LA Times Crossword 22 Jul 22, Friday

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Constructed by: Zachary David Levy
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): See the Doctor First

Themed answers are common phrases starting with “DR-” reinterpreted as kinds of DOCTORS:

  • 17A Medical pro who avoids the rear of the ship? : DR AFT-DODGER (from “draft dodger”)
  • 26A Medical pro who holds a pal’s hand in a tattoo parlor? : DR INKING-BUDDY (from “drinking buddy”)
  • 42A Medical pro who engineers hairpin turns? : DR ESS-DESIGNER (from “dress designer”)
  • 55A Medical pro who is a sick chess player? : DR ILL-MASTER (from “drillmaster”)

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

Bill’s time: 5m 52s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

6 Bubble tea insert : STRAW

Bubble tea, sometimes called “boba tea”, is a tea-based drink from Taiwan. The “bubbles” are chewy tapioca balls that are usually added to the drink.

11 Sweet sandwich, for short : PBJ

Peanut butter and jelly (PB&J or PBJ)

14 A Marx brother : HARPO

Harpo Marx was the second-oldest of the Marx brothers. Harpo’s real name was Adolph, and he earned his nickname because he played the harp. Famously, Harpe didn’t speak on screen, a routine that he developed after reading a review that he performed really well when he just didn’t speak! He would usually whistle or toot a hand-held horn instead of speaking.

16 Grammy winner Corinne Bailey __ : RAE

Corinne Bailey Rae is a British singer from Yorkshire in northern England.

19 Approximate fig. : EST

Estimate (est.)

20 Actor Mineo : SAL

Actor Sal Mineo’s most famous role was John “Plato” Crawford, the kid who was in awe of the James Dean character in “Rebel Without a Cause”. Sadly, Mineo was murdered in 1976 when he was just 37 years old. He was attacked in the alley behind his Los Angeles apartment and stabbed through the heart. When an arrest was made it was discovered that the murderer had no idea that his victim was a celebrity, and that his plan was just to rob anyone who came along.

21 Yarns : TALES

The phrase “to spin a yarn”, meaning “to tell a tall tale”, originated in the early 1800s with seamen. The idea was that sailors would tell stories to each other while engaged in mindless work such as twisting yarn.

22 Key near Alt : CTRL

The Control (CTRL) key on a PC keyboard is used to modify the function of other keys. For example, pressing CTRL+C copies a selection to the clipboard, and CTRL+V pastes the contents of the clipboard to a location defined by the cursor. Control keys were introduced on teletypewriters to generate “control characters”, which are non-printing characters that instruct a computer to do something like print a page, ring a bell etc.

24 Rum cocktail : MAI TAI

The mai tai cocktail is strongly associated with the Polynesian islands, but the drink was supposedly invented in 1944 in Trader Vic’s restaurant in Oakland, California. One recipe is 6 parts white rum, 3 parts orange curaçao, 3 parts Orgeat syrup, 1 part rock candy syrup, 2 parts fresh lime juice, all mixed with ice and then a float added of 6 parts dark rum. “Maita’i” is the Tahitian word for “good”.

31 Actress Zellweger : RENEE

Renée Zellweger’s big break came in the 1996 movie “Jerry Maguire”. A few years later, Zellweger followed that up with a string of successes in “Bridget Jones’ Diary” (2001), “Chicago” (2002) and “Cold Mountain” (2003). My wife and I love watching her play Bridget Jones, and as someone coming from Britain and Ireland, I have to say that Zellweger does a remarkable job with the accent. She worked hard to perfect that accent, and of course she had a voice coach. She also went “undercover” and worked as a temp in an office for three weeks fine-tuning her skills.

32 Eucalyptus eater : KOALA

The koala bear really does look like a little bear, but it’s not even closely related. The koala is an arboreal marsupial and a herbivore, native to the east and south coasts of Australia. Koalas aren’t primates, and are one of the few mammals other than primates who have fingerprints. In fact, it can be very difficult to tell human fingerprints from koala fingerprints, even under an electron microscope. Male koalas are called “bucks”, females are “does”, and young koalas are “joeys”. I’m a little jealous of the koala, as it sleeps up to 20 hours a day …

Eucalyptus (plural “eucalypti”) is a genus of flowering trees and shrubs that is particularly widespread in Australia. The species known as mountain ash or swamp gum is the tallest flowering plant in the world, with the tallest example located in Tasmania and standing at over 325 feet tall.

37 The Good Book : BIBLE

The Bible is the best-selling book of all time, with annual sales running at about 100 million copies.

48 Big trade show : EXPO

The first World’s Fair was held in 1851, known back then as the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations. The fair was the idea of Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria. It was held in a magnificent glass and cast-iron structure called the Crystal Palace that was purpose-built for the occasion. The Great Exhibition spawned a tradition of what became known as World’s Fairs, expositions that feature national pavilions created by participating countries. The term “Expo” was coined for Expo 67, a 1967 World’s Fair held in Montreal. Since then, we’ve been using “expo” to describe any large exposition or trade show.

51 Investigative journalist __ B. Wells : IDA

Ida B. Wells was an African-American journalist and leader of the civil rights movement. She published a pamphlet in 1892 called “Southern Horrors: Lynch Law in All Its Phases”, which publicized the horrors of lynching of African Americans by white mobs in the South.

54 Long of “Empire” : NIA

Nia Long is an American actress who is probably best known for playing Will Smith’s sometime girlfriend and fiancee Lisa Wilkes on the TV show “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air”.

55 Medical pro who is a sick chess player? : DR ILL-MASTER (from “drillmaster”)

“Empire” is a musical drama TV series about the hip hop music business. Star of the show is Terrence Howard, who plays drug-dealer turned hip hop mogul Lucious Lyon. Lyon is CEO of Empire Entertainment.

58 Washington’s Sea-__ Airport : TAC

SeaTac is a suburb of Seattle, Washington and is a city that surrounds the Seattle-Tacoma Airport (Sea-Tac), hence the city’s name.

60 Title holder : SPINE

In the US, the convention is to write the title on the spine of a book from top-to-bottom. In most of Europe, the convention is to write the title from bottom-to-top. We have a lot of books in the “library” in our house from both sides of the Atlantic, and so there is much movement of the head from left to right as we glance along our bookshelves.

61 Estadio cheer : OLE!

In Spain, one might hear a shout of “olé!” in “un estadio” (a stadium).

62 Lies for, maybe : ABETS

The word “abet” comes into English from the Old French “abeter” meaning “to bait” or “to harass with dogs” (literally “to make bite”). This sense of encouraging something bad to happen morphed into our modern usage of “abet” meaning to aid or encourage someone in a crime.

Down

1 Many profs : PHDS

“Ph.D.” is an abbreviation for “philosophiae doctor”, Latin for “teacher of philosophy”. Often, candidates for a PhD already hold a bachelor’s and a master’s degree, so a PhD might be considered a “third degree”.

2 “The Secrets We Kept” novelist Prescott : LARA

Author Lara Prescott achieved success with her debut novel, “The Secrets We Kept” published in 2020. It is a historical mystery story about a CIA plot to use Boris Pasternak’s epic novel “Doctor Zhivago” to influence the hearts and minds of Soviet Russia.

3 River to the Caspian : URAL

The Ural River rises in the Ural Mountains in Russia and flows for half its length through Russian territory until it crosses the border into Kazakhstan, finally emptying into the Caspian Sea. It is the third-longest river in Europe, after the Volga and Danube. The Ural is often cited as defining a long stretch of the border between Europe and Asia, although the exact position of that border is open to debate.

The Caspian Sea is a landlocked body of water lying between Asia and Europe. By some definitions, the Caspian is the largest lake on the planet. The name “Caspian” comes from the Caspi people who lived to the southwest of the sea in the South Caucasus.

4 Sunblock letters : SPF

In theory, the sun protection factor (SPF) is a calibrated measure of the effectiveness of a sunscreen in protecting the skin from harmful UV rays. The idea is that if you wear a lotion with say SPF 20, then it takes 20 times as much UV radiation to cause the skin to burn than it would take without protection. I say just stay out of the sun …

5 Quick, provocative opinion : HOT TAKE

The term “hot take” is from the world of journalism, and was coined relatively recently. It describes the shabby technique of making a provocative comment about a news event, usually with the intent of encouraging angry responses from readers or listeners.

7 Laundry brand : TIDE

Tide is a laundry detergent that has been made by Procter & Gamble since 1946. Back then, Tide was marketed as “America’s Washday Favorite”.

10 Simple card game : WAR

War is a card game, one played mainly by children.

12 Iraq port city : BASRA

Basra is Iraq’s main port, and is located in the southeast of the country, just 34 miles from the Persian Gulf. Access to the gulf is via the Shatt al-Arab waterway, a river that discharges into the gulf in the port city of Umm Qasr.

13 Actor who plays the Emperor in 2020’s “Mulan” : JET LI

Actor Jet Li’s real name is Li Jian Jie. Jet Li is a martial artist and international film star from Beijing, China. Li played a villain in “Lethal Weapon 4”, and had a leading role in the 2000 movie “Romeo Must Die”.

2020’s “Mulan” is a live-action remake of the 1998 animated Disney film of the same name. Chinese-American actress Liu Yifei plays the title character, a woman from Chinese legend. The movie was received well by the critics, but fans of the animated original were largely unimpressed.

18 “The Persistence of Memory” painter : DALI

“The Persistence of Memory” is probably Salvador Dalí’s most famous work. It features the celebrated melting clocks/watches, and you can see them in the painting in the MoMA in New York City.

22 Spain’s El __ : CID

Rodrigo Díaz de Vivar was known as El Cid Campeador, which translates as “The Champion” or perhaps “The Lord, Master of Military Arts”. El Cid was a soldier who fought under the rule of King Alfonso VI of Spain (among others). However, he was sent into exile by the King in 1080, after acting beyond his authorization in battle. El Cid then offered his services to his former foes, the Moorish kings, After a number of years building a reputation with the Moors, he was recalled from exile by Alfonso. By this time El Cid was very much his own man. Nominally under the orders of Alfonso, he led a combined army of Spanish and Moorish troops and took the city of Valencia on the Mediterranean coast in 1094, making it his headquarters and home. He died in Valencia, quite peacefully, in 1099.

23 “Where creativity clicks” construction toy : K’NEX

The construction toy with the name K’Nex is the phonetic spelling of the word “connects”. The toy was invented by Joel Glickman, who came up with the idea while playing with straws as he sat at a table after a wedding. He launched K’Nex in 1993, and it is still sold in stores.

24 Slip-on shoe : MULE

A mule is a shoe without a back and usually with a closed toe. The original mule was a shoe worn by the highest magistrates in ancient Rome.

25 Programming pioneer Lovelace : ADA

Ada Lovelace’s real name and title was Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace. She was the only legitimate child of Lord Byron, the poet. Lovelace was fascinated by mathematics and wrote about the work done by Charles Babbage in building his groundbreaking mechanical computer. In some of her notes, she proposed an algorithm for Babbage’s machine to compute Bernoulli numbers. This algorithm is recognized by many as the world’s first computer program and so Lovelace is sometimes called the first “computer programmer”. There is a computer language called “Ada” that was named in her honor. The Ada language was developed from 1977 to 1983 for the US Department of Defense.

27 Forfeited auto : REPO

Repossession (repo)

30 Birds of prey that were once endangered : BALD EAGLES

DDT is dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (don’t forget now!). DDT was used with great success to control disease-carrying insects during WWII, and when made available for use after the war it became by far the most popular pesticide. And then Rachel Carson published her famous book “Silent Spring”, suggesting there was a link between DDT and diminishing populations of certain wildlife. It was the public outcry sparked by the book, and reports of links between DDT and cancer, that led to the ban on the use of the chemical in 1972. That ban is touted as the main reason that the bald eagle was rescued from near extinction.

34 Basketball Hall of Famer Donovan : ANNE

Anne Donovan was a basketball player and coach. She became the first woman to coach a WNBA Championship team when she led the Seattle Storm to the title in 2004. Donovan also represented the US, both as a player and a coach.

38 Best Picture winner set in Iran : ARGO

“Argo” is a 2012 movie that is based on the true story of the rescue of six diplomats hiding out during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. The film was directed by and stars Ben Affleck and is produced by Grant Heslov and George Clooney, the same pair who produced the excellent “Good Night, and Good Luck”. I highly recommend “Argo”, although I found the scenes of religious fervor to be very frightening …

40 Jiff : SEC

“Jiff”, or “jiffy”, meaning “short time, instant” is thought originally to be thieves’ slang for “lightning”.

41 Pathology study : DISEASE

Pathology is the study of disease and its causes. The term ultimately comes from the Greek “pathos” meaning “suffering” and “-logia” meaning “study”.

43 __ Grande : RIO

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”).

45 Box lunch? : BENTO

A bento is a single-person meal that is eaten quite commonly in Japan. A bento can be purchased as a take-out meal, or it may be packed at home. A bento is usually sold as a “bento box”.

46 The first “A” in CAT scan : AXIAL

A CT (or “CAT”) scan produces (via computer manipulation) a three-dimensional image of the inside of an object, usually the human body. It does so by taking a series of two dimensional x-ray images while rotating the camera around the patient. The issue with CT scans is that they use x-rays. High doses of radiation can be harmful, causing damage that is cumulative over time. The initialism “CT” stands for “computed tomography”. The older initialism “CAT” stands for “computed axial tomography”.

55 Genetic info carrier : DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)

56 Director Reiner : ROB

The great director and actor Rob Reiner first came to prominence playing “Meathead”, Archie and Edith Bunker’s son-in-law in “All in the Family”. Since then, Reiner has directed a long string of hit movies including, “The Princess Bride”, “Stand by Me”, “This Is Spinal Tap”, “When Harry Met Sally …”, “Misery” and “A Few Good Men”.

57 Mani-pedi place : SPA

Manicure & pedicure (mani-pedi)

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Luxurious : PLUSH
6 Bubble tea insert : STRAW
11 Sweet sandwich, for short : PBJ
14 A Marx brother : HARPO
15 Small crown : TIARA
16 Grammy winner Corinne Bailey __ : RAE
17 Medical pro who avoids the rear of the ship? : DR AFT-DODGER (from “draft dodger”)
19 Approximate fig. : EST
20 Actor Mineo : SAL
21 Yarns : TALES
22 Key near Alt : CTRL
23 Farmers market buy : KALE
24 Rum cocktail : MAI TAI
26 Medical pro who holds a pal’s hand in a tattoo parlor? : DR INKING-BUDDY (from “drinking buddy”)
31 Actress Zellweger : RENEE
32 Eucalyptus eater : KOALA
33 Plant juice : SAP
36 Peak : APEX
37 The Good Book : BIBLE
38 Top-ranked : A-ONE
39 Sorrow : WOE
40 “What a pity” : SO SAD
41 Aerial photography craft : DRONE
42 Medical pro who engineers hairpin turns? : DR ESS-DESIGNER (from “dress designer”)
45 ABCs : BASICS
47 Plus : ALSO
48 Big trade show : EXPO
49 Noncommittal : VAGUE
51 Investigative journalist __ B. Wells : IDA
54 Long of “Empire” : NIA
55 Medical pro who is a sick chess player? : DR ILL-MASTER (from “drillmaster”)
58 Washington’s Sea-__ Airport : TAC
59 “Cross my heart!” : NO LIE!
60 Title holder : SPINE
61 Estadio cheer : OLE!
62 Lies for, maybe : ABETS
63 Snap course : EASY A

Down

1 Many profs : PHDS
2 “The Secrets We Kept” novelist Prescott : LARA
3 River to the Caspian : URAL
4 Sunblock letters : SPF
5 Quick, provocative opinion : HOT TAKE
6 Unexpected smack? : STOLEN KISS
7 Laundry brand : TIDE
8 Old T-shirts, maybe : RAGS
9 “__ we good?” : ARE
10 Simple card game : WAR
11 In the not-too-distant future : PRETTY SOON
12 Iraq port city : BASRA
13 Actor who plays the Emperor in 2020’s “Mulan” : JET LI
18 “The Persistence of Memory” painter : DALI
22 Spain’s El __ : CID
23 “Where creativity clicks” construction toy : K’NEX
24 Slip-on shoe : MULE
25 Programming pioneer Lovelace : ADA
26 Sketch : DRAW
27 Forfeited auto : REPO
28 “Please give me some alone time” : I NEED SPACE
29 Sour : GO BAD
30 Birds of prey that were once endangered : BALD EAGLES
34 Basketball Hall of Famer Donovan : ANNE
35 Social equal : PEER
37 Bigwig : BOSS
38 Best Picture winner set in Iran : ARGO
40 Jiff : SEC
41 Pathology study : DISEASE
43 __ Grande : RIO
44 Run-down area : SLUM
45 Box lunch? : BENTO
46 The first “A” in CAT scan : AXIAL
49 Dreadful : VILE
50 Came to rest : ALIT
51 Terse affirmation : IT IS
52 Turn down : DENY
53 Painter’s calculation : AREA
55 Genetic info carrier : DNA
56 Director Reiner : ROB
57 Mani-pedi place : SPA

19 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 22 Jul 22, Friday”

  1. No errors. Took about 20 minutes though.
    Once I caught onto the theme, it helped.

    Never heard of KNEX.

    Otherwise, pretty straight forward crossword.

  2. No errors, one lookup “jetli”….never heard of him. Clever theme and
    for a change it was a big help in solving the puzzle.

    1. Isn’t a lookup equivalent to an error, an error of omission as opposed to one of commission?

  3. Enjoyed the theme today. If I ever got a tattoo I’d definitely need an inking buddy! (Dr. or not!) 🙂

  4. The 16A/13D natick is the one aws**t that negates twenty attaboys. As Jack Benny used to shout, “Now cut that out!”

    Re DDT: when I was a kid (‘way back when), we used to say that ‘DDT’ stood for ‘drop dead twice.’ It was an effective all- purpose killer, and in its heyday was liberally applied wherever insect pests needed killing. We used to paint it on the roosts in the chicken house to kill mites.

  5. 13:34 with revisions of: LEGO>KNEX, ANN>ADA.

    New items/names: Corinne Bailey RAE, ANN>ADA, LARA Prescott, ANNE Donovan

    Figured out how the theme worked after completing the puzzle.

    It helped to realize that the clue for 21A was “Yarns” and not “Yams;” and that “Plant juice” was 33A and not 32A where I’d initially put RESIN.L (which is why I initially had ANN instead of ADA.

  6. 12:16, no errors. This was a pretty easy Friday puzzle. I imagine tomorrow’s puzzle will be the cruciverbalist’s revenge… .

  7. I’m so confused. Ever since the new editor took over, Mondays and Tuesdays are killing me, and Thursdays and Fridays are easy. I live my life as an inadvertent outlier.

  8. Mostly easy Friday for me; took 18:43 with no peeks or errors. Didn’t know a few things but managed with crosses and guesses: RAE, LARA, ANNE, K’NEX. Didn’t really figure out the theme until I got here.

  9. 11:49 – couple square reveals.

    Seemed too easy for a Friday, not that my time is anything to write home about …
    @Glenn – 4:28 for a Friday!

    Be Well.

  10. I also thought it was easy. Didn’t know k’nex and never knew axial in CAT.
    Better get used to foreign words in these puzzles, Frank. They’re not going away. But yes, I hate them as well.

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