LA Times Crossword 24 Mar 22, Thursday

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Constructed by: Joe Deeney
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Radio Edit

Themed answers each include the letter string R-A-D-I-O, but EDITED, in a different order:

  • 62A Shortened version of a pop song … and a hint to what’s hidden in the answers to starred clues : RADIO EDIT
  • 17A *Be silly : KID AROUND
  • 24A *Loosen up : LET ONE’S HAIR DOWN
  • 38A *Grand Canyon traveler : COLORADO RIVER
  • 52A *Nyctophobic : AFRAID OF THE DARK

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

Bill’s time: 7m 30s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

14 English horn cousin : OBOE

When you hear an orchestra tuning before a performance, you’ll note (pun!) that the oboe starts off the process by playing an “A”. The rest of the musicians in turn tune to that oboe’s “A”.

The English horn is also known by its French name “cor anglais”. It is a double-reed woodwind instrument.

15 Hill by a loch : BRAE

“Brae” is a lowland Scots word for the slope or brow of a hill.

“Loch” is the Scottish-Gaelic word for “lake”. The Irish-Gaelic word is “lough”, and the Welsh word is “llyn”.

16 Spacecraft docked at the ISS : SOYUZ

The Russian Soyuz space program started in the early sixties as part of a plan to land a cosmonaut on the moon. The Soyuz program is still alive and kicking, and derivatives of those early spacecraft designs from the sixties are regularly visiting the International Space Station. “Soyuz” is a Russian word meaning “union”.

The International Space Station (ISS) is a modular facility that comprises components launched into space by Russian Proton and Soyuz rockets, and by American Space Shuttles. The station has been occupied by astronauts and scientists continually since November, 2000.

20 Mag staff : EDS

Editor (ed.)

21 12/31, e.g. : EVE

The famous New Year’s Eve (NYE) ball-dropping tradition in Times Square started on January 1st 1908. The original ball was lit with one hundred 25-watt light bulbs and was dropped at one second after midnight. A fifth version of the ball was introduced in 2008 for the centennial anniversary of the ceremony. The 2008 ball was built by Waterford Crystal and was lit by 9,567 LED bulbs that consumed the same amount of power as ten electric toasters. The current ball was used for the first time in 2009, and is double the size of the 2008 ball at 12 feet in diameter. The ball now sits atop Times Square year round, so you can go see it next time you are in town.

22 Exams for aspiring judges, briefly : LSATS

Law School Admission Test (LSAT)

31 Universal donor’s type, briefly : O-NEG

In general, a person with type O-negative blood is a universal donor, meaning that his or her blood can be used for transfusion into persons with any other blood type: A, B, AB or O, negative or positive (although there are other considerations). Also in general, a person with type AB-positive blood is a universal recipient, meaning that he or she can receive a transfusion of blood of any type: A, B, AB or O, negative or positive.

32 Recipe word : ADD

The Latin “recipere” means “to take”, and the imperative form “recipe” was written at the top of medical prescriptions as an instruction, i.e. “take (the following)”. This use of “recipe” evolved into the instruction for preparing a dish of food in the mid-1700s.

35 “Like, yesterday!” : ASAP!

As soon as possible (ASAP)

37 “Hunan Report” author : MAO

Mao Zedong wrote an essay in 1927 titled “Report on an Investigation of the Peasant Movement in Hunan”. Usually referred to as the “Hunan Report”, 30-year-old Mao wrote the essay after visiting his home village in Hunan. The report advocates revolution by poor peasant workers against the landlord class. Up to that point, the Chinese Communist Party was battling the government of Chiang Kai-shek by recruiting urban workers.

38 *Grand Canyon traveler : COLORADO RIVER

The Colorado River rises in the Rocky Mountains, flows through the southwestern US and northwest Mexico, and empties into the Gulf of California. Famously, it is the Colorado that forms the Grand Canyon. The best known dam on the river is the Hoover Dam, which forms Lake Mead.

42 Dallas hoopster : MAV

The Mavericks (also “Mavs”) are an NBA franchise in Dallas, Texas. The team was founded in 1980, and the Mavericks name was chosen by fan votes. The choice of “Mavericks” was prompted by the fact that the actor James Garner was a part-owner of the team, and Garner of course played the title role in the “Maverick” television series.

43 Sub : HERO

A hero is a submarine sandwich. The hero originated in New York City in the 1800s among Italian immigrants who wanted an Italian sandwich that reminded them of home. The name “hero” was coined in the 1930s, supposedly by a food critic in the “New York Herald Tribune” when he wrote that “one had to be a hero” to finish the gigantic sandwich. Hero is a prevalent term to this day in New York City, reserved for a submarine sandwich with an Italian flavor.

44 Broadcast from NBC’s Studio 8H : SNL

Studio 8H is an NBC TV studio located at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City. When completed in 1933, it was the largest radio studio in the world, and was intended for orchestral performances as well as variety programs with large studio audiences. Studio 8H was converted for television in 1950, and since 1975 has been the home of “Saturday Night Live” (SNL).

45 Score symbol : CLEF

“Clef” is the French word for “key”. In music, a clef is used to indicate the pitch of the notes written on a stave. The bass clef is also known as the F-clef, the alto clef is the C-clef, and the treble clef is the G-clef.

47 Tuner toggle : AM/FM

Amplitude modulation/frequency modulation (AM/FM)

52 *Nyctophobic : AFRAID OF THE DARK

Nyctophobia is a fear of the dark or of the night. The term “nyctophobia” ultimately derives from “nyx”, the Greek word for “night”.

57 __ Challenge: soft drink promotion : PEPSI

The Pepsi Challenge is a marketing campaign that PepsiCo introduced in 1975 as a tactic in the Cola Wars with the Coca-Cola Company. The challenge itself involves a blind taste test.

60 Catherine of “A Mighty Wind” : O’HARA

“A Mighty Wind” is a 2003 comedy drama movie co-written and directed by Christopher Guest. The film falls into the genre known as “mockumentary”, and tells of a folk music reunion concert. Many in the cast of “A Mighty Wind” also appeared in the other successful Christopher Guest films “This is Spinal Tap”, “Waiting for Guffman” and “Best in Show”.

Catherine O’Hara is an actress and comedian from Toronto, Ontario. One of O’Hara’s more famous film roles is Kevin’s mother in the Christmas classic “Home Alone”. She also plays a lead character in the excellent sitcom “Schitt’s Creek” alongside Eugen Levy.

62 Shortened version of a pop song … and a hint to what’s hidden in the answers to starred clues : RADIO EDIT

A radio edit is a modified version of a song that is more suitable for airplay. Historically, the most common modification is shortening, usually to 3-5 minutes in length, so that commercial stations are more likely to play the song. More recently, modifications are being made to remove profanity or offensive subject matter.

66 First name in stunts : EVEL

Daredevil Evel Knievel contracted hepatitis C from the many blood transfusions that he needed after injuries incurred during stunts. He had to have a liver transplant as a result, but his health declined after that. Knievel eventually passed away in 2007.

67 Put on board : LADE

The verb “to lade” meaning “to load” comes from an Old English word “hladan”. “Lade” also used to mean “draw water” and indeed gave us our word “ladle”. So “lade” and “ladle” are close cousins.

68 Feints on the ice : DEKES

A deke, also known as a dangle, is a technique used to get past an opponent in ice hockey. “Deke” is a colloquial shortening of the word “decoy”.

Down

4 Mauna __ : KEA

Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii, the peak of which is the highest point in the whole state. Mauna Kea is in effect the tip of a gigantic volcano rising up from the seabed.

7 Novelist McEwan : IAN

Ian McEwan is an English novelist with a track record of writing well-received novels. His most famous work of recent years I would say is “Atonement” which has benefited from the success of a fabulous movie adaptation released in 2007.

8 2021 Emmy winner for Outstanding Comedy Series : TED LASSO

“Ted Lasso” is a marvelous sports-comedy TV show about an American college football coach who moves to the UK to manage an English soccer team. The title character is played very admirably by Jason Sudeikas. Sudeikas first played Lasso in a series of TV commercials commissioned to promote NBC’s coverage of the British Premier League. Great stuff, and highly recommended …

9 Liam’s “Schindler’s List” role : OSKAR

Oskar Schindler is the protagonist in the Steven Spielberg movie “Schindler’s List”. Schindler was a real person who survived WWII. During the Holocaust, Schindler managed to save almost 1,200 Jews from perishing by employing them in his factories. After the war, Schindler and his wife were left penniless having used his assets to protect and feed his workers. For years the couple survived on the charity of Jewish groups. Schindler tried to make a go of it in business again but never had any real success. He died a pauper in 1974 in Hildesheim, not far from Hanover. His last wish was to be buried in Jerusalem. Schindler was the only former member of the Nazi Party to be buried on Mount Zion.

Irish actor Liam Neeson got his big break when he played Oskar Schindler in the Spielberg epic, “Schindler’s List”. Neeson was in the news some years later when he lost his wife, actress Natasha Richardson, in a tragic skiing accident in 2009. Earlier in his life, in the 1980s, Neeson lived for several years with Oscar-winning actress Helen Mirren.

13 Birth units: Abbr. : OZS

Our term “ounce” comes from the Latin “uncia”, which was 1/12 of a “libra”, the Roman “pound”. “Uncia” is also the derivation of our word “inch”, 1/12 of a foot.

18 Driver’s role in “Star Wars” sequels : REN

Kylo Ren is the son of Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa in the “Star Wars” universe. The character’s birth name was Ben Solo. He was trained as a Jedi knight by his uncle, Luke Skywalker. However, Ben came to embrace the Dark Side, and changed his name to Kylo Ren. Ren is played by actor Adam Driver.

23 Bollywood strings : SITARS

The sitar has been around since the Middle Ages. It is a stringed instrument that is played by plucking, and is used most often in Hindustani classical music. In the West we have been exposed to the instrument largely through the performances of Ravi Shankar and some music by George Harrison of the Beatles, a onetime student of Shankar.

“Bollywood” is the informal name given to the huge film industry based in Mumbai in India. The term “Bollywood” is a melding of “Bombay” (the former name of Mumbai), and “Hollywood”.

25 Iridescent gem : OPAL

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.

28 Gps. like Partners In Health : NGO

Non-governmental organization (NGO)

38 Whale newborn : CALF

Male whales are referred to as “bulls”, females are “cows”, and the young are “calves”.

40 Fancy dressers : ARMOIRES

“Armoire” is the French word for “wardrobe”, and is used in English for a standing closet that stores clothes.

41 Prince who inspired Dracula : VLAD

Vlad III was a 15th century ruler in modern-day Romania. He was given the name “Vlad the Impaler” after he died, and this suggests that he was in the habit of impaling his enemies. His father, Vlad II, was known as Vlad Dracul, which translates as Vlad the Devil or Dragon. As a result, Vlad the Impaler was also known by the diminutive form of his father’s name, i.e. “Dracula”. Bram Stoker borrowed this name for his famous 1897 novel titled “Dracula”.

42 Old Elton label : MCA

MCA Records was a record label that was founded in 1934 as Decca Records.

“Elton John” is the stage name of English singer and pianist Reginald Dwight. John is an avid football (soccer) supporter, and is especially enthusiastic about Watford Football Club, which was his local team growing up. After he achieved financial success, John was able to purchase Watford FC, and owned the club from 1976 to 1987, and again from 1997 until 2002.

46 Spenser’s “The __ Queene” : FAERIE

“The Faerie Queene” is an epic poem by Edmund Spenser. It is one of the longest poems written in the English language.

48 57-Across sister brand, on labels : MTN DEW
(57A __ Challenge: soft drink promotion : PEPSI)

If you check the can, you’ll see that “Mountain Dew” is now marketed as “Mtn Dew”.

50 Orientation “sensor” : GAYDAR

Gaydar is a portmanteau of “gay” and “radar”, and describes the supposed ability to assess someone’s sexual orientation.

51 Bagel Bites brand : ORE-IDA

Ore-Ida frozen foods are mostly made using potatoes. The company is located in Oregon, just across the border from Idaho. “Ore-Ida” is a melding of the two state names.

54 Comes down hard? : HAILS

Hailstones are hard …

56 “Sons of Anarchy” actress Sagal : KATEY

Katey Sagal played Peggy Bundy on “Married … with Children”. Later she took over as star of the show “8 Simple Rules” in the middle of its run, when John Ritter passed away unexpectedly in 2003. Sagal then appeared on the FX drama “Sons of Anarchy”. In 2004, she married Kurt Sutter who created the “Sons of Anarchy” series.

“Sons of Anarchy” is a popular FX crime series about an outlaw motorcycle club in California’s Central Valley. Apparently, it is the most successful FX show ever.

63 Hail, in a hymn : AVE

“Ave” is a Latin word meaning “hail” as in “Ave Maria”, which translates as “Hail Mary”. “Ave” can also be used to mean “goodbye”.

64 Tolkien’s Legolas, for one : ELF

English actor Orlando Bloom’s breakthrough on the big screen came when he was chosen to play Legolas, a Sindarin Elf, in “The Lord of the Rings” series of films.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Tug : YANK
5 Grinding away : AT IT
9 Have because of : OWE TO
14 English horn cousin : OBOE
15 Hill by a loch : BRAE
16 Spacecraft docked at the ISS : SOYUZ
17 *Be silly : KID AROUND
19 Joints often replaced : KNEES
20 Mag staff : EDS
21 12/31, e.g. : EVE
22 Exams for aspiring judges, briefly : LSATS
24 *Loosen up : LET ONE’S HAIR DOWN
29 Sponge (up) : SOP
30 Student’s hurdle : TEST
31 Universal donor’s type, briefly : O-NEG
32 Recipe word : ADD
35 “Like, yesterday!” : ASAP!
37 “Hunan Report” author : MAO
38 *Grand Canyon traveler : COLORADO RIVER
42 Dallas hoopster : MAV
43 Sub : HERO
44 Broadcast from NBC’s Studio 8H : SNL
45 Score symbol : CLEF
47 Tuner toggle : AM/FM
49 Previously : AGO
52 *Nyctophobic : AFRAID OF THE DARK
57 __ Challenge: soft drink promotion : PEPSI
58 Hound : NAG
59 Affirmative vote : YEA
60 Catherine of “A Mighty Wind” : O’HARA
62 Shortened version of a pop song … and a hint to what’s hidden in the answers to starred clues : RADIO EDIT
65 Clear : LUCID
66 First name in stunts : EVEL
67 Put on board : LADE
68 Feints on the ice : DEKES
69 Mends, in a way : SEWS
70 Wear : FRAY

Down

1 Rustic type : YOKEL
2 Withstands : ABIDES
3 Silently acknowledges : NODS TO
4 Mauna __ : KEA
5 Higher than : ABOVE
6 Most faithful : TRUEST
7 Novelist McEwan : IAN
8 2021 Emmy winner for Outstanding Comedy Series : TED LASSO
9 Liam’s “Schindler’s List” role : OSKAR
10 Is unacceptable : WON’T DO
11 “Full attention here” : EYES ON ME
12 Day planner abbr. : TUE
13 Birth units: Abbr. : OZS
18 Driver’s role in “Star Wars” sequels : REN
23 Bollywood strings : SITARS
25 Iridescent gem : OPAL
26 Block at a pass? : HEAD OFF
27 Put on : WEAR
28 Gps. like Partners In Health : NGO
33 “How silly of me!” : DOH!
34 Can’t stand the idea of : DREADS
36 Safety __ : PIN
38 Whale newborn : CALF
39 Have trouble closing the suitcase, maybe : OVERPACK
40 Fancy dressers : ARMOIRES
41 Prince who inspired Dracula : VLAD
42 Old Elton label : MCA
46 Spenser’s “The __ Queene” : FAERIE
48 57-Across sister brand, on labels : MTN DEW
50 Orientation “sensor” : GAYDAR
51 Bagel Bites brand : ORE-IDA
53 Modern checkout devices : IPADS
54 Comes down hard? : HAILS
55 It may be massaged : EGO
56 “Sons of Anarchy” actress Sagal : KATEY
60 Corny, maybe : OLD
61 Colorist’s concern : HUE
63 Hail, in a hymn : AVE
64 Tolkien’s Legolas, for one : ELF

19 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 24 Mar 22, Thursday”

  1. 5:48, no errors. I’ve been hesitating lately on saying a lot about the editing in the LAT, but 28D and the tense disagreement in the clue has to about take the cake. For the clue as written (“Gps.”) the answer has to be NGOS.

    1. Hi Glenn. I saw the clue as giving a singular example “Partners in Health” yielding the singular answer of NGO.

      1. The clue is ‘Groups’. Giving a singular example of groupS doesn’t make groupS any less plural. The clue should have been. “A gp like…”

  2. Don’t like that “wear” is both a clue and an answer. That made me hesitate on filling that “put on” answer in. Otherwise a relatively easy solve for Thursday but it did seem like the theme was missing some circled letters (though I did still find it helpful). Agreed with Glenn on the plural.

  3. No errors. Thought the same as @glen and @anonymous. Those “unwritten” rules.

    Regarding the 57A test. If you leave coke sit for awhile, It tastes like Pepsi. IMO of course. As I’ve grown older, Pepsi just doesn’t have pizzazz for me like coke.

    But either one will work with a heaping glass of ice cream. Mmmmmm

  4. @glen … did u do the NEWSDAY today?
    I enjoyed that one. I was completely flummoxed on my first pass. Stopped. Then reset. It literally was 5 long words.

  5. Re: NGOS …

    My God! A nit! Or, at least, a possible nit! Let us fall upon it with glad cries and pick it to shreds, pretending that it is symptomatic of massive incompetence!

    Or, we could shrug and say “Setters and editors are human, after all.” The error (if, indeed, that’s what it was) deserved momentary attention.

    1. My God! Someone points out an error! I must fall upon their comments with cries and defend the error to the death.

      Or, I could shrug and say “Setters and editors are human, after all.” The error deserved momentary attention–which is exactly what it got.

  6. 14:47 – no errors or lookups. Revisions were: YRS>OZS, BEATOFF>HEADOFF, KATIE>KATEY, LOAD>LADE.

    I agree that clue & answer plurality of 28D is not right.

    The use of “wear” as clue and answer is indicative of the “wonderful” flexibility of the English language.

    Figured out the theme. it helped only to confirm the themed answers I’d filled in.

  7. The 28D clue, “Gps.”, is plural, but the answer is singular, period. Not a huge deal, but poor form.

    The ugliest problem with this puzzle is the number of PPPs (People, Places, Products and other proper nouns). I quit counting at 30. My solve ended in the SE corner (where yours may well have if you don’t know your LOTR references, your cast members on long ago Netflix series, or your bagel bite brands). But what a cast of characters to share a MT DEW, some OREIDA munchies or PEPSI with! Let’s see, there’s MAO, Ms O’HARE, EVEL, IAN, OSKAR, KATEY, VLAD …

  8. Mostly easy Thursday for me; took 17:52 with no peeks or errors. Did have to dance around here and there, but managed with crosses and guesses when I had enough letters. Theme didn’t really register until I got here.

    Learned what a NYCTOPHOBIC is today. Aced Wordle in 3 and Worldle in 1.

  9. No look ups,no errors. Fairly straightforward Thursday puzzle. I got
    28D with the crosses so the “tense” didn’t
    make me tense 😂 I tuned into the theme
    fairly early and it helped…

  10. Mr. Deeney tried a little bit too hard on some of these clues (only some examples have been noted above) and Mr. Norris apparently didn’t care.

    The theme was pretty useless, perhaps as intended. Long multi-word answers that contain the letters ‘radio’ in some jumbled form but consecutively isn’t really especially clever or helpful.

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