Top Line

LA Times Crossword Answers 12 Dec 12, Wednesday





CROSSWORD SETTER: Marti DuGuay-Carpenter & Don Gagliardo
THEME: 12.12.12 … in honor of today’s date (12/12/12), we have three clues that read simply “12”:
17A. 12 BIG TEN TEAM-COUNT
30A. 12 NOTES AN OCTAVE
49A. 12 CENTURY BEGUN MCI
62A. What this puzzle's three identical clues can represent DAY, MONTH AND YEAR
COMPLETION TIME: 05m 09s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
1. Life and Risk GAMES
The board game we call “The Game of Life” was created quite a few years ago, in 1869 by Milton Bradley. Back then it was called “The Checkered Game of Life” and was the first parlor game to become a popular hit. The modern version of the game was first released in 1960.

Risk is a fabulous board game, first sold in France in 1957. Risk was invented by a very successful French director of short films called Albert Lamorisse. Lamorisse called his new game "La Conquête du Monde", which translates into English as "The Conquest of the World". A game of Risk is a must during the holidays in our house ...

6. Pkg. markings UPCS
UPC stands for Universal Price Code or Universal Product Code. The first UPC-marked item to get scanned in a store was on June 26, 1974 at 08:01 a.m. at Marsh's supermarket in Troy, Ohio. It was a 10-pack of Wrigley's Juicy Fruit chewing gum …

10. Yoda trainee JEDI
Yoda is one of the most beloved characters in the "Star Wars" series of films. Yoda's voice was provided by the great modern-day puppeteer Frank Oz of "Muppets" fame.

15. __-dieu PRIE
Prie-dieu literally means "pray (to) God" in French. A prie-dieu is basically a padded kneeler, with an arm rest in front and a shelf on which one placed books of prayer.

17. 12 BIG TEN TEAM-COUNT
The Big Ten is the nation's oldest Division I college athletic conference and today is comprised of not ten, but twelve colleges mainly located in the Midwest. The conference was founded in 1896 and earned the name "Big Nine" in 1899 when Iowa and Indiana joined to bring the number of teams in the conference to nine. The conference name was changed to the Big Ten after Michigan rejoined in 1917. Right after WWII, the University of Chicago dropped out so the conference became known as the Big Nine again until 1949. The official designation of "Big Ten" was adopted in 1987 when the conference (once again with with a complement of ten teams) registered as a not-for-profit corporation. It was decided to keep the official name of Big Ten when Penn State joined in 1990 bringing the number of schools to the level of eleven, and even when the University of Nebraska-Lincoln joined in 2011 as the twelfth team.

20. ID theft target SSN
The main purpose of a Social Security Number (SSN) is to track individuals for the purposes of taxation, although given its ubiquitous use, an SSN is looking more and more like an "identity number" to me. The social security number system was introduced in 1936. Prior to 1986, an SSN was required only for persons with substantial income so many children under 14 had no number assigned. For some years the IRS had a concern that a lot of people were claiming children on their tax returns who did not actually exist. So, from 1986 onward, it is a requirement to get an SSN for any dependents over the ago of 5. Sure enough, in 1987 seven million dependents "disappeared".

21. __-Aid KOOL
The drink we know today as Kool-Aid was invented by Edward Perkins and his wife, in Perkins’ mother’s kitchen in southwest Nebraska. Kool-Aid is now the Official Soft Drink of the state.

22. Memo lead-off IN RE
The term "in re" is Latin, derived from "in" (in) and "res" (thing, matter). "In re" literally means "in the matter", and is used to mean "in regard to", or "in the matter of".

23. Our Gang word spoken with a hand signal OTAY
Hal Roach made a whole series of comedy shorts with "The Little Rascals", also known as "Our Gang". This very likable bunch of kids included Spanky and his kid brother, Porky. Porky had a speech impediment so he couldn't pronounce "Okay, Spanky" very clearly and it came out as "Otay, Panky".

30. 12 NOTES AN OCTAVE
In western music, an octave is composed of twelve notes, twelve semitones.


I find that terminology in music can be confusing. My way of looking at an octave (my way ... don't shout at me!) is thinking of a piano keyboard. In the key of C, the seven notes of the octave are C, D, E, F, G, A, B (or "do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti"). These are all white keys. Most of these "white notes" are separated by whole tones, so there is room to add a "semitone" in between most of them, and these are the black keys (C-sharp for example). There is room for five black keys in an octave, and 7 + 5 adds up to 12. I assume we use the term "octave" because we often add an eighth note on the end "to bring us back to do" as the song says (do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti, do ... or ... C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C). That eight note is really the first note in the next octave up.


33. Detective Wolfe NERO
Nero Wolfe is a fictional detective and the hero of many stories published by author Rex Stout. There are 33 Nero Wolfe novels for us to read, and 39 short stories. There are also movie adaptations of two of the novels: " Meet Nero Wolfe" (1936) which features a young Rita Hayworth, and "The League of Frightened Men" (1937). One of Wolfe's endearing traits is his love of good food and beer, so he is a pretty rotund character.

36. Norwegian throne name OLAF
Of the many kings of Norway named Olaf/Olav (and there have been five), Olaf II is perhaps the most celebrated as he was canonized and made patron saint of the country. Olaf II was king from 1015 to 1028 and was known as "Olaf the Big" (or Olaf the Fat) during his reign. Today he is more commonly referred to as "Olaf the Holy". After Olaf died he was given the title of Rex Perpetuus Norvegiae, which is Latin for “Norway’s Eternal King”.

39. Color like aqua TEAL
The beautiful color of teal takes it name from the duck called a "teal", which has dark greenish-blue (teal) markings on its head and wings.

41. 1990s Expos manager ALOU
Felipe Alou is a former professional baseball player and manager. Alou managed the Montreal Expos from 1992 to 2001, and the San Francisco Giants from 2003 to 2006. Alou was born and raised in the Dominican Republic and came to the US to play for the Giants in 1955. Felipe’s brothers Matty and Jesús followed him to the US, and into Major League baseball.


49. 12 CENTURY BEGUN MCI
MCI is the year 1101, which was the first year of the 12th century. 




54. Pointe balancing point TOE
"Pointe" is the name given to ballet dancing on the tips of the toes, and is a French term. A ballerina wears "pointe shoes" to perform this delightful-looking, albeit unhealthy feat ... pun intended ...

57. Set up a Titleist, say TEED
The golf equipment brand name “Titleist” is most closely associated with golf balls. The name of the brand comes from the word “titlist” meaning “the one who holds the title”.

59. "Vamoose!" SHOO!
"To vamoose" is to "to leave", and comes from the Spanish "vamos" meaning "let us go".

62. What this puzzle's three identical clues can represent DAY, MONTH AND YEAR
Today’s puzzle was published on 12/12/12 … 12 December 2012.

66. Ex-Dodger Hershiser OREL
Orel Hershiser is big into poker now that he has retired from Major League Baseball. Hershiser lives in Las Vegas and when he isn't working for ESPN, apparently he is at the poker tables.

67. Revival meeting shout AMEN
The word “amen” is translated as “so be it”. “Amen” is said to be of Hebrew origin, but it is likely to be also influenced by Aramaic and Arabic.

Down
1. Martini with a onion GIBSON
A Gibson is simply a regular martini (gin and vermouth) with the traditional olive garnish replaced with a pickled onion.

2. Cox sitcom co-star ANISTON
Jennifer Aniston won a 2002 Emmy for playing Rachel on the great sitcom "Friends". Jennifer's parents are both actors, and her godfather is the actor Telly Savalas.

Courteney Cox played Monica Geller on the incredibly successful sitcom "Friends". Before "Friends" she played the girlfriend of Michael J. Fox's character on "Family Ties" for a couple of years in the late eighties. Her role in "Friends" was her biggest success, no question, when she and her fellow female costars became the highest paid TV actresses ever, earning a million dollars per episode.

4. Tolkien creature with branches ENT
Ents are those tree-like creatures that live in J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth in his series of books "The Lord of the Rings". “Ent” is an Old English word for “giant”.

9. Th.D.-issuing school SEM
You can study towards the degree of Doctor of Theology (D.Th.) at a seminary (sem.).

10. "Benny & __": Depp film JOON
“Benny & Joon” is 1993 romantic comedy starring Johnny Depp and Mary Stuart Masterson in the title roles.

11. Like many commuter towns EXURBAN
As an extension to the term "suburb", an "exurb" is an area beyond the suburbs at the very outskirts of a city. Often the term exurb is used to denote an area inhabited by more wealthy people.

12. "Indochine" Oscar nominee Catherine DENEUVE
Catherine Deneuve is a French actress who was born in occupied Paris in 1943. Deneuve is a well-respected and prolific movie actress. She appeared in her 100th film in 2008.

26. Website with gadget reviews C|NET
c|net is an excellent technology website. c|net started out in 1994 as a television network specializing in technology news. In fact the host of “American Idol”, Ryan Seacrest, started off his career as a host on a c|net show.

38. Racer A.J. FOYT
A. J. Foyt is a retired racing driver. He is the only driver to have won the Indianapolis 500 (four times, in fact), the Daytona 500, the 24 Hours of Daytona as well as the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

40. Kwik-E-Mart proprietor APU
The fictional Kwik-E-Mart store is operated by Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, on "The Simpsons" TV show. The convenience store owner doesn't seem to be making much use of his Ph.D in computer science that he earned in the US. Apu's undergraduate degree is from Caltech (the Calcutta Technical Institute), where he graduated top of his class of seven million students ...

42. Bodysuit named for a trapeze artist LEOTARD
The garment known as a leotard was named for French trapeze artist Jules Léotard. Léotard wore such a garment when he was performing.

50. Prom hairstyle UPDO
A prom is a formal dance held upon graduation from high school (we call them just "formals" over in Ireland). The term "prom" is short for promenade, the name given to a type of dance or ball.

51. Natural gas component ETHANE
The main component in natural gas is methane, with the second most voluminous constituent being ethane. Both methane and ethane are combustible, and so traditionally the methane and ethane from natural gas were burned together to generate heat. However, since the sixties, ethane has been used as a valuable starter material for the production of ethylene, itself a raw material for polyethylene and other plastics. So, these days the ethane is extracted at a refinery before the natural gas is bottled as a fuel.

58. "Little" girl in "David Copperfield" EM’LY
Mr. Peggotty and Little Em’ly are characters in “David Copperfield” by Charles Dickens.

64. "I didn't need to hear that," in texts TMI
Too Much Information (TMI)!

Return to top of page

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Life and Risk GAMES
6. Pkg. markings UPCS
10. Yoda trainee JEDI
14. Lacking a point INANE
15. __-dieu PRIE
16. Nativity scene animals OXEN
17. 12 BIG TEN TEAM-COUNT
20. ID theft target SSN
21. __-Aid KOOL
22. Memo lead-off IN RE
23. Our Gang word spoken with a hand signal OTAY
25. Garage type TWO-CAR
28. Spring growth BUD
30. 12 NOTES AN OCTAVE
33. Detective Wolfe NERO
34. Room with a remote DEN
35. Yet again ANEW
36. Norwegian throne name OLAF
39. Color like aqua TEAL
41. 1990s Expos manager ALOU
44. __ long way: help considerably GO A
46. Shooter ammo PEAS
49. 12 CENTURY BEGUN MCI
54. Pointe balancing point TOE
55. Versatile veggie POTATO
56. Go another way TURN
57. Set up a Titleist, say TEED
59. "Vamoose!" SHOO!
61. Collector's objective SET
62. What this puzzle's three identical clues can represent DAY, MONTH AND YEAR
66. Ex-Dodger Hershiser OREL
67. Revival meeting shout AMEN
68. Prefix in skin care brand names DERMA-
69. Rapids phenomenon EDDY
70. Cool one's heels BIDE
71. Full of spunk SASSY

Down
1. Martini with a onion GIBSON
2. Cox sitcom co-star ANISTON
3. Influential businessperson MAGNATE
4. Tolkien creature with branches ENT
5. Car radio button SEEK
6. City area associated with affluence UPTOWN
7. Install beforehand, as software PRELOAD
8. Org. with moles CIA
9. Th.D.-issuing school SEM
10. "Benny & __": Depp film JOON
11. Like many commuter towns EXURBAN
12. "Indochine" Oscar nominee Catherine DENEUVE
13. QB's flub INT
18. Innocent's claim NOT I
19. Publication sales fig. CIRC
24. Bad news upon arriving at home? YER OUT!
26. Website with gadget reviews C|NET
27. Super-duper A-ONE
29. Morning moisture DEW
31. South-of-the-border sun SOL
32. Gift TALENT
37. Soil-related prefix AGRO-
38. Racer A.J. FOYT
40. Kwik-E-Mart proprietor APU
41. Do one's part? ACT
42. Bodysuit named for a trapeze artist LEOTARD
43. Like the jack of hearts ONE-EYED
45. Chagrined ABASHED
47. Ones who make you chuckle AMUSERS
48. Ones who make you guffaw SCREAMS
50. Prom hairstyle UPDO
51. Natural gas component ETHANE
52. "Continue ..." GO ON
53. Where work piles up IN-TRAY
58. "Little" girl in "David Copperfield" EM’LY
60. Vegas figures ODDS
62. Fawning critter DOE
63. Catch red-handed NAB
64. "I didn't need to hear that," in texts TMI
65. Senator's assent YEA


Return to top of page

No comments:

Tell a Friend about LAXCrossword.com:

Facebook Twitter Google Email

Adsense Wide Skyscraper

About This Blog

This is the simplest of blogs.

I do the Los Angeles Times puzzle online every evening, the night before it is published in the paper. Then, I "Google & Wiki" the references that puzzle me, or that I find of interest. I post my findings, along with the solution, usually before midnight PST.

I've been writing the NYTCrossword.com blog (about the New York Times crossword) since 2009. I finally started this LAXCrossword.com blog in response to many requests over the years to write about the daily LA Times crossword.

About Me

The name's William Ernest Butler, but please call me Bill. I grew up in Ireland, but now live out here in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am retired, from technology businesses that took our family all over the world.

I answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at bill@paxient.com, contact me on Google+ or leave a comment below.

Crosswords and My Dad

I worked on my first crossword puzzle when I was about 6-years-old, sitting on my Dad's knee. He let me "help" him with his puzzle almost everyday as I was growing up. Over the years, Dad passed on to me his addiction to crosswords. Now in my early 50s, I work on my Los Angeles Times and New York Times puzzles every day. I'm no longer sitting on my Dad's knee, but I feel that he is there with me, looking over my shoulder.

This blog is dedicated to my Dad, who passed away at the beginning of this month.

Bill
January 29, 2009

Blog Archive

Bottom Nav