LA Times Crossword 13 Oct 22, Thursday

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Constructed by: Amanda Rafkin
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Reveal Answer: Chaos Magic

Themed answers each include the letter string “MAGIC” in CHAOS, rearranged:

  • 60A Power that enables the Scarlet Witch to rewrite reality, and a hidden feature of the answers to the starred clues? : CHAOS MAGIC
  • 15A *”Love Story” star : ALI MACGRAW
  • 26A *Sports event whose medals feature braille inscriptions : PARALYMPIC GAMES
  • 45A *Candy smokes : BUBBLE GUM CIGARS

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

Bill’s time: 6m 20s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Point of Grant Wood’s “American Gothic”? : TINE

The iconic Grant Wood work titled “American Gothic” was painted in 1930. It depicts a farmer holding a pitchfork standing beside his spinster daughter. Grant used his sister as a model for the daughter, and his dentist as a model for the farmer. You can see “American Gothic” on display at the Art Institute of Chicago. You can also visit the house depicted in the painting, in the city of Eldon, Iowa. Perhaps predictably, the house is located on what is now called American Gothic Street.

12 Tibetan monks : LAMAS

“Lama” is a Tibetan word meaning “chief, high priest”.

13 PPO counterpart : HMO

Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) or Health Maintenance Organization (HMO). Make your choice, if you can …

14 Terra’s Greek counterpart : GAIA

The Greek goddess personifying the earth was Gaea (also “Gaia”, and meaning “land” or “earth” in Greek). The Roman equivalent goddess was Terra Mater, “Mother Earth”.

15 *”Love Story” star : ALI MACGRAW

Ali MacGraw’s most famous role was the female lead in the 1970 film “Love Story”. MacGraw became romantically involved with Steve McQueen as they filmed “The Getaway” in 1972. The pair eventually wed, after they managed to unwind their first marriages. They divorced in 1978.

There’s no doubt that the 1970 movie “Love Story” is one of the great romantic dramas of all time, but I just think Ali MacGraw was hopelessly miscast and really took the shine off the film for me. I know I am in a small minority that holds that view, as she was nominated for an Oscar for her performance.

19 __ closet : LINEN

In Old French a “clos” was an enclosure, with the diminutive form “closet” describing a small enclosure or private room. Over time this evolved into our modern usage of “closet”, describing a cabinet or cupboard.

21 Reddit admin : MOD

Moderator (mod)

Reddit.com is a networking and news website that started up in 2005. It is essentially a bulletin board system with posts that are voted up and down by users, which determines the ranking of posts. The name “Reddit” is a play on “read it”, as in “I read it on Reddit”. One popular feature of the Reddit site is an online forum that is similar to a press conference. Known as an AMA (for “ask me anything”), participants have included the likes of President Barack Obama, Madonna, Bill Gates, Stephen Colbert and Gordon Ramsay. President Obama’s AMA was so popular that the high level of traffic brought down many parts of the Reddit site.

22 __ vincit omnia : AMOR

“Omnia vincit amor” is a line from Eclogue X, one of the major works of the Latin poet Virgil. We know the phrase in English as “love conquers all”.

23 Tight-lipped : MUM

The phrase “mum’s the word” has been around since the early 1700s. “Mum” has been used to mean “silent” for centuries, the idea being that “mum” is the sound made when the lips are tightly sealed.

24 Pulitzer-winning novelist Jennifer : EGAN

Jennifer Egan is an author who grew up in San Francisco. Egan’s 2010 work “A Visit from the Goon Squad” won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Usually termed a novel, “A Visit from the Goon Squad” is structured in such a way that it is sometimes described as a collection of linked short stories.

26 *Sports event whose medals feature braille inscriptions : PARALYMPIC GAMES

The Winter and Summer Paralympic Games grew out of a gathering of British disabled WWII veterans that coincided with 1948’s Summer Olympic Games. The first official Paralympic Games was held in Rome in 1960.

31 “ur 2 funny” : LOL

Laugh out loud (LOL)

32 Some autumn babies : SCORPIOS

Scorpio is the eighth astrological sign of the Zodiac. Individuals born between October 23 and November 21 are Scorpios. I’m one of those Scorpios …

33 Link letters : URL

An Internet address (like NYXCrossword.com and LAXCrossword.com) is more correctly called a uniform resource locator (URL).

38 Paramore music genre : EMO

Paramore is a rock band that formed in 2004 in Franklin, Tennessee.

39 __ Arbor, Michigan : ANN

Ann Arbor, Michigan was founded in 1824 by John Allen and Elisha Rumsey. Supposedly, Allen and Rumsey originally used the name “Annsarbour” in recognition of stands of bur oak that were on the land they had purchased and in recognition of their wives, both of whom were called “Ann” (i.e. Anns’ Arbor)

40 Grottoes carved by waves : SEA CAVES

A grotto is a cave or cavern. “Grotto” is a word that we have imported from Italian, in which language it has the same meaning, or can describe a vault.

43 Cookbook writer Garten : INA

Ina Garten is an author as well as the host of a cooking show on the Food Network called “Barefoot Contessa”. She is a mentee of Martha Stewart, and indeed was touted as a potential “successor” to the TV celebrity when Stewart was incarcerated in 2004 after an insider trading scandal. Garten has no formal training as a chef, and indeed used to work as a nuclear policy analyst at the White House!

51 Rapper Lil __ X : NAS

“Lil Nas X” is the stage name of rapper Montero Lamar Hill. He was born and raised just outside of Atlanta. His first hit was “Old Town Road”, which is classified as country rap.

57 “Goosebumps” series author : STINE

“Goosebumps” is a series of children’s horror novels written by author R. L. Stine. The novels have been adapted into a television series shown on Canadian TV.

58 Ridesharing choice : UBER

The rideshare service Uber takes its name from the English colloquial word “uber” meaning “super, topmost”, which in turn comes from the German “über” meaning “above”.

60 Power that enables the Scarlet Witch to rewrite reality, and a hidden feature of the answers to the starred clues? : CHAOS MAGIC

The Scarlet Witch is a superhero in Marvel Comics Universe who first appears in print in 1964. The alter ego of mutant Wanda Marya Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch regularly joins the Avengers team of superheroes. On the big screen, she is portrayed by Elizabeth Olsen.

62 Muppet who once testified before Congress : ELMO

In 2002, The Muppet Elmo got to testify before a US House subcommittee. Elmo’s goal was to get an increase in funding for music education. In the transcript of the hearing, his statements are ascribed to “Elmo Monster” and “Mr. Monster”.

65 Sunflower edible : SEED

The common sunflower is so called because it has a flower head that looks like the Sun. Famously, young sunflowers exhibit heliotropism, tilting during the day to face the sun. As the sunflowers mature and bloom, they generally face east and no longer track the movement of the Sun across the sky.

Down

3 Flatbread served with tikka masala : NAAN

Chicken tikka masala is a dish consisting of chicken tikka (chunks of marinated chicken) served in a masala sauce. Masala is the Hindi word for “mixture”, and describes a mixture of spices. A dish named “masala” uses the spices incorporated into a sauce that includes garlic, ginger, onions and chili paste. Although served as part of Indian cuisine, there seems to be a lot of evidence that chicken tikka masala was actually invented in an Indian restaurant in Britain.

4 Key used to exit? : ESC

The escape key (Esc) was originally used just to control computer peripherals. It was a key that allowed the computer operator to stop what the peripheral was doing (cancel a print job, for example). Nowadays the escape key is used for all sorts of things, especially in gaming programs.

5 Cocktail ingredients : SHRIMPS

The terms “prawn” and “shrimp” are often used interchangeably on menus. Over in the UK, the term “prawn” is most common, while “shrimp” is seen more often here in North America. Sometimes there is a differentiation from a food standpoint, with “prawn” being used for larger species and “shrimp” for smaller species. As a result, “jumbo prawns” seems to be an acceptable descriptor for a dish, whereas “jumbo shrimp” seems to be an oxymoron.

6 “Ms. Marvel” star Vellani : IMAN

Iman Vellani is a Pakistani-born Canadian actress who is best known for playing the title character (aka Kamala Khan) in the superhero miniseries “Ms. Marvel”.

7 Investment firm T. __ Price : ROWE

T. Rowe Price is an investment company based in Baltimore that was founded in 1937 by Thomas Rowe Price, Jr.

9 “Dancing Queen” musical : MAMMA MIA!

The hit musical “Mamma Mia!” was written to showcase the songs of ABBA. I’m a big fan of ABBA’s music, so I’ve seen this show a couple of times and just love it. “Mamma Mia!” is such a big hit on the stage that on any given day there are at least seven performances going on somewhere in the world. There is a really interesting film version of the show that was released in 2008. I think the female lead Meryl Streep is wonderful in the movie, but the male leads … not so much! By the way, one can tell the difference between “Mamma Mia” the ABBA song and “Mamma Mia!” the musical, by noting the difference in the punctuation in the titles.

“Dancing Queen” is a great, great song from 1976 that was released by the Swedish group ABBA. ABBA’s music has never been as popular in the US as it is in other countries, but “Dancing Queen” did make it to the number-one spot in the charts here. It was in fact, ABBA’s only #1 hit in the US.

12 Alpaca kin : LLAMA

The llama is a camelid mammal very much associated with the Andean cultures. Despite the association with South America, it is thought that the ancestors of the modern llama migrated south from the Great Plains of North America about 40 million years ago.

20 Campari aperitivo : NEGRONI

The Negroni is a lovely cocktail, one that hails from Italy. A classic recipe calls for equal parts gin, sweet vermouth and Campari. According to legend, the drink was first made by bartender Forsco Scarselli at the request of Count Camillo Negroni, hence the name. The count wanted a stronger version of an Americano, and so Scarselli dropped the Americano’s soda water and replaced it with gin!

Campari is an alcoholic beverage with a distinctive red color and a pleasant, yet bitter taste. It is a key ingredient in one of my favorite cocktails: an Americano (one part Campari, one part sweet vermouth and a dash of club soda).

23 Top 10 Lionel Richie song with the lyric “Honey, you’re everything I need” : MY LOVE

“My Love” is a 1983 song written and recorded by Lionel Richie. During the recording, country music star Kenny Rogers provided backing vocals.

Singer-songwriter Lionel Richie got his big break as a singer and saxophonist with the Commodores starting in 1968. Richie launched a very successful solo career in 1982. Richie is the father of socialite Nicole Richie, childhood friend of Paris Hilton and co-star on the Fox show “The Simple Life”.

28 Raw bar need : ICE

Almost all of the shellfish consumed at a raw bar is not only uncooked, it is also still alive.

30 Nine-digit ID : SSN

A Social Security number (SSN) is divided into three parts, i.e AAA-GG-SSSS. Originally, the Area Number (AAA) was the code for the office that issued the card. Starting in 1973, the Area Number reflected the ZIP code from which the application was made. The GG in the SSN was the Group Number, and the SSSS number the Serial Number. This is all moot today. Since 2011, SSNs have been assigned randomly. Some random numbers, however, have been excluded from use, i.e. Area Numbers 000, 666 (!) and 900-999.

33 __ port : USB

Universal Serial Bus (USB) is an industry standard dealing with how computers and electronic devices connect and communicate, and dealing with electrical power through those connections.

35 Opera that inspired “Rent” : LA BOHEME

“La bohème” by Giacomo Puccini is the second-most frequently performed opera in the US (after “Madama Butterfly”, also by Puccini). The lead female role in the piece is Mimì, a seamstress.

The musical “Rent” by Jonathan Larson is based on the Puccini opera “La bohème”. “Rent” tells the story of struggling artists and musicians living in the Lower East Side of New York, and is set against the backdrop of the AIDS epidemic. We saw “Rent” on Broadway quite a few years ago, and were very disappointed …

41 Oil in some dispensary products : CBD

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a chemical extracted from cannabis plants that is used as a herbal drug. It does not contain the chemical tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is responsible for the marijuana “high”.

46 Deli spread : MAYO

Mayonnaise originated in the town of Mahon in Menorca, a Mediterranean island belonging to Spain. The Spanish called the sauce “salsa mahonesa” after the town, and this morphed into the French word “mayonnaise” that we use in English today.

56 Blue-roofed breakfast spot : IHOP

The International House of Pancakes (IHOP) was founded back in 1958. IHOP was originally intended to be called IHOE, the International House of Eggs, but that name didn’t do too well in marketing tests.

61 Spot for a cucumber mask : SPA

Apparently, scientists have shown that the inside of a cucumber (“cuke” for short) growing in a field can be up to twenty degrees cooler than the surrounding air. That’s something that was believed by farmers as early as the 1730s, at which time the phrase “cool as a cucumber” was coined.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Point of Grant Wood’s “American Gothic”? : TINE
5 Knight’s title : SIR
8 Rescue squad VIPs : EMTS
12 Tibetan monks : LAMAS
13 PPO counterpart : HMO
14 Terra’s Greek counterpart : GAIA
15 *”Love Story” star : ALI MACGRAW
17 Prophetic sign : OMEN
18 Place to go for pro tips? : SALON
19 __ closet : LINEN
21 Reddit admin : MOD
22 __ vincit omnia : AMOR
23 Tight-lipped : MUM
24 Pulitzer-winning novelist Jennifer : EGAN
26 *Sports event whose medals feature braille inscriptions : PARALYMPIC GAMES
31 “ur 2 funny” : LOL
32 Some autumn babies : SCORPIOS
33 Link letters : URL
36 Corn core : COB
38 Paramore music genre : EMO
39 __ Arbor, Michigan : ANN
40 Grottoes carved by waves : SEA CAVES
43 Cookbook writer Garten : INA
45 *Candy smokes : BUBBLE GUM CIGARS
50 Common mixer : SODA
51 Rapper Lil __ X : NAS
52 “Ok, ok! Turn the alarm off!” : I’M UP!
53 Cheer syllable : RAH!
54 Supreme being : DEITY
57 “Goosebumps” series author : STINE
58 Ridesharing choice : UBER
60 Power that enables the Scarlet Witch to rewrite reality, and a hidden feature of the answers to the starred clues? : CHAOS MAGIC
62 Muppet who once testified before Congress : ELMO
63 Darlin’ : HON
64 Don : PUT ON
65 Sunflower edible : SEED
66 Covert __ : OPS
67 Gets better in a wine cellar, hopefully : AGES

Down

1 Professional with a fitting job? : TAILOR
2 Unethical : IMMORAL
3 Flatbread served with tikka masala : NAAN
4 Key used to exit? : ESC
5 Cocktail ingredients : SHRIMPS
6 “Ms. Marvel” star Vellani : IMAN
7 Investment firm T. __ Price : ROWE
8 Subject of inflation : EGO
9 “Dancing Queen” musical : MAMMA MIA!
10 Get really drunk : TIE ONE ON
11 Hourglass stuff : SAND
12 Alpaca kin : LLAMA
15 “Stat!” : ASAP!
16 Morose : GLUM
20 Campari aperitivo : NEGRONI
23 Top 10 Lionel Richie song with the lyric “Honey, you’re everything I need” : MY LOVE
25 Unfilled space : GAP
27 Spot for a small business? : LOCAL AD
28 Raw bar need : ICE
29 Stand-up folks? : COMICS
30 Nine-digit ID : SSN
33 __ port : USB
34 Like tote bags and metal straws : REUSABLE
35 Opera that inspired “Rent” : LA BOHEME
37 Implore : BEG
41 Oil in some dispensary products : CBD
42 Shades for lifeguards : SUNTANS
44 Really work up : AGITATE
46 Deli spread : MAYO
47 Buddies : AMIGOS
48 Skirmish : RUN-IN
49 Design detail, for short : SPEC
53 Wishes undone : RUES
55 Reverberate : ECHO
56 Blue-roofed breakfast spot : IHOP
57 Self-satisfied : SMUG
59 Fish stick? : ROD
61 Spot for a cucumber mask : SPA

20 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 13 Oct 22, Thursday”

  1. No errors.

    Does one force NEGRONI to fit after they get the rest of the grid or do they start with NEGRONI and then make everything work around it?

    I guess it’s all chaos magic.

  2. No errors, a few do-overs. That word Negroni was one of
    them; I had Negrito to start with and had to change it letter by letter
    to fit the rest of the grid.

    Was going great guns until 45 across: thought at first it was candy
    cigarettes but that got shot down in a hurry. All in all an enjoyable
    puzzle…for a change.

  3. As easy as this grid was for me today the WSJ was the exact opposite. I muttered more than one, not suitable for polite company four letter word under my breath as I inked over my initial attempts to solve the dang thing. Finally, after too many false starts I wrestled the 20 foot crocodile into submission and finished without being eaten or final error!

  4. 27:45 no errors…I couldn’t decide between seacOves and seacAves until the light finally came on for locAlads🤪
    Stay safe😀

  5. Echoing Mary S.’s last sentence. Finished with no errors or lookups but had to make a couple of good guesses: CBD and NEGRONI–hadn’t heard of either. Nice Thursday. Thanks

  6. 10:46 – no errors, lookups, or false starts.

    New: AMOR vincit omnia, Jennifer EGAN, “Paramore music,” IMAN Vellani.

    Negroni was in last Friday’s puzzle, with the answer being campari. I agree with Jane Drees Blando, never have I ever said “shrimps.”

    1. I didn’t get it either but once I saw the answer….. one’s ego can be inflated. I was thinking some kind of money answer

  7. I agree with Jane above that the plural of shrimp is “shrimp”. However, according to every website I checked just now, including Merriam-Webster, the plural can be either “shrimp” or “shrimps”.

  8. 5:57

    @Anonymous, EGO inflation is what happens when flattery puffs up one’s sense of self.

    The puzzle was fine. I liked LAMAS crossing LLAMA. Theme was one of those where you hunt for the scrambled letters afterwards as if you care. Were there no circles in order to raise the difficulty to a Thursday level?

  9. Shrimps … please no!!!
    When living in South Africa we ate prawns, thought I could tell big difference (did not mean to pun, honestly.).
    Quit eating shellfish some time ago for some forgotten reason.

  10. No look ups,1 Natick. Never heard of Negroni or darn PPP. Ira sounded better
    than Ina? One change on the fly, cod/cbd
    Decent theme but didn’t help…

  11. Well my EGO was slightly inflated today when I finished the WSJ puzzle in 39:22 with no peeks or errors, but a lot of fun dancing around. Also got the LA done in 11:28 with no peeks or errors, and some dancing around. Also got word that my Covid suspended SFSU Farmers market is restarting next month..Woo Hoo!!

    Can’t say, based on Bill’s opinion, whether Ali MacGraw was miscast in “Love Story” as I never saw it, but I did stream “The Getaway”, based on reading Bill’s write-up in the past, and that was kind of interesting…I’d give it 2.5 stars out of 5.

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