LA Times Crossword 17 May 22, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Doug Peterson
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Reveal Answer: Pair of Pants

Themed answers each comprise TWO kinds of PANTS:

  • 61A Trousers, and what the answer to each starred clue literally is : PAIR OF PANTS
  • 17A *Saddle attachment for a tall jockey? : LONG STIRRUP (“long pants” & “stirrup pants”)
  • 28A *Stevedore school instruction? : CARGO TRAINING (“cargo pants” & “training pants”)
  • 46A *Relaxing exercise for skydivers? : PARACHUTE YOGA (“parachute pants” & “yoga pants”)

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

Bill’s time: 7m 33s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Olive Garden selections : PASTAS

Olive Garden is a chain of Italian-American restaurants that has over 800 locations worldwide. The chain was originally established as part of General Mills. The current owners of the chain also operate Red Lobster restaurants. Apparently there are plans to co-located Olive Garden and Red Lobster eateries so that they have separate entries but share kitchens.

11 “Dropped” drug : LSD

Someone taking the drug LSD is often said to be “dropping acid”. The use of the verb “to drop” was popular slang long before LSD came on the scene, and back then applied to the taking of any illegal drug.

14 Nabisco cookie : OREO

If you take a close look at the embossed design on the front and back of an Oreo cookie, you’ll spot the main elements of the Nabisco logo. Those elements are an oval with a cross on top, a cross with two bars. Usually the company name “Nabisco” is inside the oval, but for the cookie it’s the brand name “Oreo”. The current embossed design was introduced in 1952.

15 Wool source : ALPACA

Alpacas are like small llamas, but unlike llamas were never beasts of burden. Alpacas were bred specifically for the fleece. As such, there are no known wild alpacas these days, even in their native Peru.

17 *Saddle attachment for a tall jockey? : LONG STIRRUP (“long pants” & “stirrup pants”)

Stirrup pants are a ladies’ garment that resembles a pair of leggings, but with a strap at the end of each leg that is worn under the arch of the foot. The original stirrup pants were worn by horse riders. The strap under the foot kept the pant leg in place inside the riding boot.

20 Supplement : ADD TO

A “supplement” is something added to “supply” a deficiency. The terms “supplement” and “supply” both derive from the Latin verb “supplere” meaning “to fill up”.

21 Sweet potato kin : YAM

Although in the US we sometimes refer to sweet potatoes as “yams”, the yam is actually a completely different family of plants. True yams are more common in other parts of the world than they are in this country, and are especially common in Africa.

23 Oodles : A LOT

It’s thought that the term “oodles”, meaning “a lot”, comes from “kit and caboodle”.

26 “I Dream of __” : JEANNIE

Back in 1964, the second most watched show on American television was ABC’s “Bewitched”. Sidney Sheldon was tasked with the job of creating a rival sitcom and he came up with “I Dream of Jeannie”, which first aired in 1965 and starred Barbara Eden in the title role. The censors had a big say in how the story developed. For starters, Jeannie’s skimpy costume was permitted on air, provided that Eden didn’t show off her navel on the screen. Also, Jeannie was only allowed to live with an unmarried man as long as the story made it clear that she slept in a bottle.

28 *Stevedore school instruction? : CARGO TRAINING (“cargo pants” & “training pants”)

Cargo is freight carried by some vehicle. The term “cargo” comes into English via Spanish, ultimately deriving from the Latin “carricare” meaning “to load on a cart”.

A stevedore, or longshoreman, is someone employed in the loading and unloading of ships at a port. The word “stevedore” comes from the Spanish “estibador”, meaning “one who loads cargo”, with the verb “to steeve” meaning to load cargo in a hold. The word “longshoreman”, is simply from a man who works “alongshore”.

Cargo pants are trousers made out of hard-wearing material and have several large pockets designed to carry tools. They are sometimes referred to as “combat pants”, reflecting the original use by members of the armed forces in the 1930s and 1940s.

32 “A Sorta Fairytale” singer Tori : AMOS

Tori Amos is an American pianist and singer. She started playing the piano at two years old, and was composing piano pieces by age five. Amos was playing in piano bars (chaperoned by her father) when she was 14. I’m going to have to find some of her music …

34 Thaw, as a wing : DEICE

Deicing is the process of removing snow and ice from a surface. Deicing is particularly important for aircraft operating in freezing conditions. Ice on the surface of a plane can change its aerodynamics, and dislodged ice can cause damage to engines.

38 Billiards stick : POOL CUE

The more correct name for the game of pool is “pocket billiards”. The designation “pool” arose after pocket billiards became a common feature in “pool halls”, places where gamblers “pooled” their money to bet on horse races.

41 Org. with seven teams in Canada : NHL

The National Hockey League (NHL) was formed in 1917 in Montreal as a successor to the defunct National Hockey Association (NHA) that had been founded in 1909.

42 One-named “Hello” singer : ADELE

“Hello” is a 2015 song by English singer Adele that won her three Grammy Awards: Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Solo Performance.

44 Swiss peak : ALP

There are eight Alpine countries:

  • Austria
  • Slovenia
  • France
  • Switzerland
  • Liechtenstein
  • Germany
  • Monaco
  • Italy

Switzerland is a landlocked country in Central Europe that comprises four distinct linguistic and cultural regions: German, French, Italian and Romansh. It is a very developed nation, and has the highest nominal wealth per adult in the world. Having visited, I can attest to the steep prices encountered by tourists …

45 Air conditioner nos. : BTUS

In the world of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), the power of a heating or cooling unit can be measured using the British Thermal Unit (BTU). This dated unit is the amount of energy required to heat a pound of water so that the water’s temperature increases by one degree Fahrenheit.

46 *Relaxing exercise for skydivers? : PARACHUTE YOGA (“parachute pants” & “yoga pants”)

Parachute pants are characteristically made out of a nylon material that is similar to that used in parachutes, hence the name.

50 Beach scavenger : SEAGULL

Gulls are a family of seabirds that is most closely related to terns. Some species of gull can be quite clever. For example, they can reportedly use pieces of bread as bait to catch goldfish in ponds. Others can be quite fearless, and have been known to land on the backs of whales and peck out pieces of flesh.

54 “WandaVision” actress Dennings : KAT

Kat Dennings is the stage name of actress Katherine Litwack, who is noted today for her co-starring role on CBS’s sitcom “2 Broke Girls”. Dennings is an avid blogger, and you can check out her video blog on YouTube.

“WandaVision” is a TV miniseries featuring characters from Marvel Comics. The title characters are Wanda Maximoff (aka Scarlet Witch) played by Elizabeth Olsen and Vision played by Paul Bettany. I am by no means a fan of screen adaptations of comic characters, but I might take a look at “WandaVision”. Wanda and Vision are living in suburbia, trying to conceal their superhero identities. Each episode progresses the storyline through several decades, using situations encountered in sitcoms of the day. Episodes use the format of shows such as:

  • The Dick Van Dyke Show
  • I Love Lucy
  • Bewitched
  • I Dream of Jeannie
  • The Brady Bunch
  • Good Times
  • The Mary Tyler Moore Show
  • Full House
  • Malcolm in the Middle
  • Modern Family
  • Out of this World
  • The Twilight Zone

Sounds very intriguing …

56 Thesaurus name : ROGET

The first person to use the term “thesaurus” to mean a “collection of words arranged according to sense” was Roget in 1852, when he used it for the title of his most famous work. Up to that point in time, a thesaurus was basically an encyclopedia. Before being used with reference to books, a thesaurus was a storehouse or treasury, coming from the Latin “thesaurus” meaning “treasury, treasure”.

61 Trousers, and what the answer to each starred clue literally is : PAIR OF PANTS

The term “pants”, meaning “trousers”, is an abbreviated form of “pantaloons” and first appeared in the 1840s. Pantaloons were a kind of tights named for a silly old male character in Italian comedy named “Pantaloun” who always wore tight trousers over skinny legs.

64 Albertan’s last letter : ZED

The letter zed has been around since about 1400, and derives from the Greek letter zeta. The spelling and pronunciation “zee”, used in America today, first popped up in the 1670s. The spelling and pronunciation “zed” is still used in Britain and Ireland.

Alberta (Alta.) is a big province, one about the size of Texas. It is named after Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, the fourth child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Princess Louise also donated her name to Lake Louise, the large glacial lake in the province, now within the bounds of Banff National Park.

65 __ milk : ALMOND

I’m a big fan of plain, unsweetened almond milk. Basic almond milk is made by combining almonds and water in a blender, and then straining out the almond pulp. Almond milk is now the most popular plant milk in the US, with soy milk being the second-most popular.

66 Polling results, say : DATA

Our word “data” (singular “datum”) comes from the Latin “datum” meaning “given”. The idea is that data are “things given”.

68 Title usually abbreviated : MISTER

“Mr.” is an abbreviation for “mister”, and “Mrs.” an abbreviation for “mistress”.

69 With 53-Across, “The Mandalorian” franchise : STAR …
53A See 69-Across : … WARS

“The Mandalorian” is a TV series in the “Star Wars” universe that is set five years after the events in the 1983 film “Return of the Jedi”. The show was created by actor and filmmaker Jon Favreau, and has been well received. The title character is Din Djarin (played by Pedro Pascal), a bounty hunter with a ward named Grogu. Grogu is an infant of the same species as Yoda, and so is referred to by viewers as “Baby Yoda”.

Down

1 Fast-food beverage : COLA

The first cola drink to become a commercial success was Coca-Cola, soon after it was invented by a druggist in 1886. The first sales were in Jacob’s Pharmacy in Atlanta, Georgia, where a glass of the new beverage sold for five cents. That original Coca-Cola was flavored mainly with kola nuts and vanilla. The formulation was based on an alcoholic drink called Coca Wine that had been on sale for over twenty years.

2 Three-time A.L. MVP : A-ROD

Baseball player Alex Rodriguez, nicknamed “A-Rod”, hit his 600th home run on August 4th, 2010. He had hit his 500th home run exactly three years earlier, on August 4th, 2007, when he became the youngest player in Major League history to join the 500-home run club.

4 Military IDs : DOG TAGS

The identification tags worn by soldiers are often called “dog tags”, simply because they do resemble tags worn by dogs. US military personnel are required to wear dog tags when in the field. Each soldier wears either two tags or a special tag that breaks easily into two identical pieces. The idea is that if a soldier is killed, then one half can be removed for notification and the remaining half stays with the body. Each tag contains basics such as name and ID number, medical information like blood type, and possibly a religious preference.

5 Basketball coach Summitt in the Hall of Fame : PAT

Pat Summitt was a college basketball head coach. She coached the Tennessee Lady Vols team for 38 years starting in 1974. Sadly, Summitt stepped down in 2012 following a diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, and passed away in 2016.

6 “Baby Cobra” comedian Wong : ALI

Ali Wong is a stand-up comedian from San Francisco who is a protégé of Chris Rock. She made two very successful Netflix stand-up specials “Baby Cobra” and “Hard Knock Wife”. She also worked as a writer for the hit sitcom “Fresh Off the Boat”.

8 __ P. Henson of “Empire” : TARAJI

Taraji P. Henson is an actress whose breakthrough role was Queenie in 2008’s “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”, a role for which she was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. I best know her as one of the leads in the excellent 2016 biographical drama “Hidden Figures”. TV viewers might know Henson for playing Cookie Lyon in the musical drama series “Empire”.

9 Keen insight : ACUMEN

“Acumen” is such a lovely word, I think, one meaning “keenness of judgment or insight”. “Acumen” is Latin for “point, sting”, the idea being that someone with acumen has mental sharpness.

10 Tree goo : SAP

There are two types of sap in a plant. Xylem sap is a watery solution that moves from the roots to the leaves. Phloem sap is a sugary solution that moves from the leaves (where sugars are produced) to the parts of the plant where sugars are used.

11 Giving an earful : LACING INTO

To lace into is to attack violently. “To lace into” is similar to the verb “to lay into”.

12 Hindu teacher : SWAMI

A swami is a religious teacher in the Hindu tradition. The word “swami” can also mean “husband” in the Bengali and Malay languages.

22 Novelist Tyler : ANNE

Anne Tyler is a novelist from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Most of Tyler’s novels are set in Baltimore, Maryland, where she now resides. Tyler’s most famous title has to be “The Accidental Tourist”, which was adapted into a 1988 film starring William Hurt, Kathleen Turner and Geena Davis. Tyler might be considered somewhat of a recluse in her professional life, as she rarely makes personal appearances to promote her books.

24 Miranda of “Homeland” : OTTO

Miranda Otto is an actress from Brisbane, Australia. She is best known in North America for playing Éowyn in “The Lord of the Rings” series of films.

25 Rascal Flatts, e.g. : TRIO

Rascal Flatts was a country music trio that started performing together in 1999. The group got the name from someone watching them play together at a bar in Nashville, someone who had a band with that name in the 1960s. The trio wrote up a contract there and then on a napkin, and paid $5,000 for the name “Rascal Flatts”.

28 Where to find a cocina : CASA

In Spanish, “la cocina” (the kitchen) and “el baño” (the bathroom) are “salas” (rooms) in a “casa” (house).

30 Annual floral procession in Pasadena : ROSE PARADE

The first Rose Parade was staged in 1890 on New Year’s Day in Pasadena, California. The initial parades were organized by the Pasadena Valley Hunt Club, whose members wanted to highlight the mild winter weather in the area. The initial parades did not feature flowers, but these were added to underscore the favorable climate. It was the inclusion of the flowers that gave rise to the name “Tournament of Roses”. The first Rose Bowl football game was played in 1902.

Pasadena, California is famous for hosting the annual Rose Bowl football game, as well as the related Tournament of Roses Parade. The name “Pasadena” was chosen somewhat arbitrarily. A missionary in Michigan supplied a list of translations of the names “Crown of the Valley”, “Key of the Valley” etc, in the Chippewa language when the locals were choosing a name. All of the translations ended in “pasadena” meaning “of the valley”. The word was liked, so it was picked.

31 God to more than two billion : ALLAH

The name “Allah” comes from the Arabic “al-” and “ilah”, meaning “the” and “deity”. So, “Allah” can be translated as “God”.

36 “Frozen” sister : ELSA

“Frozen” is a 2013 animated feature from Walt Disney Studios that is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Snow Queen”. The film is all about the exploits of Princess Anna, the younger sister of Elsa, Snow Queen of Arendelle. Spoiler alert: Prince Hans of the Southern Isles seems to be a good guy for most of the film, but turns out to be a baddie in the end. And, a snowman named Olaf provides some comic relief.

38 Chile neighbor : PERU

Peru’s name comes from the word “Biru”. Back in the early 1500s, Biru was a ruler living near the Bay of San Miguel in Panama. The territory over which Biru ruled was the furthest land south in the Americas known to Europeans at that time. The Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro was the first European to move south of Biru’s empire and the land that he found was designated “Peru”, a derivative of “Biru”.

The nation of Chile has a very distinctive shape. It is a narrow strip that runs up the west coast of South America. The average width of the country is only a little over 100 miles, and yet its length is about 2,700 miles. Chile is touted as the longest country in the world, although I am not so sure what that means exactly. I mean, Russia extends about 4,800 miles from east-to west, so maybe “longest” implies long in the north-south direction?

47 High-pH compound : ALKALI

The “opposite” of an acid is a base. Acids turn litmus paper red, and bases turn it blue. Acids and bases react with each other to form salts. An important subset of the chemicals called bases are alkalis, hydroxides of the alkali metals and of ammonium. The term “alkali” is sometimes used interchangeably with “base”, especially if that base is readily soluble in water.

As we all recall from chemistry class, a pH of 7 is considered neutral. Anything less than 7 is an acid, and anything above 7 is a base.

49 Wyatt of the Old West : EARP

Wyatt Earp is famous as one of the participants in the gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Earp was a city policeman in Wichita, Kansas and also in Dodge City, Kansas. Earp was also deputy sheriff in Tombstone, Arizona where the O.K. Corral gunfight took place. Years later, Earp joined the Alaska Gold Rush and with a partner built and operated the Dexter Saloon in Nome.

50 Language of Southern Africa : SWAZI

The Kingdom of Swaziland is located in southern Africa and is a nation almost completely surrounded by South Africa. Swaziland is quite a small country, only 120 miles long from north to south, and 80 miles from east to west.

51 Artist’s stand : EASEL

The word “easel” comes from an old Dutch word meaning “donkey”, would you believe? The idea is that an easel carries its load (an oil painting, say) just as a donkey would be made to carry a load.

57 Puny pest : GNAT

Gnats are attracted to the smell of rotting food, and vinegar. Simple homemade traps that use vinegar are often constructed to attract and kill gnats.

58 Blues legend James : ETTA

“Etta James” was the stage name of celebrated blues and soul singer Jamesetta Hawkins. James’ most famous recording was her 1960 hit “At Last”, which made it into the pop charts. James performed “At Last” at the age of 71 in 2009 on the reality show “Dancing with the Stars”, which was to be her final television appearance. She passed away in 2012.

59 Russian sovereign : TSAR

The term “czar” (also “tsar”) is a Slavic word that was first used as a title by Simeon I of Bulgaria in 913 AD. “Czar” is derived from the word “caesar”, which was synonymous with “emperor” at that time. We tend to use the “czar” spelling, as opposed to “tsar”, when we describe a person today with great power or authority, e.g. “Drug Czar”.

61 Nonstick spray brand : PAM

PAM cooking spray was introduced in 1961 by Leon Rubin and Arthur Meyerhoff. The name “PAM” is an acronym … standing for “Product of Arthur Meyerhoff”. Who’d a thunk it …?

62 Common Scrabble tile value : ONE

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”.

63 Pres. on a dime : FDR

President Roosevelt was a major driver in the founding of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis. The Foundation’s most successful fundraising campaign was to encourage the public to just send a dime to support the charity, so that even before the Foundation officially changed its name, the public were already calling it March of Dimes. After President Roosevelt passed away in office, Congress passed legislation calling for a new design for the dime, one featuring the image of FDR. The Roosevelt dime was introduced in 1946, on the day that would have been the President’s 64th birthday.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Item sold with an envelope : CARD
5 Olive Garden selections : PASTAS
11 “Dropped” drug : LSD
14 Nabisco cookie : OREO
15 Wool source : ALPACA
16 Reverent feeling : AWE
17 *Saddle attachment for a tall jockey? : LONG STIRRUP (“long pants” & “stirrup pants”)
19 “__ I help you?” : CAN
20 Supplement : ADD TO
21 Sweet potato kin : YAM
22 Targets : AIMS
23 Oodles : A LOT
26 “I Dream of __” : JEANNIE
28 *Stevedore school instruction? : CARGO TRAINING (“cargo pants” & “training pants”)
32 “A Sorta Fairytale” singer Tori : AMOS
33 Shop __ you drop : ‘TIL
34 Thaw, as a wing : DEICE
37 Familial nickname : SIS
38 Billiards stick : POOL CUE
41 Org. with seven teams in Canada : NHL
42 One-named “Hello” singer : ADELE
44 Swiss peak : ALP
45 Air conditioner nos. : BTUS
46 *Relaxing exercise for skydivers? : PARACHUTE YOGA (“parachute pants” & “yoga pants”)
50 Beach scavenger : SEAGULL
52 Tusked beast : BOAR
53 See 69-Across : … WARS
54 “WandaVision” actress Dennings : KAT
56 Thesaurus name : ROGET
60 Pretty-picture link : … AS A …
61 Trousers, and what the answer to each starred clue literally is : PAIR OF PANTS
64 Albertan’s last letter : ZED
65 __ milk : ALMOND
66 Polling results, say : DATA
67 Project conclusion? : -ILE
68 Title usually abbreviated : MISTER
69 With 53-Across, “The Mandalorian” franchise : STAR …

Down

1 Fast-food beverage : COLA
2 Three-time A.L. MVP : A-ROD
3 Tear apart : REND
4 Military IDs : DOG TAGS
5 Basketball coach Summitt in the Hall of Fame : PAT
6 “Baby Cobra” comedian Wong : ALI
7 Nimble : SPRY
8 __ P. Henson of “Empire” : TARAJI
9 Keen insight : ACUMEN
10 Tree goo : SAP
11 Giving an earful : LACING INTO
12 Hindu teacher : SWAMI
13 Tightly packed : DENSE
18 Recital piece : SOLO
22 Novelist Tyler : ANNE
24 Miranda of “Homeland” : OTTO
25 Rascal Flatts, e.g. : TRIO
27 Deputy : AIDE
28 Where to find a cocina : CASA
29 In a group of : AMID
30 Annual floral procession in Pasadena : ROSE PARADE
31 God to more than two billion : ALLAH
35 Guzzle : CHUG
36 “Frozen” sister : ELSA
38 Chile neighbor : PERU
39 Driver or putter : CLUB
40 Capable of : UP TO
43 Drops back : LAGS
45 Detour routes, often : BY-ROADS
47 High-pH compound : ALKALI
48 Insurance filings : CLAIMS
49 Wyatt of the Old West : EARP
50 Language of Southern Africa : SWAZI
51 Artist’s stand : EASEL
55 Brisk pace : TROT
57 Puny pest : GNAT
58 Blues legend James : ETTA
59 Russian sovereign : TSAR
61 Nonstick spray brand : PAM
62 Common Scrabble tile value : ONE
63 Pres. on a dime : FDR

17 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 17 May 22, Tuesday”

  1. 9:40 and no errors. My fingers weren’t typing very accurately this morning–lots of backspacing and retyping. I think I would have done better with pen-on-paper.

    1. The Kingdom of Swaziland is now known as the Kingdom of Eswatini. The language is also called siSwati.

  2. 11:32 – no errors or lookups. Revisions: ADDON>ADDTO, SONG>SOLO, SLEW>ALOT, MISSUS>MISTER.

    New items: “A Sorta Fairytale,” KAT Dennings (although I watched WandaVision), ANNE Tyler, OTTO Miranda.

    Theme (61A, et al) was easy to see, but not solved soon enough to help.

  3. I’ve never had this happen before, but on your website I cannot go to puzzles from last year which I am only doing now. The up and down arrows where 2022 is located will not go anywhere but 2022. Is this something new? I hope it is just a glitch and can be fixed.

  4. Can anyone shed light on the purpose of the modifier “Albertan’s” in 64A? Isn’t zed the last letter for anyone in the English speaking world? Why did the constructor single out Alberta? Why not Manitoban’s last letter, British Columbian’s, or for that matter Texan’s or Englishman’s? What am I missing here?

  5. A little tough for a Tuesday; took 13:01 with no peeks or errors, although plenty of dancing around to get all the people I never heard of: TARAJI, KAT, OTTO and TRIO for that matter.

    @Tim in Sequim – I think most people in the US use zee as the last letter of the alphabet, whereas in the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand use zed.

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