LA Times Crossword 16 Jan 22, Sunday

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Constructed by: Darryl Gonzalez
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme: I Have a Dream

The LAST word in each themed answer often precedes “FREE”:

  • 98A End of an iconic speech … and what the ends of the answers to starred clues can have? : … FREE AT LAST
  • 23A *Like one of two parents, often : STAY-AT-HOME (giving “home free”)
  • 32A *When many grab a bite : COMMERCIAL BREAK (giving “break free”)
  • 39A *Inverness native : HIGHLAND SCOT (giving “scot-free”)
  • 52A *Software design considerations : LOOK AND FEEL (giving “feel free”)
  • 66A *Cube in a bowl : LUMP OF SUGAR (giving “sugar-free”)
  • 79A *Bridge holdings sufficient to start the bidding with : OPENING HANDS (giving “hands-free”)
  • 85A *Cardiologist’s dietary concern : HYDROGENATED FAT (giving “fat-free”)

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

Bill’s time: 15m 26s

Bill’s errors: 2

  • PANTERA (Wantera)
  • PHEW (whew)

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

9 Venomous snake : MAMBA

Mambas, and most famously black mambas, are highly venomous snakes that used to be responsible for a great number of fatalities before anti-venoms became available. Mamba venom is a deadly mix of neurotoxins that attack the nervous system and cardiotoxins that attack the heart. A bite, if left untreated, causes the lungs and the heart to shut down.

14 ER readouts : EKGS

An EKG measures the electrical activity in the heart. Back in my homeland of Ireland, an EKG is known as an ECG (for electrocardiogram). We use the German name in the US, Elektrokardiogramm, giving us EKG. Apparently the abbreviation EKG is preferred, as ECG might be confused (if poorly handwritten, I guess) with EEG, the abbreviation for an electroencephalogram.

18 Env. insert : ENC

An envelope (env.) might include an enclosure (enc.).

25 Turkish bread : LIRAS

The word “lira” is used in a number of countries for currency. “Lira” comes from the Latin for “pound” and is derived from the British pound sterling, the value of a Troy pound of silver. For example, the lira (plural “lire”) was the official currency of Italy before the country changed over to the euro in 2002.

27 Maria __ Trapp : VON

“The Sound of Music” is a Rodgers and Hammerstein musical that was made into a celebrated movie in 1965 starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer. The musical is based on “The Story of the Trapp Family Singers”, a memoir by Maria von Trapp. The von Trapp family ended up in Stowe, Vermont after the war. One family descended from the Vermont von Trapps lives in the same town in which I used to live in California.

30 Insurance giant : AETNA

When the healthcare management and insurance company known as Aetna was founded, the name was chosen to evoke images of Mount Etna, the Italian volcano.

31 Drei squared : NEUN

In German, “drei” (three) is the square root of “neun” (nine).

35 Four-time Grammy-nominated metal band : PANTERA

Pantera was a heavy metal band formed in 1981 by two brothers with the stage names of Vinnie Paul and Dimebag Darrell. The group disbanded in 2003. Any hopes for a reunion were dashed in 2004 when Dimebag Darrell was shot dead on stage by a deranged fan.

37 “Dies __”: hymn : IRAE

“Dies Irae” is Latin for “Day of Wrath”. It is the name of a famous melody in Gregorian Chant, one that is often used as part of the Roman Catholic Requiem Mass.

38 Amazon and others, locally : RIOS

The Amazon River of South America is the world’s largest in terms of volume, and accounts for an amazing one-fifth of the world’s total river flow. Perhaps even more amazing is that there are no bridges across the Amazon! There isn’t even one, mainly because the river flows through tropical rainforest, where there are few roads and cities.

39 *Inverness native : HIGHLAND SCOT (giving “scot-free”)

Inverness is in effect the capital city of the Scottish Highlands. It is the most northerly city in the whole of the United Kingdom. Inverness sits at the mouth of the River Ness, which flows from the famous Loch Ness.

The phrase “scot-free” means “free from punishment, restraint or obligation”. The term derives from the Old English “scotfreo” meaning “exempt from royal tax”, with “scot” being a royal tax.

42 Large green moth : LUNA

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

43 Bio or chem : SCI

Chemistry (chem.) and biology (biol.) are sciences (scis.).

47 Navel variety : INNIE

The navel is basically the scar left behind when the umbilical cord is removed from a newborn baby. One interesting use of the umbilicus (navel, belly button) is to differentiate between identical twins, especially when they are very young.

55 Break down : PARSE

The verb “to parse” means “to state the parts of speech in a sentence”. “Parse” comes from the Latin word “pars” meaning “part”.

56 Gram prefix : TELE-

At least colloquially, a telegram was a telegraph message sent inland, while a cablegram was sent overseas. The use of “cablegram” came about as the message was transmitted via a submarine cable.

60 Rio Grande city : LAREDO

Laredo is a border city in Texas that is situated on the banks of the Rio Grande, across the border from Nuevo Laredo in Mexico.

The Rio Grande (Spanish for “big river”) is a waterway that forms part of the border between Mexico and the United States. Although we call the river the Rio Grande on this side of the border, in Mexico it is called the Río Bravo or Río Bravo del Norte (Spanish for “furious river of the north”).

63 Green-skinned “Return of the Jedi” girl : OOLA

Oola was a slave-girl dancer who was eaten by a scary creature in the movie “Star Wars Episode VI: The Return of the Jedi”. Oola was played by British actor Femi Taylor.

71 Windy City rail initials : CTA

Chicago Transit Authority (CTA)

It seems that the derivation of Chicago’s nickname “Windy City” isn’t as obvious as I would have thought. There are two viable theories. Firstly, that the weather can be breezy with wind blowing in off Lake Michigan. The effect of the wind is exaggerated by the grid-layout adopted by city planners after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. The second theory is that “windy” means “being full of bluster”. Sportswriters from the rival city of Cincinnati were fond of calling Chicago supporters “windy” in the 1860s and 1870s, meaning that they were full of hot air in their claims that the Chicago White Stockings were superior to the Cincinnati Red Stockings.

75 Iranian language : FARSI

“Farsi” is one of the local names used for the Persian language.

76 Many hybrid dogs, casually : POOS

Poodle hybrids are sometimes described as “designer dogs”. Examples are the Labradoodle (Labrador retriever and poodle cross), cockapoo (cocker-spaniel and poodle cross), maltipoo (Maltese and poodle cross) and Jack-A-Poo (Jack Russell and poodle cross).

77 Jack or jenny : ASS

A female donkey/ass is known as a jenny, and a male is known as a jack, or sometimes “jackass”. We started using the term “jackass” to mean “fool” in the 1820s.

79 *Bridge holdings sufficient to start the bidding with : OPENING HANDS (giving “hands-free”)

The version of the card game bridge that is played mostly today is contract bridge. Auction bridge is a similar game, and is a precursor to contract bridge.

82 Eighteen-wheelers : RIGS

An 18-wheeler semi-trailer truck has eight wheels under the trailer, i.e. four on each of the two rear axles. There are 10 wheels under the tractor unit. Two of the ten wheels are on the front axle, and eight are on the rear two axles that sit under the front of the trailer.

83 Raison d’__ : ETRE

“Raison d’être” is a French phrase meaning “reason for existence”.

85 *Cardiologist’s dietary concern : HYDROGENATED FAT (giving “fat-free”)

Saturated fats (“bad” fats) differ from unsaturated fats (“good” fats) chemically in that saturated fats have chains of fatty acids that are relatively straight, allowing individual molecules to pack closely together. This close packing largely explains why saturated fats are solid at room temperature. Unsaturated fatty acids on the other hand have “kinks” in the chains of their fatty acids, so that they cannot pack together closely. Unsaturated fats are generally liquid at room temperature. Food manufacturers have learned that humans get sick by consuming saturated fats (i.e. fats from animal sources). So, they market “healthy” vegetable fats (naturally unsaturated and liquid at room temperature) that they have magically transformed into solid fats (like vegetable spreads). They saturate (hydrogenate) the healthy fats, so that now they solidify at room temperature, and in our arteries. There should be a law …

91 They know the ropes : PROS

As one might expect perhaps, the phrase “learning the ropes” is nautical in origin. A new recruit on a sailing vessel would have to learn how to tie the appropriate knots and learn which rope controlled which sail or spar.

92 Ames native : IOWAN

The Iowa city of Ames was founded as a stop on the Cedar Rapids and Missouri Railroad in 1864. It was named for US Congressman Oakes Ames from the state of Massachusetts in honor of the role that Ames played in the building of the transcontinental railroad.

93 Bob Hope venue : USO TOUR

The United Service Organization (USO) was founded in 1941 at the request of President Franklin D. Roosevelt “to handle the on-leave recreation of the men in the armed forces”. A USO tour is undertaken by a troupe of entertainers, many of whom are big-name celebrities. A USO tour usually includes troop locations in combat zones.

I remember my first non-business visit to Los Angeles. I was a typical tourist and bought a map showing the homes of the stars and drove around Beverly Hills absorbing all the glitz. At one point I drove past a Rolls Royce that was stopped in oncoming traffic, waiting to make a left turn. The window was down, and the driver was puffing away on a big cigar. It was none other than Bob Hope. Seeing him there right beside me; that was a big thrill …

94 Luke, to Darth : SON

Anakin “Ani” Skywalker is the principal character in the first six of the “Star Wars” movies. His progress chronologically through the series of films is:

  • Episode I: Anakin is a 9-year-old slave boy who earns the promise of Jedi training by young Obi-Wan Kenobi.
  • Episode II: Anakin is 18-years-old and goes on a murdering rampage to avenge the killing of his mother.
  • Episode III: Anakin is 21-years-old and a Jedi knight, but he turns to the Dark Side and becomes Darth Vader. His wife Padme gives birth to twins, Luke and Leia Skywalker.
  • Episode IV: Darth Vader, comes into conflict with his children, Luke Skywalker and the Princess Leia.
  • Episode V: Darth Vader attempts to coax his son Luke over to the dark side, and reveals to Luke that he is his father.
  • Episode VI: Luke learns that Leia is his sister, and takes on the task of bringing Darth Vader back from the Dark Side in order to save the Galaxy. Vader saves his son from the Emperor’s evil grip, dying in the process, but his spirit ends up alongside the spirits of Yoda and Obi-Wan. They all live happily ever after …

95 Sonny & Cher hit : DUET

Singing duo Sonny & Cher started out in the mid-1960s as backing singers working with Phil Spector. The couple married in 1964, and the next year released their breakthrough numbers “Baby Don’t Go” and “I Got You Babe”. Sonny and Cher divorced in 1975, and dissolved their act that same year. Cher moved onto a successful solo career that continues to this day. Sonny Bono was elected as a US Congressman for California in 1995. Sadly, he didn’t finish his term in the House as he died from injuries sustained in a skiing accident in 1998.

98 End of an iconic speech … and what the ends of the answers to starred clues can have? : … FREE AT LAST

“Free at last” are words used by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the end of his “I have a dream …” speech:

And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

103 Mystery’s Gardner : ERLE

I must have read all of the “Perry Mason” books when I was in college. I think they kept me sane when I was facing the pressure of exams. Author Erle Stanley Gardner was himself a lawyer, although he didn’t get into the profession the easy way. Gardner went to law school, but got himself suspended after a month. So, he became a self-taught attorney and opened his own law office in Merced, California. Understandably perhaps, Gardner gave up the law once his novels became successful.

104 Sunlit courts : ATRIA

In modern architecture, an atrium (plural “atria” or “atriums”) is a large open space usually in the center of a building and extending upwards to the roof. The original atrium was an open court in the center of an Ancient Roman house. One could access most of the enclosed rooms of the house from the atrium.

105 Fired at the table? : FLAMBE

“Flambé” is the French word for “flamed”, and was originally a term used to describe certain types of porcelain. The word “flambé” crept into cookery just after 1900.

106 Once named : NEE

“Née” is the French word for “born” when referring to a female. The male equivalent is “né”. The term “née” is mainly used in English when referring to a married woman’s birth name, assuming that she has adopted her husband’s name, e.g. Michelle Obama née Robinson, Melania Trump née Knavs, and Jill Biden née Jacobs.

107 On a pension: Abbr. : RETD

Retired (“ret.” or “retd.”)

108 Rimes of country : LEANN

LeAnn Rimes has been a country music star since she was 13 years old. In 2008 she disclosed publicly that she suffered from the autoimmune disease psoriasis. She has been active since then in raising money to fight the disease and helping fund cancer research as well. So, not only did Rimes win three Grammy Awards in 1997, she also won a 2009 Humanitarian Award from the Academy of Country Music.

109 Cool giant : S STAR

Stars are commonly classified by the color of the light that they emit. Classically, these classifications are, from hottest to coolest, O, B, A, F, G, K and M. The list of classes has been expanded to include class D for white dwarfs, and classes S and C for carbon stars.

110 Ecru relative : TAN

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”.

Down

1 Director Craven : WES

Wes Craven was a very successful film director and writer specializing in movies of the horror genre, which means that I don’t watch them! He was responsible for “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and the “Scream” films. Craven passed away in August 2015.

2 Queen’s subject : ANT

The queen ant of some species can live to a ripe old age of 30 years, which is one of the longest lifespans in the insect world.

4 English __ : CHANNEL

The English Channel is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean, the narrow part that separates the south of England from northern France. The French call the same body of water “La Manche”, which translates literally as “the sleeve”. At its narrowest point the Channel is just over 20 miles wide, and it is indeed possible to see France from England and vice versa. Nowadays of course there is a tunnel under the channel making travel extremely convenient. When I was living and working in Europe, with the help of the Channel Tunnel, one day I had a breakfast meeting in Brussels, a lunch meeting in London, and a dinner meeting in Paris. That said, it’s a lot more fun sitting here blogging about the crossword …

5 Slowing, to an orch. : RIT

Rit. (or sometimes ritard.) is the abbreviation for “ritardando”, a musical direction to slow down the tempo.

6 N.T. book : EPH

It seems that the Epistle of Paul to the Ephesians (Eph.) is now regarded by scholars as written “in the style of Paul”, by someone who was influenced by Paul’s thought.

8 May bouquet words : TO MOM

Note the official punctuation in “Mother’s Day”, even though one might think it should be “Mothers’ Day”. President Wilson and Anna Jarvis, who created the tradition, specifically wanted Mother’s Day to honor the mothers within each family and not just “mothers” in general, so they went with the “Mother’s Day” punctuation.

“Bouquet” comes from the French word for “bunch” in the sense of “bunch of flowers”. In French, the term is derived from an older word describing a little wood or small grove of trees.

9 Shopping area loiterer : MALL RAT

Surprisingly (to me!), our word “mall”, meaning “shady walk” or “enclosed shopping space”, comes from the Italian for “mallet”. All of our shopping-style malls are named for “The Mall” in St. James’s Park in London. This tree-lined promenade was so called as it used to be a famous spot to play the croquet-like game called “pall-mall”. The game derived its name from the Italian for ball (palla) and mallet “maglio”. The London thoroughfare called the Mall still exists, at one end of which is Buckingham Palace. Indeed, parallel to the Mall is a street called Pall Mall.

11 Lundi follower : MARDI

In French, “lundi” (Monday) is the day before “mardi” (Tuesday), which is the day before “mercredi” (Wednesday).

12 Lingerie item : BRA

“Lingerie” is a French term. As used in France, it describes any underwear, worn by either males or females. In English we use “lingerie” to describe alluring underclothing worn by women. The term “lingerie” comes into English via the French word “linge” meaning “washables”, and ultimately from the Latin “linum”, meaning “linen”. We tend not to pronounce the word correctly in English, either here in the US or across the other side of the Atlantic. The French pronunciation is more like “lan-zher-ee”, as opposed to “lon-zher-ay” (American) and “lon-zher-ee” (British).

13 @@@ : ATS

The “at symbol” (@) originated in the commercial word, as shorthand for “each at, per” and similar phrases. I suppose we see the symbol most commonly these days as part of email addresses.

14 Fragrant compounds : ESTERS

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.

15 1971 Fonda/Sutherland film : KLUTE

“Klute” is an entertaining 1971 crime thriller film starring Jane Fonda and Donald Sutherland. Fonda won the Best Actress Oscar for her performance.

Jane Fonda is the daughter of Henry Fonda, sister of Peter Fonda, and aunt of Bridget Fonda, making the Fondas quite the acting family. Jane Fonda had many memorable screen performances, but is equally memorable for her anti-war activism. Most famously she was outspoken against the Vietnam War, going so far as to visit North Vietnam during the height of the conflict in 1972, posing for photographs and making radio broadcasts denouncing American leaders as “war criminals”. For her stance, Fonda was nicknamed “Hanoi Jane”.

Donald Sutherland is an actor from Saint John, New Brunswick who I mainly associate with war movies from the sixties and seventies, notably “The Dirty Dozen” (1967), “The Eagle Has Landed” (1976), “M*A*S*H” (1970) and “Kelly’s Heroes” (1970). Donald is the father of actor Kiefer Sutherland.

17 Jargon ending : -SPEAK

The noun “jargon” can describe nonsensical and meaningless talk, or the specialized language of a particular group, trade or profession. The term “jargon” is Old French, with the more usual meaning of “chattering”. How apt …

33 Island that’s the first word of The Beach Boys’ “Kokomo” : ARUBA

Aruba is one of the so-called ABC islands located off the northern coast of Venezuela. “ABC Islands” is a name given to the three westernmost islands of the Leeward Antilles in the Caribbean. The nickname comes from the first letters of the island names: Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao. All three of the ABC islands are part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

“Kokomo” is a song released by the Beach Boys in 1988. It describes a trip taken by a couple to a fictional island off the Florida Keys called Kokomo. The success of the song led to at least one Florida resort adopting the name.

Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take ya
Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama
Key Largo, Montego,
baby why don’t we go,
Jamaica

34 Strong textile : LINEN

The textile known as linen is made from flax fibers. The name “linen” probably comes from “linum”, which is Latin for both “flax” and “textile made from flax”.

36 Gorp bit : RAISIN

“Gorp” is a name sometimes used for trail mix, particularly by hikers. It’s not really known for sure how this name came about, but some say it stands for “good old raisins and peanuts” or perhaps “gobs of raw protein”.

40 Genetic carriers : DNAS

DNA contains nucleotide base sequences called genes, which are blueprints used in the manufacture of proteins needed by the body. Our DNA is also “decorated” with epigenetic markers that modify the activity level of genes, and can even turn genes off. These epigenetic markers respond to environmental conditions, so that organisms with the same DNA can exhibit differences in behavior and appearance, as a result of differing environments. This explains why identical twins develop differences in appearance over time.

41 __City: computer game : SIM

SimCity is a very clever computer game. Players build and grow cities and societies by creating the conditions necessary for people (the Sims) to move in and thrive. SimCity was launched in 1989, and to this day it is consistently ranked as one of the greatest computer games of all time.

44 “Heart Blanche” rapper Green : CEELO

“CeeLo Green” is the stage name of rapper Thomas DeCarlo Callaway. Green was one of the coaches for the contestants on the singing TV show “The Voice” for four seasons.

45 Atoll, say : ISLE

An atoll is a coral island that is shaped in a ring that encloses a lagoon. There is still some debate as to how an atoll forms, but a theory proposed by Charles Darwin while on his famous voyage aboard HMS Beagle still holds sway. Basically, an atoll was once a volcanic island that had subsided and fallen into the sea. The coastline of the island is home to coral growth which persists even as the island continues to subside inside the circling coral reef.

48 L in a box score : LOSS

In the world of sports, a box score lists the score of a game as well as achievements of the competing teams and team members.

49 Word before party or math : AFTER-

The suffix “math” evolved from an Old English word meaning “a mowing, cutting of grass”. So, as strange as it seems, an aftermath was a second crop of grass grown after harvesting the first. An aftermath was also known as an aftergrass or an aftercrop. By the 16th century, the term “aftermath” was being used figuratively to mean “period following a ruinous event”. That’s quite a leap …

51 Sushi-grade tuna : AHI

Yellowfin and bigeye tuna are usually marketed as “ahi”, the Hawaiian name. They are both big fish, with yellowfish tuna often weighing over 300 pounds, and bigeye tuna getting up to 400 pounds.

54 Sling on a phone : TV APP

Sling TV is a streaming service that was introduced in 2015. Sling is owned by Dish Network.

55 Animal rights org. : PETA

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is a large animal rights organization, with about 300 employees and two million members and supporters worldwide. Although the group campaigns for animal rights across a broad spectrum of issues, it has a stated focus in opposition of four practices:

  • Factory farming
  • Fur farming
  • Animal testing
  • Use of animals in entertainment

58 Salamanca souls : ALMAS

Salamanca is a city and province in the commune of Castile and León in northwestern Spain. The University of Salamanca is the oldest university in the country, having been founded in 1218.

59 Mulberry family fruit : FIGS

The fig is the fruit of a small tree in the mulberry family. Once picked, figs don’t travel very well, so the bulk of figs consumed have been preserved by drying.

61 Barely clear of the bottom : AWEIGH

When an anchor is “aweigh” or “atrip”, it is just clear of the ocean bottom, has just been lifted.

62 __ state : RED

On political maps, red states are usually Republican and blue states usually Democrat. The designation of red and blue states is a very recent concept, only introduced in the 2000 presidential election by TV journalist, the late Tim Russert. In retrospect, the choice of colors is surprising, as in other democracies around the world red is usually used to describe left-leaning socialist parties (the reds under the bed!), and blue is used for conservative right-wing parties. In election cycles, swing/battleground states are often depicted in purple.

63 First name in ’70s Olympics gymnastics : OLGA

Olga Korbut is from modern-day Belarus, but was born during the days of the Soviet Union. Korbut competed for the USSR team in the 1972 and 1976 Olympic Games. She was 17 when she appeared in the 1972 Munich Games, and had been training in a sports school since she was 8-years-old. The world fell in love with her as she was a very emotional young lady, readily expressing joy and disappointment, something that we weren’t used to seeing in athletes from behind the Iron Curtain. Korbut immigrated to the US in 1991 and now lives in Scottsdale, Arizona.

64 Town : BURG

“Burg” is an informal term used in the US for a smaller town that comes from the German word “burg” meaning “fortified city”.

65 Virtual name that means “beautiful woman who leads you to victory” in Norwegian : SIRI

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.

68 Fannie of “Fried Green Tomatoes” fame : FLAGG

“Fannie Flagg” is the stage name of American actress Patricia Neil. Neil had to change her name to avoid confusion with the famous Oscar-winning actress of the same name. As well as acting, Flagg is a celebrated author, her most famous work being the 1987 novel “Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe”. She also wrote the screenplay for the screen adaptation “Fried Green Tomatoes”, which was released in 1991.

71 One of 21, or sometimes 20 : CONSONANT

Although definitions vary, it is usual to divide the English alphabet into 21 consonants and 5 vowels (A, E, I, O and U). The letter Y is sometimes used as a vowel, which changes the count to 20 consonants and 6 vowels.

72 Brouhahas : TO-DOS

“Brouhaha”, meaning “ado, stir”, was a French word that back in the 1550s meant “the cry of the devil disguised as clergy” . Wow!

73 Trade gp. : ASSN

Association (assn.)

76 Girl Scout group : PATROL

As every little boy (of my era) knows, the Scouting movement was founded by Lord Baden-Powell, in 1907. He also founded the Girl Guide and Girl Scout organization in 1910, along with this sister Agnes Baden-Powell. The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) soon followed, also in 1910. The Boy Scouts motto is “Be Prepared”.

79 Den piece : OTTOMAN

The piece of furniture known as an ottoman can be a couch, usually one with a head but no back or sides. Here in the US, the term more commonly applies to a padded and upholstered seat or bench that can also be used as a footrest. The original ottoman couch came from the Ottoman Empire, hence the name.

80 __-à-porter: ready-to-wear : PRET

“Prêt-à-porter” is a common enough phrase in Europe. It is a French expression meaning “ready to wear” that has made it into a number of other languages, including English.

81 Trendy type often parodied on “Portlandia” : HIPSTER

“Portlandia” is a satirical sketch show that airs on the Independent Film Channel (IFC). The show is set in Portland, Oregon and takes its name from a statue called “Portlandia” which sits above the entrance to a building in downtown Portland. The statue is a copper repoussé work, and is second in size in the US only to the Statue of Liberty.

82 For mature audiences : R-RATED

The Motion Picture Association of America’s (MPAA) film-rating system (PG-13, R, etc.) is purely voluntary and is not backed by any law. Movie theaters agree to abide by the rules that come with the MPAA ratings in exchange for access to new movies.

85 It’s quarry : HIDER

We’ve been using the noun “quarry” to mean “anything chased in a hunt” since the early 17th century. The term derives from the earlier term “”quirre”, which were the entrails of a deer that were given to dogs as a reward after a successful kill.

88 __Sweet: sugar substitute : NUTRA-

NutraSweet is a brand name for the artificial sweetener aspartame. Aspartame was discovered by a chemist working for Searle in 1965, but it took 15 years for the company to be granted approval for its sale. I wonder why …???

96 Eight pts. : GAL

The name of our fluid measure called a “gallon” ultimately comes from the Medieval Latin term “galleta” meaning “bucket, pail”.

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.

97 Tour de France saison : ETE

In French, “été” (summer) is “la saison chaude” (the warm season).

Back in the late 1800s, long-distance cycle races were used as promotional events, traditionally to help boost sales of newspapers. These races usually took place around tracks, but in 1902 the backers of the struggling sports publication “L’Auto” decided to stage a race that would take the competitors all around France. That first Tour de France took place in 1903, starting in Paris and passing through Lyon, Marseilles, Bordeaux, Nantes and then back to Paris.

99 Vitals checker, briefly : EMT

Emergency medical technician (EMT)

There are four primary vital signs that are measured by health professionals:

  1. Body temperature
  2. Blood pressure
  3. Pulse
  4. Breathing rate

100 Law school accrediting org. : ABA

The American Bar Association (ABA) was founded back in 1878 and is a voluntary association for lawyers and law students. The ABA focuses on setting academic standards for law schools and setting ethical codes for the profession.

101 Cruiser’s milieu : SEA

We use the French term “milieu” (plural “milieux”) to mean “environment, surroundings”. In French, “milieu” is the word for “middle”.

102 Highest Scrabble tile point value : TEN

The game of Scrabble has been produced in many international versions, and each of these editions has its own tile distribution to suit the local language. For example, in English we have two tiles worth ten points: one “Q” and one “Z”. If you play the game in French then there are five tiles worth ten points: one “K”, one “W”, one “X”, one “Y” and one “Z”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Felt : WAS
4 Snuck : CREPT
9 Venomous snake : MAMBA
14 ER readouts : EKGS
18 Env. insert : ENC
19 Art movement since the ’70s : HIP HOP
21 In different places : APART
22 Sty fare : SLOP
23 *Like one of two parents, often : STAY-AT-HOME (giving “home free”)
25 Turkish bread : LIRAS
26 Correct the pitch of : TUNE
27 Maria __ Trapp : VON
28 Beyond repair : TOTALED
30 Insurance giant : AETNA
31 Drei squared : NEUN
32 *When many grab a bite : COMMERCIAL BREAK (giving “break free”)
35 Four-time Grammy-nominated metal band : PANTERA
37 “Dies __”: hymn : IRAE
38 Amazon and others, locally : RIOS
39 *Inverness native : HIGHLAND SCOT (giving “scot-free”)
42 Large green moth : LUNA
43 Bio or chem : SCI
46 Pre-revelry nights : EVES
47 Navel variety : INNIE
48 Unchains : LIBERATES
50 United : WED
51 “… without trying to change me” : … AS I AM
52 *Software design considerations : LOOK AND FEEL (giving “feel free”)
54 Makes less dense : THINS
55 Break down : PARSE
56 Gram prefix : TELE-
57 Partaking of : HAVING
59 Big celebrations : FETES
60 Rio Grande city : LAREDO
63 Green-skinned “Return of the Jedi” girl : OOLA
64 Snacks : BITES
65 Underground conduit : SEWER
66 *Cube in a bowl : LUMP OF SUGAR (giving “sugar-free”)
70 Credited in a note : CITED
71 Windy City rail initials : CTA
74 Wrestling foes : GRAPPLERS
75 Iranian language : FARSI
76 Many hybrid dogs, casually : POOS
77 Jack or jenny : ASS
78 Zest : TANG
79 *Bridge holdings sufficient to start the bidding with : OPENING HANDS (giving “hands-free”)
82 Eighteen-wheelers : RIGS
83 Raison d’__ : ETRE
84 “You better believe I’ll fight!” : OH, IT’S ON!
85 *Cardiologist’s dietary concern : HYDROGENATED FAT (giving “fat-free”)
91 They know the ropes : PROS
92 Ames native : IOWAN
93 Bob Hope venue : USO TOUR
94 Luke, to Darth : SON
95 Sonny & Cher hit : DUET
96 “Chase those guys!” : GET ‘EM!
98 End of an iconic speech … and what the ends of the answers to starred clues can have? : … FREE AT LAST
103 Mystery’s Gardner : ERLE
104 Sunlit courts : ATRIA
105 Fired at the table? : FLAMBE
106 Once named : NEE
107 On a pension: Abbr. : RETD
108 Rimes of country : LEANN
109 Cool giant : S STAR
110 Ecru relative : TAN

Down

1 Director Craven : WES
2 Queen’s subject : ANT
3 Picked around in, as a junkyard : SCAVENGED
4 English __ : CHANNEL
5 Slowing, to an orch. : RIT
6 N.T. book : EPH
7 Start to finish? : PHOTO-
8 May bouquet words : TO MOM
9 Shopping area loiterer : MALL RAT
10 Each : APIECE
11 Lundi follower : MARDI
12 Lingerie item : BRA
13 @@@ : ATS
14 Fragrant compounds : ESTERS
15 1971 Fonda/Sutherland film : KLUTE
16 Plannin’ to : GONNA
17 Jargon ending : -SPEAK
20 Rodents on wheels, perhaps : PET MICE
24 Some hostel visitors : YOUTHS
29 Dynamic start? : AERO-
30 On the train : ABOARD
31 None too worldly : NAIVE
32 Food preservation method : CANNING
33 Island that’s the first word of The Beach Boys’ “Kokomo” : ARUBA
34 Strong textile : LINEN
35 “What a relief!” : PHEW!
36 Gorp bit : RAISIN
40 Genetic carriers : DNAS
41 __City: computer game : SIM
42 Facebook option : LIKE
43 Knight’s ride : STEED
44 “Heart Blanche” rapper Green : CEELO
45 Atoll, say : ISLE
48 L in a box score : LOSS
49 Word before party or math : AFTER-
51 Sushi-grade tuna : AHI
52 “See ya” : LATER
53 Rock groups? : ORES
54 Sling on a phone : TV APP
55 Animal rights org. : PETA
57 Doctor’s office posting : HOURS
58 Salamanca souls : ALMAS
59 Mulberry family fruit : FIGS
60 “We should just skip it” : LET’S NOT
61 Barely clear of the bottom : AWEIGH
62 __ state : RED
63 First name in ’70s Olympics gymnastics : OLGA
64 Town : BURG
65 Virtual name that means “beautiful woman who leads you to victory” in Norwegian : SIRI
67 Sales rep’s upsell : OPTION
68 Fannie of “Fried Green Tomatoes” fame : FLAGG
69 Feeling : SENSE
70 Has the ability to : CAN
71 One of 21, or sometimes 20 : CONSONANT
72 Brouhahas : TO-DOS
73 Trade gp. : ASSN
75 Get energy from : FEED OFF
76 Girl Scout group : PATROL
79 Den piece : OTTOMAN
80 __-à-porter: ready-to-wear : PRET
81 Trendy type often parodied on “Portlandia” : HIPSTER
82 For mature audiences : R-RATED
83 Enter with caution : EASE IN
85 It’s quarry : HIDER
86 “Now __ talking!” : YOU’RE
87 Obsessed (on) : DWELT
88 __Sweet: sugar substitute : NUTRA-
89 Rolls and binds : FURLS
90 Zones : AREAS
96 Eight pts. : GAL
97 Tour de France saison : ETE
99 Vitals checker, briefly : EMT
100 Law school accrediting org. : ABA
101 Cruiser’s milieu : SEA
102 Highest Scrabble tile point value : TEN

25 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 16 Jan 22, Sunday”

  1. Managed to get through without the Check/Reveal Grid function. The two squares I had left were OO_A/A_MAS and E_GS/_LUTE. A film buff I am not, but I at least knew that the latter had to be one of three letters.

  2. Was also stuck for a bit on OOLA and ALMAS. I guessed right

    Last to fall was SW cornerwith HIDER. but mostly because of DWELT.. I had SWEET for a long time and couldn’t think of Sonny and Cher hit except “I got you babe”. Oh, it was a DUET!

  3. 52:46 no errors…an error free weekend for me …I’ll take it😀
    I just hurt my arm patting myself on the back🤪
    Stay safe😀

  4. Still don’t get how “hider” can mean “prey.” Using “was” as a synonym for “felt” seems tenuous too.

    1. A “hider” can be thought of as quarry (part of a hunt). This fair-to-middling crossword puzzler feels that that was a mediocre, at best, clue.

    2. I was sick. I felt sick. Again, lame, at best.
      A better crossword puzzle editor would not have allowed either of those two clues to remain in the published puzzle.

    1. I believe you are right about the Windy City.
      Not nicknamed after the wind that comes
      howling off the lake as most people assume!

      No look ups, no errors. Agree that there were a couple of dodgy clues but great theme!

  5. Not my best effort. Screwed up the Windy City initials and the
    “poos” so that corner was a mess. Got all the long starred clues
    but couldn’t put them together in any context until I read the
    “reveal” clue.

  6. 27 minutes, 4 second, and needed Check Grid to correct 10 errors.

    Not a fan of this one; too many proper names and odd abbreviations.

  7. Unlike Anon Mike I guessed wrong on intersection of Oola and Almas. I instead went with an “n” for the letter giving me a two word error with the one wrong letter. As I usually do at this point I channel my inner Homer Simpson and go with my “D’oh!” interjection.

  8. My nemesis was “HAVING/TV APP.”

    I had put down “EATING” and had no idea what “TTAPP” could mean.

    Once I got “HOURS” I fixed “HAVING” and I was done, but couldn’t understand what “TVAPP” was.

  9. Tricky Sunday for me; took 55:20 with 3 errors. Couldn’t get R_T/E_P/HIPHOP and I guessed wrong on OOnA/AnMAS. Got the OOLA right away after a “check-grid” but it took several to get HIPHOP – didn’t think of that as starting in the 70s.

    re PANTERA – I got that right away, since I remembered the onstage murder of the lead guitarist, as he played in a new band, by a crazed fan, mad that he broke up Pantera.

  10. 58D; Bill, the explanation is insufficient. I finally figured out that Alma is Spanish for soul, after guessing correctly.

  11. 25:22 with one letter error – mTA/mONSONANT. Not from Chicago, and obviously didn’t pick up on the 21 or 20 theme. Still, a pretty good finish on a Sunday puzzle.

    I agree that WAS for “Felt” seems to ne a stretch. Got a good guess on the L in OOLA/ALMAS.

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