LA Times Crossword 22 Aug 22, Monday

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Constructed by: Rebecca Goldstein
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Reveal Answer: Rando

Themed answers each comprise two words, starting with R AND O:

  • 53D Total stranger, or a three-word hint to the answers to the starred clues : RANDO or R AND O
  • 16A *Playful semiaquatic mammal : RIVER OTTER
  • 24A *Seafood served on the half shell : RAW OYSTER
  • 36A *Really get down to the music : ROCK OUT
  • 38A *Floral perfume ingredient : ROSE OIL
  • 47A *Request with a tight timeline : RUSH ORDER
  • 59A *”Only the Lonely” singer : ROY ORBISON

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

Bill’s time: 5m 53s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

9 __ bean : FAVA

The fava bean is also known as the broad bean. “Broad bean” is used “broadly” (pun!) in the UK, whereas “fava bean” is common in the US. “Fava” is the Italian name for the broad bean.

13 Cereal coveted by a silly rabbit : TRIX

Trix is a corn-based breakfast cereal that has been around since 1954, produced by General Mills. Ads for the cereal featured Trix Rabbit, who would try hard to get hold of bowls of the cereal. He would always get caught though, and be admonished with, “Silly rabbit, Trix are for kids!” With 46% sugar content, the rabbit probably wouldn’t have liked it anyway …

14 Garlic piece : CLOVE

Our word “garlic” evolved via Old English from “gar” (spear) and “leac” (leek). The use of “spear” is apparently a reference to the shape of a clove.

16 *Playful semiaquatic mammal : RIVER OTTER

Male and female otters are known as dogs and bitches, with the offspring called pups. Males and females are sometimes referred to as boars and sows. A collection of otters is a bevy, family, lodge or perhaps a romp. When in water, a collection of otters can be called a raft.

19 “__ the Force, Luke” : USE

When the character Luke Skywalker was created for “Star Wars”, he was named “Annikin Starkiller”. Conceptually, he was a 60-year-old war veteran for a while, and also a female at one point. Luke is played by actor Mark Hamill in the “Star Wars” films.

21 Green shade named for a fruit : OLIVE

The olive tree developed in and around the Mediterranean Basin, but has been cultivated in many locations around the world for thousands of years. The fruit of the olive tree is prized as a foodstuff, as well as a source of olive oil. Our word “oil” ultimately derives from the Greek “elaia” meaning “olive”.

22 Electric car maker : TESLA

Tesla Motors shortened its name to just “Tesla” in early 2017.

24 *Seafood served on the half shell : RAW OYSTER

A group of oysters is commonly referred to as a “bed”, and oysters can be farmed in man-made beds. The largest body of water producing oysters in the US today is Chesapeake Bay, although the number of beds continues to dwindle due to pollution and overfishing. Back in the 1800s, most of the world’s oysters came from New York Harbor.

28 Thompson of “Thor: Love and Thunder” : TESSA

Tessa Thompson is an actress from Los Angeles who is known for playing the supporting role of Jackie Cook on the TV show “Veronica Mars”, and for playing student leader Diane Nash in the 2014 film “Selma”. She also portrays superheroine Valkyrie in movies based on Marvel Comics characters.

“Thor: Love and Thunder” is a 2022 sequel to the superhero film “Thor: Ragnarok” from 2017. Chris Hemsworth plays the title character. A younger version of Thor is played by Hemsworth’s twin sons Sasha and Tristan.

31 Mammal with elephant and leopard varieties : SEAL

There are three families of seals. The first is the walrus family, the second the eared seals (like sea lions), and thirdly the earless seals (like elephant seals).

The leopard seal (also “sea leopard”) primarily inhabits the Antarctic pack ice. It lives very close to the top of the food chain, with only the orca (killer whale) being a natural predator. It has a spotted pattern on its back, hence the use of “leopard” in its name.

38 *Floral perfume ingredient : ROSE OIL

Attar of rose is also known as rose oil, and is an essential oil extracted from the petals of various types of rose.

41 Sail the seven __ : SEAS

The phrase “the seven seas” has been used for centuries by many different peoples. The actual definition of what constitutes the collection of seven has varied depending on the period and the culture. Nowadays we consider the seven largest bodies of water as the seven seas, namely:

  • The North Pacific Ocean
  • The South Pacific Ocean
  • The North Atlantic Ocean
  • The South Atlantic Ocean
  • The Indian Ocean
  • The Southern Ocean
  • The Arctic Ocean

44 Baseball Hall of Famer Stengel : CASEY

Casey Stengel was a professional baseball player, playing from 1912-1925 and managing from 1934-1965. Stengel was born in Kansas City. He had German heritage, and so was called “Dutch” for much of his early life. As he acquired fame on the baseball field, Stengel was given the nickname “Casey”, largely because he came from Kansas City (“KC”) and also because of the popularity of the poem “Casey at the Bat”. He was a smart and erudite guy when it came to baseball, so sportswriters tended to call him “The Old Professor”.

55 Verdi opera : AIDA

“Aida” is a celebrated opera by Giuseppe Verdi that is based on a scenario written by French Egyptologist Auguste Mariette. Mariette also designed the costumes and stages for the opening performance. The opera was first staged in 1871 in an opera house in Cairo. In the storyline, Aida is an Ethiopian princess brought into Egypt as a slave. Radamès is an Egyptian commander who falls in love with her, and then complications arise!

57 Hotel at JFK named for a defunct airline : TWA

The TWA Hotel that opened in 2019 uses the main part of the TWA terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport that serves New York City. The magnificent TWA Flight Center was designed by Eero Saarinen, opened in 1962, and closed in 2001. The building was repurposed as a hotel and opened for business in 2017. As of 2022, it is the only hotel operating on the grounds of JFK.

59 *”Only the Lonely” singer : ROY ORBISON

The marvelous rock ballad “Only the Lonely (Know the Way I Feel)” is a song written and recorded by Roy Orbison. The song was released in 1960 and became Orbison’s first major hit.

Roy Orbison had to be one the sickliest looking performers I’ve ever seen. Orbison had a very sallow complexion, pock-marked from teenage acne. The yellowish skin tone came from a severe bout of jaundice as a child. Perhaps poor nutrition affected him and his siblings, because all of them had very poor eyesight, with Roy almost blind and wearing very thick lenses from a very young age. He was also very ashamed of his head of hair, which was almost a ghostly white color, and so he dyed it jet black even when he was young. Despite all this, he was immensely popular in his heyday with teenage girls, particularly in Canada and Ireland for some reason. On a tour of Ireland in 1963, the Irish police had to stop one of his performances in order to pull a bevy of local lasses off poor Mr. Orbison …

63 Helps in a heist : 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.

67 Miranda of “Homeland” : OTTO

Miranda Otto is an actress from Brisbane, Australia. She played Éowyn in “The Lord of the Rings” series of films.

Down

1 Walk like a peacock : STRUT

The female peafowl, the peahen, has very dull plumage compared to the extravagant display on the tail of the peacock.

4 Cord cutter? : AXE

A cord of firewood has a volume of 128 cubic feet. More commonly it’s a neat stack measuring 4 feet high, 8 feet long and 4 feet deep.

6 Reason to get all gussied up : HOT DATE

To gussy up is to dress showily. The term “gussy” was a slang term that was used to describe an overly-dressed person.

7 “__ Maria” : AVE

“Ave Maria” (“Hail Mary” in English) is the prayer at the core of the Roman Catholic Rosary, which itself is a set of prayers asking for the assistance of the Virgin Mary. Much of the text of the “Hail Mary” comes from the Gospel of Luke. The words in Latin are:

AVE MARIA, gratia plena, Dominus tecum. Benedicta tu in mulieribus, et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Iesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc, et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.

The prayer has been adapted as a hymn. The two most famous musical versions of “Ave Maria” are by Charles Gounod (based on a piece by Bach) and by Franz Schubert.

8 Spanish verb similar to “estar” : SER

The verb “to be” is “ser” in Spanish and “être” in French.

The Spanish verb “estar” translates as “to be”.

12 Ed who played Lou Grant : ASNER

“Lou Grant” is a spin-off from “The Mary Tyler Moore Show”. The title character, played so ably by Ed Asner, had headed up a television newsroom in Minneapolis in the original series. In the spin-off, Grant was the city editor of the fictional “Los Angeles Tribune”. The original show was a sitcom, the spin-off was a drama series.

21 Kvetching cries : OYS

The word “kvetch” comes to us from Yiddish, with “kvetshn” meaning “to complain” or “squeeze”.

23 “Magically delicious” cereal : LUCKY CHARMS

Lucky Charms is a General Mills breakfast cereal that first hit the shelves in 1964. The initial idea was to produce a cereal that brought to mind charms on a charm bracelet. The cereal’s mascot is a leprechaun whose original name was L. C. Leprechaun, then Sir Charms, and finally Lucky the Leprechaun.

26 Norwegian city with a Viking Ship Museum : OSLO

The most famous exhibit in Oslo’s Viking Ship Museum is the completely intact Oseberg ship. Named for the farm where it was discovered, the Oseberg ship was excavated from a large burial mound that dates back to 834 AD. The interment is an example of a “ship burial”, in which a ship was used as a container for a dead body and associated grave goods. The Oseberg ship included the bodies of two elderly females, one of which may have been included as a human sacrifice.

29 Prefix with athlete : TRI-

An Ironman Triathlon is a race involving a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride, and a marathon run of just over 26 miles. The idea for the race came out of a debate between some runners in the 1977 Oahu Perimeter Relay. They were questioning whether runners, swimmers or bikers were the most fit athletes. The debaters decided to combine three local events to determine the answer, inviting athletes from all three disciplines. The events that were mimicked in the first triathlon were the Waikiki Roughwater swim (2.4 miles), the Around-Oahu Bike Race (115 miles) and the Honolulu Marathon (26.2 miles). The idea was that whoever finishes first would be called “the Iron Man”. The first triathlon was run in 1978, with fifteen starters and only twelve finishers. The race format is used all over the world now, but the Hawaiian Ironman is the event that everyone wants to win.

30 “Apollo 13” director Howard : RON

“Apollo 13” is a great film, and supposedly one that is historically and technically accurate. The film is an adaptation of mission commander Jim Lovell’s book “Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13”. I am going to have to put that book on my Christmas list …

37 Cold War initials : USSR

The former Soviet Union (officially “Union of Soviet Socialist Republics” or “USSR”) was created in 1922, not long after the Russian Revolution of 1917 that overthrew the tsar. Geographically, the new Soviet Union was roughly equivalent to the old Russian Empire, and comprised fifteen Soviet Socialist Republics (SSRs).

39 Egyptian beetle : SCARAB

Scarabs were amulets in ancient Egypt. They were modeled on the dung beetle, as it was viewed as a symbol of the cycle of life.

42 Long-fingered lemurs of Madagascar : AYE-AYES

The aye-aye is a lemur that is native to Madagascar. It is the largest nocturnal primate in the world, and has an unusual way of feeding. The aye-aye taps on trees to find grubs, rather like a woodpecker. Having located its meal, it then uses its rodent-like teeth to gnaw into the wood and uses a specially-adapted long and narrow middle finger to pull out the grubs.

45 “You’ve got mail” ISP : AOL

The iconic phrase “You’ve got mail” was first used by AOL in 1989. The greeting was recorded by voice actor Elwood Edwards. Edwards has parlayed his gig with AOL into some other work. He appears in an episode of “The Simpsons” as a doctor who says the line “You’ve got leprosy”. Edwards also worked as a weatherman for a while and got to use the line “You’ve got hail” …

47 Politely declines, maybe : RSVPS

“RSVP” stands for “répondez s’il vous plaît”, which is French for “answer, please”.

48 Development sites : UTERI

“Uterus” (plural “uteri”) is the Latin word for “womb”.

53 Total stranger, or a three-word hint to the answers to the starred clues : RANDO or R AND O

“Rando” is a slang term describing a “random person”. The term tends not to be used flatteringly.

56 Rx writers, often : DRS

There seems to be some uncertainty about the origin of the symbol “Rx” that’s used for a medical prescription. One explanation is that it comes from the astrological sign for Jupiter, a symbol put on prescriptions in days of old to invoke Jupiter’s blessing to help a patient recover.

59 Animal logo on a Dodge truck : RAM

Chrysler put ram hood ornaments on all of its Dodge-branded vehicles starting in 1933. When the first line of Dodge trucks and vans were introduced in 1981, they were named “Rams” in honor of that hood ornament.

60 __-Wan Kenobi : OBI

Obi-Wan Kenobi is one of the more beloved of the “Star Wars” characters. Kenobi was portrayed by two fabulous actors in the series of films. As a young man he is played by Scottish actor Ewan McGregor, and as an older man he is played by Alec Guinness.

61 Caveat in a text : IMO

In my opinion (IMO)

A caveat is a warning or a qualification. “Caveat” is the Latin for “let him beware”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Ongoing drama : SAGA
5 Sounds of revelation : AHAS
9 __ bean : FAVA
13 Cereal coveted by a silly rabbit : TRIX
14 Garlic piece : CLOVE
15 Baaing mamas : EWES
16 *Playful semiaquatic mammal : RIVER OTTER
18 Merit : EARN
19 “__ the Force, Luke” : USE
20 Looked over : EYED
21 Green shade named for a fruit : OLIVE
22 Electric car maker : TESLA
24 *Seafood served on the half shell : RAW OYSTER
27 Flower starter : BUD
28 Thompson of “Thor: Love and Thunder” : TESSA
29 Parcel of land : TRACT
31 Mammal with elephant and leopard varieties : SEAL
32 Chiding sounds : TSKS
36 *Really get down to the music : ROCK OUT
38 *Floral perfume ingredient : ROSE OIL
40 Black as night : INKY
41 Sail the seven __ : SEAS
43 Spiteful, as gossip : CATTY
44 Baseball Hall of Famer Stengel : CASEY
46 Campfire residue : ASH
47 *Request with a tight timeline : RUSH ORDER
51 Broadcast again : RE-AIR
54 Incredible bargain : STEAL
55 Verdi opera : AIDA
57 Hotel at JFK named for a defunct airline : TWA
58 Turn sharply : VEER
59 *”Only the Lonely” singer : ROY ORBISON
62 Stiffly proper : PRIM
63 Helps in a heist : ABETS
64 “Do you __?” : MIND
65 Moral lapses : SINS
66 Fail to notice : MISS
67 Miranda of “Homeland” : OTTO

Down

1 Walk like a peacock : STRUT
2 Pop up : ARISE
3 Volunteers in the community one grew up in, say : GIVES BACK
4 Cord cutter? : AXE
5 Take in or let out : ALTER
6 Reason to get all gussied up : HOT DATE
7 “__ Maria” : AVE
8 Spanish verb similar to “estar” : SER
9 Is completely comfortable : FEELS AT EASE
10 Anticipate : AWAIT
11 Vivacity : VERVE
12 Ed who played Lou Grant : ASNER
14 Playfully shy : COY
17 Share a bedtime story with : READ TO
21 Kvetching cries : OYS
23 “Magically delicious” cereal : LUCKY CHARMS
25 Has on : WEARS
26 Norwegian city with a Viking Ship Museum : OSLO
29 Prefix with athlete : TRI-
30 “Apollo 13” director Howard : RON
31 Fine equine : STEED
33 “Really? There’s no more?” : SO THAT’S IT?
34 Tool set : KIT
35 Wily : SLY
37 Cold War initials : USSR
39 Egyptian beetle : SCARAB
42 Long-fingered lemurs of Madagascar : AYE-AYES
45 “You’ve got mail” ISP : AOL
47 Politely declines, maybe : RSVPS
48 Development sites : UTERI
49 Greet and seat : SEE IN
50 Very funny folks : RIOTS
52 Terse refusal : I WON’T!
53 Total stranger, or a three-word hint to the answers to the starred clues : RANDO or R AND O
56 Rx writers, often : DRS
59 Animal logo on a Dodge truck : RAM
60 __-Wan Kenobi : OBI
61 Caveat in a text : IMO

14 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 22 Aug 22, Monday”

  1. This one should have been easy, but had to start over on too many
    answers. Ended up with no errors or lookups. Was not familiar
    with “rando” but it fit, soooo…..

  2. Hoo-ah. Finished with no errors in fairly quick time (don’t keep track of it) even though I didn’t know 28A, 67A, 42D, 8D or RANDO. Nice puzzle.

  3. 5:47

    Fun, amusing theme.

    I think this is not the first time I’ve had to change LIMA->FAVA. Lesson learned?

    Also very sneaky that ISTHATALL works for a long time until you shift to SOTHATSIT.

  4. 9:40 with revisions of: LIMA>FAVA, IWANT>AWAIT.

    New: TWA Hotel, Miranda OTTO, AYEAYES.

    Pretty good to get six themed clues into a Monday puzzle.

    @Pam in MA, interesting observation for the 33D answer.

  5. Some of these “themes” (like today) are getting ridiculous. For some time now these puzzles are no longer relevant for the above-average solver but rather the expert speed demon. Good for you but not for me.

  6. 5 minutes 32 seconds, no errors. Not often I can get anywhere close to Bill’s finishing time on a Monday (when he’s likely to be in the four minutes + range), but I’ll take it as a decent start to the week.

  7. Slightly tricky for a Monday; took me 11:32 with no peeks or errors, but a bit of dancing around and waiting for one or more crosses. Hand to change oNyx to INKY. Got lucky on FAVA and most of the NE but not so lucky in the SW, which took a couple of revisions.

    I was hoping that TESSA drove a TESLA, but sadly she drives a Cadillac Escalade and an AUDI A3, according to Google.

  8. Got the six clues even though I had a mess in the SE corner and couldn’t make any sense of “R AND O”.
    I would say it was a touch hard for a Monday.

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