LA Times Crossword 15 Aug 22, Monday

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Constructed by: Carly Schuna
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Awesome Start

Themed answers are common two-word phrases. Each starts with a synonym of “AWESOME”, and finishes with a noun defined in the clue:

  • 20A Awesome event in military history? : BOSS BATTLE
  • 33A Awesome side at a barbecue? : SWEET CORN
  • 41A Awesome double Dutch accessory? : TIGHT ROPE
  • 52A Awesome tennis racket? : FLY SWATTER
  • Read on, or jump to …
    … a complete list of answers

    Bill’s time: 5m 11s

    Bill’s errors: 0

    Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

    Across

    1 __ the fat : CHEW

    Back in the day, a wealthy person would “bring home the bacon”, and sit around with guests “chewing the fat”.

    5 Fill, as a teddy bear : STUFF

    The stuffed toy known as a teddy bear was introduced in the early 1900s and was named for President Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt. The toy was inspired by a political cartoon that was drawn in 1902 showing President Roosevelt on a bear hunt and refusing to kill a black bear cub.

    10 Bonneville Salt Flats state : UTAH

    The largest salt pan located near the Great Salt Lake is the famous Bonneville Salt Flats. There is an area in the Flats called the Bonneville Speedway that is devoted to motor sports and is noted as a venue for numerous land speed records.

    14 Toy block brand with Creator 3-in-1 sets : LEGO

    Lego produces some wonderful specialized sets with which you can build models of celebrated structures, including:

    • The Statue of Liberty (2,882 pieces)
    • The Sydney Opera House (2,989 pieces)
    • The Eiffel Tower (3,428 pieces)
    • Tower Bridge (4,295 pieces)
    • The Taj Mahal (5,922 pieces)

    16 Indian flatbread : ROTI

    In an Indian restaurant, naan bread is very popular. Roti is an unleavened cousin of naan.

    18 Submit taxes online : E-FILE

    E-file: that’s certainly what I do with my tax return …

    20 Awesome event in military history? : BOSS BATTLE

    In the world of video gaming, a significantly strong computer-controlled opponent is referred to as a boss. A fight against a boss is known as a boss battle.

    24 Tree in a tray : BONSAI

    The term “bonsai” is used more correctly to describe the Japanese art of growing carefully shaped trees in containers, although it has come to be used as the name for all miniature trees in pots. “Bonsai” translates literally as “tray planting”.

    26 Penne and pappardelle : PASTAS

    The pasta known as penne comes in two main types, i.e. penne lisce (which is smooth) and penne rigate (which is furrowed).

    Pappardelle are flat, broad pasta that look like wide (up to an inch) fettuccine. The term “pappardelle” comes from “pappare” meaning “to gobble up”.

    33 Awesome side at a barbecue? : SWEET CORN

    It is believed that our word “barbecue” (BBQ) comes from the Taíno people of the Caribbean in whose language “barbacoa” means “sacred fire pit”.

    38 Comic __: casual typeface : SANS

    Comic Sans MS is a font that looks a bit like that used in old comic books. Comic Sans was released by Microsoft in 1994. If you live in the Netherlands, you are lucky enough to enjoy Comic Sans Day on the first Friday of July each year.

    39 Warty jumpers : TOADS

    The “warts” on the skin of a toad have no relation to the viral infection that can occur on human skin. A toad’s warts are colored bumps that are believed to help the animal blend more effectively into its environment.

    41 Awesome double Dutch accessory? : TIGHT ROPE

    Double Dutch is a skipping game that uses two jump ropes that are turned in opposite directions.

    43 Judy Blume’s “Tales of a Fourth __ Nothing” : GRADE

    Judy Blume writes novels for children and young adults. Blume’s novels for teens were groundbreaking when first published, tackling such difficult subjects as racism, divorce and bullying.

    44 Softball scores : RUNS

    The sport we know today as softball was created as an indoor version of baseball. The first game was played on Thanksgiving Day in Chicago. Back then, a “soft” ball was indeed used, but the name “softball” wasn’t adopted until 1926.

    45 Telephoned : CALLED

    Alexander Graham Bell was an inventor and scientist from Edinburgh, Scotland who later lived in Canada and the US. Both his wife and his mother were deaf, a fact that led to Bell spending much of life researching hearing and speech. Bell’s work on hearing devices led to the invention of the telephone. Paradoxically, Bell hated the telephone and refused to have one in the study of his home where he worked. I am with him on this one, as I hate the phone …

    50 Hotmail alternative : AOL

    Hotmail was introduced in 1996 and was one of the world’s first webmail services. Webmail is an email service in which the emails are stored remotely on a server, rather than on a user’s own computer. Hotmail was acquired by Microsoft in 1997, and was replaced by Outlook.com in 2013.

    60 Spaghetti Western director Sergio : LEONE

    Sergio Leone was an Italian film director, and someone very much associated with the Spaghetti Western movie genre . Perhaps most famous of Leone’s westerns were the so-called “Man with No Name” trilogy starring Clint Eastwood. The three films are:

    • “A Fistful of Dollars” (1964)
    • “For a Few Dollars More” (1965)
    • “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (1966)

    64 Marvel Comics mutants : X-MEN

    The X-Men are a team of superheroes created by Stan Lee for Marvel Comics. Nowadays, the X-Men are perhaps best known as the subject of a series of movies, with Hugh Jackman playing Wolverine and Patrick Stewart playing Professor Xavier (or simply “Professor X”). Some very respected actors have also played the villains whom the X-Men have to battle. For example, the enemy called Magneto is portrayed by veteran Shakespearean actor Sir Ian McKellen.

    Marvel Comics was founded in 1939 as Timely Comics, before becoming Atlas Comics in 1951 and eventually Marvel Comics in 1961. The “Marvel” brand had existed from day one, and Timely Comics’ first publication was “Marvel Comics #1” in October 1939. That first comic featured the superhero the Human Torch.

    67 Structure with stakes : TENT

    A tent is a collapsible shelter made from fabric stretched over supporting poles. The term “tent” comes from the Latin “tentus” meaning “stretched”.

    Down

    1 Sandwich type : CLUB

    The club sandwich is a double-decker affair with three layers of bread and two layers of filling. This style of sandwich has been around since the end of the 19th century, and some say it was invented at an exclusive gambling “club” in Saratoga Springs, New York.

    2 Sandwich type : HERO

    A hero is a submarine sandwich. It 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.

    3 Spaghetti carbonara ingredients : EGGS

    A carbonara pasta dish includes a sauce made with eggs, cheese, bacon and black pepper. Apparently, the name of the dish is derived from “carbonaro”, the Italian for “charcoal burner”. One suggestion is that it was first made for Italian charcoal workers in the mid-1900s.

    5 Swordfish servings : STEAKS

    Swordfish are predatory fish with long, pointed bills that resemble swords, hence the name. The “sword” is not used to spear its prey, but rather is employed as a slashing tool, injuring the prey and making for an easier catch.

    7 Scoville __: chili pepper heat measurement : UNIT

    The Scoville scale is a measure of the spiciness of chili peppers. The scale was invented by a pharmacist in 1912, Wilbur Scoville. To determine the position of a pepper on the Scoville scale, the amount of capsaicin in the chili is measured. Capsaicin is an irritant that causes the sensation of burning when it comes into contact with tissue, particularly mucous membranes.

    10 “Blue Ain’t Your Color” country singer Keith : URBAN

    Keith Urban is a country singer from Australia who was actually born in New Zealand. He moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 1992, and married Australian actress Nicole Kidman in 2006.

    12 Open courtyards : ATRIA

    In modern architecture, an atrium (plural “atria” or “atriums”) is a large open space usually in the center of a building and extending upwards to the roof. The original atrium was an open court in the center of an Ancient Roman house. One could access most of the enclosed rooms of the house from the atrium.

    13 Asian language related to Urdu : HINDI

    Hindi is one of the two official languages of India, along with English. Hindi is the fourth most-spoken first language in the world (after Mandarin, Spanish and English).

    Urdu is one of the two official languages of Pakistan (the other being English), and is one of the 22 scheduled languages in India. Urdu partly developed from Persian and is written from right to left.

    21 Wild pig : BOAR

    The wild boar might be described as a matriarchal beast. Fully-grown males live a solitary life, except during mating season. Fully-grown females live together in groups called sounders, along with their offspring.

    27 Smoothie bowl berry : ACAI

    Açaí na tigela is a dish made from the frozen, mashed fruit of the açaí palm and served as a smoothie. Often topped with granola, banana, other berries and syrup, the dish is a specialty in much of Brazil. There’s even a savory version of açaí na tigela (“açaí in the bowl”) that includes shrimp or dried fish and tapioca. Açaí bowls are becoming very popular in North America, especially as a health food.

    28 Spotify selection : SONG

    Spotify is a popular music-streaming service that was launched in Sweden in 2008.

    29 Booty : TUSH

    “Tush”, a word meaning “backside”, is an abbreviation of “tochus” that comes from the Yiddish “tokhes”.

    “Booty” is a slang term for the buttocks.

    30 Scoreless Scrabble turns : SWAPS

    The game of Scrabble has been around since 1938, and is the invention of an architect named Alfred Mosher Butts. Butts was born on April 13th, and we now celebrate National Scrabble Day on April 13th each year in his honor.

    31 News story opening, in journalism jargon : LEDE

    The opening paragraph in any work of literature is often just called “the lead”. In the world of journalism, this is usually referred to as “the lede”. The derivative phrase “bury the lede” means to fail to stress the most important aspect of a story.

    34 __-Alt-Del : CTRL

    Ctrl-Alt-Delete is a keyboard command on IBM PC compatible systems used for a soft reboot, or more recently to bring up the task manager in the Windows operating system. Bill Gates tells us that the command was originally just a device to be used during development and was never meant to “go live”. He once said that “Ctrl+Alt+Delete” was a mistake, and that he would have preferred a dedicated key on the keyboard that carried out the same function.

    39 Artisan chocolate treats : TRUFFLES

    A chocolate truffle is a (delicious) confectionery comprising a chocolate coating surrounded by chocolate that may be coated in cocoa powder or chopped nuts. The confection is named for the edible fungus called a truffle, which has a similar shape.

    47 Vietnam’s capital : HANOI

    Hanoi (“Hà Nội” in Vietnamese) was the capital of North Vietnam, and Saigon the capital of South Vietnam. After the Vietnam War, Hanoi was made capital of the reunified state. Saigon, the larger metropolis, was renamed to Ho Chi Minh City. Hanoi is located in the delta of the Red River, and is just over 50 miles from the Gulf of Tonkin in the South China Sea.

    50 Ed of “Up” : ASNER

    Ed Asner was most famous for playing the irascible but lovable Lou Grant on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and on the spin-off drama “Lou Grant”. Off-screen Asner was noted for his political activism. He served two terms as president of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), and was very involved in the 1980 SAG strike. When “Lou Grant” was canceled in 1982, despite decent ratings, there was a lot of talk that the cancellation was a move by the network against Asner personally. In fact, one of Asner’s activist colleagues, Howard Hesseman (who played Johnny Fever) found that his show “WKRP in Cincinnati” was also canceled … on the very same day.

    “Up” was the tenth movie released by Pixar studios, and features the wonderful animation that we have come to expect from Pixar. The film earned itself two Academy Awards. The main voice actor is Ed Asner, whose animated persona as Carl Fredricksen was created to resemble Spencer Tracy, as Tracy appeared in his last film, “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”.

    53 Jeté, e.g. : LEAP

    A jeté is a leap in ballet, with the term “jeté” coming from the French word “jeter” meaning “to throw”. A “jeté en avant” is a “leap to the front”, towards the audience. A “grand jeté” is a long horizontal jump, a split in the air, leaping from one foot to the other.

    54 Lotus pose discipline : YOGA

    “Asana” is a Sanskrit word that translates literally as “sitting down”. The asanas are the poses that a practitioner of yoga assumes. The most famous is the lotus position, the cross-legged pose called “padmasana”.

    Complete List of Clues/Answers

    Across

    1 __ the fat : CHEW
    5 Fill, as a teddy bear : STUFF
    10 Bonneville Salt Flats state : UTAH
    14 Toy block brand with Creator 3-in-1 sets : LEGO
    15 Pitch-fixing pro : TUNER
    16 Indian flatbread : ROTI
    17 Hankering : URGE
    18 Submit taxes online : E-FILE
    19 Severely overcook : BURN
    20 Awesome event in military history? : BOSS BATTLE
    22 Desertlike : ARID
    23 Signs off on : OKS
    24 Tree in a tray : BONSAI
    26 Penne and pappardelle : PASTAS
    30 Minor mistake : SLIP
    32 Scrub energetically : SCOUR
    33 Awesome side at a barbecue? : SWEET CORN
    38 Comic __: casual typeface : SANS
    39 Warty jumpers : TOADS
    40 “That is a fact” : TRUE
    41 Awesome double Dutch accessory? : TIGHT ROPE
    43 Judy Blume’s “Tales of a Fourth __ Nothing” : GRADE
    44 Softball scores : RUNS
    45 Telephoned : CALLED
    46 Hypothetical scenario : WHAT-IF
    50 Hotmail alternative : AOL
    51 A pop : EACH
    52 Awesome tennis racket? : FLY SWATTER
    59 Digging : INTO
    60 Spaghetti Western director Sergio : LEONE
    61 Roof overhang : EAVE
    62 Splits : GOES
    63 Superexcited : EAGER
    64 Marvel Comics mutants : X-MEN
    65 __-and-seek : HIDE
    66 Trades blows : SPARS
    67 Structure with stakes : TENT

    Down

    1 Sandwich type : CLUB
    2 Sandwich type : HERO
    3 Spaghetti carbonara ingredients : EGGS
    4 Misfortunes : WOES
    5 Swordfish servings : STEAKS
    6 Clumps of fur : TUFTS
    7 Scoville __: chili pepper heat measurement : UNIT
    8 Succumbed to gravity : FELL
    9 Giveaways for sampling, e.g. : FREEBIES
    10 “Blue Ain’t Your Color” country singer Keith : URBAN
    11 Travels with the band : TOURS
    12 Open courtyards : ATRIA
    13 Asian language related to Urdu : HINDI
    21 Wild pig : BOAR
    25 Choose (to) : OPT
    26 Hissed “Hey!” : PSST!
    27 Smoothie bowl berry : ACAI
    28 Spotify selection : SONG
    29 Booty : TUSH
    30 Scoreless Scrabble turns : SWAPS
    31 News story opening, in journalism jargon : LEDE
    33 Shortly : SOON
    34 __-Alt-Del : CTRL
    35 Spoken, not written : ORAL
    36 Disrespectful : RUDE
    37 “__ a lift?” : NEED
    39 Artisan chocolate treats : TRUFFLES
    42 Uni- + bi- : TRI-
    43 Huge bash : GALA
    45 Quakes in fear : COWERS
    46 Put on a scale : WEIGH
    47 Vietnam’s capital : HANOI
    48 Played a role : ACTED
    49 “The ones I’m pointing at” : THOSE
    50 Ed of “Up” : ASNER
    53 Jeté, e.g. : LEAP
    54 Lotus pose discipline : YOGA
    55 Smartphone message : TEXT
    56 Subdue, as wild hair : TAME
    57 Neck and neck : EVEN
    58 Tenant’s monthly payment : RENT

    18 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 15 Aug 22, Monday”

    1. No errors, no lookups. The theme was meaningless to me as
      I am not familiar with all those supposed synonyms for
      “awesome”. Too old I guess.

    2. No errors. Looks like about 9 mins for me.

      The good, the bad , the ugly. Classic movie.
      The final duel scene. The stare down.

      Waa waa waa!

    3. It went fast, but several acrosses were guesses: TUNER, ROTI, BOSSBATTLE, SANS, TIGHTROPE,

      It went fast, but there were several across guesses: TUNER, ROTI,
      SANS, TIGHTROPE, RUNS, 3 of them being sports.

    4. 23:09 no errors…this was almost a Monday DNF…the theme sucked as did some of the clues👎👎👎👎
      Stay safe😀

    5. 5:24 no errors, actually I really liked this one, the theme was fine, and no bogus crossword-ese in sight unless you’re going to pick on something like PSST

    6. 4:26

      Sweet theme! I’d say a well constructed crossword is always tight. I like the two sandwiches in the NW.

    7. 8:12 – clean. Don’t know why it took so long … very few PPPs – nice trend!

      I’m with a bunch of other people who don’t know the “in” synonyms for awesome – the theme was useless to me.

      Be Well.

    8. 8:05, one revision: NAAN>ROTI.

      No new items/names.

      Carly Schuna must have been hungry when she started constructing this one – 4 of the first 5 down clues are food, plus roti, smoothie bowl, pastas, sweet corn, and truffles for dessert!

    9. Kind of tricky Monday for me; took 16:18 with 1 dumb error. I didn’t get the banner at the end and I really had no idea on SWAP/SLIP/…ROPES. After trying numerous combos and finally settling on the correct fill, I still didn’t get the banner. So, I did a “check-grid” to discover the really dumb: HINDu/BONSAu, which I really should’ve double checked when I filled them in…sigh!

      Spaghetti Carbonara is new to me and sounds delicious according to the recipes out there.

      Scrabble question: I haven’t played this game in eons, so does SWAP just mean that you have nothing to put on the board and are essentially calling a pass, or SWAP to the next player?

      1. A swap in Scrabble is where you can put one or more, even all, of your tiles back in the bag and then draw out that same number of tiles. You do not get to play a word on the board for that turn.

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