LA Times Crossword 24 May 22, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Ella Dershowitz
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Reveal Answer: Well Played!

Themed answers each start with something that can be PLAYED:

  • 56A “How clever of you!,” and a hint to the first words of the answers to the starred clues : WELL PLAYED!
  • 17A *Hunting-and-fishing official : GAME WARDEN
  • 24A *End a relationship : PART WAYS
  • 35A *Slouch : HUNCH OVER
  • 48A *Adorn with lots of bling : TRICK OUT

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

Bill’s time: 8m 33s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

14 “My life. My card” card co. : AMEX

“Amex” is short for “American Express”, the name of the financial services company that is best known for its credit card, charge card and traveler’s check businesses. The company name is indicative of its original business. American Express was founded in 1850 in Buffalo, New York as an express mail service.

15 World Heritage Site in Jordan : PETRA

The archaeological city of Petra in Jordan sounds like a fabulous sight, and is known for its beautiful buildings that have been carved out of the natural rock. Petra is Jordan’s most visited tourist attraction.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is better known by the acronym “UNESCO”. UNESCO’s mission is to help build peace in the world using programs focused on education, the sciences, culture, communication and information. The organization’s work is aimed in particular at Africa, and gender equalization. UNESCO also administers a World Heritage Site program that designates and helps conserve sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance to humanity across the world.

16 Law school newbie : ONE L

“One L” is a name used in general for first-year law students, especially those attending Harvard.

20 Sport that made its Olympic debut in 2021 : KARATE

Karate is a martial art that originated in the Ryukyu Kingdom, which is now part of Japan. A practitioner of karate is known as a karateka. The sport of karate was included as an Olympic sport starting with the 2020 Games.

31 Filmmaker 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.

32 ATM key : ENTER

Automatic Teller Machine (ATM)

41 Mont. neighbor : IDA

Idaho borders six states, and one Canadian province:

  • Montana
  • Wyoming
  • Nevada
  • Utah
  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • British Columbia

44 Reacted to head scritches, maybe : PURRED

In common parlance, a scritch is a calming scratch given to a pet, to show affection and give pleasure to the animal.

46 Most junk mail : ADS

If you are the recipient of advertising mail, you might refer to it as junk mail. If you are the sender, then you probably call it direct mail.

47 Amanda Gorman creation : POEM

Amanda Gorman is a poet and activist who, in 2017, was the first person named as the National Youth Poet Laureate. Famously, Gorman recited her poem “The Hill We Climb” at the inauguration of President Biden in 2021.

When day comes, we step out of the shade aflame and unafraid. The new dawn blooms as we free it. For there is always light. If only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it.

48 *Adorn with lots of bling : TRICK OUT

Bling-bling (often simply “bling”) is the name given to all the shiny stuff sported by rap stars in particular i.e. the jewelry, watches, metallic cell phones, even gold caps on the teeth. The term comes from the supposed “bling” sound caused by light striking a shiny metal surface.

51 Pandemonium : CHAOS

In Greek mythology, Chaos was the first of the primeval gods born at the creation of the universe. Following Chaos came:

  • Gaia, the primordial goddess of the Earth
  • Tartaros, the primordial god of the Underworld
  • Eros, the primordial god of Love
  • Nyx, the primordial goddess of the Night
  • Erebus, the primordial god of Darkness
  • Aither, the primordial god of Light
  • Hemera, the primordial goddess of the Day

The word “pandemonium” was coined in 1667 by John Milton in his epic poem “Paradise Lost”. It is the name he invented for the capital of Hell, “the High Capital, of Satan and his Peers”.

52 Lots and lots : OODLES

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

In the idiomatic expression “the whole kit and caboodle”, “caboodle” (sometimes spelled “kaboodle”) is an informal term describing a bunch of people, or sometimes “the whole lot”.

60 Luxury watch : OMEGA

Omega is a manufacturer of high-end watches based in Switzerland. An Omega watch was the first portable timepiece to make it to the moon, Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that James Bond has been wearing an Omega watch in the movies since 1995.

61 Romance novelist Roberts who writes mysteries as J.D. Robb : NORA

Nora Roberts is a very successful author who has written over 165 romance novels. Roberts is published under a number of pen names, i.e. J.D. Robb, Jill March and Sarah Hardesty.

62 “Let It Go” singer in “Frozen” : ELSA

“Let It Go” is an incredibly successful song from the Disney animated film “Frozen” released in 2013. It was performed in the movie by Idina Menzel, who also was the voice actor for the character Elsa. “Let It Go” is one of the very few Disney songs to make it into the Billboard Top Ten.

Down

1 Duffel or tote : BAG

A duffel bag is a cylindrical tote bag with a drawstring top, often used by military personnel. The bag is made of this cloth, a cloth that originally came from the town of Duffel in Belgium, hence the name.

2 Sushi experience curated by the chef : OMAKASE

When food is ordered “omakase” in a Japanese restaurant, the patron is asking the chef to choose what is served. The term “omakase” comes from the Japanese for “to entrust”.

5 Petty quarrel : SPAT

The word “petty”, meaning “small-minded”, comes from the French word for small, “petit”. When “petty” first came into English it wasn’t used disparagingly, and was used more literally giving us terms like “petty officer” and “petty cash”. The word “petty” evolved into a prefix “petti-” with the meaning of “small”, as in the word “petticoat”.

7 Liftoff approx. : ETD

Estimated time of departure (ETD)

8 Tapas corncake : AREPA

An arepa is a cornmeal cake or bread that is popular in Colombian and Venezuelan cuisines in particular. Each arepa has a flat, round shape and is often split to make a sandwich.

“Tapa” is the Spanish word for “lid”. There is no clear rationale for why this word came to be used for an appetizer. There are lots of explanations cited, all of which seem to involve the temporary covering of one’s glass of wine with a plate or item of food to either preserve the wine or give one extra space at the table.

11 Glands in squids and cuttlefish : INK SACS

Octopodes and squid have the ability to release a dark pigment into the water as a means of escape. The dark pigment is called cephalopod ink (the squid and octopus belong to the class cephalopoda) and is stored in an ink sac. The dark color is created by melanin, the same substance that acts as a pigment in human skin.

Squids are cephalopods with large eyes, two tentacles and eight arms. They can move very rapidly through the water, using jet propulsion. Very commonly, squid is served as a food under the name “calamari”.

Cuttlefish are marine animals that are related to squids and octopodes. Cuttlefish have a unique internal shell and are molluscs, not fish.

22 Mall map units : STORES

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.

23 Crow’s call : CAW

Ravens and crows are very similar species, and it can be difficult to tell them apart. Ravens are a little larger and often travel in pairs, whereas crows are a little smaller and are usually seen in larger groups. Crows make a cawing sound, while the raven’s call is more like a croak.

26 “Harriet the __”: kid-lit classic : SPY

“Harriet the Spy” is a 1964 children’s novel by American writer and illustrator Louise Fitzhugh. Fitzhugh followed up “Harriet the Spy” with a 1965 sequel “The Long Secret”, and then a 1979 prequel “Sport”.

28 Novelist Patchett : ANN

Ann Patchett is an author who lives in Nashville, Tennessee. Patchett’s most famous work is probably her novel “Bel Canto”, published in 2001. In 2012, “Time” included her in the magazine’s list of 100 most influential people in the world.

32 “Mystery solved!” : EUREKA!

“Eureka” translates from Greek as “I have found it”. The word is usually associated with Archimedes, uttered as he stepped into his bath one day. His discovery was that the volume of water that was displaced was equal to that of the object (presumably his foot) that had been submerged. He used this fact to determine the volume of a crown, something he needed in order to determine if it was made of pure gold or was a forgery.

35 Cinnamon-y rice milk drink : HORCHATA

Horchata is a plant-based drink that possibly originated in North Africa, but now is very much associated with the Spanish-speaking world. There are many versions of horchata. The original, still found in some African countries, is made from soaked, ground and sweetened tiger nuts.

39 Upper arm muscle : TRICEPS

The triceps brachii muscle is found at the back of the upper arm. The muscle’s name translates from Latin to “three-headed arm muscle”, fitting as it is actually made up of three bundles of muscles.

42 Sweet course : DESSERT

Our word “dessert” comes from the French verb “desservir” meaning “to clear the table”. The idea is that dessert is usually the last course to be cleared from the table.

43 “Yo te __” : AMO

In Spanish, one might say “yo te amo” (I love you) “con flores” (with flowers).

45 Some a cappella singing : DOO-WOP

Doo-wop developed in the 1940s and can be described as a vocal-based R&B music. Even though the style has been around since the forties, the name doo-wop wasn’t introduced until the early sixties.

A cappella music is sung without instruments accompanying. “A cappella” translates from Italian as “in the manner of the chapel”.

47 Central European country : POLAND

The country of Poland takes her name from the West Slavic tribe known as the Polans.

50 “Good” cholesterol initials : HDL

HDL (high-density lipoprotein) is a compound that is used to transport fats around the body. When HDL is combined with (i.e. is transporting) cholesterol, it is often called “good cholesterol”. This is because HDL seems to remove cholesterol from where it should not be, say on the walls of arteries, and transports it to the liver for reuse or disposal. Important stuff …

52 “Black Widow” actress Kurylenko : OLGA

Olga Kurylenko is a Ukrainian actress and model. Kurylenko played the Bond girl Camille Montes in the James Bond movie “Quantum of Solace”.

“Black Widow” is a 2021 superhero movie in the Marvel Comics universe. The title character is played by Scarlett Johansson, a role that she played in several earlier films.

53 Iridescent stone : OPAL

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

The largest opal ever found, and the most valuable, is the Olympic Australis. It was discovered in South Australia in 1956. That same year, the Summer Olympics were being held in Melbourne so the newly discovered stone was given the name “Olympic Australis”.

55 __ makhani: lentil dish : DAL

I love dal dishes, which are prepared from various peas or beans (often lentils) that have been stripped of their outer skins and split. Dal is an important part of Indian cuisines. I suppose in Indian terms, split pea soup (another of my favorites) would be called a dal.

Several dishes in Indian cuisine bear the name “makhani”. “Makhani” is a Punjabi word meaning “butter”. A popular example is murgh makhani, which also goes by the English name “butter chicken”.

58 Calendar square : DAY

Our word “calendar” ultimately derives from the Latin “calendae”. “Calends” were the first days of each Roman month. The Latin “calendarium” was an account book, as the debts fell due and accounts were reckoned on the first day of each month.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Fail to interest : BORE
5 Bundle of papers : SHEAF
10 Needs no hemming, say : FITS
14 “My life. My card” card co. : AMEX
15 World Heritage Site in Jordan : PETRA
16 Law school newbie : ONE L
17 *Hunting-and-fishing official : GAME WARDEN
19 Just good enough : OKAY
20 Sport that made its Olympic debut in 2021 : KARATE
21 Personal histories : PASTS
23 Supermarket conveniences : CARTS
24 *End a relationship : PART WAYS
27 Poses a question : ASKS
28 Tire filler : AIR
30 Boot tip : TOE CAP
31 Filmmaker Craven : WES
32 ATM key : ENTER
34 Like voices after a loud party : RASPY
35 *Slouch : HUNCH OVER
37 Audition hopeful : ACTOR
40 Lots and lots : HEAPS
41 Mont. neighbor : IDA
44 Reacted to head scritches, maybe : PURRED
46 Most junk mail : ADS
47 Amanda Gorman creation : POEM
48 *Adorn with lots of bling : TRICK OUT
50 “In what way?” : HOW SO?
51 Pandemonium : CHAOS
52 Lots and lots : OODLES
54 Start of a story : IDEA
56 “How clever of you!,” and a hint to the first words of the answers to the starred clues : WELL PLAYED!
59 Like kids at a magic show : RAPT
60 Luxury watch : OMEGA
61 Romance novelist Roberts who writes mysteries as J.D. Robb : NORA
62 “Let It Go” singer in “Frozen” : ELSA
63 Bicycle part : PEDAL
64 Jury __ : DUTY

Down

1 Duffel or tote : BAG
2 Sushi experience curated by the chef : OMAKASE
3 Comments : REMARKS
4 Applies, as influence : EXERTS
5 Petty quarrel : SPAT
6 Attendance answer : HERE
7 Liftoff approx. : ETD
8 Tapas corncake : AREPA
9 Tribute pieces by devotees : FAN ART
10 Shoes : FOOTWEAR
11 Glands in squids and cuttlefish : INK SACS
12 Sweet __ : TEA
13 Crafty : SLY
18 “Now, where __ I?” : WAS
22 Mall map units : STORES
23 Crow’s call : CAW
24 First word in many a baking recipe : PREHEAT …
25 Sharp bark : YAP
26 “Harriet the __”: kid-lit classic : SPY
28 Novelist Patchett : ANN
29 Symptom targeted by an oatmeal bath : ITCH
32 “Mystery solved!” : EUREKA!
33 Street : ROAD
35 Cinnamon-y rice milk drink : HORCHATA
36 Corp. execs : VPS
37 Just right : APT
38 Mean mutt : CUR
39 Upper arm muscle : TRICEPS
41 Words of gratitude : I OWE YOU
42 Sweet course : DESSERT
43 “Yo te __” : AMO
45 Some a cappella singing : DOO-WOP
47 Central European country : POLAND
49 “I’m here to help” : USE ME
50 “Good” cholesterol initials : HDL
52 “Black Widow” actress Kurylenko : OLGA
53 Iridescent stone : OPAL
54 Rage : IRE
55 __ makhani: lentil dish : DAL
57 Acted as tour guide : LED
58 Calendar square : DAY

21 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 24 May 22, Tuesday”

  1. . Down near the end, I had to change
    “Rolex” to “Omega” but got it done in time to finish
    with no errors and no lookups.

  2. Pet Peeve One L is not used in general, basically only at Harvard.
    I haven’t enjoyed the puzzles lately, just a little off in cluing, etc. I think that I will stop doing this one.

  3. It’s like all the setters got together and decided to ramp up the obscurity and the nonsense👎

  4. Why is it that puzzlers and editors seem to ignore the maxim that if the clue is singular then the answer must be singular? Irksome, for sure. Laziness by the editor. 39D is an example of this kind of mistake.

    1. Not really. The scientific Latin name is “Triceps brachii” which gets abbreviated to just “triceps”. So nothing lazy on that one.

  5. 10:49, and lucky to escape with my head attached. This one was sneakily difficult. Peppered with a bunch of names no one knows, too.

  6. 24:08 – so much for “Easy Tuesdays” … sigh.

    Didn’t know PETRA/AREPA cross.

    Also didn’t know DAL makhani and HORCHATA. I must live a very sheltered culinary life …

    Felt more like a NYT Tuesday.

    @Glenn – nice time of 5:17 for this puzzle, IMHO.

    Be Well.

  7. 5:46

    Didn’t really see the theme because the cat was in front of the screen, demanding scritches for her purrs.

    HORCHATA is delicious! I consider its availability to be a sign of a really fine taco shop.

  8. 12:25 – no errors or lookups. Revisions: FANLIT>FANART, PREPARE>PREHEAT, ONCE>IDEA, HORCHAKA>HKRCHATA.

    New items: OMAKASE, NORA & J.D. Robb, ANN Patchett, OLGA Kurylenko, DAL makhani. I agree – names may be coming more prevalent, but not yet overwhelming. In my experience, AREPAs can be found at some restaurants, and at some food trucks.

    Got the theme, but it was not a help in solving clues.

  9. Slightly tough Tuesday for me; took 12:23 with 1 error: FIpS/pEA. I worked the downs first and put in pEA, and didn’t feel like looking for an error when I didn’t get the banner at the end. The “check-grid” found it for me.

    Theme didn’t help today and I spent a bit of time on I OWE YOU, since I inadvertently put in WELL PLAcED at first.

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