LA Times Crossword 31 Oct 22, Monday

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Constructed by: Doug Peterson
Edited by: Patti Varol

Today’s Reveal Answer: Halloween Choice

Happy Halloween, everyone. Themed clues are either TRICK or TREAT:

  • 39A TRICK OR TREAT : HALLOWEEN CHOICE
  • 18A TRICK : DOUBLE-CROSS
  • 24A TREAT : SPRING FOR DINNER
  • 51A TRICK : OPTICAL ILLUSION
  • 61A TREAT : FIDO’S REWARD

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

Bill’s time: 6m 45s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 “Knives Out” actress de Armas : ANA

Ana de Armas is an actress from Cuba. Having attended the National Theater School of Cuba, she moved to Spain at the age of 18. Thre, she made a name for herself in a Spanish TV series called “El Internado”. De Armas moved to Los Angeles in 2014, after which her performance opposite Ryan Gosling in 2017’s “Blade Runner 2049” earned her critical acclaim.

“Knives Out” is an intriguing murder mystery film released in 2019. There’s a great cast including Daniel Craig, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette and Christopher Plummer. I really enjoyed this one, partly because it’s a clever, contemporary take on a classic whodunit movie …

9 Bread that’s boiled before it’s baked : BAGEL

The bagel was invented in the Polish city of Kraków in the 16th century. Bagels were brought to this country by Jewish immigrants from Poland who mainly established homes in and around New York City.

15 African animal with striped hindquarters : OKAPI

The okapi is closely related to the giraffe, although it does have markings on its legs and haunches that resemble those of a zebra. The okapi’s tongue is long enough to reach back and wash its eyeballs, and can go back even further to clean its ears inside and out.

16 Monte __: gambling resort : CARLO

Monte Carlo is an administrative area in the Principality of Monaco that covers just under a quarter of a square mile. The area is known in particular as the location of the famous Monte Carlo Casino. “Monte Carlo” translates as “Mount Charles”, and was named in 1866 for Charles III of Monaco who was ruling the principality at the time.

17 Thanksgiving tuber : YAM

Thanksgiving Day was observed on different dates in different states for many years, until Abraham Lincoln fixed the date for the whole country in 1863. Lincoln’s presidential proclamation set that date as the last Thursday in November. In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt moved the holiday to the fourth Thursday in November, arguing that the earlier date would give the economy a much-needed boost.

28 __-Saxon : ANGLO

Germanic tribes invaded Great Britain from the early 5th century and created the nation that we now call England. The Anglo-Saxons (sometimes simply “Saxons”), as these tribes came to be called, held sway in the country until the Norman Conquest in 1066. The Anglo-Saxons were descendants of three Germanic tribes:

  • The Angles, from Angeln in Northern Germany (and the tribe that gave the name “England”).
  • The Saxons, from Lower Saxony and Holland.
  • The Jutes, from the Jutland peninsula in Denmark.

29 Mar.-to-Nov. hrs. : DST

Daylight saving time (DST)

30 “Sin City” actress Jessica : ALBA

Actress Jessica Alba got her big break when she was cast in the Fox science fiction show “Dark Angel”. Alba had a tough life growing up as she spent a lot of time in hospital and so found it difficult to develop friendships. As a youngster she twice had a collapsed lung, frequently caught pneumonia, suffered from asthma, had a ruptured appendix and a tonsillar cyst. On top of all that, Alba acknowledges that she suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder as a child.

“Sin City” is a 2005 thriller movie that is based on a series of graphic novels by Frank Miller. Miller also co-directs the film. “Sin City” has a large ensemble cast that includes Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Benicio del Toro, Clive Owen and Mickey Rourke. The author Frank Miller even plays a role himself.

39 TRICK OR TREAT : HALLOWEEN CHOICE

All Saints’ Day is November 1st each year. The day before All Saints’ Day is All Hallows’ Eve, better known by the Scottish term “Halloween”.

44 Batman and Robin, e.g. : DUO

Batman and Robin are somewhat unique among their superhero compatriots in that they have no special powers, just a whole load of cool gadgets. Batman is sometimes referred to as the Caped Crusader, Robin as the Boy Wonder, and the pair as the Dynamic Duo.

59 Rock’s __ Speedwagon : REO

REO Speedwagon is an American rock band that formed in 1967, and is still going strong. The band’s biggest hits are “Keep On Loving You” (1980) and “Can’t Fight This Feeling” (1985). The founding members chose the name for the REO Speed Wagon flatbed truck. Note that the band’s name is one word “Speedwagon”, whereas the vehicle’s name uses two words “Speed Wagon”.

60 Honolulu-born “E Lei Ka Lei Lei” singer : DON HO

Honolulu-born singer Don Ho wasa a veteran of the US Airforce. He joined up in 1954 and graduated from flight school as a fighter pilot. However, he spent much of his active service flying C-97 Stratofreighters.

“E Lei Ka Lei Lei” is a 1989 recording by Don Ho that is also known as “The Beach Party Song”.

61 TREAT : FIDO’S REWARD

“Fido”, the name for many a dog, is Latin for “I trust”.

65 Spot for an AirPod : EAR

AirPods are Apple’s line of bluetooth earpods. When AirPods were introduced in 2016, the market reacted with some skepticism. The left and right AirPods are not connected by any wire, so there was concern that individual earbuds could fall out of the ear, and possibly get lost. Another concern is Apple’s stated intent to abandon the wired headphone socket on new iPhone models.

66 Stevie Wonder’s “My Cherie __” : AMOUR

Stevie Wonder wrote “My Cherie Amour” way back in 1966, but it wasn’t released until 1969. The song tells of Stevie’s infatuation with a real woman whom he encountered in the Michigan School for the Blind.

The great musician Stevie Wonder signed on with Motown Records when he was just 11-years-old. He has been remarkably loyal to the label and is still recording with Motown some 50 years later. The level of Stevie Wonder’s success is illustrated by his 22 Grammy Awards, the most Grammys awarded to a male solo artist. Wonder was born 6 weeks prematurely, and incomplete development of blood vessels in his eyes caused the retinas to detach leaving him blind soon after birth. His mother, Lula Mae Hardaway, co-wrote many of Stevie’s songs when he was a teenager, including “I Was Made to Love Her”, “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours” and “I Don’t Know Why I Love You”.

68 $200 Monopoly buys: Abbr. : RRS

The four railroad (RR) properties in the Monopoly board game are:

  • Reading Railroad
  • Pennsylvania Railroad
  • B&O Railroad
  • Short Line

Down

1 Vast chasm : ABYSS

“Abyss”, meaning “deep chasm”, ultimately derives from the Greek “a-” (without) and “byssos” (bottom).

2 Rights org. that awards the Spingarn Medal : NAACP

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) awards the Spingarn Medal every year, to honor outstanding achievement by an African American. The award was created in 1914 and is named for Joel Elias Spingarn, the NAACP’s first Chairman of the Board.

5 Former MGM rival : RKO

During the Golden Age of Cinema (roughly, the thirties and forties), the “Big Five” Hollywood studios were:

  • Lowe’s/MGM
  • Paramount
  • Fox (later “20th Century Fox”)
  • Warner Bros.
  • RKO

6 __ de parfum : EAU

In the world of perfumery, eau de parfum (EdP) is generally more concentrated than eau de toilette (EdT), which in turn is generally more concentrated than eau de cologne (EdC).

7 Tough H.S. science class : AP BIO

The Advanced Placement (AP) program offers college-level courses to kids who are still in high school (HS). After being tested at the end of an AP course, successful students receive credits that count towards a college degree.

9 Slyly include in an email, for short : BCC

A blind carbon copy (bcc) is a copy of a document or message that is sent to someone without other recipients of the message knowing about that extra copy.

10 “__ Burr, Sir”: song in “Hamilton” : AARON

Aaron Burr was the third vice-president of the US, and served under Thomas Jefferson from 1801 to 1805. In the final year of his term in office, Burr fought an illegal duel and killed his political rival Alexander Hamilton. Burr was charged with several crimes as a result, but those charges were eventually dropped. The Democratic-Republican Party had already decided not to nominate Burr as candidate for vice president to run alongside Jefferson in the 1804 election, largely because the relationship between Vice President Burr and President Jefferson was so poor. The subsequent fallout resulting from the killing of Alexander Hamilton effectively ended Burr’s political career.

“Hamilton” is a 2015 musical based on the life of US Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, as described in the 2004 biography by Ron Chernow. The show opened off-Broadway in February 2015, and transferred to Broadway in August of the same year. Advance ticket sales for the Broadway production were unprecedented, and reportedly amounted to $30 million. The representations of the main characters are decidedly ground-breaking. The show is rooted in hip-hop and the main roles such as Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington are all played by African-American and Hispanic actors.

12 Borden mascot : ELSIE

Elsie the Cow is the mascot of the Borden Company. Elsie first appeared at the New York World’s Fair in 1939, introduced to symbolize the perfect dairy product. She is so famous and respected that she has been awarded the degrees of Doctor of Bovinity, Doctor of Human Kindness and Doctor of Ecownomics. Elsie was also given a husband named Elmer the Bull. Elmer eventually moved over to the chemical division of Borden where he gave his name to Elmer’s Glue.

21 Concluding episode : FINALE

“Finale” is an Italian word meaning “final” that we imported into English in the 1780s, initially as a musical term.

25 Healthy aura : GLOW

An aura (plural “aurae”) is an intangible quality that surrounds a person or thing, a “je ne sais quoi”. “Je ne sais quoi” is French for “I don’t know what”.

26 Golfer’s warning shout : FORE!

No one seems to know for sure where the golfing term “fore!” comes from. It has been used at least as far back as 1881, and since then has been called out to warn other golfers that a wayward ball might be heading their way. My favorite possibility for its origin is that it is a contraction of the Gaelic warning cry “Faugh a Ballagh!” (clear the way!) which is still called out in the sport of road bowling. Road bowling is an Irish game where players bowl balls along roads between villages, trying to reach the end of the course in as few bowls as possible, just like in golf!

27 Calamine lotion target : ITCH

Calamine is mainly zinc oxide, with a small percentage of iron oxide. Calamine is incorporated into a lotion that is used for many things, including treatment of sunburn and itching.

31 Back muscle, informally : LAT

The muscles known as the “lats” are the latissimi dorsi, and are the broadest muscles in the back. “Latissimus” is Latin for “broadest”, and “dorsum” is Latin for “back”.

36 Passenger planes : AIRLINERS

The use of the word “line” with reference to transportation started in the 1780s, in the context of stagecoaches. Such transportation operated a string of stagecoaches between towns and cities along regular “lines”. The concept shifted to shipping “lines” operating ocean-going “liners” between ports. And then came “airliners”.

40 Oil cartel letters : OPEC

The OPEC cartel was formally established in 1960 and has been headquartered in Vienna since 1965. The US is actually the third largest oil producer in the world (after Russia and Saudi Arabia). One reason America isn’t in OPEC, even though we are a big producer, is that we import a lot more than we export. But we all probably knew that already …

42 Christmas stocking disappointment : COAL

Apparently, the tradition of putting coal in the Christmas stocking of a poorly-behaved child comes simply from the proximity of the stocking (hanging on the fireplace) to a source of coal!

47 “Hunting Season” novelist Nevada : BARR

Nevada Barr is an author noted for her series of mystery novels set in National Parks that feature park ranger and detective Anna Pigeon.

48 Censoring sounds : BLEEPS

The original “censor” was an officer in ancient Rome who had responsibility for taking the “census”, as well as supervising public morality.

50 Rainy day creation : PUDDLE

We’ve been using the word “puddle” to mean “small pool of muddy water” since the 15th century. The term ultimately comes from the German “pudeln” meaning “to splash in water”. “Pudelm” is also the derivation of “poodle”, a breed of dog that was used in hunting waterfowl. So, “poodle” and “puddle” are cousins. Quite interesting …

51 Scraps used by nose-to-tail chefs : OFFAL

The internal organs and entrails of a butchered animal are referred to collectively as “offal”. Examples of dishes that make use of offal would be sausages, foie gras, sweetbreads and haggis. The term is a melding of the words “off” and “fall”, and dates back to the 14th century. The idea is that offal is what “falls off” a butcher’s block.

52 __ donna: opera star : PRIMA

The Italian operatic term “prima donna” is used for the lead female singer in an opera company. “Prima donna” translates from Italian as “first lady”. The lead male singer is known as the “primo uomo”. The term “prima donna assoluta” is reserved for a prima donna who is generally accepted as being an outstanding performer. We tend to use “prima donna” for a female performer who has an inflated ego.

55 Des Moines resident : IOWAN

The city of Des Moines is the capital of Iowa, and takes its name from the Des Moines River. The river in turn takes its name from the French “Riviere des Moines” meaning “River of the Monks”. It looks like there isn’t any “monkish” connection to the city’s name per se. “Des Moines” was just the name given by French traders who corrupted “Moingona”, the name of a group of Illinois Native Americans who lived by the river. However, others contend that French Trappist monks, who lived a full 200 miles from the river, somehow influenced the name.

56 Windy City airport : O’HARE

O’Hare International was the world’s busiest airport from 1963 to 1998. The original airport was constructed on the site between 1942 and 1943, and was used by the Douglas Aircraft Company for the manufacture of planes during WWII. Before the factory and airport were built, there was a community in the area called Orchard Place, so the airport was called Orchard Place Airport/Douglas Field. This name is the derivation of the airport’s current location identifier: ORD (OR-chard D-ouglas). Orchard Place Airport was renamed to O’Hare International in 1949 in honor of Lieutenant Commander Butch O’Hare who grew up in Chicago. O’Hare was the US Navy’s first flying ace and a Medal of Honor recipient in WWII.

It seems that the derivation of Chicago’s nickname “Windy City” isn’t as obvious as I would have thought. There are two viable theories. Firstly, that the weather can be breezy with wind blowing in off Lake Michigan. The effect of the wind is exaggerated by the grid-layout adopted by city planners after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. The second theory is that “windy” means “being full of bluster”. Sportswriters from the rival city of Cincinnati were fond of calling Chicago supporters “windy” in the 1860s and 1870s, meaning that they were full of hot air in their claims that the Chicago White Stockings were superior to the Cincinnati Red Stockings.

57 Viking language : NORSE

The Vikings were a Germanic people from northern Europe who were noted as great seafarers. Key to the success of the Vikings was the design of their famous “longships”. Made from wood, the longship was long and narrow with a shallow hull, It was also light, so that the crew would actually carry it small distances over land and around obstacles. Longships were designed to be propelled by both sail and oars.

63 Singer DiFranco : ANI

Singer Ani DiFranco founded her record company Righteous Records in 1990 in order to gain independence from the established record industry. She had to change the name to Righteous Babe Records as there already was a Righteous Record label, one that published gospel music.

64 Checkers color : RED

“Checkers” is yet another word that I had to learn moving across the Atlantic. In Ireland, the game is called “draughts”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 “Knives Out” actress de Armas : ANA
4 Skin care product : CREAM
9 Bread that’s boiled before it’s baked : BAGEL
14 Not good : BAD
15 African animal with striped hindquarters : OKAPI
16 Monte __: gambling resort : CARLO
17 Thanksgiving tuber : YAM
18 TRICK : DOUBLE-CROSS
20 Genre of many works with “star” in the title : SCI-FI
22 + or – atomic particle : ION
23 Tot’s scrape : OWIE
24 TREAT : SPRING FOR DINNER
28 __-Saxon : ANGLO
29 Mar.-to-Nov. hrs. : DST
30 “Sin City” actress Jessica : ALBA
32 Sphere : ORB
34 Waiting room seat : CHAIR
39 TRICK OR TREAT : HALLOWEEN CHOICE
43 Tough to climb : STEEP
44 Batman and Robin, e.g. : DUO
45 Get ready, informally : PREP
46 Flow back : EBB
49 Flap on a jacket : LAPEL
51 TRICK : OPTICAL ILLUSION
58 Email heading word : FROM
59 Rock’s __ Speedwagon : REO
60 Honolulu-born “E Lei Ka Lei Lei” singer : DON HO
61 TREAT : FIDO’S REWARD
65 Spot for an AirPod : EAR
66 Stevie Wonder’s “My Cherie __” : AMOUR
67 Advisory group : PANEL
68 $200 Monopoly buys: Abbr. : RRS
69 Doesn’t wear out : LASTS
70 Mean and sarcastic : SNIDE
71 “Catch my drift?” : SEE

Down

1 Vast chasm : ABYSS
2 Rights org. that awards the Spingarn Medal : NAACP
3 Worthy of esteem : ADMIRABLE
4 Programmer’s task : CODING
5 Former MGM rival : RKO
6 __ de parfum : EAU
7 Tough H.S. science class : AP BIO
8 Noble address : MILORD
9 Slyly include in an email, for short : BCC
10 “__ Burr, Sir”: song in “Hamilton” : AARON
11 In adulthood : GROWN
12 Borden mascot : ELSIE
13 One who draws the short straw : LOSER
19 Stops : ENDS
21 Concluding episode : FINALE
25 Healthy aura : GLOW
26 Golfer’s warning shout : FORE!
27 Calamine lotion target : ITCH
30 Contented sighs : AHS
31 Back muscle, informally : LAT
33 __-and-breakfast : BED
35 “Fingers crossed” : HOPE SO
36 Passenger planes : AIRLINERS
37 Hockey surface : ICE
38 Agt. : REP
40 Oil cartel letters : OPEC
41 __ and void : NULL
42 Christmas stocking disappointment : COAL
47 “Hunting Season” novelist Nevada : BARR
48 Censoring sounds : BLEEPS
50 Rainy day creation : PUDDLE
51 Scraps used by nose-to-tail chefs : OFFAL
52 __ donna: opera star : PRIMA
53 Big commotions : TO-DOS
54 Folding declaration at the poker table : I’M OUT
55 Des Moines resident : IOWAN
56 Windy City airport : O’HARE
57 Viking language : NORSE
62 Graduating gp. : SRS
63 Singer DiFranco : ANI
64 Checkers color : RED

14 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 31 Oct 22, Monday”

  1. No errors. Never heard of Nevada Barr.
    My wife might like her stuff with the whole park ranger mystery setting.

  2. I felt “mIord” for 8D seemed odd so I kept “mYlord” when I assumed “okapY” was an acceptable alternate spelling of “okapi”.

  3. 6 minutes, 4 seconds, and another rare shaving of Bill’s finishing time.

    That’s my “treat” on the day!

  4. Mostly easy Monday; took 7:26 with no peeks or errors. Just a little waiting for crosses for OKAPI, BARR and some of the theme answers.

    Finally saw ANA de Armas in “No Time to Die”…really cute, action packed…3.5/4.0 stars.

  5. 8:10 – no errors or lookups. False start: SPRINGFORDRINKS>SPRINGFORDINNER.

    New: “Hunting Season,” Nevada BARR. Have seen OFFAL before, but rarely remember it. Some of what that is sounds “awful.”

    Clever theme. A quick solve to get in before the trick-or-treaters arrive!

  6. Hi every buddy!!🙃
    Easy Monday. No errors, altho I didn’t remember BARR from past puzzles. I know she’s been here before.

    Go Phillies!!

    Be well~~⚾️

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