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Greetings from Kilkenny, in Ireland

I am on vacation in Ireland until October 9th. I plan on doing the puzzle each day (with a pint, no doubt), although I may be a little late due to time zone differences. I am sure that you understand. Happy puzzling, and slainte!

Bill

LA Times Crossword Answers 27 Oct 13, Sunday






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CROSSWORD SETTER: Ed Sessa
THEME: Catching Some Zs … today’s themed answers are well-known phrases, but with a “Z” sound inserted:
24A. Really big hangover? A DAZE LIKE NO OTHER (from “a day like no other”)
36A. Mythical siren's boast? I CALL ‘EM AS I SEIZE ‘EM (from “I call ‘em as I see ‘em”)
50A. Couch potato's preparations? LAZE-AWAY PLAN (from “layaway plan”)
66A. North Pole resident's motto? LIVE, FREEZE OR DIE (from “Live Free or Die”)
89A. "You might wanna clean your glasses"? THAT AIN’T HAZE (from “that ain’t hay”)
100A. Harvest time in the Corn Belt? MERRY MONTH OF MAIZE (from “merry month of May”)
117A. "L, XL, XXL—who cares?"? A SIZE IS JUST A SIZE (from “a sigh is just a sigh”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 15m 50s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

5. All-in-one Apple IMAC
The iMac is a desktop computer platform from Apple introduced in 1998. One of the main features of the iMac is an "all-in-one" design, with the computer console and monitor integrated.

14. 92-Across newbie PLEBE
“Plebe” is a slang term for a freshman in the US military and naval academies. Plebe is probably short for "plebeian", the name given to someone of the common class in Ancient Rome (as opposed to a Patrician). "Pleb" is a shortened version of plebeian, and is a term used outside of the military schools.

19. Bits of fibrous fuzz LINT
“Lint”, meaning “fuzz”, is one of those terms that I had to learn when I moved to the US. We call the same thing “fuzz” on the other side of the Atlantic.

20. Second ballot, often RUNOFF VOTE
Today a “ballot” is a piece of paper used to cast a vote. Back in the 1500s, a “ballot” was a small “ball” used in the process of voting.

22. Marathoner, e.g. RACER
The marathon is run over 26 miles and 385 yards, and of course commemorates the legendary messenger-run by Pheidippides from the site of the Battle of Marathon back to Athens. The actual distance run today was decided in 1921, and matches the length of the modern-day Marathon-Athens highway.

26. Bond film title beginning A VIEW
"A View to a Kill" is a James Bond movie with Roger Moore playing the famous 007. The villain of this particular piece was played very ably by Christopher Walken. In the film, Actress Maud Adams appears as an extra in a scene shot at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco. She was visiting her friend Roger Moore, and happened to get caught in the background. Adams is the only actress to play a Bond girl twice (in “The Man with the Golden Gun” and “Octopussy”), and she also merits this uncredited appearance in “A View to a Kill”.

28. Title for Lancelot SIR
Sir Lancelot was one of the knights in the legend of King Arthur and the Round Table. Lancelot was the most trusted of Arthur’s knights when it came to battle, but off the field he had a poorer reputation. Famously, Lancelot had an affair with Guinevere, Arthur’s wife.

30. Video file format MPEG
The Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) was established in 1988 to set standards for audio and video compression. The standards they’ve come up with use the acronym MPEG.

35. Nada, to Nanette RIEN
The word “nothing” translates to “nada” in Spanish and “rien” in French.

36. Mythical siren's boast? I CALL ‘EM AS I SEIZE ‘EM (from “I call ‘em as I see ‘em”)
In Greek mythology, the Sirens were seductive bird-women who lured men to their deaths with their song. When Odysseus sailed closed to the island home of the Sirens he wanted to hear their voices, but in safety. He had his men plug their ears with beeswax and then ordered them to tie him to the mast and not to free him until they were safe. On hearing their song Odysseus begged to be let loose, but the sailors just tightened his bonds and and the whole crew sailed away unharmed.

42. Demolition material TNT
TNT is an abbreviation for trinitrotoluene. Trinitrotoluene was first produced in 1863 by the German chemist Joseph Wilbrand, who developed it for use as a yellow dye. TNT is relatively difficult to detonate so it was on the market as a dye for some years before its more explosive properties were discovered.

47. In __ of: replacing LIEU
As you might imagine, "in lieu" comes into English from the Old French word "lieu" meaning "place", which in turn is derived from the Latin "locum", also meaning "place". So, "in lieu" means "in place of".

48. NYC subway IRT
The Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) was the original private operator of the New York Subway when it opened in 1904. The city took over ownership of the system in 1940, but the lines originally operated by the IRT are still known by the IRT moniker.

49. Better part of a loaf? HALF
“Half a loaf is better than none …”

54. George Smiley portrayer Guinness ALEC
Sir Alec Guinness played many great roles over a long and distinguished career, but nowadays is best remembered for playing the original Obi-Wan Kenobi in "Star Wars".

“Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” and “Smiley’s People” were two excellent BBC mini-series that were adaptations of the novels of the same name by John le Carré. Sir Alec Guinness stars in both series, playing the main character George Smiley.

56. Rihanna song title meaning "I love you" TE AMO
The singer Rihanna was born and grew up on the island of Barbados and moved to the US when she was 16-years-old to pursue a singing career.

58. Nicholas II's consort ALEXANDRA
Alexandra Feodorovna was the wife of Nicholas II, the last Emperor of the Russian Empire. Famously, Alexandra was murdered by Bolsheviks with the rest of her family in 1918. She was a granddaughter of Queen Victoria of the UK. Alexandra and her grandmother were both carriers of the gene causing haemophilia in European royalty in the 19th and 20th centuries. She was also known for her friendship with Grigori Rasputin, the Russian mystic whose influence over the imperial family is said by many to have helped hasten their downfall.

59. Florida's "Blue Monster" golf course DORAL
The Doral Golf Resort in Doral, Florida has five championship golf courses, including one called the Blue Monster.

64. Loser to DDE AES
Adlai Stevenson (AES) ran for president unsuccessfully against Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952 and in 1956. Some years after his second defeat, Stevenson served under President Kennedy as Ambassador to the United Nations. Stevenson was always noted for his eloquence and he had a famous exchange in a UN Security Council meeting during the Cuban missile crisis. Stevenson bluntly demanded that the Soviet representative on the council tell the world if the USSR was installing nuclear weapons in Cuba. His words were "Don't wait for the translation, answer 'yes' or 'no'!" followed by "I am prepared to wait for my answer until Hell freezes over!"

65. Balaam's mount ASS
Balaam was a diviner who appears in the Book of Numbers in the Hebrew Bible. In one story, Balaam is held to task by an angel for particularly cruel treatment of an ass.

66. North Pole resident's motto? LIVE, FREEZE OR DIE (from “Live Free or Die”)
“Live Free or Die” is the motto of the state of New Hampshire. The phrase originated with General John Stark, a native of New Hampshire who served in the Revolutionary War. Stark had to miss a reunion celebration in 1809 due to poor health, and instead sent a letter with his toast “Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils.”

72. Toon Chihuahua REN
“The Ren and Stimpy Show” is an animated television show that ran on Nickelodeon from 1991 to 1996. The title characters are Marland "Ren" Höek, a scrawny Chihuahua, and Stimpson J. Cat, a rotund Manx cat. Not my cup of tea ...

77. Belarusian bread RUBLE
The ruble (also “rouble”) is the unit of currency in Russia, as well as several other countries of the former Soviet Union. One ruble is divided into one hundred kopecks.

The Republic of Belarus is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, located east of Poland and north of Ukraine. Belarus didn’t exist as an entity until the Russian Revolution when it was created as one of the Soviet Socialist Republics (SSRs) that made up the USSR. The Republic of Belarus was formed soon after the USSR dissolved in 1990, but unlike many of the former Soviet Republics, Belarus has largely retained the old Soviet policies. Alexander Lukashenko is the country’s president and he believes in state ownership of the economy. Belarus and Russia have formal agreements in place that pledge cooperation.

92. Annapolis inst. USNA
The United States Naval Academy (USNA) is located in Annapolis, Maryland. The USNA was founded in 1845 and educates officers for both the US Navy and the US Marine Corps. The motto of the USNA is “Ex Scientia Tridens”, which translates as “From Knowledge, Sea Power”.

94. Wheel spinner's purchase AN I
Contestants have been spinning the “Wheel of Fortune” since it first aired in 1975.

97. Valedictorians, e.g. A-STUDENTS
A valediction is an act of taking one's leave, from the Latin "vale dicere", to say farewell. An example of a valediction would be the words "yours truly" at the end of a letter. And of course, the valedictorian (here in the US anyway) is the student in a graduating class that is chosen to say the final words at the graduation ceremony, a farewell to the classmates.

99. Alley-__ pass: hoops play OOP
An alley-oop is a play in basketball in which one player throw the ball close to the basket for a teammate who usually scores with a slam dunk.

100. Harvest time in the Corn Belt? MERRY MONTH OF MAIZE (from “merry month of May”)
There is a traditional nursery rhyme that goes:
In the merry month of May
When green leaves begin to spring,
Little lambs do skip like fairies,
Birds do couple, build, and sing.

106. Mardi Gras, for one FETE
“Mardi Gras” translates from French as “Fat Tuesday”, and gets its name from the practice of eating rich foods on the eve of the fasting season known as Lent.

107. Caddies of old ELDORADOS
The Cadillac Eldorado is a two-door luxury car that was produced by GM from 1953 to 2002.

114. Big name in bookselling NOBLE
Barnes & Noble (B&N) is the oldest retailer of books in the US. The company started out in the book-printing business in 1873 and opened its first true bookstore in 1917, in New York City.

117. "L, XL, XXL—who cares?"? A SIZE IS JUST A SIZE (from “a sigh is just a sigh”)
“A sigh is just a sigh” is a lovely line from a lovely song, “As Time Goes By”, featured in the 1942 classic movie “Casablanca”.

The movie "Casablanca" was released in January of 1943, timed to coincide with the Casablanca Conference, the high-level meeting between Roosevelt and Churchill. The film wasn't a box-office hit, but gained critical acclaim, winning three Oscars including Best Picture. The signature song "As Time Goes By" was written many years earlier for a 1931 Broadway musical called "Everybody's Welcome", and was a hit in 1931 for Rudy Vallee. But today we all remember the Casablanca version, sung by Dooley Wilson (who played "Sam" in the film). Poor Dooley didn't get to record it as a single, due to a musician's strike in 1943, so the 1931 Rudy Vallee version was re-released that year and became an even bigger hit second time round.

123. Debussy contemporary RAVEL
Maurice Ravel was a great French composer of the Romantic Era. His most famous piece of music by far is his “Bolero”, the success of which he found somewhat irksome as he thought it to be a trivial work. Personally though, I love minimalism and simplicity …

Claude Debussy is one of my favorite composers, one who epitomises the Romantic Era and Impressionist Movement in music. One of my favorite CDs is a collection of some "lighter" Debussy pieces called "Debussy for Daydreaming", and what an evocative collection it is. Included are "Syrinx", "Maid with the Flaxen Hair", "Rêverie" and everyone's favorite, "Clair de Lune".

124. Steinbeck novel set in the Salinas Valley EAST OF EDEN
John Steinbeck considered "East of Eden" his magnus opus. Most of the storyline takes place near Salinas, just south of where I live here in the Bay Area. Two of the characters in the story are brothers Cal and Aron, representative of the biblical Cain and Abel.

125. Iberian river EBRO
The Ebro is the longest river in Spain. The river was known by the Romans as the Iber, and it is the "Iber" river that gives the "Iberian" Peninsula its name.

126. Nixon fundraiser Maurice STANS
Maurice Stans was Secretary of Commerce in the Nixon administration. He resigned from the cabinet to head up the finance committee of Richard Nixon's reelection campaign. Famously, money raised by this committee was used to finance the Watergate crimes.

129. Breads for Reubens RYES
There are conflicting stories about the origin of the Reuben sandwich. One is that it was invented around 1914 by Arnold Reuben, an immigrant from Germany who owned Reuben's Deli in New York.

Down
1. __ mater ALMA
The literal translation for the Latin term "alma mater" is "nourishing mother". “Alma mater” was used in Ancient Rome to refer to mother goddesses, and in Medieval Christianity the term was used to refer to the Virgin Mary. Nowadays, one's alma mater is the school one attended, either high school or college, usually one's last place of education.

2. Actor Schreiber LIEV
Liev Schreiber is highly regarded as a stage actor, and has many classical roles under his belt. He won a Tony in 2005 for his Broadway performance in "Glengarry Glen Ross", and earned excellent reviews for his performance in Shakespeare's "Cymbeline".

3. Part of the Enterprise's power source ANTIMATTER
In the world of particle physics, antimatter is made up of particles that have the same mass as particles of ordinary matter, but with the opposite charge and quantum spin. Mixing matter and antimatter causes the annihilation of both, with a release of energy equal to the mass of the particles according to Einstein’s equation E=mc2.

In the "Star Trek" universe, the warp speed achieved by the warp drive engines is very much like our real-world Mach number. Just as a plane traveling at Mach 1 is moving at the speed of sound, a starship traveling at warp factor 1 is moving at the speed of light. Mach 2 is twice the speed of sound, and warp factor 2 is twice the speed of light. Cool, huh ...?

7. Santa __: offshore winds ANAS
Santa Ana is the county seat of Orange County, California and takes its name from the Santa Ana River that runs through the city. The Santa Ana winds are the very dry air currents that sweep offshore late in the year in Southern California. Because these air currents are so dry, they are noted for their influence over forest fires in the area, especially in the heat of the fall. The winds arise from a buildup of air pressure in the Great Basin that lies between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada. Under the right conditions, that air spills over the peaks of the Sierra Nevada and basically "falls" down the side of the Sierra range, heading for the ocean. As the air falls it becomes drier and heats up so that relative humidity can fall to below 10% by the time it hits the coast.

9. Org. with Bucs and Broncos NFL
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers joined the NFL in 1976 along with the Seattle Seahawks as expansion teams. The Bucs had a tough start in the NFL, losing their first 26 games. Things went better in the early eighties, but then the team went through 14 consecutive losing seasons. Their luck changed again though, and they won the Super Bowl at the end of the 2002 season.

The Denver Broncos NFL team started out as a charter member of the AFL in 1960. The Broncos played in the famous Mile High Stadium from 1960 until 2001, when the team moved to the newly-built INVESCO Field at Mile HIgh that was built next door to the old stadium. Most people still seem to use the name “Mile High Stadium” though.

10. Duct opening? OVI-
Oviducts are the non-mammalian equivalents of the Fallopian tubes. Eggs travel from the ovaries, along the oviduct (there are usually two oviducts, but sometimes only one) and are released into some other organ or anatomical structure depending on species.

11. Manipulate, as statistics, with "up" HOKE
“To hoke” is a slang term meaning to create a false impression. The term derives from the noun “hokum”.

"Hokum" was originally theater slang, meaning "melodramatic, exaggerated acting". Now the term just means “empty talk”.

12. Old Roman way ITER
“Iter” is the Latin for “road”.

14. President __ PRO TEM
"Pro tempore" can be abbreviated to "pro tem" or "p.t." "Pro tempore" is a Latin phrase that best translates as "for the time being". It is used to describe a person who is acting for another, usually a superior.

17. "Someone's __ sleeping in my bed" BEEN
"Someone's been sleeping in my bed" is a famous line from the story of “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”.

The story of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" was first recorded in 1837, in England, although the narrative was around before it was actually written down. The original fairy tale was rather gruesome, but successive versions became more family-oriented. The character that eventually became Goldilocks was originally an elderly woman, and the three "nameless" bears became Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear.

21. 1938 Physics Nobelist FERMI
The physicist Enrico Fermi was born in Rome, Italy. Fermi moved to the US just before WWII, largely to escape the anti-Semitic feelings that were developing in Italy under Mussolini. It was Fermi's work at the University of Chicago that led to the construction of the world's first nuclear reactor. Fermi died at 53 years of age from stomach cancer. Cancer was a prevalent cause of death among the team working on that first nuclear pile. The synthetic element Fermium was discovered in 1952 and is named in his honor.

25. Role for Ronny OPIE
Opie Taylor is the character played by Ron Howard on “The Andy Griffith Show”. Opie lives with widowed father Andy Taylor (played by Andy Griffith) and his great-aunt Beatrice “Aunt Bee” Taylor (played by Frances Bavier. Ron Howard first played the role in 1960 in the pilot show, when he was just 5 years old. Howard sure has come a long way since playing Opie Taylor. He has directed some fabulous movies including favorites of mine like "Apollo 13", "A Beautiful Mind" and "The Da Vinci Code". And today, "Opie" is a grandfather ...

27. Llanfairpwll citizens WELSH
Llanfairpwll is the short form of the Welsh village that is more completely named Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch. That’s the longest place name in Europe. The name translates as:
[St.] Mary's Church (Llanfair) [in] the hollow (pwll) of the white hazel (gwyngyll) near (goger) the rapid whirlpool (y chwyrndrobwll) [and] the church of [St.] Tysilio (llantysilio) with a red cave ([a]g ogo goch). 
The sign at the local railway station is a spot often used for photos by tourists. The length of the sign necessitates the use of five supporting poles instead of the usual two.

33. Nick and Nora's dog ASTA
Asta is the wonderful little dog in the superb movie "The Thin Man" starring William Powell and Myrna Loy (as Nick and Nora Charles). In the original story by Dashiell Hammett, Asta was a female Schnauzer, but on screen Asta was played by a wire-haired fox terrier called "Skippy". Skippy was also the dog in "Bringing up Baby" with Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn, the one who kept stealing the dinosaur bone. Skippy retired in 1939, so Asta was played by other dogs in the remainder of "The Thin Man" films.

36. 24-part epic ILIAD
The Iliad is an epic poem by the Greek poet Homer, which tells the story of the siege of Ilium (also known as “Troy”) during the Trojan war.

37. "Two Women" producer Ponti CARLO
The Italian film producer Carlo Ponti was not quite as famous as his celebrity wife, Sophia Loren. Ponti met Loren as a contestant in a beauty contest he was judging in 1950. Back then she was a budding young actress still using her real name, Sofia Lazzaro. The two married in 1957 even though divorce was illegal at the time in Italy, so Ponti was still married to his first wife.

Sophia Loren certainly has earned her place in the world of movies. In 1962 she won an Oscar for Best Actress for her role in the Italian film "Two Women", the first actress to win an Academy Award for a non-English speaking performance. Loren received a second nomination for Best Actress for her role in "Marriage Italian-Style", another Italian-language movie, released in 1964.

38. Like all bucks and some broncos MALE
A "bronco" (also "bronc") is a horse that is untamed. In Mexican Spanish "bronco" is a word for "horse", and in the original Spanish "bronco" means "rough, rude".

40. Intestinal parts ILEA
The human ileum is the lowest part of the small intestine, found below the jejumum and above the cecum of the large intestine.

42. Oscar winner Swinton of "Michael Clayton" TILDA
Tilda Swinton is an English actress, quite famous in her native land. Swinton made a big name for herself outside the UK when she played the “baddie” in the 2007 movie “Michael Clayton”, opposite the “goodie” played by George Clooney.

47. Hosp. worker LPN
A licensed practical nurse (LPN) might work in a hospital (hosp.).

53. PLO chairman before Mahmoud YASIR
Yasser (also Yasir) Arafat was born in Cairo in 1929, the son of two Palestinians and the second-youngest of seven children. Arafat was beaten by his father as a child and so did not have a good relationship with him. Arafat did not attend his father's funeral, nor did he visit his grave. The beatings were apparently administered because the young Arafat was repeatedly attending religious services in the Jewish quarter of Cairo. Arafat's explanation was that he wanted to "study the mentality" of the Jewish people.

Mahmoud Abbas took over as Chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization in 2004 after the death of Yasser Arafat. Abbas is also the President of the Palestinian National Authority, equivalent to "head of state".

55. "Iron man" Ripken CAL
Cal Ripken played his entire, 20-year professional baseball career for the Baltimore Orioles. Ripken was known as the "Iron Man" because he showed up for work every day, come rain or shine. He played 2,632 straight games, blowing past the previous 2,130-game record held by Lou Gehrig.

57. Sea, overseas MER
“Mer” is the French word for “sea”.

60. Tripoli's country LIBYA
Tripoli is the capital city of Libya and sits on the Mediterranean Coast. The city was founded by the Phoenicians in the 7th century BC and was originally called Oea.

62. R&R component: Abbr. REC
R&R is “rest and recreation”.

63. One of the greenhouse gases OZONE
Ozone gets its name from the Greek word ozein, meaning "to smell". It was given this name as ozone's formation during lightning storms was detected by the gas's distinctive smell.

Greenhouse gases are gases that act can both absorb and emit heat. The most abundant greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are water vapor, carbon dioxide and methane. Without these gases in the atmosphere, the mean temperature of the earth would be significantly lower. Since the Industrial Revolution man has caused dramatic shifts in the amount of carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere in particular, causing the mean temperature of the earth to rise. Not a good thing, I hear …

67. One of a Caesarean trio VICI
The oft-quoted statement "Veni, vidi, vici" ("I came, I saw, I conquered") is believed by many to have been written by Julius Caesar. The words date back to 47 BC and refer to the short war between Rome and Pharnaces II of Pontus.

68. Poet's deep black EBON
Ebony is another word for the color black (often shortened to "ebon" in poetry). Ebony is a dark black wood that is very dense, one of the few types of wood that sinks in water. Ebony has been in high demand so the species of trees yielding the wood are now considered threatened. It is in such short supply that unscrupulous vendors have been known to darken lighter woods with shoe polish to look like ebony, so be warned ...

69. Reagan __ ERA
Ronald Reagan started out his political career as a member of the Democratic Party, but switched to the Republicans in the early fifties. He served as Governor of California for eight years, and vied unsuccessfully for the nomination for US President on two occasions. He finally succeeded in 1980 and defeated President Jimmy Carter to become the 40th US President in 1981.

71. Aus. setting EUR
The name “Austria” is a Latin variant of the German name for the country: “Österreich”. “Österreich” itself means “Eastern borderlands”, a reference to the country’s history as a prefecture of neighboring Bavaria to the west.

73. Prefix with botany ETHNO-
Ethnobotany is is the study of the relationship between plants and people.

74. Rights gp. since 1909 NAACP
The full name of the NAACP, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, is remarkable in that it actually still uses the old offensive term "colored people". The NAACP was founded in 1909, by a group that included suffragette and journalist Mary White Ovington, wealthy socialist William English Walling, and civil rights activist Henry Moscowitz. Another member of the founding group was W. E. B. Du Bois, the first African American to earn a doctorate at Harvard University.

78. Collectible stuffed animal BEANIE BABY
There were originally just nine Beanie Babies when Ty Warner introduced the stuffed animal in 1993. In the late nineties the toy became a real fad, largely due to innovative marketing techniques. For example, there was no mass marketing with constant TV ads, and the production volume was limited pushing the line into the realm of collectibles. Beanie Baby models were also "retired" on a regular basis, fueling a "must have" behavior in the market.

79. Woody Woodpecker's creator LANTZ
The much-loved cartoon character called Woody Woodpecker came out of the Walter Lantz animation studio. Woody initially appeared in a cartoon called “Knock Knock” released in 1940. Woody was first voiced by the famous Mel Blanc.

80. Beethoven's "Für __" ELISE
"Fur Elise" is a beautiful piece of music written by Beethoven, and is also known as "Bagatelle in A Minor". "Fur Elise" means simply "For Elise", but sadly no one knows for sure the identity of the mysterious dedicatee.

83. Guide to Bethlehem STAR
"Magi" is the plural of the Latin word "magus", a term applied to someone who was able to read the stars. Hence, magi is commonly used with reference to the "wise men from the East" who followed the star and visited Jesus soon after he was born in Bethlehem.

84. "__ are the we of me": McCullers THEY
“They are the we of me” is a quotation from the 1946 novel “The Member of the Wedding” written by Carson McCullers.

90. Weapon for Napoleon ARME
In French, a soldier (soldat) uses a weapon (arme).

91. __ suit: '40s apparel ZOOT
A zoot suit has pants that are fairly loose fitting, except around the cuff at the bottom of the leg. The pants also have a high waist. The jacket of the suit has wide lapels and wide padded shoulders. Zoot-suits were popular in the US in the thirties and forties, and were often associated with the African American, Latino American and Italian American ethnic groups. Over in the UK, the zoot suit was worn by the "Teddy boys" of the fifties and sixties. "Zoot" is probably just a slang iteration of the word "suit".

97. They have legends ATLASES
The famous Flemish geographer Gerardus Mercator published his first collection of maps in 1578. Mercator's collection contained a frontispiece with an image of Atlas the Titan from Greek mythology holding up the world on his shoulders. That image gave us our term "atlas".

100. Honeycomb-like fungi MORELS
The morel is that genus of mushroom with the honeycomb-like structure on the cap. They're highly prized, especially in French cuisine. Morels should never be eaten raw as they are toxic, with the toxins being removed by thorough cooking.

101. Morales of "NYPD Blue" ESAI
Esai Morales is best known for his role in the 1987 movie "La Bamba", which depicted the life of Ritchie Valens and his half-brother Bob Morales (played by Esai).

"NYPD Blue" is a police drama that was originally aired in 1993, and ran until 2005. Stars of the show are Dennis Franz, David Caruso, Jimmy Smits and Rick Schroder. The show created a bit of a fuss back in the nineties as it featured a relatively large amount of nudity for broadcast television.

102. Exodus obstacle RED SEA
The Red Sea (sometimes called the Arabian Gulf) is a stretch of water lying between Africa and Asia. The Gulf of Suez (and the Suez Canal) lies to north, and the Gulf of Aden to the south. According to the Book of Exodus in the Bible, God parted the Red Sea to allow Moses lead the Israelites from Egypt.

103. City south of Baghdad NAJAF
Najaf is an Iraqi city that lies about 100 miles south of Baghdad.

104. Pair of sixes DOZEN
Our word “dozen” is used for a group of twelve. We imported it into English from Old French. The modern French word for twelve is “douze”, and a dozen is “douzaine”.

107. Hammer sites EARS
The middle ear is the portion of the ear immediately behind the eardrum. The middle ear contains three small bones called the ossicles, the three smallest bones in the human body. The ossicles' job is to transmit sound from the outer ear to the inner ear. The shape of the bones gives rise to their common names: the hammer, anvil and stirrup.

108. Future jurist's exam, for short LSAT
Law School Admission Test (LSAT)

109. Prima donna DIVA
"Diva" comes to us from Latin via Italian. "Diva" is the feminine form of "divus" meaning "divine one". The word is used in Italy to mean "goddess" or "fine lady", and especially is applied to the prima donna in an opera. We often use the term to describe a singer with a big ego.

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.

110. California home of the Bionic Woman OJAI
The city of Ojai, California is located just northwest of Los Angeles. One of the city's claims to fame is that according to the TV shows “The Bionic Woman” and “The Six Million Dollar Man”, Jaime Sommers and Steve Austin grew up in Ojai and were childhood sweethearts!

I so much preferred “The Bionic Woman” over the original show, “The Six Million Dollar Man”. That was probably because I was “at that age” in the mid-seventies, when the star Lindsay Wagner was attracting my attention! Wagner played Jaime Sommers who was badly injured in a parachute jump, and she was given robotic implants that gave her speed, strength and exceptional hearing.

115. Old Pisa dough LIRE
The city of Pisa is right on the Italian coast, sitting at the mouth of the River Arno, and is famous for its Leaning Tower. The tower is actually the campanile (bell tower) of the city's cathedral, and it has been leaning since it was completed in 1173. Just shows you how important good foundations are ...

116. Slaughter in the field ENOS
Enos Slaughter has a remarkable playing record in Major League Baseball over a 19-year career. Slaughter's record is particularly remarkable given that he left baseball for three years to serve in the military during WWII.

118. Letters for baseball's Cards STL
The St. Louis Cardinals were originally called the "Brown Stockings", changing their name to the "Perfectos" in 1899. The new name obviously didn't go down well with the locals, as the owners changed it one year later to the Cardinals.

120. Buddhism sect ZEN
Zen is a Buddhist school that developed its own tradition in China back in the 7th century AD. Zen is a Japanese spelling of the Chinese word "chan", which in turn derives from the Sanskrit word "dhyana" meaning "meditation".

121. Tonsillectomy MD ENT
Ear, Nose and Throat specialist (ENT)

The palatine tonsils are located at the back of the human throat. The exact role that tonsils play isn’t completely understood, but it is known that they are in the first line of defense in the body’s immune system. They provide some level of protection against pathogens that are ingested and inhaled.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Cry from the heartbroken ALAS!
5. All-in-one Apple IMAC
9. Masterful, pitching-wise NO-HIT
14. 92-Across newbie PLEBE
19. Bits of fibrous fuzz LINT
20. Second ballot, often RUNOFF VOTE
22. Marathoner, e.g. RACER
23. Dole (out) METE
24. Really big hangover? A DAZE LIKE NO OTHER (from “a day like no other”)
26. Bond film title beginning A VIEW
28. Title for Lancelot SIR
29. Blow-ups ERUPTIONS
30. Video file format MPEG
32. Online read, for short EMAG
35. Nada, to Nanette RIEN
36. Mythical siren's boast? I CALL ‘EM AS I SEIZE ‘EM (from “I call ‘em as I see ‘em”)
42. Demolition material TNT
45. Rain delay result LATE START
46. Prefix with scope TELE-
47. In __ of: replacing LIEU
48. NYC subway IRT
49. Better part of a loaf? HALF
50. Couch potato's preparations? LAZE-AWAY PLAN (from “layaway plan”)
54. George Smiley portrayer Guinness ALEC
56. Rihanna song title meaning "I love you" TE AMO
58. Nicholas II's consort ALEXANDRA
59. Florida's "Blue Monster" golf course DORAL
61. Museum gift shop offering, briefly REPRO
64. Loser to DDE AES
65. Balaam's mount ASS
66. North Pole resident's motto? LIVE, FREEZE OR DIE (from “Live Free or Die”)
72. Toon Chihuahua REN
75. Crab eater's neckwear BIB
76. Treat with disdain SCORN
77. Belarusian bread RUBLE
81. Whatever the price AT ANY COST
85. Nasal airways NARES
88. Unlike fiction REAL
89. "You might wanna clean your glasses"? THAT AIN’T HAZE (from “that ain’t hay”)
92. Annapolis inst. USNA
94. Wheel spinner's purchase AN I
95. Foot segment INCH
96. Aviation prefix AERO-
97. Valedictorians, e.g. A-STUDENTS
99. Alley-__ pass: hoops play OOP
100. Harvest time in the Corn Belt? MERRY MONTH OF MAIZE (from “merry month of May”)
104. Prescription indication DOSE
105. List catchall ET AL
106. Mardi Gras, for one FETE
107. Caddies of old ELDORADOS
112. Yak JAW
114. Big name in bookselling NOBLE
117. "L, XL, XXL—who cares?"? A SIZE IS JUST A SIZE (from “a sigh is just a sigh”)
122. Bigheaded VAIN
123. Debussy contemporary RAVEL
124. Steinbeck novel set in the Salinas Valley EAST OF EDEN
125. Iberian river EBRO
126. Nixon fundraiser Maurice STANS
127. Path to a wedding AISLE
128. Posted SENT
129. Breads for Reubens RYES

Down
1. __ mater ALMA
2. Actor Schreiber LIEV
3. Part of the Enterprise's power source ANTIMATTER
4. Pealing place STEEPLE
5. CPA's recommendation IRA
6. Strong java MUD
7. Santa __: offshore winds ANAS
8. Like the best fireplace fire COZIEST
9. Org. with Bucs and Broncos NFL
10. Duct opening? OVI-
11. Manipulate, as statistics, with "up" HOKE
12. Old Roman way ITER
13. Teacher's security TENURE
14. President __ PRO TEM
15. Language of many a motto LATIN
16. It's repetitive ECHO
17. "Someone's __ sleeping in my bed" BEEN
18. Slips ERRS
21. 1938 Physics Nobelist FERMI
25. Role for Ronny OPIE
27. Llanfairpwll citizens WELSH
31. Imply GET AT
33. Nick and Nora's dog ASTA
34. "Shoot" GEEZ!
36. 24-part epic ILIAD
37. "Two Women" producer Ponti CARLO
38. Like all bucks and some broncos MALE
39. Line for 33-Down ARF ARF
40. Intestinal parts ILEA
41. Enthusiasm ZEAL
42. Oscar winner Swinton of "Michael Clayton" TILDA
43. Approaches NEARS
44. Albacore and ahi TUNAS
47. Hosp. worker LPN
50. Easy strides LOPES
51. Sport WEAR
52. Felled in the forest AXED
53. PLO chairman before Mahmoud YASIR
55. "Iron man" Ripken CAL
57. Sea, overseas MER
60. Tripoli's country LIBYA
62. R&R component: Abbr. REC
63. One of the greenhouse gases OZONE
67. One of a Caesarean trio VICI
68. Poet's deep black EBON
69. Reagan __ ERA
70. Torrent ONRUSH
71. Aus. setting EUR
72. 9 to 5, e.g. RATIO
73. Prefix with botany ETHNO-
74. Rights gp. since 1909 NAACP
78. Collectible stuffed animal BEANIE BABY
79. Woody Woodpecker's creator LANTZ
80. Beethoven's "Für __" ELISE
82. Degree in math NTH
83. Guide to Bethlehem STAR
84. "__ are the we of me": McCullers THEY
86. Juan's "this" ESTO
87. Put (out) SNUFF
90. Weapon for Napoleon ARME
91. __ suit: '40s apparel ZOOT
93. Commercial developers ADMEN
97. They have legends ATLASES
98. Dine next door, say EAT OVER
100. Honeycomb-like fungi MORELS
101. Morales of "NYPD Blue" ESAI
102. Exodus obstacle RED SEA
103. City south of Baghdad NAJAF
104. Pair of sixes DOZEN
107. Hammer sites EARS
108. Future jurist's exam, for short LSAT
109. Prima donna DIVA
110. California home of the Bionic Woman OJAI
111. Figure (out) SUSS
113. Like EE shoes WIDE
115. Old Pisa dough LIRE
116. Slaughter in the field ENOS
118. Letters for baseball's Cards STL
119. Kid's piggy TOE
120. Buddhism sect ZEN
121. Tonsillectomy MD ENT


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3 comments:

Vidwan827 said...

Ho, ho, ho, and Hi ! Bill.


Happy Birthday, Bill, for TOMORROW! and many more to come.

Happy Birthday Bill

Tried today's puzzle, found it tough and chewy.... So came here.

Was busy yesterday .... Hi Pookie ! Had to cook for a dinner yesterday and also today.

It's Diwali , the biggest festival in India. It's the festivals of lights,.... and firecrackers. You are supposed to keep all your lights on, in the house, and run up a huge electric bill.! Diwali is supposed to come, this year, on Nov. 3rd, this year, but we selected the most convenient weekend for our celebrations. (Lol). The Goddess Lakshmi, (Laxmi) is supposed to be out, wandering around, trying to enter people's homes, and give good fortune, and we are supposed to have bright lights and open windows to attract her. She is the all important goddess of money, wealth, good fortune and ..... more wealth !!

Pookie, for my cooking, I cooked a spinach curry with peanuts, a highly spiced pilaf rice dish, tandoorie (barbecued -) chicken, and lots of hors doeuvres (!) like samosas, kachoris and other LDL cholesterol raising fried foods.

For sweet deserts we had laddoos, cashew burfi and rasgullas ....

Hope you all have a nice weekend, and are ready for tomorrow. .....

Pookie said...

Vidwan, I KNEW you must be celebrating Diwali, but I looked up the date and it was in Nov.
Ooh, spinach curry!
I made burfi once a long time ago from an Indian cookbook that was never returned to me, and to this day I can't find it online.
I think I simmered a half gallon of milk down to paste and added cardamom.
Hi Bill, finished the puzzle but had trouble looking at "hoke" up.
Ready for tomorrow?

Bill Butler said...

@Vidwan
We could smell the food cooking away from here, on the blog :) You've listed some of my favorites dishes there. I hope that you and your family really enjoy Diwali.

@Pookie
Pass the spinach curry :) We are big fans of Indian food in our house, but yesterday we "bucked the trend" and tried out a new Afghani restaurant that is nearby. And very happy were were too :) As for "hoke" and "hokum", not words that I'd use much, so that slowed me down a little. And yes, ready for a rest tomorrow as my family has been celebrating my birthday this weekend. I am getting too old for celebrations :) Hope you had a good weekend.

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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 every day 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

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