he had to have five more procedures. He ended up suing for medical malpractice and donated his $7.5 million compensation payment to charity.

57 Oater sound effects : GUNSHOTS

The term “oater” that is used for a Western movie comes from the number of horses seen, as horses love oats!

59 Legal scholar Guinier : LANI

Lani Guinier was the first African-American woman to achieve tenure at Harvard Law School.

62 Aqua __: gold dissolver : REGIA

Aqua regia is a mixture of concentrated nitric acid and hydrochloric acid. “Aqua regia” translates as “royal water”. The mixture was given this name as it can dissolve the “noble” metals, gold and platinum.

67 Nigerian seaport : LAGOS

Lagos is a port and the biggest city in Nigeria. It used to be the country’s capital, until it was replaced in that role in 1991 by Abuja, a city built just for this purpose. Lagos is also the most populous city in the whole of Africa (followed by Cairo in Egypt).

71 HBO rival : TMC

The Movie Channel is owned by Showtime, which in turn is a subsidiary of CBS. The channel’s name is often abbreviated to “TMC”, although this is informal usage.

73 __ Goose vodka : GREY

Grey Goose is a vodka that is produced in France. It was developed specifically for the American market using resources and expertise available in the French Cognac region.

74 Large green-winged flier : LUNA MOTH

The lime-green luna moth is one of the largest moths found in North America, growing to a wingspan of up to 4½ inches.

82 Baron Cohen’s Kazakh journalist : BORAT

Sacha Baron Cohen is a comedian and comic actor from England. Baron Cohen is perhaps most famous for playing the characters Borat and Ali G on the small and large screens. I’m wasn’t a fan, but I must admit that I really enjoyed 2020’s “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm”.

84 Intl. broadcasting initials : VOA

The United States Information Agency (USIA) was established under President Eisenhower in 1953, and continued operating until 1999. It’s mission was “public diplomacy”, another term for propaganda broadcast over radio airwaves. The intent from day one was to avoid having the broadcasts identified as propaganda. Speaking as a former listener to the USIA’s Voice of America (VOA) over in Europe, there were a lot of fun programs that had one coming back to hear more, but we all knew it was propaganda quite frankly …

88 Swiss winds : ALPHORNS

The alphorn is a wooden horn that can be several meters long. Today, it is used as a musical instrument, but historically, the alphorn was used for communication.

90 Maine, to Macron : ETAT

In French, Maine is an “état” (state).

When Emmanuel Macron became President of France in 2017, he was 39 years of age, and so became the youngest person to ever hold that office.

92 Start of a few choice words? : EENIE …

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Catch the tiger/monkey/baby by the toe.
If it hollers/screams let him go,
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe, you are it!

94 Bird migration routes : FLYWAYS

Flight paths used by migrating birds are known as flyways. Flyways over the Americas can be grouped into four roughly parallel north-south routes:

  • The Atlantic flyway
  • The Mississippi flyway
  • The Central flyway
  • The Allegheny Front flyway

95 Elegy for one voice : MONODY

In poetry, a monody is a poem in which one individual laments the death of another. In music, monody is the vocal style in which a soloist sings a single melodic line with an instrumental line accompanying.

97 Five Pillars faith : ISLAM

Followers of the Muslim tradition believe in the Five Pillars of Islam, five obligatory acts that underpin Muslim life. The Five Pillars are:

  1. The Islamic creed
  2. Daily prayer
  3. Almsgiving
  4. Fasting during the month of Ramadan
  5. The pilgrimage to Mecca (haj, hajj, hadj) once during a lifetime

100 The same, on the Seine : EGALE

“Égal” (feminine “égale”) is the French word for “equal, alike”, and a word we sometimes use in English. The national motto of France is “Liberté, égalité, fraternité”, meaning “Liberty, equality, fraternity”.

101 Ivanhoe’s love : ROWENA

In the famous novel by Sir Walter Scott, the title character “Ivanhoe” marries Lady Rowena.

102 Trattoria entrée : SCAMPI

The Italian dish known as “scampi” is a serving of shrimp in garlic butter and dry white wine.

A trattoria is an Italian restaurant. In Italian, a “trattore” is the keeper of said eating house.

103 Jellystone Park bear : YOGI

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.

114 Greek-American New Ager : YANNI

Yanni is a remarkable Greek musician who is very successful in the world of New Age music. What I find so remarkable is that he is a self-taught musician. Yanni was born Yiannis Chryssomallis in Kalamata, Greece and moved to the US in 1972 to attend the University of Minnesota.

116 One of three in “Macbeth” : SCENE V

Shakespeare adopted the five-act structure for most of his plays, thereby using the same format that was used by Seneca for his Roman tragedies. Given five acts, the plays tend to unfold as follows:

  • Act I is used as an introduction
  • Act II is used to complicate things
  • Act III contains the climax of the tale
  • Act IV is used to add some suspense
  • Act V is the conclusion

117 “__ seen worse” : I’VE

So have I …

118 Pilgrim John : ALDEN

John Alden is said to have been the first person to disembark from the Mayflower and to have set foot on Plymouth Rock in 1620. Alden himself was not a Pilgrim as such, and was a carpenter working on the Mayflower before it sailed. He apparently decided to travel with the ship at the last minute, perhaps in pursuit of the passenger who would become his wife, Priscilla Mullens. Alden ended up in a love triangle with Priscilla and Captain Miles Standish, a relationship which is recounted in the Longfellow poem “The Courtship of Miles Standish”. John and Priscilla were the parents of a son John Alden, who was later to be accused during the Salem witch trials.

119 Kitchen amts. : TSPS

Teaspoon (tsp.)

120 “Forrest Gump” actor : SINISE

Actor Gary Sinise was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for playing Lieutenant Dan Taylor in the 1994 film “Forrest Gump”. Sinise then played the lead in television’s “CSI: NY” starting in 2004. Sinise was awarded the Presidential Citizens Medal by President Bush for his work helping Iraqi school children as well as his work with the USO.

The epic 1994 movie “Forrest Gump” is based on a 1986 novel of the same name by Winston Groom. Groom said that he had envisioned John Goodman playing the title role, and not Tom Hanks.

Down

4 Yuletide entrée : CHRISTMAS HAM (hiding ASH tree)

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.

6 Austen title heroine : EMMA

Here is the opening paragraph of the novel “Emma”, by Jane Austen:

Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite some of the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her.

8 Needing TLC, say : ILL

Tender loving care (TLC)

9 Kind of microscope : ELECTRON

An electron microscope is a microscope that uses a beam of electrons rather than visible light to illuminate the sample. Electron microscopes can reveal smaller structures that optical microscopes because the wavelength of an electron beam can be up to 100,000 times shorter than visible light photons.

10 Angela Martin, e.g., in “The Office” : CAT LADY

The excellent sitcom “The Office” is set in a branch of a paper company in Scranton, Pennsylvania. If you haven’t seen the original UK version starring Ricky Gervais, I do recommend you check it out. Having said that, the US cast took the show to a whole new level. Great television …

11 Intl. delegate : UN REP

The United Nations was established right after the end of WWII, and was a replacement for the ineffective League of Nations that had been formed after the end of WWI. The US was at the forefront of the founding of the United Nations, led by President Franklin Roosevelt just prior to the start of WWII. The UN’s headquarters is in international territory in New York. There are three regional UN headquarters, also located in international territory, in Geneva, Vienna and Nairobi.

14 ’60s chic : MOD

“Mod” is short for “modernist”, and describes a subculture that originated in London in the late fifties. Young men who called themselves mods tended to wear tailored suits, listen to pop music and drive around on Italian motor scooters. Mods came into conflict with another subculture that emerged at the same time in the UK called the rockers. Rockers were into rock and roll music, and drove motorcycles I remember as a young kid in school having to declare myself as either a mod or a rocker. I don’t think our “gangs” back then were quite the same as they are today though …

15 Gonzaga University city : SPOKANE

Spokane, Washington is named for the Spokan people who lived in the eastern portion of Washington and northern Idaho. Back in 1974, Spokane was the smallest city ever to host a World’s Fair. The theme of the fare was “the environment”, which I suppose was ahead of its time. Notably, Expo ’74 was the first American-hosted World’s Fair attended by the Soviet Union after WWII.

Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington was founded by Jesuits in 1887 to serve the local Native American community. The school is named for the Jesuit saint Aloysius Gonzaga.

25 “Either/Or” author Kierkegaard : SOREN

Soren Kierkegaard was a Danish philosopher and theologian, and I’ve never really understood anything that he wrote!

28 Wind with a drum : FIFE

A fife is a small flute that is often used in military and marching bands. The name “fife” comes from the German “Pfeife” meaning “pipe”.

30 Dover diapers : NAPPIES

“Diaper” is another word that I had to learn when I moved to America. What are called “diapers” over here, we call “nappies” back in Ireland. The term “diaper” is actually the original term that was used in England for the garment, where “diaper” referred to the cloth that was used. The term “diaper” was brought to the New World where it stuck. Back in Britain, “diaper” was displaced by the word “nappy”, a diminutive of “napkin”.

Dover is a town and port in the county of Kent on the south coast of England. Dover lies just 25 miles from the coast of France, and is a terminus on the much-used Dover-Calais ferry service. The town is also famous for its magnificent chalk cliffs that are known as the White Cliffs of Dover.

36 Comical Martha : RAYE

Martha Raye was a comic actress as well as a singer. Raye was famous for the size of her mouth, something that she used to her own advantage. As her nickname was “The Big Mouth”, she made a little money appearing in commercials for the Polident denture cleaner in the eighties. Her line was, “So take it from the Big Mouth: new Polident Green gets tough stains clean!”

39 House, in Inuit : IGLU

The Inuit word for “house” is “iglu”, which we usually write as “igloo”. The Greenlandic (yes, that’s a language) word for “house” is very similar, namely “igdlo”. The walls of igloos are tremendous insulators, due to the air pockets in the blocks of snow.

40 Dianetics creator Hubbard : L RON

L. Ron Hubbard wrote a self-improvement book in 1950 called “Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health”. A few years later, he used the concepts in the book as he founded his Church of Scientology.

42 Treat often eaten filling-first : OREO

There is an “official” competition involving Oreo cookies, in case anyone is interested in participating. A competitor has to take several steps to finish an OREO Lick Race:

  1. Twist open the cookie.
  2. Lick each half clean of creme.
  3. Show the clean cookie halves to the fellow competitors.
  4. Dunk the cookie halves in a glass of milk.
  5. Eat the cookie halves.
  6. Drink the milk.
  7. Ready, set, go …

46 13-time NHL all-star Jaromir __ : JAGR

Jaromír Jágr is an NHL hockey player from the Czech Republic. When Jágr made his debut in the NHL in 1990 at age 18, he was the youngest player in the league.

47 Flu symptom : AGUE

An ague is a fever, one usually associated with malaria.

50 New York canal : ERIE

The Erie Canal runs from Albany to Buffalo in the state of New York. What the canal does is allow shipping to proceed from New York Harbor right up the Hudson River, through the canal and into the Great Lakes. When it was opened in 1825, the Erie Canal had an immediate impact on the economy of New York City and locations along its route. It was the first means of “cheap” transportation from a port on the Atlantic seaboard into the interior of the United States. Arguably it was the most important factor contributing to the growth of New York City over competing ports such as Baltimore and Philadelphia. It was largely because of the Erie Canal that New York became such an economic powerhouse, earning it the nickname of “the Empire State”. Paradoxically, one of the project’s main proponents was severely criticized. New York Governor DeWitt Clinton received so much ridicule that the canal was nicknamed “Clinton’s Folly” and “Clinton’s Ditch”.

54 British pop : PATER

Well, “pater” is Latin for “father”, and was used by upper-class families as a term of address for a male parent. My sense is that it is a thing of the past …

55 Eliza’s ‘elper ‘iggins : ‘ENRY

George Bernard Shaw’s play “Pygmalion” was adapted by Lerner and Loewe to become the Broadway musical “My Fair Lady”. The musical spun off the wonderful 1964 film of the same name starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison. To cockney Eliza Doolittle, Professor Henry Higgins was “‘Enry ‘Iggins”.

56 Start of Popeye’s credo : I YAM …

Popeye first appeared in 1929 in a comic strip called “Thimble Theatre”. The strip, created by E. C. Segar, ran for ten years before Popeye made an appearance. Popeye received such a great welcome from readers that he soon “took over” the strip, and eventually even hogged the strip’s title. Before Popeye turned up, Olive Oyl was the main character.

59 “__ Croft: Tomb Raider” : LARA

Lara Croft was introduced to the world in 1996 as the main character in a pretty cool video game (or so I thought, back then) called “Tomb Raider”. Lara Croft moved to the big screen in 2001 and 2003, in two pretty awful movie adaptations of the game’s storyline. Angelina Jolie played Croft, and she did a very energetic job.

61 Subject never quite resolved in “When Harry Met Sally…” : PLATONIC LOVE (hiding CLOVE tree)

The Greek philosopher Plato wrote a philosophical treatise on the nature of love called “Symposium”. “Symposium” is the source of the contemporary phrase “Platonic love”.

“When Harry Met Sally… “ is a 1989 romantic comedy starring Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan in the title roles. This marvelous film was written by the late Nora Ephron and directed by Rob Reiner.

Cloves are the flower buds of the tree Syzygium aromaticum. Until a couple of centuries ago, clove trees were only found in the Maluku Islands in Indonesia. Because they were a rich source of cloves, mace and nutmeg, the Moluccas were referred to historically as the Spice Islands.

64 Neutrogena shampoo brand : T/GEL

Neutrogena is a brand of skincare products that was founded in 1930 as a cosmetics company called Natone.

65 Gin flavor : SLOE

The sloe is the fruit of the blackthorn bush, and the main flavoring ingredient in sloe gin. A sloe looks like a small plum, but is usually much more tart in taste.

68 “Oh Happy Day” genre : GOSPEL MUSIC (hiding ELM tree)

“Oh Happy Day” is a 1967 gospel-style arrangement of a 1755 hymn with words by English clergyman Philip Doddridge called “O happy day, that fixed my choice”. The 1967 version was the brainchild of Edwin Hawkins, who recorded the song with the Edwin Hawkins Singers.

69 Bart’s bus driver : OTTO

Otto Mann drives the school bus on the TV show “The Simpsons”. Otto is a Germanic character voiced by Harry Shearer, and his name is a play on “Ottoman Empire”. Whenever Bart sees him, he greets Otto with the words “Otto, man!”

72 Rounds up : CORRALS

“Corral” is Spanish word that we’ve imported into English describing an enclosure for livestock. Ultimately, the term comes from the Vulgar Latin “currale” meaning “enclosure for carts”, itself coming from “currus”, the Latin for “cart”.

75 Kid-lit’s __ the Great : NATE

The “Nate the Great” series of children’s novels was written (mainly) by Marjorie Sharmat. Nate is like a young Sherlock Holmes, with a dog for a sidekick called Sludge. Some of the books have been adapted for television.

76 “Selma” director DuVernay : AVA

Ava DuVernay is a filmmaker who became the first African-American woman to win the Best Director Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, a feat she achieved in 2012 for her feature film “Middle of Nowhere”. “Middle of Nowhere” tells the story of a woman who drops out of medical school to focus on her husband when he is sentenced to 8 years in prison. DuVernay also directed the 2014 film “Selma” about the 1965 voting rights marches from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.

77 Massage deeply : ROLF

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

78 Atlas feature : MAP LEGEND (hiding MAPLE tree)

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.

80 Adidas Yeezy collaborator : KANYE WEST (hiding YEW tree)

Kanye West is a rap singer who was born in Atlanta and raised in Chicago. He also spent some time in Nanjing, China as a child, where his mother was teaching as part of an exchange program. West is married to reality star Kim Kardashian.

Adidas and Kanye West teamed up to produce the Adidas Yeezy line of sportswear (mainly sneakers). “Yeezy” is one of Kanye West’s nicknames.

81 Talk trash about : DISS

“Dis” (also “diss”) is a slang term meaning “insult” that originated in the eighties. It is a shortened form of “disrespect” or “dismiss”.

82 Back at Belmont : BET ON

Belmont Park is a horse racing track located just outside New York City in Elmont. The facility is home to the celebrated Belmont Stakes, the third race in the season that makes up the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing. The track is named for one of the original investors, financier and horse breeder August Belmont Jr.

85 Sioux City state : IOWA

Sioux City, Iowa has a history that is inextricably linked with the Missouri River. The city grew from a camp established by the Lewis and Clark expedition that traveled up the river in 1804. Today, Sioux City is the navigational head of the Missouri, the furthest point upstream that is accessible by general cargo ships.

89 Healthy routine : HYGIENE

Hygieia was both the Greek and Roman goddess of health and cleanliness. She was a daughter of Asclepius, the Greek god of medicine. The name “Hygieia” gives us our contemporary term “hygiene”.

91 Airport fixture : TOWER

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) was founded in 1925. In 1930, Cleveland was home to the first air traffic control tower in the country, as well as the first airfield lighting system.

93 World Golf Hall of Famer 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.

96 “The Omen” child : DAMIEN

The original film “The Omen” was released in 1976. “Damien: Omen II” hit the screens in 1978. We were regaled with “Omen III: The Final Conflict” in 1981, and there was even a TV movie “Omen IV: The Awakening” in 1991. The original was remade in 2006 as “The Omen: 666”, and was released on 6/6/06. I haven’t seen any of them, and have no interest in doing so (despite the excellent cast) as I really don’t like the genre …

98 ’90s-00s IBM PC : APTIVA

The Aptiva was a line of personal computers for home use that was produced by IBM from 1994 to 2001. I had one …

103 DaCosta of “Chicago Med” : YAYA

Yaya DaCosta got her career break in 2004 when she was named runner-up in the reality show “America’s Next Top Model”. That success led to work as an actress, mainly on TV shows such as “Ugly Betty” and “Chicago Med”. In 2015, DaCosta portrayed singer Whitney Houston in the Lifetime television movie “Whitney”.

“Chicago Med” is a medical drama TV show that started airing in 2015. It is part of what’s known as the “Chicago” franchise, which also includes “Chicago Fire”, “Chicago P.D.” and “Chicago Justice”.

104 Iridescent gem : OPAL

An opal is often described as having a milky iridescence known as opalescence.

An iridescent surface appears to change color gradually with a change in the angle of view, or a change in the angle that the light is hitting that surface.

106 Rhinitis docs : ENTS

The branch of medicine known as “ear, nose and throat” (ENT) is more correctly called “otolaryngology”.

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.

108 Years in Caesar’s time : ANNI

Ancient Rome went through three distinct periods. From 753 to 509 BC, Rome was a kingdom founded by the legendary Romulus. From 509 to 27 BC, Rome was a republic. The Roman Republic started with the overthrow of the last monarch Lucius Tarquinius Superbus. He was replaced by two elected consuls who were advised by a senate. The Republic evolved over time, but came to an end when Octavian expanded his power and declared himself “First Citizen”. Octavian effectively became Rome’s first emperor, and took the name “Caesar Augustus”. The “Fall of the Western Roman Empire” took place in the 5th century, formally ending in 476 CE when the last emperor Romulus Augustus was deposed. The Eastern Roman Empire survived as the Byzantine Empire, which was centered on Constantinople.

112 Rank of Brit. TV sleuth Morse : DCI

Detective chief inspector (DCI)

“Inspector Morse” is a series of detective novels penned by English crime writer Colin Dexter. The novels were adapted into a very successful television show that occasionally appears in the US on PBS. Morse’s given name is Endeavor, which is also the title of a prequel series “Endeavor” about Morse as a rookie detective. Morse is a very colorful character with a penchant for classical music, real ale and crosswords. I can identify with that …

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 [Yawn] : [MEH]
4 “My __ Amour”: Stevie Wonder hit : CHERIE
10 Transition point : CUSP
14 Old PC platform : MS-DOS
19 Antacid brand since the 1800s : ENO
20 Mark who plays Luke : HAMILL
21 Avalon contemporary in pop music : ANKA
22 “Einstein on the Beach,” e.g. : OPERA
23 Dove’s call : COO
24 Road safety feature : RUMBLE STRIP
26 Eponymous engineer Ray : DOLBY
27 Climactic Wembley Stadium event : CUP FINAL
29 Big name in camping gear : COLEMAN
31 Make up partner : KISS
32 Like some illegal employment practices : AGEIST
33 Lure into a lair : ENTRAP
35 SoFi Stadium NFLer : LA RAM
37 Mine feature : SHAFT
38 Looked at too long : STARED
39 Select members for, as a jury : IMPANEL
41 Swab over : REMOP
43 Petting zoo animal : PONY
44 Academic hiatuses : GAP YEARS
46 Disconcert : JAR
48 Sorkin of “Days of Our Lives” : ARLEEN
50 Dinsmore of kid lit : ELSIE
51 Inclusive word : TOO
52 Form 1040 fig. : AGI
53 Circus barkers : SEALS
54 Read : PERUSE
56 “Well, __ that special!”: “SNL” catchphrase : ISN’T
57 Oater sound effects : GUNSHOTS
59 Legal scholar Guinier : LANI
60 Mole, maybe : SPY
62 Aqua __: gold dissolver : REGIA
63 Ease, as one’s mind : SET AT REST
67 Nigerian seaport : LAGOS
71 HBO rival : TMC
73 __ Goose vodka : GREY
74 Large green-winged flier : LUNA MOTH
76 Open ones are welcoming : ARMS
79 Honey-do-this response : OK, DEAR
82 Baron Cohen’s Kazakh journalist : BORAT
83 Name in alphabetical order? : STU
84 Intl. broadcasting initials : VOA
85 Letter-shaped track segment : I-RAIL
86 Hope that one may : SEEK TO
87 See 105-Across : POT
88 Swiss winds : ALPHORNS
90 Maine, to Macron : ETAT
92 Start of a few choice words? : EENIE …
94 Bird migration routes : FLYWAYS
95 Elegy for one voice : MONODY
97 Five Pillars faith : ISLAM
100 The same, on the Seine : EGALE
101 Ivanhoe’s love : ROWENA
102 Trattoria entrée : SCAMPI
103 Jellystone Park bear : YOGI
105 Make more tempting, as the 87-Across : SWEETEN
107 Ad campaign components : MAIL-OUTS
109 “Not __ out of you!”: “Shh!” : A PEEP
111 Signed, as an agreement : ENTERED INTO
113 Canine order : SIT!
114 Greek-American New Ager : YANNI
115 Headliner : STAR
116 One of three in “Macbeth” : SCENE V
117 “__ seen worse” : I’VE
118 Pilgrim John : ALDEN
119 Kitchen amts. : TSPS
120 “Forrest Gump” actor : SINISE
121 Rogue : CAD

Down

1 Tourist draws : MECCAS
2 “I’ve had it!” : ENOUGH!
3 Round jewelry item : HOOP EARRING (hiding PEAR tree)
4 Yuletide entrée : CHRISTMAS HAM (hiding ASH tree)
5 Frequent : HAUNT
6 Austen title heroine : EMMA
7 Barbecued morsel : RIBLET
8 Needing TLC, say : ILL
9 Kind of microscope : ELECTRON
10 Angela Martin, e.g., in “The Office” : CAT LADY
11 Intl. delegate : UN REP
12 Brush (over) : SKIM
13 Solemn periodic Vatican event : PAPAL MASS (hiding PALM tree)
14 ’60s chic : MOD
15 Gonzaga University city : SPOKANE
16 Sub fillers : DELI MEATS (hiding LIME tree)
17 Bubbles and blueberries : ORBS
18 Comes out with : SAYS
25 “Either/Or” author Kierkegaard : SOREN
28 Wind with a drum : FIFE
30 Dover diapers : NAPPIES
34 Shaving spots : NAPES
36 Comical Martha : RAYE
38 Evidence of egg toss errors : SPLATS
39 House, in Inuit : IGLU
40 Dianetics creator Hubbard : L RON
42 Treat often eaten filling-first : OREO
45 Lush : SOT
46 13-time NHL all-star Jaromir __ : JAGR
47 Flu symptom : AGUE
49 “What __ can I do?” : ELSE
50 New York canal : ERIE
54 British pop : PATER
55 Eliza’s ‘elper ‘iggins : ‘ENRY
56 Start of Popeye’s credo : I YAM …
58 Is in session : SITS
59 “__ Croft: Tomb Raider” : LARA
61 Subject never quite resolved in “When Harry Met Sally…” : PLATONIC LOVE (hiding CLOVE tree)
64 Neutrogena shampoo brand : T/GEL
65 Gin flavor : SLOE
66 Clunker : TURKEY
68 “Oh Happy Day” genre : GOSPEL MUSIC (hiding ELM tree)
69 Bart’s bus driver : OTTO
70 Open-and-__ case : SHUT
72 Rounds up : CORRALS
75 Kid-lit’s __ the Great : NATE
76 “Selma” director DuVernay : AVA
77 Massage deeply : ROLF
78 Atlas feature : MAP LEGEND (hiding MAPLE tree)
80 Adidas Yeezy collaborator : KANYE WEST (hiding YEW tree)
81 Talk trash about : DISS
82 Back at Belmont : BET ON
85 Sioux City state : IOWA
86 Rationality : SANENESS
89 Healthy routine : HYGIENE
90 Overly dramatic types : EMOTERS
91 Airport fixture : TOWER
93 World Golf Hall of Famer Aoki : ISAO
96 “The Omen” child : DAMIEN
98 ’90s-00s IBM PC : APTIVA
99 Sprayed gently : MISTED
101 Put another hole in, as a keg : RETAP
102 Web or camp follower : -SITES
103 DaCosta of “Chicago Med” : YAYA
104 Iridescent gem : OPAL
106 Rhinitis docs : ENTS
108 Years in Caesar’s time : ANNI
110 Stick with it : PIN
112 Rank of Brit. TV sleuth Morse : DCI

17 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 26 Dec 21, Sunday”

  1. 35:34

    Tough one!

    The first circles I filled were LIME, so thought maybe it would be shades of green. Then I realized they were trees. That helped in several places. Never did figure out what that blob in the middle meant. Thanks for the explanation.

    Agua REGIA sounds like scary stuff.

    I vaguely remember the APTIVA.

    I got to learn a cool word: MONODY

    1. Hi Fitz. I find myself at a complete loss with that clue & answer as well. Perhaps one of our more erudite solvers here can supply us both an answer that makes sense?

    2. I don’t think Bill was actually trying to explain that entry in what he had to say about it. I haven’t researched this, but my guess would be that three of the “acts” in “MacBeth” have at least five “scenes” (so that, in the entire play, there are three “scene 5’s”). Somewhere in one of the many boxes in my basement, I have a book of Shakespeare’s plays that would confirm or refute my guess. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable than I will weigh in … 🤨.

  2. @Glenn … Thanks for yesterday’s comment about the “Stumper”. (It’s always comforting to know one isn’t alone in finding a puzzle difficult.)

  3. I struggled with this one off and on all day; wasn’t my best effort, but
    actually I did better than I was afraid I did. The worst section for me was
    the bottom right hand stuff. Never did come up with “scampi” mainly
    because I spelled “Isao” incorrectly from memory.

  4. Tough Sunday for me; took 1:00:55 with about 8 “check-grids” to get past obscure actors and things. Most trouble getting TURKEY, SEEKTO, DCI, BETON and SINISE. At least I got TGEL this time…finally.

  5. I searched for this puzzle to print (Sunday Dec. 26), takes me to a PFD to click on, but it’s the Saturday puzzle (Dec. 25) that appears.

    How I can get the Sunday puzzle (not the answers)?

  6. 47:53 with one look up (the R in JAGR/REGIA) and one error (eMPANEL/eGLU). Had a lot of pondering in this one!

    I got the tree names, but didn’t understand the circled letters in the middle until seeing Bill’s explanation.

    Had to revise NODE>CUSP, NUTLADY>CATLADY, MOPUP>REMOP, GOAT>PONY, CPA>AGI, ERNIE>ELSIE, SETTOREST>SETATREST, FLIGHTS>FLYWAYS, DET>DCI.

    New names/words for me were: LANI Guinier, ELSIE Dinsmore, SOREN Kierkegaard (first name), Jaromir JAGR, Aqua REGIA, MONODY, ROWENA linked to Ivanhoe. I guess the Aptiva didn’t last long (about 6 years); I really don’t remember it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.