LA Times Crossword 23 Mar 22, Wednesday

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Constructed by: Tim D’Alfonso
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Explicit Content

Themed answers each start with a word that might describe EXPLICIT CONTENT:

  • 58A Music industry advisory … and a warning that may result from misinterpreting this puzzle’s theme? : EXPLICIT CONTENT
  • 17A 42-U.S.-gallon containers : CRUDE OIL BARRELS
  • 27A Cocktail with a splash of olive juice : DIRTY MARTINI
  • 44A “Maus” is the only one to win a Pulitzer Prize (1992) : GRAPHIC NOVEL

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

Bill’s time: 6m 30s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Alaskan islander : ALEUT

The Aleuts live on the Aleutian Islands of the North Pacific, and on the Commander Islands at the western end of the same island chain. The Aleutian Islands are part of the United States, and the Commander Islands are in Russia.

6 Bar flier : DART

Darts is a game that’s often played in English and Irish pubs, even over here in America. The scoring in a traditional game of darts is difficult to describe in a sentence or two, but the game of darts called “Round the Clock” is simply hitting the numbers 1 through 20 on the dartboard in sequence.

10 Early garden spot : EDEN

In the Christian tradition, the “fall of man” took place in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve succumbed to the temptation of eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This went against the bidding of God, and was at the urging of the serpent. As a result, Adam and Eve were banished from Eden to prevent them from becoming immortal by eating from the tree of life. The first humans had transitioned from a state of innocent obedience to a state of guilty disobedience.

14 Like the yolk in Eggs Benedict : RUNNY

Eggs Benedict is a dish traditionally served at an American breakfast or brunch. It usually consists of a halved English muffin topped with ham and poached eggs, all smothered in Hollandaise sauce. The exact origin of the dish is apparently debated, but one story is that it is named for a Wall Street stockbroker called Lemuel Benedict. In 1894 in the Waldorf Hotel, Benedict ordered toast, poached eggs, crispy bacon and Hollandaise sauce as a cure for his hangover. The hotel’s maître d’ Oscar Tschirky was impressed by the dish and added the variant that we use today to the hotel’s menu, naming it for the gentleman who had first ordered it.

15 MLB Triple Crown category : RBIS

In Major League baseball, a player can earn the Triple Crown when he is the leader in three specific statistics. The pitching Triple Crown includes wins, strikeouts and earned run average (ERA). The batting Triple Crown includes home runs, runs batted in (RBI) and batting average.

17 42-U.S.-gallon containers : CRUDE OIL BARRELS

The volume of one oil barrel is equivalent to 42 US gallons. A barrel is correctly abbreviated to “bbl”. Barrels aren’t really used for transporting crude oil anymore. Instead, oil moves in bulk through pipelines and in tankers. “Barrel” is just used as a unit of volume these days.

21 Flying geese formation : VEE

Apparently, birds that fly in a V-formation do so for a couple of reasons. One is that it makes for efficient flight and conserves energy. The leading bird gets no advantage, but every following bird gets to “slipstream” a little. It has been noted that the lead bird drops to the back of the formation when he/she gets fatigued. It’s also thought that the flock can stick together more easily when in formation, so it is more difficult to lose someone along the way.

A collection of geese is referred to as a “gaggle” when on the ground. When geese are in V-formation in flight, they are referred to collectively as a “skein”.

22 Hall partner : OATES

Daryl Hall & John Oates are a pop music duo who were most successful in the late seventies and early eighties. They had six number one hits, including the 1982 release “Maneater”.

27 Cocktail with a splash of olive juice : DIRTY MARTINI

A dirty martini is a regular martini with a splash of olive juice, and served with an olive garnish.

32 Sierra Nevada resort : TAHOE

Lake Tahoe (often referred to simply as “Tahoe”) is up in the Sierra Nevada mountains, and is located right on the border between California and Nevada. It is the largest alpine lake in the country, and the largest lake in general behind the five Great Lakes. Tahoe is also the second deepest lake, with only the beautiful Crater Lake in Oregon being deeper. Given its location, there are tall casinos that sit right on the shore on the Nevada side of the state line where gambling is legal.

The American Sierra Nevada range lies in California and Nevada. The Spanish Sierra Nevada range is in Andalusia, with the name meaning “snowy range” in Spanish.

38 “The Martian” star Matt : DAMON

Matt Damon is an actor and screenwriter from Cambridge, Massachusetts. Damon’s big break came with the 1997 movie “Good Will Hunting”, in which he starred. He co-wrote the screenplay with his childhood friend Ben Affleck.

“The Martian” is an intriguing 2015 science fiction film starring Matt Damon as an astronaut who is accidentally stranded on Mars. The movie is based on a 2011 novel of the same name by Andy Weir. One thing that I liked about the film is that the science cited is fairly realistic. In fact, NASA collaborated with the filmmakers extensively from script development to principal casting.

41 Word of dissent : NAY

To dissent is to withhold approval, to withhold an assent. The verb “to dissent” comes from Latin “dis-” (differently) and “sentire” (to feel, think).

42 Late NBA legend, familiarly : KOBE

Kobe Bryant played basketball for the LA Lakers. Bryant got his given name from a menu, would you believe? His parents were in a Japanese restaurant and liked the name of “Kobe” beef, the beef from around the city of Kobe on the island of Honshu in Japan. Very sadly, Bryant and his daughter Gianna, along with seven others, were killed in a helicopter crash in 2020.

44 “Maus” is the only one to win a Pulitzer Prize (1992) : GRAPHIC NOVEL

“Maus” is a graphic novel published in 1991, although it appeared in serial form from 1980 to 1991. Written and drawn by cartoonist Art Spiegelman, “Maus” became the first graphic novel to win a Pulitzer, doing so in 1992.

49 Certain agent’s area : REALTY

The terms “realty” and “real estate” actually date back to the late 1600s. Back then, the terms meant “real possessions, things owned that are tangible and real”.

52 Corrective surgery acronym : LASIK

LASIK surgery uses a laser to reshape the cornea of the eye to improve vision. The LASIK acronym stands for “laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis”.

56 The Beatles’ “__ Leaving Home” : SHE’S

“She’s Leaving Home” is a 1967 song released by the Beatles on the “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” album. None of the four members of the band play an instrument in this song, and instead the music is played by a small string orchestra. The lyrics are performed by Paul McCartney and John Lennon. In fact, George Harrison and Ringo Starr weren’t even in the studio at the time of the recording.

62 Doorstep delivery, at times? : NOEL

“Noël” is the French word for the Christmas season, and ultimately comes from the Latin word for “birth” (natalis). “Noel” has come to be used as an alternative for “Christmas carol”.

63 October birthstone : OPAL

Here is the “official” list of birthstones, by month, that we tend to use today:

  • January: Garnet
  • February: Amethyst
  • March: Bloodstone or Aquamarine
  • April: Diamond
  • May: Emerald
  • June: Pearl or Moonstone
  • July: Ruby
  • August: Sardonyx or Peridot
  • September: Sapphire or Lapis Lazuli
  • October: Opal or Pink Tourmaline
  • November: Topaz or Citrine
  • December: Turquoise or Zircon (also now, Tanzanite)

64 Main line : AORTA

The aorta originates in the heart and extends down into the abdomen. It is the largest artery in the body.

65 One of Snoopy’s brothers : ANDY

Snoopy is the beagle owned by Charlie Brown in the “Peanuts” comic strip penned by Charles M. Schulz. Schulz told us in the strip that Snoopy has seven siblings: a sister Belle and four brothers, Spike, Andy, Marbles and Olaf. The remaining brother and sister weren’t named in the comic strip, but we did meet Rover and Molly in the 1991 TV special “Snoopy’s Reunion”.

66 Bunyan’s blue ox : BABE

Paul Bunyan is a character of American myth. He is a skilled lumberjack, and has a sidekick called Babe the Blue Ox. Both Bunyan and Babe are gigantic in size.

Down

1 Principal : ARCH

We use “arch-” to mean “chief, principal”. Said prefix comes from the combining form of the Greek word “arkhos” meaning “chief, lead, commander”.

3 Habituate : ENURE

“Enure” is a variant spelling of “inure”, which means “to harden oneself against the effects of, to accustom oneself to”.

5 Sheridan of “Ready Player One” : TYE

The young actor Tye Sheridan had one of the lead roles in the 2012 coming-of-age film “Mud”, which starred Matthew McConaughey. He later played a young version of Scott Summers (aka “Cyclops”) in the “X-Men” series of films. In 2018, he led the cast of the sci-fi film “Ready Player One”.

8 Bone in the torso : RIB

“Torso” (plural “torsi”) is an Italian word meaning the “trunk of a statue”, and is a term that we imported into English.

9 Screeners at LAX : TSA

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is the agency that employs the good folks who check passengers and baggage at airports.

Los Angeles International Airport is the sixth busiest airport in the world in terms of passenger traffic, and the busiest here on the West Coast of the US. The airport was opened in 1930 as Mines Field and was renamed to Los Angeles Airport in 1941. On the airport property is the iconic white structure that resembles a flying saucer. This is called the Theme Building and I believe it is mainly used as a restaurant and observation deck for the public. The airport used to be identified by the letters “LA”, but when the aviation industry went to a three-letter standard for airport identification, this was changed to “LAX”. Apparently, the “X” has no significant meaning.

10 Not on target : ERRANT

Someone described as errant is roving around, especially in search of adventure, as in “knight-errant”.The term “errant” has come to mean “behaving wrongly” and “straying outside the bounds”.

11 Daft Punk, for one : DUET

Daft Punk was an electronic music duo from Paris, France that formed in 1993, with members Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter. The pair split up in 2021.

12 Fashion magazine since 1945 : ELLE

“Elle” magazine was founded in 1945 in France and today has the highest circulation of any fashion magazine in the world. “Elle” is the French word for “she”. “Elle” is published monthly worldwide, although you can pick up a weekly edition if you live in France.

19 Stadium sounds : ROARS

The Greek word “stadion” was a measure of length, about 600 feet. The name “stadion” then came to be used for a running track of that length. That “running track” meaning led to our contemporary term “stadium” (plural “stadia”).

25 ROFL cousin : LMAO

Laughing my a** off (LMAO)

Rolling on floor laughing (ROFL)

28 Coastal Arab country : YEMEN

Yemen is located on the Arabian Peninsula, and lies just south of Saudi Arabia and west of Oman. Yemen is the only state on the peninsula that is a republic (its official name is the Republic of Yemen). Everyone over the age of 18 gets to vote, but only Muslims can hold elected office.

31 DBs’ stats : INTS

In football, a defensive back (DB) is constantly striving for an interception (Int).

32 Little kick : TANG

Back in the 1300s, the tongue of a serpent might be referred to as a tang, and that tongue was believed to be a stinging organ. By the mid-1600’s, the term “tang” had come to mean “sharp taste”, a meaning that persists to this day.

33 Petri dish filler : AGAR

Julius Richard Petri was a German bacteriologist and was the man after whom the Petri dish is named. The petri dish can have an agar gel on the bottom which acts as a nutrient source for the specimen being grown and studied, in which case the dish plus agar is referred to as an “agar plate”.

34 Georgetown athlete : HOYA

The athletic teams of Georgetown University are known as the Hoyas. The name is derived from “Hoya Saxa”, a traditional cheer yelled out at Georgetown games as far back as 1893. The term is a mixture of Greek and Latin, with the Greek word “hoya” meaning “such” or “what”, and “saxa” translating from Latin as “rocks” or “small stones”. The cheer is usually rendered in English as “what rocks!”.

40 Brit’s period : FULL STOP

The punctuation mark used to terminate a sentence is called a “period” in American English, and a “full stop” in British English. The same punctuation mark has no symbol in Morse code, so the word STOP is used instead in telegraphy.

42 Bold-sounding trouser material : KHAKI

I guess “khaki” might sound like “cocky”.

“Khaki” is an Urdu word that translates literally as “dusty”. The word was adopted for its current use as the name of a fabric by the British cavalry in India in the mid-1800s.

43 Coral __ : SEA

The Coral Sea is part of the South Pacific Ocean lying off the northeast coast of Australia. It is home to the renowned Great Barrier Reef.

45 City famous for cheesesteaks, informally : PHILLY

Philadelphia, the largest city in Pennsylvania, was founded in 1682 by William Penn. He chose the name “Philadelphia” after making a treaty of friendship with the local Lenape people. The name translates from Greek as “brotherly love”.

Apparently, the cheesesteak sandwich was introduced by Pat and Harry Olivieri and first sold in the 1930s at their hot dog stand in South Philadelphia. Pat later opened his own restaurant with a menu centered on the popular sandwich, and you can go eat one there to this day. It’s named Pat’s King of Steaks, and my guess is that everyone in South Philly knows it.

46 Soothsayer : ORACLE

In ancient Greece and Rome, an oracle was someone believed to be inspired by the gods to give wise counsel. The word “oracle” derives from the Latin “orare” meaning “to speak”, which is the same root for our word “orator”. One of the most important oracles of ancient Greece was Pythia, the high priestess to Apollo at Delphi.

A soothsayer is someone who claims to have the ability to predict the future. The term “soothsayer” comes from “sooth”, an archaic word for “truth”. So a soothsayer was supposedly one who told the “truth” (about the future).

47 Kill, as a bill : VETO

The verb “veto” comes directly from Latin and means “I forbid”. The term was used by tribunes of ancient Rome to indicate that they opposed measures passed by the Senate.

50 “Voilà!” : THERE!

The French word “voilà” means “there it is”, and “voici” means “here it is”. The terms come from “voi là” meaning “see there” and “voi ici” meaning “see here”.

51 Gossip spreader : YENTA

“Yenta” (also “Yente”) is actually a female Yiddish name. In Yiddish theater “yenta” came to mean a busybody, a gossip.

52 “Master of None” Emmy-winning writer Waithe : LENA

Lena Waithe’s break as an actress came with a supporting role in the comedy-drama show “Master of None” starting in 2015. The same show brought her significant success as a writer, winning a Primetime Emmy for co-writing the “Thanksgiving” episode with the show’s creator Aziz Ansari. Waithe also serves as executive producer for the horror-drama anthology series “Them”.

53 Nerve cell part : AXON

A nerve cell is more correctly called a neuron. The branched projections that receive electrochemical signals from other neurons are known as dendrites. The long nerve fiber that conducts signals away from the neuron is known as the axon. A neuron that has no definite axon is referred to as “apolar” or “nonpolar”. In apolar neurons the nerve impulses radiate in all directions.

60 Pub pick : IPA

India pale ale (IPA) is a style of beer that originated in England. The beer was originally intended for transportation from England to India, hence the name.

61 “King’s Disease” Grammy-winning rapper : NAS

Rapper Nas used to go by an earlier stage name “Nasty Nas”, and before that by his real name “Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones”. Nas released his first album “Illmatic” in 1994, and inventively titled his fifth studio album “Stillmatic”, released in 2001.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Alaskan islander : ALEUT
6 Bar flier : DART
10 Early garden spot : EDEN
14 Like the yolk in Eggs Benedict : RUNNY
15 MLB Triple Crown category : RBIS
16 Govern : RULE
17 42-U.S.-gallon containers : CRUDE OIL BARRELS
20 “Try this” : HERE
21 Flying geese formation : VEE
22 Hall partner : OATES
23 Tries to make a point? : SERVES
25 Tilt : LEAN
27 Cocktail with a splash of olive juice : DIRTY MARTINI
32 Sierra Nevada resort : TAHOE
35 Places for hoops, maybe : EARS
36 Crime boss : DON
37 Eagerly excited : AGOG
38 “The Martian” star Matt : DAMON
40 Word with print or note : FOOT-
41 Word of dissent : NAY
42 Late NBA legend, familiarly : KOBE
43 Mopey states : SULKS
44 “Maus” is the only one to win a Pulitzer Prize (1992) : GRAPHIC NOVEL
48 Caps, e.g. : HATS
49 Certain agent’s area : REALTY
52 Corrective surgery acronym : LASIK
55 Took a load off : SAT
56 The Beatles’ “__ Leaving Home” : SHE’S
58 Music industry advisory … and a warning that may result from misinterpreting this puzzle’s theme? : EXPLICIT CONTENT
62 Doorstep delivery, at times? : NOEL
63 October birthstone : OPAL
64 Main line : AORTA
65 One of Snoopy’s brothers : ANDY
66 Bunyan’s blue ox : BABE
67 Fishing tool : SPEAR

Down

1 Principal : ARCH
2 Fishing gear : LURES
3 Habituate : ENURE
4 Expected loser : UNDERDOG
5 Sheridan of “Ready Player One” : TYE
6 Most arid : DRIEST
7 Fit : ABLE
8 Bone in the torso : RIB
9 Screeners at LAX : TSA
10 Not on target : ERRANT
11 Daft Punk, for one : DUET
12 Fashion magazine since 1945 : ELLE
13 Condition suffix : -NESS
18 One more time : OVER
19 Stadium sounds : ROARS
24 Contend : VIE
25 ROFL cousin : LMAO
26 Bring in : EARN
28 Coastal Arab country : YEMEN
29 One on a fan site : IDOL
30 Cozy spot : NOOK
31 DBs’ stats : INTS
32 Little kick : TANG
33 Petri dish filler : AGAR
34 Georgetown athlete : HOYA
38 “Just __!” : DO IT
39 Basics : ABCS
40 Brit’s period : FULL STOP
42 Bold-sounding trouser material : KHAKI
43 Coral __ : SEA
45 City famous for cheesesteaks, informally : PHILLY
46 Soothsayer : ORACLE
47 Kill, as a bill : VETO
50 “Voilà!” : THERE!
51 Gossip spreader : YENTA
52 “Master of None” Emmy-winning writer Waithe : LENA
53 Nerve cell part : AXON
54 Hustled : SPED
55 Guess : STAB
57 Common flag feature : STAR
59 Corn throwaway : COB
60 Pub pick : IPA
61 “King’s Disease” Grammy-winning rapper : NAS

22 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 23 Mar 22, Wednesday”

  1. No errors; one lookup–Lena Waithe. Did not know LMAO…but
    had it right from crossing letters. ..and what does ROFL stand for?
    Maybe I don’t want to know! Someone’s sure to enlighten me.

    1. Happiness is the condition of being happy. Sadness is the condition of being sad. Speediness is the condition of being speedy. And so on … 😜

    2. -NESS is a suffix that goes on a word to indicate condition. “I shivered because I was cold.” or “The coldness of the air made me shiver.”

  2. 16:06 – no errors, lookups, or revisions. Just took a little while to find answers I knew, which then helped solve answers I didn’t know right off.

    TYE Sheridan and LENA Waithe were new names for me.

  3. 8:51, 3 lookups, including Snoopy’s brothers. It’s such a long time since I followed Peanuts.

    I went back and forth on INURE/ENURE + ALEUT/ALIUT. And square by square I changed FUNKS to SULKS.

    Does anyone still do caroling and deliver NOELs on doorsteps?

  4. The “NOEL” clue was delightfully opaque. Those who don’t enjoy the little moment of delight that results from seeing through such a bit of misdirection really ought to find another way to spend their time … 😳.

    (IM … ever so … HO … 😜.)

  5. Mostly easy Wednesday for me, except for the NW corner; took me 16:33 with no peeks or errors. I had a little bit of hesitation in the SW but managed that fairly quickly, but spent 2-3 minutes in the NW before I finally untangled that corner. Never heard of TYE and was thinking it had to be Ted or something, even though I had RUNNY and HERE. Didn’t help that I had inuiT instead of ALEUT. Oh well, live and learn…Islander->ALEUT.

    I too liked NOEL…amusing clue/answer, the ones I live for. 🙂

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