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Greetings from Blackrock, in Dublin, 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 1 May 13, Wednesday



CROSSWORD SETTER: Erik Agard
THEME: Shuffle Board … each of the themed answers stars with an anagram of BOARD:
20A. *General outline components BROAD STROKES
37A. *16th/17th-century dramatic nickname BARD OF AVON
43A. *2009-'10 Lady Gaga hit BAD ROMANCE
56A. Cruise ship game ... or how to start each of the answers to starred clues? SHUFFLEBOARD
COMPLETION TIME: 07m 22s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
1. Aveeno's parent co. J AND J
Aveeno is a manufacturer of skin care and hair care products that was founded in 1945. The name Aveeno comes from the Latin name for the common oat: “Avena sativa”.

6. Hebrides native SCOT
The Hebrides is a group of islands just off the west coast of Scotland that are divided into two main group, the Inner and Outer Hebrides.

10. Madcap ZANY
Something described a zany clownish and bizarre. “Zany” can also be a noun, a term used for a clown or a buffon. The original noun was “Zanni”, a Venetian dialect variant of Gianni, short for Giovanni (John). Zanni was a character who appeared in comedy plays of the day, and was someone who aped the principal actors.

14. Olds's last compact ALERO
The Oldsmobile Alero was the last car made under the Oldsmobile brand. The Alero was produced from 1999 to 2004.

15. Biblical prophet EZRA
Ezra the Scribe, also called Ezra the Priest, is the central character in the Book of Ezra in the Hebrew Bible.

16. "En garde" weapon EPEE
“En garde” is a French term that has been absorbed into the sport of fencing. Originally a warning “on guard!”, it is spoken at the start of an encounter to warn the fencers to take a defensive position.

17. Louis of MGM MAYER
Lazar Meir was born in Belarus in 1884, but we know him better as Louis B. Mayer, the famous American film producer and boss of MGM (Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer).

22. Actor Aykroyd DAN
Dan Aykroyd is a Canadian comedian and actor, born in Ottawa, Ontario, although he is now a naturalized US citizen. He was of course an original cast member on “Saturday Night Live” and, along with John Belushi, fronted the Blues Brothers.

23. SFO hrs. PST
San Francisco International Airport (SFO).

24. They may grade univ. papers TAS
Teaching Assistants (TAs).

37. *16th/17th-century dramatic nickname BARD OF AVON
William Shakespeare is known as the Bard of Avon as he was born and raised in the lovely town of Stratford-upon-Avon in the English midlands.

There are actually four rivers called the Avon in England, but "Shakespeare's Avon" lies mainly in Warwickshire. The name "Avon" comes from the Old English word for a river, "abona". Stratford-upon-Avon was of course William Shakespeare's birthplace.

42. "Shrek" ogress FIONA
Princess Fiona is the love interest in the “Shrek” series of films.

Before "Shrek" was a successful movie franchise and Broadway musical, it was a children's picture book called "Shrek!" authored and illustrated by William Steig. The title "Shrek!" came from the German/Yiddish word Schreck, meaning "fear" or "terror".

43. *2009-'10 Lady Gaga hit BAD ROMANCE
Lady Gaga is the stage name of singer Stefani Germanotta from New York City. I've seen Lady Gaga interviewed on television a few times, and she sure is "unique". Her music is of course out of my league, but she does know how to put on a show.

47. 2003 self-titled folk album ODETTA
Odetta Holmes (or just "Odetta") was a singer and a human rights activist. She has been cited as an influence by such singers as Harry Belafonte, Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin and Carly Simon.

48. Lawless TV role XENA
The Xena character, famously played by New Zealander Lucy Lawless, was introduced in a made-for-TV movie called “Hercules and the Amazon Women”. Lawless reprised the role in a series called "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys". Xena became so popular that a series was built around her character, with Lawless retained for the role.

50. Dr. with Grammys DRE
Dr. Dre is the stage name of rapper Andre Romelle Young. Dr. Dre is known for his own singing career as well as for producing records and starting the careers of others such Snoop Dogg, Eminem and 50 Cent.

51. Composer Rorem NED
American composer Ned Rorem is famous for his musical compositions, but also for his book, "Paris Diary of Ned Rorem" that was published in 1966. Rorem talks openly about his sexuality in the book, and also about the sexuality of others including Noel Coward, Leonard Bernstein and Samuel Barber, much to some people’s chagrin.

52. Windy City rail and bus org. CTA
Chicago Transit Authority (CTA).

It seems that the derivation of Chicago's nickname as the "Windy City" isn't as obvious as I would have thought. There are two viable theories. First 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.

54. "Community" network NBC
“Community” is a comedy show on NBC that first aired on 2009. Haven’t seen this one …

56. Cruise ship game ... or how to start each of the answers to starred clues? SHUFFLEBOARD
The game of shuffleboard has been around for a long time. King Henry VIII was fond of playing, and in fact he prohibited commoners from playing the game. Shuffleboard is also known as shovelboard, a reference perhaps to the shovel-like paddles used to propel the pucks.

66. Operating system developed at Bell Labs UNIX
I always think of an operating system as that piece of software that sits between the hardware on my computer and the programs that I choose to run. Developers of application programs don't really have to worry about being able to "talk to" the countless different types of hardware found in the wide variety of computers that are manufactured, they just need to talk to the handful of operating systems that are out there, like Windows, MAC and Unix. The operating system takes care of the rest.

Bell Labs dates back to the days of Alexander Graham Bell. The first Bell Labs building was in the carriage house of Bell's father's house in Washington, D.C.

67. Sandusky's lake ERIE
Sandusky, Ohio is a city on the shores of Lake Erie. My son is always talking about Sandusky as a place he’d like to visit, as it is home to one the largest collections of roller coasters in the world.

69. Like the Nissan Cube BOXY
The Nissan Cube has a strangely appealing design, I find. The Cube was introduced into North America in 2009, although it had already been on sale in Japan for over a decade, since 1998.

Down
1. Door part JAMB
A door jamb is the vertical portion of a door frame. The term "jamb" comes from the French word "jambe" meaning "leg".

2. Banned orchard spray ALAR
The chemical name for Alar, a plant growth regulator and color enhancer, is daminozide. Alar was primarily used on apples but was withdrawn from the market when it was linked to cancer.

3. "Miss Independent" R&B singer NE-YO
Ne-Yo is the stage name of R&B singer Shaffer Chimere Smith.

5. "Michael, Row the Boat Ashore" river JORDAN
“Michael, Row the Boat Ashore” is an African American spiritual that dates back at least to the Civil War.

6. Schism group SECT
A schism is a split or a division, especially in a religion.

The Jordan River forms the border between Israel and Jordan, and flows into the Dead Sea. According to the Christian Bible, Jesus was baptised in the Jordan by John the Baptist. The country of Jordan takes its name from the river.

7. Peter or Paul, but not Mary CZAR
The term czar (also tsar) is a Slavic word that was first used as a title by Simeon I of Bulgaria in 913 AD. "Czar" is derived from the word "Caesar", which was synonymous with "emperor" at that time.

8. Ship's lowest 70-Across ORLOP
The orlop is the lowest deck on the ship, the place where cables and ropes used to be stored. The name “orlop” comes from the Dutch word “overlopen” meaning “to run over”. The idea is that all these ropes "ran over" each other while in storage.

10. Son of Cronus and Rhea ZEUS
In Greek mythology Rhea was one of the Titans. She was the sister and husband of Cronus, and together they had six children, the last of which was Zeus. Cronus swallowed all of his children as soon as they were born, except for Zeus, who Rhea managed to hide from her husband.

11. "Angry Birds," e.g. APP
Angry Birds is a video game that was developed for smartphones. Angry Birds is the third most downloaded game, after Tetris and Pac-Man.

13. Japanese dough YEN
The Korean Won, the Chinese Yuan, and the Japanese Yen (all of which are Asian currencies) take their names from the Chinese written character that represents "round shape".

24. Recorded, nowadays TIVOED
TiVo was introduced in 1999 and was the world's first commercially successful DVR (Digital Video Recorder).

26. Obama left it in November, 2008 SENATE
President Obama served three terms in the Illinois State Senate, from 1997 to 2004. The future President ran unsuccessfully for the US House of Representatives in 2000, and then successfully for the US Senate in 2004. Famously, State Senator Obama delivered the keynote address to the Democratic National Convention in 2004, just a few months before winning that US Senate seat.

27. Capital WSW of Madrid LISBON
Lisbon is the capital of Portugal. Lisbon is the westernmost capital city in Europe, and indeed is the westernmost large city on the continent. It is also the oldest city in Western Europe and is hundreds of years older than London, Paris and Rome.

32. Place with a cheer named for it BRONX
Not so much here in America, but over in the British Isles "blowing a raspberry" is a way of insulting someone (I think it's called "a Bronx cheer" here in the US).

34. Inexperienced one NAIF
A naïf is someone who is naive, as "naïf" is the French word for "naive".

38. Yahtzee need DICE
The dice game of Yahtzee was introduced in 1956, a variant of earlier dice games, especially the game "Yacht" (which even has a similar name). Yahtzee is required playing in our house at holidays.

49. Costello's partner ABBOTT
Bud Abbott and Lou Costello made up the comedy duo Abbott and Costello who were immensely popular in the forties and fifties. Even when I was growing up in Ireland and knew nothing about baseball, I was rolling around the floor listening to Abbott and Costello’s famous “Who’s on First?” comedy routine. Can you name all the players?
- First Base: Who
- Second Base: What
- Third Base: I Don't Know
- Left field: Why
- Center field: Because
- Pitcher: Tomorrow
- Catcher: Today
- Shortstop: I Don't Care/I Don't Give a Darn

55. Brooklyn's __ Island CONEY
"Cony" (or "coney") is an old English word for rabbit or rabbit fur, and Coney Island in New York takes its name from the same root. The Dutch used the name "Conyne Eylandt" (Rabbit Island) after the large population of rabbits that was hunted there.

57. Abbr. in a bank ad FDIC
During the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law the Banking Act of 1933. The legislation established the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), intended to be a temporary government corporation that provided insurance on deposits made by customers of qualified financial institutions. The first accounts to be covered, in 1934, had an insurance limit of $2,500. Since the financial crisis of 2008, that limit is $250,000.

59. "To serve, not to be served" group AARP
AARP is now the official name for the interest group that used to be called the American Association of Retired Persons. The name change reflects the current focus of the group on all Americans aged 50 or over, as opposed to just people who have retired.

61. Stowe antislavery novel DRED
Harriet Beecher Stowe's first novel ended up being her most famous, "Uncle Tom's Cabin". Stowe followed it up with an 1856 novel called "Dred: A Tale of the Great Dismal Swamp".

63. Year in Madrid ANO
In Spanish, there are 100 años (years) in a century (siglo).

Madrid is the largest city in Spain and the capital. Madrid is located very close to the geographical center of the country.

64. Puffed cereal with a Berry Berry variety KIX
Kix cereal has been around since 1937, would you believe? Kix used to be just puffed grains, processed to give the characteristic shape. Then the decision was made to add sugar to get better penetration into the young kid marketplace. Sad really ...

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Aveeno's parent co. J AND J
6. Hebrides native SCOT
10. Madcap ZANY
14. Olds's last compact ALERO
15. Biblical prophet EZRA
16. "En garde" weapon EPEE
17. Louis of MGM MAYER
18. Taps CALLS UPON
20. *General outline components BROAD STROKES
22. Actor Aykroyd DAN
23. SFO hrs. PST
24. They may grade univ. papers TAS
27. __-di-dah LAH
30. Shell-shocked NUMB
33. Ad time TONITE
35. Steamed IRED
37. *16th/17th-century dramatic nickname BARD OF AVON
39. Scrawny sort SCRAG
41. First person in France? MOI
42. "Shrek" ogress FIONA
43. *2009-'10 Lady Gaga hit BAD ROMANCE
46. Distance measures FEET
47. 2003 self-titled folk album ODETTA
48. Lawless TV role XENA
50. Dr. with Grammys DRE
51. Composer Rorem NED
52. Windy City rail and bus org. CTA
54. "Community" network NBC
56. Cruise ship game ... or how to start each of the answers to starred clues? SHUFFLEBOARD
62. Go motoring TAKE A RIDE
65. Studio sign ON AIR
66. Operating system developed at Bell Labs UNIX
67. Sandusky's lake ERIE
68. Short and probably not sweet TERSE
69. Like the Nissan Cube BOXY
70. Swabbing site DECK
71. Pounded the keyboard TYPED

Down
1. Door part JAMB
2. Banned orchard spray ALAR
3. "Miss Independent" R&B singer NE-YO
4. Can't contemplate DREAD
5. "Michael, Row the Boat Ashore" river JORDAN
6. Schism group SECT
7. Peter or Paul, but not Mary CZAR
8. Ship's lowest 70-Across ORLOP
9. Consults TALKS TO
10. Son of Cronus and Rhea ZEUS
11. "Angry Birds," e.g. APP
12. New beginning? NEO-
13. Japanese dough YEN
19. Hit the road SET OFF
21. Intentionally fail to invite SNUB
24. Recorded, nowadays TIVOED
25. Sorry sort ATONER
26. Obama left it in November, 2008 SENATE
27. Capital WSW of Madrid LISBON
28. Game sanctuary? ARCADE
29. Kept together, as sheep HERDED
31. Doll's cry MAMA!
32. Place with a cheer named for it BRONX
34. Inexperienced one NAIF
36. Zip DART
38. Yahtzee need DICE
40. "Tricked you!" GOTCHA!
44. Turned from green to red, perhaps MATURED
45. Kin of -trix -ENNE
49. Costello's partner ABBOTT
53. Blazing AFIRE
55. Brooklyn's __ Island CONEY
56. Quite the fox SEXY
57. Abbr. in a bank ad FDIC
58. Onionlike veggie LEEK
59. "To serve, not to be served" group AARP
60. Ascent RISE
61. Stowe antislavery novel DRED
62. Place to unwind TUB
63. Year in Madrid ANO
64. Puffed cereal with a Berry Berry variety KIX


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Posted by Bill Butler
Google+

LA Times Crossword Answers 30 Apr 13, Tuesday



CROSSWORD SETTER: Amy Johnson
THEME: Ice First … today’s themed answers are made up of two words, each of which can be preceded by the word ICE:
39A. With 40-Across and "Baby," a 1990's hip-hop hit that answers the question, "What can precede both parts of the answers to starred clues?" ICE
40A. See 39-Across ICE

17A. *Protective fuse container BREAKER BOX (“icebreaker” & “icebox”)
61A. *Tailgater's brew chiller BEER BUCKET (“ice beer” & “ice bucket”)
11D. *Flood control concern STORM WATER (“ice storm” & “ice water”)
29D. *Era of mass production MACHINE AGE (“ice machine” & “ice age”)
COMPLETION TIME: 08m 22s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
10. __ Spumante ASTI
Asti is a sparkling white wine from the Piedmont region of Italy, and is named for the town of Asti around which the wine is produced. The wine used to be called Asti Spumante, and it had a very bad reputation as a “poor man’s champagne”. The “Spumante” was dropped in a marketing attempt at rebranding associated with a reduction in the amount of residual sugar in the wine.

14. 50+ group AARP
AARP is now the official name for the interest group that used to be called the American Association of Retired Persons. The name change reflects the current focus of the group on all Americans aged 50 or over, as opposed to just people who have retired.

15. Verdi aria ERI TU
The aria "Eri tu" is from Verdi's opera "Un ballo in maschera" (A Masked Ball). The opera tells the story of the assassination of King Gustav III of Sweden during a masked ball.

16. Trans Am roof option T-TOP
A T-top is a car roof that has removable panels on either side of a rigid bar that runs down the center of the vehicle above the driver.

The Trans Am was a specialty version of the Pontiac Firebird produced from 1969 to 2002.

23. Gift for el 14 de febrero ROSAS
In Spanish, a gift of roses (rosas) might be given on the 14th of February (14 de febrero).

Saint Valentine’s Day was chosen by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD to honor various martyrs with the name Valentine. However, the saints' day was dropped by the Catholic church in 1969, by Pope Paul VI. Try telling that to Hallmark though …

26. Tree for which New Haven is nicknamed ELM
The city of New Haven, Connecticut was founded in 1638 by Puritan immigrants from England. New Haven is of course home to Yale University. The city also initiated the first public tree planting program in the country. The large elms included in the program led to New Haven being called “the Elm City”.

30. Native American weapons TOMAHAWKS
The Native American axe known as a tomahawk takes its name from the Virginia Algonquian term for the tool: “tamahaac”.

37. MSN alternative AOL
Founded as Quantum Computer Services in 1983, the company changed its name in 1989 to America Online. As America Online went international, the acronym AOL was used in order to shake off the "America-centric" sound to the name. During the heady days of AOL's success the company could not keep up with the growing number of subscribers, so people trying to connect often encountered busy signals. That's when users referred to AOL as "Always Off-Line".

MSN was originally called The Microsoft Network, introduced in 1995 as an integral part of Microsoft's Windows 95 operating system. MSN is a whole bundle of services including email, instant messaging, and the MSN.com portal (which is the 9th most visited site on the Internet).

38. Partners' legal entity: Abbr. LLC
A limited liability company (LLC) is a company structure that limits the liability of the owner or owners.

39. With 40-Across and "Baby," a 1990's hip-hop hit that answers the question, "What can precede both parts of the answers to starred clues?" ICE
40. See 39-Across ICE
“Ice Ice Baby” is song released by rap artists Vanilla Ice and DJ Earthquake.

41. Lao Tzu's "path" TAO
Lao Tse (also Lao-Tzu) was a central figure in the development of the religion/philosophy of Taoism.

42. July 4th reaction OOH!
On 11 June 1776, the Continental Congress appointed a committee of five people to draft a declaration of independence. Included in the five were John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Adams persuaded the other committee members to give Jefferson the task of writing the first draft. A resolution of independence was passed by the Congress on 2 Jul 1776. The final draft of the declaration was approved by the Congress two days later, on July 4th. John Adams wrote a letter to his wife that included an assertion that July 2nd (the date of the resolution of independence) would become a great American holiday. Of course Adams was wrong, and it was actually the date the Declaration of Independence was finalized that came to be celebrated annually.

43. Early Florida explorer DE SOTO
Hernando de Soto was a Spanish conquistador who led expeditions throughout the southeastern US. De Sotos travels were unsuccessful in that he failed to bring gold or silver back to Spain, and nor did he found any colonies. What de Soto did achieve was the exposure of local populations to devastating Eurasian diseases.

46. School term TRIMESTER
"Semester" is a German word from the Latin "semestris", an adjective meaning "of six months". We of course use "semester" in a system that divides an academic year into two roughly equal parts. A trimester system has three parts, and a quarter system has four.

50. Groupon offerings DEALS
Groupon is a relatively young company, a deal-of-the-day type website that was started in 2008. The concept behind the business is illustrated by the company name, a portmanteau of “group coupon”. Each day a discount coupon is offered to website members who sign up knowing that the coupon requires a minimum number of "takers" in order for it to be valid. If too few buyers sign up, then the coupon is void. When sufficient buyers sign up the coupon is honored, and the retailer benefits from the large volume of business generated. Groupon was very successful for a couple of years and predictions were made that the company would reach $1 billion in sales faster than any other company in history. That forecast has changed dramatically, and the CEO was ousted in February 2013.

52. Rodeo hat STETSON
Stetson is a brand name of hat, manufactured by the John B. Stetson Company of St. Joseph, Missouri. The so called "cowboy hat" that Stetson pioneered was such a success that the company became the largest hat maker in the world, producing over 3.3 million hats per year.

56. With 48-Down, Felipe's outfielder son MOISES
Jesus Alou played major league baseball, as did his brothers Matty and Felipe, and as does Felipe's son, Moises.

60. Keister in a fall? PRAT
"Prat" is a new word for me, a slang term for the buttocks apparently ...

Back in the early 1900s a keister was a safe or a strongbox. It has been suggested that this term was then used as slang by pickpockets for the rear trouser pocket in which one might keep a wallet. From this usage, keister appeared as a slang term for the buttocks in the early 1930s.

61. *Tailgater's brew chiller BEER BUCKET (“ice beer” & “ice bucket”)
Ice beer is a type of lager that has undergone a process called fractional freezing. This means that the beer has been chilled to the point that ice crystals form. The ice is frozen water, and can be filtered off. This lowers the water content in the beer, hence raising the concentration of alcohol.

66. "The Clan of the Cave Bear" heroine AYLA
As Jean Auel prepared her first book in the “Earth’s Children” series, she did a lot of research about the Ice Age, the setting for her stories. She went as far as taking a survival course in cold conditions, learning to build an ice cave and how to make fire, tan leather and knap stone.

Down
1. Broccoli __ RABE
Broccoli Rabe is perhaps better known as rapini, and is a vegetable often used in Mediterranean cuisines. It is quite delicious sauteed with garlic ...

3. Novelist __ Easton Ellis BRET
Bret Easton Ellis wrote a trio of novels that were made into very successful movies: "Less Than Zero" (1987, starring Andrew McCarthy), "American Psycho" (2000, starring Christian Bale) and "The Rules of Attraction" (2002, starring James van der Beek).

5. Marshmallowy Easter treats PEEPS
Peeps are marshmallow candies usually in the shapes of chicks and bunnies, primarily sold around the Easter holiday. Peeps were introduced in 1952 by a Russian immigrant called Sam Born whose company "Just Born" makes the candies to this day. The original candies were yellow and hand-shaped to look like little chicks, hence the name "Peeps".

8. "Click __ Ticket": seatbelt safety slogan IT OR
There is only one state in the US that does not require drivers to wear seat belts by law, and that is New Hampshire.

9. Elegance LUXE
Luxe is another word for luxury. The term came into English via French from the Latin “luxus” meaning “luxury”.

10. Hun honcho ATTILA
In his day, Attila the Hun was the most feared enemy of the Roman Empire, until he died in 453 AD. Attila was the leader of the Hunnic Empire of central Europe and was famous for invading much of the continent. However, he never directly attacked Rome.

18. "Get Smart" evil agency KAOS
The satirical comedy series called "Get Smart" was the creation of Mel Brooks and Buck Henry, and starred Don Adams as Agent 86, Maxwell Smart. It was on the air from 1965 to 1970. Smart's shoe phone was a hilarious prop used in almost every episode. When Smart dialed the number 117, the shoe converted into a gun. Cool stuff ...

25. Sevillian sun SOL
The city of Seville is the capital of Andalusia in southern Spain. Seville is a favored setting for many operas including "The Barber of Seville" by Rossini, "Fidelio" by Beethoven and Mozart's "Don Giovanni" and "The Marriage of Figaro".

31. __ d'hôtel: headwaiter MAITRE
The full name of a maitre d' is "maitre d'hotel", which means "master of the hotel".

32. With the bow, to a cellist ARCO
“Arco” is a musical direction instructing a string player to return to normal bowing technique after a passage played using some other technique (perhaps pizzicato).

33. Cuddly-looking marsupial KOALA
The koala really does look like a little bear, but it's not even closely related. The koala is an arboreal marsupial and a herbivore, native to the east and south coasts of Australia. Koalas aren’t primates, and are one of the few mammals other than primates who have fingerprints. In fact, it can be very difficult to tell human fingerprints from koala fingerprints, even under an electron microscope.

34. Casino attractions SLOTS
The “casino” originated in the 1700s, first describing a public room for music or dancing. The name “casino” is a diminutive of “casa” meaning “house”.

39. Inventeur's list IDEES
In French, an inventor (inventeur) might have a list of ideas (idées).

44. U.K. lexicological work OED
The "Oxford English Dictionary" (OED) contains over 300,000 "main" entries and 59 million words in total. It is said it would take a single person 120 years to type it out in full. The longest entry for one word in the second edition of the OED is the verb "set". When the third edition was published in 2007, the longest entry for a single word became the verb "put". Perhaps not surprisingly, the most-quoted author in the OED is William Shakespeare, with his most quoted work being “Hamlet”. The most-quoted female author is George Eliot (aka Mary Ann Evans).

45. Many a Tony winner MUSICAL
The full name for the Tony Award is the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre. Antoinette Perry was an American actress and co-founder of the American Theatre Wing, one of the organizations that selects the award recipients.

51. Jewelry resin AMBER
Amber's technical name is "resinite", reflecting its composition and formation. Amber starts out life as soft sticky tree resin but then under high temperature and pressure from overlying layers of soil, it fossilizes. The sticky resin can trap organisms or other plant matter, and this material can sometimes remain virtually intact inside the amber fossil giving us a unique gift from the past.

52. Pet adoption org. SPCA
Unlike in other countries, there is no "umbrella" organization in the US with the goal of preventing cruelty to animals. Instead there are independent organizations set up all over the nation using the name SPCA. Having said that, there is an organization called the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) that was originally intended to operate across the country, but really it now focuses its efforts in New York City.

54. Final bio? OBIT
"Obituary" comes from the Latin "obituaris", originally the record of the death of a person, although the literal meaning is "pertaining to death".

55. 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.

57. Largest of the Inner Hebrides SKYE
The Isle of Skye is off the northwest coast of Scotland in the Inner Hebrides. It is the second largest island in the country, and has been linked to the mainland by a road bridge since 1995. I've never been there, but I hear the views are spectacular.

63. 66, notably: Abbr. RTE
The famous old highway called Route 66 has largely been replaced by modern interstates. It ran from Chicago to Los Angeles, right through the heart of America, and so it was often called the "Main Street of America". The road gained notoriety because of Nat King Cole's song "(Get Your Kicks On) Route 66", and also because of the sixties TV show called "Route 66".

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. 1860s Grays REBS
5. Danger PERIL
10. __ Spumante ASTI
14. 50+ group AARP
15. Verdi aria ERI TU
16. Trans Am roof option T-TOP
17. *Protective fuse container BREAKER BOX (“icebreaker” & “icebox”)
19. Mower brand TORO
20. Set up for a fall ENTRAP
21. Part of 14-Across, originally RETIRED
23. Gift for el 14 de febrero ROSAS
26. Tree for which New Haven is nicknamed ELM
27. Summits ACMES
30. Native American weapons TOMAHAWKS
35. "Get a __ of this!" LOAD
36. Loud, like sirens ABLARE
37. MSN alternative AOL
38. Partners' legal entity: Abbr. LLC
39. With 40-Across and "Baby," a 1990's hip-hop hit that answers the question, "What can precede both parts of the answers to starred clues?" ICE
40. See 39-Across ICE
41. Lao Tzu's "path" TAO
42. July 4th reaction OOH!
43. Early Florida explorer DE SOTO
45. Get gooey MELT
46. School term TRIMESTER
48. Saintly circles AURAS
49. "Uh-uh, lassie!" NAE
50. Groupon offerings DEALS
52. Rodeo hat STETSON
56. With 48-Down, Felipe's outfielder son MOISES
60. Keister in a fall? PRAT
61. *Tailgater's brew chiller BEER BUCKET (“ice beer” & “ice bucket”)
64. Bird house CAGE
65. Really miffed IRATE
66. "The Clan of the Cave Bear" heroine AYLA
67. Thumbs-up votes AYES
68. Bellhop, at times TOTER
69. Out of concern that LEST

Down
1. Broccoli __ RABE
2. Be worthy of EARN
3. Novelist __ Easton Ellis BRET
4. Trained with gloves SPARRED
5. Marshmallowy Easter treats PEEPS
6. Miscalculate ERR
7. Curved bone RIB
8. "Click __ Ticket": seatbelt safety slogan IT OR
9. Elegance LUXE
10. Hun honcho ATTILA
11. *Flood control concern STORM WATER (“ice storm” & “ice water”)
12. Ran fast TORE
13. Apple for a music teacher? IPOD
18. "Get Smart" evil agency KAOS
22. Little chuckle TEHEE
24. In a perfect world AT BEST
25. Sevillian sun SOL
27. Portion out ALLOT
28. Enjoy crayons COLOR
29. *Era of mass production MACHINE AGE (“ice machine” & “ice age”)
31. __ d'hôtel: headwaiter MAITRE
32. With the bow, to a cellist ARCO
33. Cuddly-looking marsupial KOALA
34. Casino attractions SLOTS
36. Unreturned serves ACES
39. Inventeur's list IDEES
44. U.K. lexicological work OED
45. Many a Tony winner MUSICAL
47. Unglossy finishes MATTES
48. See 56-Across ALOU
51. Jewelry resin AMBER
52. Pet adoption org. SPCA
53. Printer paper holder TRAY
54. Final bio? OBIT
55. Detective Wolfe NERO
57. Largest of the Inner Hebrides SKYE
58. Wiggly swimmers EELS
59. On-base pct., e.g. STAT
62. Have a meal EAT
63. 66, notably: Abbr. RTE


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Posted by Bill Butler
Google

LA Times Crossword Answers 29 Apr 13, Monday



CROSSWORD SETTER: Patti Varol
THEME: Golden Brown Finish … each of the themed answers ends with something that might be described as GOLDEN BROWN:
17A. Lacking a strong foundation, metaphorically BUILT ON SAND
24A. Snoopy's WWI plane SOPWITH CAMEL
38A. Shutterbug PHOTOGRAPHY BUFF
48A. Farina-based hot cereal CREAM OF WHEAT
60A. Ideal toast color, and a hint to the ends of 17-, 24-, 38- and 48-Across GOLDEN BROWN
COMPLETION TIME: 07m 56s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
10. 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.

13. Dubuque natives IOWANS
The city of Dubuque, Iowa is named for a pioneer from Quebec who arrived in the area in 1785, a pioneer named Julien Dubuque.

16. Chowed down ATE
"Chow" is an American slang term for food that originated in California in the mid-1800s. "Chow" comes from the Chinese pidgin English "chow-chow" meaning "food".

22. Florence's country ITALY
“Firenze” is the Italian name for the city that we know in English as Florence.

24. Snoopy's WWI plane SOPWITH CAMEL
The Sopwith Camel is a biplane that was used by the British during WWI. The Camel was the most effective fighter during the conflict, shooting down 1,294 enemy planes.

Snoopy, the famous beagle in the "Peanuts" comic strip, has a number of alter-egos and is sometimes depicted as a World War I flying ace piloting a Sopwith Camel biplane. Snoopy's arch-enemy in the air is Manfred von Richthofen, the Red Baron, and Snoopy can often be seen shaking his fist and crying out, "Curse you, Red Baron!"

31. Hors d'oeuvre cracker RITZ
I've always liked Ritz crackers. They've been around since 1934 when they were introduced by Nabisco. The name Ritz was chosen because the marketing folks felt that the association with Ritz-Carlton would evoke images of wealth and the high life.

An hors d’oeuvre is the first course in a meal. “Hors d’oeuvre” translates from French as “apart from the work”, really meaning “not the main course”.

32. Northwestern Canadian territory YUKON
Canada’s federal territory known as Yukon takes its name from the Yukon River. “Yukon” means “Big Stream” in the local Gwich'in language.

Canada is made up of ten provinces and three territories. The three territories lie to the north of the country, and are Yukon, Northwest Territories (NWT) and Nunavut. Territories differ from provinces in that they only have governmental powers that are delegated to them by the federal government, whereas the provinces have constitutional powers in their own right.

33. Naval hoosegow BRIG
A brig, short for brigantine, is a type of ship. It was the use of brigantines as prison ships that led to use of “brig” as the word for a jail or prison cell on a seagoing vessel.

"Hoosegow" is a slang term for "jail". "Hoosegow" is a mispronunciation of the Mexican-Spanish word "juzgao" meaning "court, tribunal".

42. Mork's planet ORK
"Mork & Mindy" was broadcast from 1978 to 1982. We were first introduced to Mork (played by Robin Williams, of course) in a special episode of "Happy Days". The particular episode in question has a bizarre storyline culminating in Fonzie and Mork having a thumb-to-finger duel. Eventually Richie wakes up in bed, and alien Mork was just part of a dream! Oh, and "Nanu Nanu" means both "hello" and "goodbye" back on the planet Ork. "I am Mork from Ork, Nanu Nanu". Great stuff ...

48. Farina-based hot cereal CREAM OF WHEAT
Farina is semolina, or cream of wheat. It is made from wheat grain in which much of the nutritious ingredients are removed leaving a fine "flour". The name "Farina" is the Latin word meaning "flour".

53. Egypt neighbor LIBYA
The name “Libya” comes from the Ancient Greek “Libúē”, the historical name for Northwest Africa.

54. Subway whose first line had a terminus at NYC's City Hall 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.

55. Suffix with wagon -ETTE
A wagonette is a relatively small horse-drawn vehicle with two lengthwise passenger seats facing each other behind the drivers seat.

64. Hamlet, to Gertrude SON
“Hamlet” is William Shakespeare’s longest play, and was also one of most popular of the playwright's works during his lifetime.

66. "I, Robot" author ASIMOV
Isaac Asimov was a wonderful science fiction writer, and a professor of biochemistry. He was a favorite author as I was growing up and I must admit that some hero worship on my part led me to study and work as a biochemist for a short while early in my career. My favorite of his works is the collection of short stories called “I, Robot”, although Asimov’s most famous work is probably his “Foundation” trilogy of novels.

68. 2013 Oscars host MacFarlane SETH
Seth MacFarlane is best known for creating the very successful (although they don't get my vote!) animated TV shows "Family Guy" and "American Dad". My kids love 'em ...

Down
1. Light-green lettuce BIBB
Bibb is a variety of lettuce in the cultivar known as butterhead. All butterhead varieties have loose-leafed heads and a buttery texture.

2. Disreputable fellow ROUE
"Roue" is a lovely word, I think, describing a less than lovely man. A roue could otherwise be described as a cad, someone of loose morals. "Roue" comes from the French word "rouer" meaning "to break on a wheel". This describes the ancient form of capital punishment where a poor soul was lashed to a wheel and then beaten to death with cudgels and bars. I guess the suggestion is that a roue, with his loose morals, deserves such a punishment.

4. Rogaine target BALD SPOT
Rogaine is a brand name for the drug Minoxidil. It was developed as an oral medication to treat high blood pressure, but was found to have an exploitable side-effect. It caused an increased in the rate of hair growth. A topical solution was marketed to promote growth of hair especially in balding men. The drug seems to work well, but when the application is stopped, things go back to normal in about 60 days. Wouldn’t dream of touching the stuff myself …

5. Dr. who treats snorers ENT
Ear, Nose and Throat specialist (ENT).

6. Bite-size raw Asian dish SUSHI
Sushi is a Japanese dish that has as its primary ingredient cooked, vinegared rice. The rice is usually topped with something, most often fish, and can be served in seaweed rolls. If you want raw fish by itself, then you have to order "sashimi".

7. Water quality org. EPA
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was set up during the Nixon administration and began operation at the end of 1970.

12. Streep of "The Iron Lady" MERYL
Meryl Streep has had more nominations for an academy award than any other actor, a tribute to her talent and the respect she has earned in the industry. I am not a huge fan of her earlier works but some of her recent movies are now on my list of all-time favorites. I recommend "Mama Mia" (you'll either love it or hate it!), "Julie & Julia", "It's Complicated" and ”Hope Springs”.

“The Iron Lady” is a 2011 biopic about Margaret Thatcher, former British Prime Minister. The marvelous Meryl Streep does a wonderful job playing the title role. I had great expectations for this film and found that it didn’t quite deliver, despite a great cast.

23. Whirling toon devil, for short TAZ
The “Looney Tunes” character known as the Tasmanian Devil, or “Taz”, first appeared on screens in 1964 but gained real popularity in the 1990s.

The carnivorous marsupial known as the Tasmanian devil is aptly named, in the sense that the only place the animal is found in the wild is on the island of Tasmania. The “little devils” are about the size of a small dog, and they have the strongest bite for their size of any known mammal.

27. "__ Noon": Gary Cooper Western HIGH
I am not a fan of western movies, but “High Noon” works for me. The film has a great cast, with Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly in the lead roles. I suppose I like the film because it doesn’t fit the mold as a typical western with lots of predictable action sequences. That said, when “High Noon” first hit theaters it was not popular with audiences, largely because moviegoers were expecting the formulaic western film.

29. German mining region RUHR
The Ruhr is a large urban area in western Germany. The region is heavily populated and is the fifth largest urban area in the whole of Europe after Istanbul, Moscow, London and Paris.

35. "Black Swan" skirt TUTU
The word "tutu", used for a ballet dancer's skirt, is actually a somewhat "naughty" term. It came into English from French in the early 20th century. The French "tutu" is an alteration of the word "cucu", a childish word for "cul" meaning the "bottom," or "backside".

I have yet to see the 2010 movie “Black Swan”, which I’ve assumed is a psychological thriller set against the background of a ballet company staging Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake”. However, I’ve just seen “Black Swan” also described as a “horror film”, and that worries me as I am not a fan of the horror genre. Still, I’ll give it a chance ...

36. Immature newts EFTS
Newts wouldn't be my favorite animals. They are found all over the world living on land or in water depending on the species, but always associated with water even if it is only for breeding. Newts metamorphose through three distinct developmental stages during their lives. They start off as larvae in water, fertilized eggs that often cling to aquatic plants. The eggs hatch into tadpoles, the first developmental form of the newt. After living some months as tadpoles swimming around in the water, they undergo another metamorphosis, sprouting legs and replacing their external gills with lungs. At this juvenile stage they are known as efts, and leave the water to live on land. A more gradual transition takes place then, as the eft takes on the lizard-like appearance of the adult newt.

39. Ratón chaser GATO
In Spanish, a cat (gato) might chase a mouse (ratón).

40. Org. that usually has a community pool YMCA
The YMCA is a worldwide movement that has its roots in London, England. There, in 1844, the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) was founded with the intent of promoting Christian principles through the development of "a healthy spirit, mind and body". The founder, George Williams, saw the need to create YMCA facilities for young men who were flocking to the cities as the Industrial Revolution flourished. He saw that these men were frequenting taverns and brothels, and wanted to offer a more wholesome alternative.

41. Neosporin target BACTERIA
Neosporin is an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment, one that is a little controversial. It seems that Neosporin is about as effective as petroleum jelly in preventing infection. Also, the low level of antibiotic in the cream has little effect in killing any bacteria and in fact contributes to antibiotic resistance. On top of that, reports of contact dermatitis caused by Neosporin are relatively common. I’m going to stop using it ...

45. Mary __ cosmetics KAY
Mary Kay Ash founded her skincare and cosmetics company, somewhat ominously on Friday 13th, 1963. In 1968, Mary Kay Ash bought herself a pink Cadillac, specially painted to match the color of one of her compacts. The car became so famous that she gave away five of them to her top saleswoman, a tradition that lasts to this day.

47. Blue Cross rival AETNA
When the health care management company known as Aetna was founded, the name was chosen to evoke images of Mt. Etna, the European volcano.

The Blue Cross association of health plans was established in 1929 in Dallas, Texas. The first plan put in place was for teachers, and guaranteed 21 days of hospital care if needed, for a premium of $6 a year. One can only dream …

50. Dense black wood EBONY
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 …

52. Otto I's realm: Abbr. HRE
The Holy Roman Empire (HRE) existed from 962 to 1806 AD and was a territory of varying size over the centuries that centered on the Kingdom of Germany. The HRE was a successor to the western half of the Ancient Roman Empire.

Otto I the Great, ruled the Holy Roman Empire in the 10th century.

57. What Noah counted by TWOS
Genesis 6:19-20 states that Noah was instructed to take two animals of every kind into the ark. Later, in Genesis 7:2-3 Noah was instructed to take on board "every clean animal by sevens ... male and female, to keep offspring alive on the face of all the earth". Apparently "extras" (7 rather than 2) were needed for ritual sacrifice.

61. "__ to Joy" ODE
"Ode to Joy" is a poem written in 1785 by German poet Friedrich Schiller. Ludwig van Beethoven gave the poem great notoriety when he used it in his Ninth "Choral" Symphony first performed in 1824.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Under-the-table money BRIBE
6. Teamster's rig SEMI
10. Tight-lipped MUM
13. Dubuque natives IOWANS
15. "Once __ a time ..." UPON
16. Chowed down ATE
17. Lacking a strong foundation, metaphorically BUILT ON SAND
19. Corp. board member DIR
20. __ over backward BEND
21. "That feels good!" AAH!
22. Florence's country ITALY
24. Snoopy's WWI plane SOPWITH CAMEL
28. Prize on the mantel TROPHY
31. Hors d'oeuvre cracker RITZ
32. Northwestern Canadian territory YUKON
33. Naval hoosegow BRIG
35. Brew in a bag TEA
38. Shutterbug PHOTOGRAPHY BUFF
42. Mork's planet ORK
43. Senate staffer AIDE
44. Lusterless finish MATTE
45. Windy day toy KITE
47. Put the blame on ACCUSE
48. Farina-based hot cereal CREAM OF WHEAT
53. Egypt neighbor LIBYA
54. Subway whose first line had a terminus at NYC's City Hall IRT
55. Suffix with wagon -ETTE
59. Before today AGO
60. Ideal toast color, and a hint to the ends of 17-, 24-, 38- and 48-Across GOLDEN BROWN
64. Hamlet, to Gertrude SON
65. Change a manuscript EDIT
66. "I, Robot" author ASIMOV
67. Butt in PRY
68. 2013 Oscars host MacFarlane SETH
69. Pert SASSY

Down
1. Light-green lettuce BIBB
2. Disreputable fellow ROUE
3. "Heads __, tails you lose" I WIN
4. Rogaine target BALD SPOT
5. Dr. who treats snorers ENT
6. Bite-size raw Asian dish SUSHI
7. Water quality org. EPA
8. Start of a wk., workwise MON
9. Formally charge, in court INDICT
10. Sir's counterpart MADAM
11. More than decorative UTILE
12. Streep of "The Iron Lady" MERYL
14. All lathered up SOAPY
18. Folksy negative NAW
23. Whirling toon devil, for short TAZ
25. "How awful!" OH NO!
26. Hogwash TRIPE
27. "__ Noon": Gary Cooper Western HIGH
28. Printing error, perhaps TYPO
29. German mining region RUHR
30. "Quit nagging! I'll do it!" OK! OK!
33. To the point BRIEF
34. "Way cool!" RAD
35. "Black Swan" skirt TUTU
36. Immature newts EFTS
37. Set __: name the price A FEE
39. Ratón chaser GATO
40. Org. that usually has a community pool YMCA
41. Neosporin target BACTERIA
45. Mary __ cosmetics KAY
46. Publicists' concerns IMAGES
47. Blue Cross rival AETNA
48. Anklet fastener CLASP
49. Strictness RIGOR
50. Dense black wood EBONY
51. Boot spec WIDTH
52. Otto I's realm: Abbr. HRE
56. Male turkeys TOMS
57. What Noah counted by TWOS
58. Covet ENVY
61. "__ to Joy" ODE
62. Set ablaze LIT
63. Undergrad tech degs. BSS


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Posted by Bill Butler
Google+

LA Times Crossword Answers 28 Apr 13, Sunday



CROSSWORD SETTER: Julian Lim
THEME: It’ll Have to Do … each of the themed answers is a well known phrase , but with a -TLE suffix added:
22A. Container for mystery meat? SPAM BOTTLE (from “spambot”)
31A. Action scene in "True Blood"? VAMPIRE BATTLE (from “vampire bat”)
49A. Courage of Manhattanites? NEW YORK METTLE (from “New York Met”)
71A. Cloak for a road trip? HIGHWAY MANTLE (from “highwayman”)
92A. Reaction to an alarm? RISING STARTLE (from “rising star”)
102A. Baby's pre-vacation note to self? PACK RATTLE (from “packrat”)
COMPLETION TIME: 33m 17s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
5. Jotting on a Post-it MEMO
The Post-it note was invented at 3M following the accidental discovery of a low-tack, reusable adhesive. The actual intent of the development program was the discovery of a super-strong adhesive.

9. Lowest of the low NADIR
The nadir is the direction pointing immediately below a particular location (through to the other side of the Earth for example). The opposite direction, that pointing immediately above, is called the zenith.

14. Artist who was an admirer of Freud DALI
The famous surrealist painter Salvador Dalí was born in Figueres, Spain. I had the privilege of visiting the Dalí Museum in Figueres some years ago, just north of Barcelona. If you ever get the chance, it's a “must see” as it really is a quite magnificent building with a fascinating collection.

20. "Invisible Cities" author Calvino ITALO
As well as being an author, Italo Calvino was a famous Italian journalist. He was a supporter of communism and so wasn't very popular in the US nor in Britain.

22. Container for mystery meat? SPAM BOTTLE (from “spambot”)
Apparently the term "SPAM", used for unwanted email, is taken from a "Monty Python" sketch. In the sketch (which I've seen) the dialog is taken over by the word SPAM, a play on the glut of canned meat in the markets of Britain after WWII. So "SPAM" is used for the glut of emails that takes over online communication. I can just imagine nerdy Internet types (like me) adopting something from a "Monty Python" sketch to describe an online phenomenon ...

Spambots are nasty little computer programs that send out spam emails and messages, often from fake accounts. This blog gets about 300 spam comments a day that I have to delete, almost all of which are written by spambots.

25. Nanny __: security devices CAMS
From what I just read, it is legal to record video with a hidden camera, at least to monitor the behavior of a caregiver in your home. Apparently there is also a law that prohibits the recording of audio. So, "nanny cams" are sold without audio capability. But (disclaimer) that's just what I read, so don't take my word for it!

27. Word repeated after "que," in song SERA
As Doris Day told us, “que sera sera” is Spanish for "whatever will be, will be".

31. Action scene in "True Blood"? VAMPIRE BATTLE (from “vampire bat”)
“True Blood” is a television drama made by HBO. The series is based on novels written by Charlaine Harris.

Vampire bats feed mostly in the blood of mammals, including humans. When they find a suitable "victim", often one that is asleep, the bat usually lands close by and approaches its "meal" on the ground. It makes a small cut with its razor-sharp teeth and laps up the blood. The blood tends to flow freely as the bat's saliva contains anti-coagulants. Reports of bats biting the neck of humans are very rare in the real world, but the neck is the preferred location of attack in the fantasy world of vampires.

34. Pakistani city LAHORE
Lahore is a large city in Pakistan, second in size only to Karachi. It is known as the Garden of the Mughals (or in English, Moguls) because of its association with the Mughal Empire. The Mughals ruled much of India from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries.

35. Order to pounce SIC ‘EM
Sic 'em is an attack order given to a dog, instructing the animal to growl, bark or even bite. The term dates back to the 1830s, with "sic" being a variation of "seek".

44. Like NES video games RETRO
The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was sold in North America from 1985 to to 1995. The NES was the biggest selling gaming console of the era.

45. Pulitzer winner Walker ALICE
Alice Walker is an author and poet. Walker’s best known work is the novel “The Color Purple”, which earned her the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. “The Color Purple” was of course adapted into a very successful film of the same name, directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Whoopi Goldberg.

48. Hamilton's prov. ONT
Hamilton, Ontario is a port city on the western end of Lake Ontario. It is a popular location for film shoots, and has been used for mainstream movies such as "Gone in 60 Seconds", "X-Men", "Hairspray" and "The Incredible Hulk".

49. Courage of Manhattanites? NEW YORK METTLE (from “New York Met”)
The New York Mets baseball team was founded in 1962, a replacement for two teams that the city had lost, namely the Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Giants. For several years the Mets played very poorly, finishing no better than second-to-last in their division. Then of course along came the “Miracle Mets” who beat the Baltimore Orioles in 1969 to claim the World Series in a huge upset.

52. Crew member TAR
A Jack Tar, or just "tar", was a seaman in the days of the British Empire. The term probably arose due to a sailor's various uses of tar back then, including waterproofing of clothes and using tar in the hair to slick down a ponytail.

56. Mil. decoration DSM
The Distinguished Service Medal is the highest (non-valorous) decoration awarded for services to the US military.

58. Wrote with limited characters TWEETED
I have never tweeted in my life, and have no plans to do so. Twitter is a micro-blogging service that limits any post sent to just 140 characters. In a sense, it is similar to this blog. Here I send out a post once a day containing information that I think might be useful to folks (thank you for reading!). I don't think I could send out much of interest using just 140 characters. I believe that many people who do tweet tend to send out messages like "I'm at dinner now. I am having sushi" and "There's nothing on TV. I'm bored". Nope, I don't think so!

59. Vineyard grape PINOT
The Pinot noir wine grape variety takes its name from the French for “pine” and “black”. The grapes grow in tight clusters shaped like pine cones, and are very dark in color. The Pinot noir grape is most closely associated with Burgundy wines in France, although in recent years the popularity (and price) of California Pinot noir wine has soared after it featured so prominently in the wonderful, wonderful 2004 movie “Sideways”. Grab a bottle of Pinot, and go rent the DVD…

67. Panaceas CURE ALLS
Panacea was the Greek goddess of healing. She lent her name to the term “panacea” that was used by alchemists to describe the beguiling remedy that could cure all diseases and prolong life indefinitely.

75. __ Fáil: Irish "stone of destiny" LIA
The “Lia Fáil” is the coronation stone that is found on the Hill of Tara, the traditional seat of the High Kings of Ireland. “Lia Fáil” translates from Irish as “stone of destiny”.

78. Architect Saarinen ELIEL
Eliel Saarinen was a Finnish architect who designed entire city districts in Helsinki. He immigrated to the United States where he became famous for his art nouveau designs. He was the father of Eero Saarinen, who was to become even more renowned in America for his designs, including the Dulles International Airport terminal, and the TWA building at JFK.

79. High-ranked Atlanta school EMORY
Emory is a private school in Atlanta, Georgia with a focus on graduate research. The school was named after a Methodist Episcopal bishop called John Emory, who was very popular at the time of the school's founding in 1836.

80. Bane for bugs DEET
DEET is short for N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide, an active ingredient in insect repellents. DEET is most often used to repel mosquitoes by applying it to the skin and/or clothing. It is also used to protect against tick bites.

83. Windy City airport code ORD
O'Hare International is the fourth busiest airport in the world. 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 Edward 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. As an aside, Edward O'Hare's father was a lawyer for Al Capone who helped get the famous gangster convicted on tax evasion.

It seems that the derivation of Chicago's nickname as the "Windy City" isn't as obvious as I would have thought. There are two viable theories. First 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.

84. Water filter brand BRITA
Brita is a German company that specializes in water filtration products. Brita products do a great job of filtering tap water, but they don’t “purify” it, they don't remove microbes. That job is usually done by a municipality before the water gets to the faucet.

86. Paleness causes ANEMIAS
The term “anemia” (or “anaemia” as we write it back in Ireland) comes from a Greek word meaning "lack of blood". Anemia is a lack of iron in the blood, or a low red blood cell count. Tiredness is a symptom of the condition.

88. __ Manor: "Batman" setting WAYNE
Wayne Manor is where Bruce Wayne lives, the alter-ego of Batman. It is a huge manor that lies just outside Gotham City. Looking after the house is the Wayne family servant, Alfred. Beneath the grounds of the manor is an extensive cave system where Bruce Wayne put together his Batcave. Access is to the cave is via a staircase behind a hidden door. The door is opened by moving the hands of a non-functioning grandfather clock to 10:47, the time at which Wayne's parents were murdered. It is the murder of his parents that sets Bruce off on his journey of crime fighting.

95. Two guys out to dinner, say MAN DATE
A man date: two heterosexual males hanging out together.

96. Noted lawmaker NEWTON
Sir Isaac Newton was of course one of the most influential people in history, the man who laid the groundwork for all of classical mechanics. The story about an apple falling on his head, inspiring him to formulate his theories about gravity, well that's not quite true. Newton often told the story about observing an apple falling in his mother's garden and how this made him acutely aware of the Earth's gravitational pull. However, he made no mention of the apple hitting him on the head.

107. Earthenware pot OLLA
An olla is a traditional clay pot used for the making of stews.

108. Turned right GEED
"Haw!" is a command given to a trained animal that is hauling something (like a horse or an ox). "Haw!" is used to instruct the animal to turn to the left. The equivalent command for a right turn is "Gee!" Just to confuse things, the same commands are used in the British Isles but with the opposite meanings. That must be pretty unsettling for jet-setting plow horses ...

110. Hardy's "Pure Woman" TESS
The full name of Thomas Hardy's 1891 novel is "Tess of the d'Urbervilles: A Pure Woman Faithfully Presented". When it was originally published, "Tess ..." received very mixed reviews, largely because it addresses some difficult sexual themes including rape, and sexual double standards (society's attitude towards men vs women). I suppose the most celebrated screen adaptation is Roman Polanski's "Tess" released in 1979. Polanski apparently made "Tess" because his wife, Sharon Tate, gave him Hardy's novel as her last act before she was murdered by the Manson family. There is a dedication at the beginning of the movie that simply reads "To Sharon".

111. Drudge PEON
A peon is a lowly worker with no real control over his/her working conditions. The word comes into English from Spanish where it has the same meaning.

Down
2. Andean herd member ALPACA
Alpacas are like small llamas, but unlike llamas were never beasts of burden. Alpacas were bred specifically for the fleece. As such, there are no known wild alpacas these days, even in their native Peru.

3. Venue for poetry readings in space? SLAM SHUTTLE (from “slam shut”)
A poetry slam is a competition in which poets read their own work (usually), with winners being chosen by members of audience. Apparently the first poetry slam took place in Chicago in 1984. Now there is a Nation Poetry Slam that takes place each year, with representatives from the US, Canada and France.

7. Part of a GI's URL MIL
Like www.army.mil

10. __ 2600: old video game console ATARI
The kids today probably don't realize that we had a video game console back in the seventies, and it wasn't a Nintendo nor was it a PlayStation. The Atari 2600 game system introduced the idea of separating out computing hardware (the console) from the game code (a cartridge). The same concept persists to this day, although cartridges have been displaced by discs and downloads.

11. Capital NW of Monrovia DAKAR
The Republic of Senegal is a country on the far western coast of Africa. For many years Senegal was a French colony, gaining independence in 1960. The capital of Senegal is Dakar, a city located on the Cap-Vert Peninsula that juts out into the Atlantic Ocean.

12. Loire land ILE
In French, an island (île) is a piece of ground (terre) surrounded by water (eau).

The Loire River is so long that it drains a full one-fifth of France's land mass. It rises in the southeast, in the Cevennes mountain range, then it heads north and then due east, emptying into the Bay of Biscay at the city of Nantes.

16. California city name meaning "pretty knoll" LOMA LINDA
Loma Linda is a city in California located not far from Los Angeles. The name Loma Linda translates from Spanish as “Beautiful Hill”.

17. Yard worker? INSPECTOR
London’s Metropolitan Police Service was originally headquartered at 4 Whitehall Place, and the rear entrance to the building was in a street called Great Scotland Yard. As the public entrance to the headquarters became that rear entrance, the headquarters and the force itself became known as “Scotland Yard”. The current headquarters is nowhere near that first building, and hasn’t been so since 1890, and the new facility is called New Scotland Yard.

19. Silver in movies HORSE
Silver was the Lone Ranger’s horse.

"The Lone Ranger" was both a radio and television show, dating back to its first radio performance in 1933 on a Detroit station. The line "Hi-yo, Silver! Away!" was a device used in the storyline to signal that a riding sequence was starting, so cue the music!

27. Hook underling SMEE
In J. M. Barrie's play and novel about Peter Pan, Smee is one of Captain Hook's pirates and is Hook's right-hand man. Smee is described by Barrie as being "Irish" and "a man who stabbed without offence". Nice guy!

31. In __ fertilization VITRO
In vitro fertilization is the process in which egg cells are fertilized by sperm cells outside of the body “in vitro”, meaning “in glass”, usually in a culture dish.

35. Dionysian reveler SATYR
The satyrs of Greek mythology came with a very high sex drive. They are the "rude" male subjects drawn on the side of old Greek vases. The nubile maidens known as nymphs were often an object of attention for the satyrs.

Dionysus was the party animal of Greek mythology. Dionysus was the god of the wine, ritual madness and ecstasy! His Roman equivalent was Bacchus.

43. Eat like a chinchilla GNAW
A chinchilla is a rodent found in the Andes in South America. The chinchilla is a little larger than a squirrel, and has velvet-like fur. It takes its name from the local Chincha people who made clothing out of the fur. Chinchillas are quite rare in the wild now as they been hunted almost out of existence, but there are plenty of farm-raised chinchillas around supporting the fur industry, sad to say ...

45. Supplies for Rambo AMMO
"First Blood" was the original of the four "Rambo" films starring Sylvester Stallone as John Rambo, a troubled Vietnam War veteran. I thought "First Blood" was a pretty good film actually, but the sequels were terrible, and way too violent for me. But action all the way ...

51. First name in makeup ESTEE
Estée Lauder was quite the successful businesswoman, with a reputation as a great salesperson. Lauder introduced her own line of fragrances in 1953, a bath oil called "Youth Dew". "Youth Dew" was marketed as a perfume, but it was added to bathwater. All of a sudden women were pouring whole bottles of Ms. Lauder's "perfume" into their baths while using only a drop or two of French perfumes behind their ears. That's quite a difference in sales volume ...

57. Wharton Sch. conferral MBA
The world's first MBA degree was offered by Harvard’s Graduate School of Business Administration, in 1908.

Wharton is the business school of the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia.

61. Kama __ SUTRA
Kama is the Hindu god of love. He is portrayed as a youth bearing a bow and arrows, much like Eros and Cupid.

The word "sutra" is used in Hinduism for a learned text, one usually meant to be studied by students.

The Kama Sutra is renowned for its descriptions of positions that can be used for sexual intercourse, but the sutra includes many other texts that deal with various matters of a sexual nature including how to woo a woman, the conduct of a "chief wife", the conduct of "other" wives, how to make money as a courtesan and much, much more, as if that isn't enough …

63. Rival of Bjorn ILIE
I think that Ilie Nastase was the most entertaining tennis player of the 1970s, the days of Jimmy Connors, Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe. No matter how much pressure there was in a match, Nastase always had time to give the crowd a laugh.

64. Some srs.' source of stress LSAT
The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) has been around since 1948.

68. Webinars, e.g. E-LEARNING
Webinar is short for “Web-based seminar”, a presentation, lecture or similar event held online. In a Webinar there is two-way interaction, with the audience able to ask questions of the presenter.

69. Mortgage acronym FANNIE MAE
The Federal National Mortgage Association is commonly called Fannie Mae, a play on the acronym FNMA.

73. Sophie player MERYL
Meryl Streep has had more nominations for an academy award than any other actor, a tribute to her talent and the respect she has earned in the industry. I am not a huge fan of her earlier works but some of her recent movies are now on my list of all-time favorites. I recommend "Mama Mia" (you'll either love it or hate it!), "Julie & Julia", "It's Complicated" and ”Hope Springs”.

“Sophie’s Choice” is a novel by William Styron. The title character is a Polish survivor of Nazi concentration camps. The tragic “choice” which Sophie had to make was forced on her by a sadistic German doctor during the war. Sophie had to decide which of her two young children would be immediately gassed, and which would be allowed to live in a camp. Famously, Sophie was played on the big screen by actress Meryl Streep.

82. "The Flintstones" answer to Fido DINO
In the Hanna-Barbera cartoon "The Flintstones", Dino the pet dinosaur was voiced by the famous Mel Blanc, until Blanc passed away in 1989.

85. Maasai Mara game reserve locale KENYA
The Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya sits right beside the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania.

87. '60s-'70s veep and family AGNEWS
Spiro Agnew served as Vice-President under Richard Nixon, before becoming the only VP in American history to resign because of criminal charges (there was a bribery scandal). Agnew was also the first Greek-American to serve as US Vice-President as he was the son of a Greek immigrant who had shortened the family name from Anagnostopoulos.

89. City about 300 miles from Baghdad BASRA
It's quite a coincidence that the Iraqi city of Basra has a name that is an anagram of "Arabs", isn't it? Basra also features in the H. G. Wells science-fiction tale "The Shape of Things to Come". Written in 1933, the storyline predicts a global conflict (WWII) that breaks out in 1940 lasting for ten years, after which chaos reigns as no victor emerges. Following worldwide plague, a benevolent dictatorship takes charge and the world moves towards a serene utopia. In time, the dictators are overthrown and peacefully retired, and the people of the Earth live happily ever after, all citizens of one global state with its capital in Basra in the Middle East.

90. 1887 La Scala premiere OTELLO
Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Otello" was first performed in 1887 at La Scala Theater in Milan. The opera is based on Shakespeare's play "Othello" and is considered by many to be Verdi's greatest work.

The La Scala Opera House opened in 1778. It was built on the site of the church of Santa Maria della Scala, which gave the theater the name "Teatro alla Scala".

91. Like the lion slain by Hercules NEMEAN
The Twelve Labors of Hercules is actually a Greek myth, although Hercules is the Roman name for the hero that the Greeks called Heracles. The first of these labors was to slay the Nemean Lion, a monster that lived in a cave near Nemea. Hercules had a tough job as the lion's golden fur was impenetrable to normal weapons. One version of the story is that Hercules killed the lion by shooting an arrow into its mouth. Another version says that Hercules stunned the monster with a club and then strangled him with his bare hands.

101. It may be seen opposite VI XII
XII is at the top of many a clockface, and VI at the bottom.

102. Nursery container POT
Many a pot is found in a plant nursery.

103. "The Kids __ All Right": 2010 Best Picture nominee ARE
“The Kids Are All Right” is an entertaining 2010 movie with a fabulous cast that includes Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo and Mia Wasikowska. Bening and Moore play a lesbian couple, with each of them having given birth to a child using the same sperm donor. Ruffalo plays the sperm donor, and Wasikowska plays the elder of the two children.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Skip it PASS
5. Jotting on a Post-it MEMO
9. Lowest of the low NADIR
14. Artist who was an admirer of Freud DALI
18. Partner ALLY
19. Invites over HAS IN
20. "Invisible Cities" author Calvino ITALO
21. Well-versed in UP ON
22. Container for mystery meat? SPAM BOTTLE (from “spambot”)
24. How some sleep NAKED
25. Nanny __: security devices CAMS
26. Fiddled (with) TAMPERED
27. Word repeated after "que," in song SERA
28. Lure into crime ENTRAP
30. Rapture ECSTASY
31. Action scene in "True Blood"? VAMPIRE BATTLE (from “vampire bat”)
34. Pakistani city LAHORE
35. Order to pounce SIC ‘EM
36. Like some personalities DYNAMIC
37. Fluent speakers avoid them UMS
38. Dull finish MATTE
39. Runner on snow SKI
41. Out of breath SPENT
42. Ones giving marching orders: Abbr. SGTS
44. Like NES video games RETRO
45. Pulitzer winner Walker ALICE
47. Opposite of exo- ENDO-
48. Hamilton's prov. ONT
49. Courage of Manhattanites? NEW YORK METTLE (from “New York Met”)
52. Crew member TAR
53. Topple FALL OVER
55. Satan's little helpers IMPS
56. Mil. decoration DSM
58. Wrote with limited characters TWEETED
59. Vineyard grape PINOT
61. Assess flight risk, in a way SET BAIL
65. Crossword heading: Abbr. ACR
66. Weirdo WACK
67. Panaceas CURE ALLS
68. Report card calamities EFS
71. Cloak for a road trip? HIGHWAY MANTLE (from “highwayman”)
75. __ Fáil: Irish "stone of destiny" LIA
76. Villain's base LAIR
78. Architect Saarinen ELIEL
79. High-ranked Atlanta school EMORY
80. Bane for bugs DEET
81. Wrapped up ENDED
83. Windy City airport code ORD
84. Water filter brand BRITA
85. Pivotal KEY
86. Paleness causes ANEMIAS
88. __ Manor: "Batman" setting WAYNE
89. High light? BEACON
92. Reaction to an alarm? RISING STARTLE (from “rising star”)
95. Two guys out to dinner, say MAN DATE
96. Noted lawmaker NEWTON
97. MLB credits RBIS
98. Concert setup, briefly PA SYSTEM
99. "Look no further than me" I’M IT
100. Require EXACT
102. Baby's pre-vacation note to self? PACK RATTLE (from “packrat”)
104. What a ponytail covers NAPE
105. River measure WIDTH
106. "Coffee __?" OR TEA
107. Earthenware pot OLLA
108. Turned right GEED
109. Puréeing aid SIEVE
110. Hardy's "Pure Woman" TESS
111. Drudge PEON

Down
1. Washed-out shade PASTEL
2. Andean herd member ALPACA
3. Venue for poetry readings in space? SLAM SHUTTLE (from “slam shut”)
4. Diagnostician's clues SYMPTOMS
5. Brit's bro MATEY
6. Abbr. before a year ESTD
7. Part of a GI's URL MIL
8. Late lunch hour ONE
9. Late dinner hr. NINE PM
10. __ 2600: old video game console ATARI
11. Capital NW of Monrovia DAKAR
12. Loire land ILE
13. Passed on a 19-Down RODE BY
14. Versatile roll DUCT TAPE
15. Common rental APARTMENT
16. California city name meaning "pretty knoll" LOMA LINDA
17. Yard worker? INSPECTOR
19. Silver in movies HORSE
23. Is worthy of, as repeating BEARS
27. Hook underling SMEE
29. Persian breads NANS
31. In __ fertilization VITRO
32. One may be supporting ACTOR
33. Queen's decree EDICT
35. Dionysian reveler SATYR
38. Asked to be stroked, perhaps MEWED
39. Pursued one's dreams? SLEPT
40. Press packets KITS
42. Out of shape SOFT
43. Eat like a chinchilla GNAW
44. Stargazer's state REVERIE
45. Supplies for Rambo AMMO
46. Geriatrician's concern, with "the" ELDERLY
49. V-shaped mark NOTCH
50. Twisted KINKY
51. First name in makeup ESTEE
54. Cow patch LEA
57. Wharton Sch. conferral MBA
59. Played with, cat-style PAWED
60. Alphabet addition? -ICAL
61. Kama __ SUTRA
62. Livestock kept between buildings? ALLEY CATTLE (from “alley cat”)
63. Rival of Bjorn ILIE
64. Some srs.' source of stress LSAT
66. Propeller noise WHIR
67. Thou tenth C-NOTE
68. Webinars, e.g. E-LEARNING
69. Mortgage acronym FANNIE MAE
70. Glancing blow SIDESWIPE
72. Bright finish GLOSS
73. Sophie player MERYL
74. Nitrogen compound AMINE
77. Sent payment REMITTED
80. What bad traffic sometimes comes to, with "a" DEAD STOP
82. "The Flintstones" answer to Fido DINO
84. Swings at home BATS
85. Maasai Mara game reserve locale KENYA
87. '60s-'70s veep and family AGNEWS
88. Twist in agony WRITHE
89. City about 300 miles from Baghdad BASRA
90. 1887 La Scala premiere OTELLO
91. Like the lion slain by Hercules NEMEAN
93. __ union TRADE
94. "Suburgatory" airer ABC TV
95. Nets MAKES
98. Statistician's figs. PCTS
101. It may be seen opposite VI XII
102. Nursery container POT
103. "The Kids __ All Right": 2010 Best Picture nominee ARE


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LA Times Crossword Answers 27 Apr 13, Saturday



CROSSWORD SETTER: Brad Wilber
THEME: None
COMPLETION TIME: 19m 07s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
1. Protocol RUBRIC
In Medieval illuminated manuscripts, sections of text that are highlighted in red ink are known as rubrics. Often a rubric would be seen at the top of a page, and we tend to use the term “rubric” for a title or a name. “Rubric” comes from the Latin “rubrica”, the red ocher used in making the red pigment used in ink. “Rubric” has evolved to mean an authoritative rule or direction.

7. Dupe CAT’S-PAW
The use of the term “cat’s-paw” to mean a dupe derives from an old folk tale in which a monkey tricks a cat into pawing chestnuts from a fire. The monkey gets the chestnuts, and cat gets a burnt paw.

15. Script used to transcribe foreign words into Japanese KATAKANA
Katakana is a Japanese writing system (a kana) that is primarily used to write foreign words or official documents.

16. Low-tech calculator ABACUS
The abacus was used as a counting frame long before man had invented a numbering system. It is a remarkable invention, particularly when one notes that abaci are still widely used today across Africa and Asia.

18. Drop shots, in badminton DINKS
The game of badminton was developed in the mid-1700s by British military officers in India. There was already an old game called battledore and shuttlecock, so the creation of badminton was essentially the addition of a net and boundary lines for play. The game was launched officially as a sport in 1873 at Badminton House in Gloucestershire in England, giving it the name that we now use.

19. Nearsighted one MYOPE
A myope is someone suffering from myopia, short-sightedness.

22. "Daniel Deronda" (1876) was her last novel ELIOT
George Eliot was the pen name of English novelist Mary Anne Evans. As one might think, Evans chose a male pen name in order that her work might be best appreciated in the Victorian era. Eliot wrote seven novels including “Adam Bede” (1859), “The Mill on the Floss” (1860), “Silas Marner” (1861) and “Middlemarch” (1871-72).

24. Regatta racer SCULL
A scull is a boat used for competitive rowing. The main hull of the boat is often referred to as a shell.

26. Osiris' sis ISIS
Isis was the ancient Egyptian goddess of fertility, as well as the protector of the dead and the goddess of children.

Osiris was the Egyptian god of the underworld. Osiris was the son of Geb the Earth god, and Nut the sky goddess. His wife Isis was also his sister ...

30. Choir section APSE
The apse of a church or cathedral is a semicircular recess in an outer wall, usually with a half-dome as a roof and often where there resides an altar. Originally apses were used as burial places for the clergy and also for storage of important relics.

33. Legal extremes? ELS
There are letters L (els) at the ends (extremes) of the word “legal”.

35. He plays Andy Bernard on "The Office" ED HELMS
The comedic actor Ed Helms got his big break in television on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show”, after which he joined the cast of “The Office”. Helms is now making a name for himself on the big screen. Notably he co-stars in the “The Hangover” series of films.

41. City where the first koala sanctuary opened BRISBANE
Brisbane is the capital city of the state of Queensland, Australia. Brisbane is named for the Brisbane River that flows through the city. The river in turn is named for Scotsman Sir Thomas Brisbane who was the Governor of New South Wales in the 1820s. General Douglas MacArthur made Brisbane his headquarters after being forced out of the Philippines during WWII.

42. Term paper abbr. IBID
Ibid. is short for the Latin word "ibidem" and is typically found in footnotes and bibliographies. Ibid. is used to refer the reader to the prior citation, instead of giving the same information all over again (title, author etc.).

47. 14-time A.L. All-Star A-ROD
Poor old Alex Rodriguez earned more nicknames than just A-Rod. He has been called "the Cooler" by some players as there is a perception that teams go cold when he joins them and hot when he leaves. He has also been called "A-Fraud" by teammates because of another perception, that he is over-demanding.

56. It was once called Mission San Antonio de Valero ALAMO
The famous Alamo in San Antonio, Texas was originally known as Mission San Antonio de Valero. The mission was founded in 1718 and was the first mission established in the city. The Battle of the Alamo took place in 1836, a thirteen-day siege by the Mexican Army led by President General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. Only two people defending the Alamo Mission survived the onslaught. One month later, the Texian army got its revenge by attacking and defeating the Mexican Army in the Battle of San Jacinto. During the surprise attack on Santa Anna's camp, many of the Texian soldiers were heard to cry "Remember the Alamo!".

58. Underwater escape mechanism SQUID INK
Octopuses and squid have the ability to release a dark pigment into the water as a means of escape. The dark pigment is called cephalopod ink (the squid and octopus belong to the class cephalopod). The dark color is created by melanin, the same substance that acts as a pigment in human skin.

60. Stories on stands ALIBIS
"Alibi" is the Latin word for "elsewhere" as in, "I claim that I was 'elsewhere' when the crime was committed ... I have an 'alibi'".

62. Slim and trim SVELTE
“Svelte” comes into English from Latin, via the Italian "svelto" meaning "stretched out". As if I would know anything about svelte ...

63. Ritual candelabrum MENORAH
There is a seven-branched menorah used symbolically in ancient temples. However, the Hanukkah menorah is a nine-branched lampstand that is lit during the eight-day holiday called Hanukkah. “Menorah” is the Hebrew word for “lamp”.

Down
3. Flatter in a cajoling way BLANDISH
“To blandish” is to coax using flattery.

4. Pool convenience RACK
The more correct name for the game of pool is pocket billiards. The name "pool" arose after pocket billiards became a common feature in "pool halls", places where gamblers "pooled" their money to bet on horse races.

6. Some investments, briefly CDS
A certificate of deposit is like a less-flexible and higher-paying savings account. Instead of depositing money into a savings account and earning interest periodically, one can open a CD. With a CD one deposits a minimum amount of money but must leave it there for a specified length of time. In return for committing the funds for a fixed period, one is given a higher interest rate than a savings account and can redeem that interest and the initial deposit when the term has expired. CDs are relatively low-risk investments as they are FDIC insured, just like savings accounts.

7. Writer who said "All literature is gossip" CAPOTE
Truman Capote grew up in Monroeville, Alabama. There he met, and became lifelong friends with fellow novelist, Harper Lee. Capote was the inspiration for the character "Dill" in Lee's celebrated work "To Kill a Mockingbird". In turn, Harper Lee was the inspiration behind the character "Idabel" in Capote's "Other Voices, Other Rooms".

9. Campaign hot button TAXES
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was set up during the Civil War to raise money to cover war expenses. Prior to the introduction of income tax in 1862, the government was funded by levies on trade and property.

15. It has an all-white scale KEY OF C
In the world of music, the key of C major has no flats or sharps.

23. Chem test paper? LITMUS
Litmus is a mixture of naturally-occurring dyes that responds to acidity by changing color. Litmus has been around a long time, first used around 1300 by the Spanish alchemist Arnaldus de Villa Nova.

25. Fruit named for a Turkish town CASABA
A casaba is type of honeydew melon. The casaba takes its name from the Turkish city of Kasaba, from where the fruit was imported into America in the late 1800s.

27. Maker of small suits SPEEDO
Speedo brand swimwear was first produced in Australia in 1928, by a hosiery company that wanted to diversify. The brand name was chosen after a slogan competition among employees was won by "Speed on in your Speedos". It was a long time ago, I guess ...

34. Porter's "__ Girls" LES
“Les Girls” is a 1957 MGM musical that was scored by Cole Porter. Stars of the film are Gene Kelly and Mitzi Gaynor.

41. Tolerates BROOKS
“To brook” and “to abide” both mean to tolerate, to put up with.

42. Penn movie with a Seussian title I AM SAM
“I Am Sam” is a 2001 drama movie starring Sean Penn. Penn plays a man with a developmental disability who is raising a young daughter alone after her mother abandoned the family.

43. Cubism pioneer Georges BRAQUE
In the art movement known as Cubism, objects which are the subject of a painting are broken up and reassembled in an abstract form. The pioneers of the Cubist movement were Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque.

46. Statue base PLINTH
A plinth is a block on which a column is based. The Greek word "plinthos" means "squared stone".

49. Straphanger RIDER
“Straphanger” is a slang term for someone who rides the subway or a bus i.e. stands in the vehicle hanging onto a strap for balance.

51. 21-gun salute, e.g. SALVO
A salvo is a simultaneous discharge of guns. Ironically, “salvo” comes from the Latin “salve” meaning “be in good health”. Salvo was originally the name given to the firing of guns in the air as a sign of respect or greeting for an important visitor. Good health!

55. Actress Merrill of "Operation Petticoat" DINA
Dina Merrill was in 22 movies, including two of my favorites: "Desk Set" with Tracy & Hepburn, and "Operation Petticoat" with Cary Grant. Nowadays, Merrill carries some sway in the business world. Until 2007 she was on the compensation committee of Lehman Brothers, the merry band that approved all those big bonuses. Ms. Merrill probably doesn't talk too much these days about that aspect of her life!

“Operation Petticoat” is a fabulous 1959 comedy film set in WWII starring Cary Grant and Tony Curtis. The USS Sea Tiger submarine picks up five nurses in the Philippines, and hilarity ensues …

57. Bank security LIEN
A lien is the right that one has to retain or secure someone's property until a debt is paid.

59. Bit of blogger shorthand IMO
In my opinion (IMO).

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Protocol RUBRIC
7. Dupe CAT’S-PAW
14. Where seals are their least graceful ON LAND
15. Script used to transcribe foreign words into Japanese KATAKANA
16. Low-tech calculator ABACUS
17. Modeling job? EPOXYING
18. Drop shots, in badminton DINKS
19. Nearsighted one MYOPE
20. Was into DUG
21. Low SAD
22. "Daniel Deronda" (1876) was her last novel ELIOT
24. Regatta racer SCULL
26. Osiris' sis ISIS
28. Speculate INFER
30. Choir section APSE
31. Wielding absolute power DESPOTIC
33. Legal extremes? ELS
35. He plays Andy Bernard on "The Office" ED HELMS
36. Tool that's swung CLEAVER
40. Letters in a prof's email address EDU
41. City where the first koala sanctuary opened BRISBANE
42. Term paper abbr. IBID
45. Wild outing SPREE
47. 14-time A.L. All-Star A-ROD
48. Collection of plates ARMOR
50. Isn't industrious LOAFS
52. Tag for some as-is mdse. IRR
53. Legend site MAP
54. Get one's goat, e.g. IDIOM
56. It was once called Mission San Antonio de Valero ALAMO
58. Underwater escape mechanism SQUID INK
60. Stories on stands ALIBIS
61. Enhances AUGMENTS
62. Slim and trim SVELTE
63. Ritual candelabrum MENORAH
64. Cutie pies HONEYS

Down
1. Farm stand spot ROADSIDE
2. Neutral UNBIASED
3. Flatter in a cajoling way BLANDISH
4. Pool convenience RACK
5. Taken IN USE
6. Some investments, briefly CDS
7. Writer who said "All literature is gossip" CAPOTE
8. Perched on ATOP
9. Campaign hot button TAXES
10. Word with jack or box SKY
11. Settled PAID UP
12. Cancels ANNULS
13. Part of some golfers' pre-shot routines WAGGLE
15. It has an all-white scale KEY OF C
19. They show a lot of leg MINIS
23. Chem test paper? LITMUS
25. Fruit named for a Turkish town CASABA
27. Maker of small suits SPEEDO
29. A pitcher may appear in it RELIEF
32. Unlike spring chickens OLD
34. Porter's "__ Girls" LES
36. Stationery shade CREAM
37. Algebraic uncertainty VARIABLE
38. Unfathomable size ENORMITY
39. Wooer's buy RED ROSES
41. Tolerates BROOKS
42. Penn movie with a Seussian title I AM SAM
43. Cubism pioneer Georges BRAQUE
44. Call into question IMPUGN
46. Statue base PLINTH
49. Straphanger RIDER
51. 21-gun salute, e.g. SALVO
55. Actress Merrill of "Operation Petticoat" DINA
57. Bank security LIEN
59. Bit of blogger shorthand IMO
60. It may be tapped off ASH


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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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