LA Times Crossword Answers 17 Feb 17, Friday










Constructed by: Mark Feldman

Edited by: Rich Norris

Quicklink to a complete list of today’s clues and answers

Quicklink to comments

Theme: Punny Swaps

Each of today’s themed answers relates to a common, two-word phrase. The last word in that phrase has been replaced by a homophone, and then phrase’s word-order has been switched:

  • 17A. Ladies’ man with laryngitis? : HOARSE STUD (from “stud horse”)
  • 28A. Infant at bath time? : BARE BABY (from “baby bear”)
  • 44A. High schooler just hanging out? : IDLE TEEN (from “teen idol”)
  • 58A. Ordinary-looking fashion VIP? : PLAIN MODEL (from “model plane”)

Bill’s time: 8m 56s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

6. Popular speaker : BOSE

Bose Corporation was founded in 1964 by Amar G. Bose, and is a company that specializes in manufacture of audio equipment.

10. Unlike Wabash College : CO-ED

Wabash College is an all-male school in Crawfordsville, Indiana that was founded in 1832 as the Wabash Teachers Seminary and Manual Labor College. Wabash is one of only three all-male liberal arts colleges left in the US. The other two are Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia and Morehouse College in Georgia.

14. “Voilà!” : THERE!

“Voilà” means “there it is”, and “voici” means “here it is”. The terms come from “voi là” meaning “see there” and “voi ici” meaning “see here”.

16. Company with a Select Guest loyalty program : OMNI

Omni Hotels & Resorts is headquartered in Irvine, California and has properties in the US, Canada and Mexico.

17. Ladies’ man with laryngitis? : HOARSE STUD (from “stud horse”)

The word “stud”, meaning “a male horse kept for breeding”, is derived from the Old English word “stod”, which described a whole herd of horses. The term “stud” can be used figuratively for a “ladies’ man”.

The suffix “-itis” is used to denote inflammation, as in laryngitis (inflammation of the larynx), otitis (inflammation of the ear) and sinusitis (inflammation of the sinuses).

20. Airport NNW of IND : 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 Butch O’Hare who grew up in Chicago. O’Hare was the US Navy’s first flying ace and a Medal of Honor recipient in WWII.

Indianapolis International Airport (IND), located just a few miles from the city’s downtown area, is the largest airport in Indiana.

21. Spicy cuisine : CREOLE

Creole is the term used in Haiti to describe all of the native people, as well as the music, food and culture of the country. 80% of the Haitian Creole people are so called black creoles, descendants of the original Africans brought to the island as slaves during the French colonial days.

23. Goneril’s husband : ALBANY

In Shakespeare’s “King Lear”, the king’s daughter Goneril is married to the Duke of Albany.

25. Revered sage, in India : MAHATMA

Mohandas Gandhi was a political and spiritual leader in India in the first part of the 20th century, as the country sought independence from Britain. He was also referred to as “Mahatma”, meaning “great soul”. His remarkable philosophy of nonviolence and living a modest lifestyle was a great inspiration to the Indian people. India (and Pakistan) was granted independence in 1947. Tragically, Gandhi was assassinated the very next year by a Hindu nationalist.

29. 1995 “Live at Red Rocks” pianist : TESH

John Tesh is a pianist and composer, as well as a radio and television presenter. For many years Tesh presented the show “Entertainment Tonight”. For “ET” he once covered the filming of an episode of “Star Trek: The Next Generation”. As part of the piece, he volunteered to act as a Klingon warrior. If you see the “Star Trek: TNG” episode called “The Icarus Factor” in reruns, watch out for John Tesh engaging in ritual torture with Mr. Worf as his victim.

Red Rocks Amphitheatre is an open-air venue for the performing arts near Morrison, Colorado.

30. African scourge : TSETSE

Tsetse flies live on the blood of vertebrate mammals. The name “tsetse” comes from Tswana, a language of southern Africa, and translates simply as “fly”. Tsetse flies are famous for being carriers of the disease known as “sleeping sickness”. Sleeping sickness is caused by a parasite which is passed onto humans when the tsetse fly bites into human skin tissue. If one considers all the diseases transmitted by the insect, then the tsetse fly is responsible for a staggering quarter of a million deaths each year.

32. Indian silk-producing region : ASSAM

Assam is a state in the very northeast of India, just south of the Himalayas. Assam is noted for its tea as well as its silk.

34. Suffix with ethyl : -ENE

Ethylene (also called “ethene”) has a gazillion uses, including as an anesthetic and an aid to hastening the ripening of fruit. Ethylene’s most common use is as a major raw material in the manufacture of plastics (like polyethylene).

35. “Same here” : DITTO

“Ditto” was originally used in Italian (from Tuscan dialect) to avoid repetition of the names of months in a series of dates. So, “ditto” is just another wonderful import from that lovely land …

48. Highest peak in the Armenian plateau : ARARAT

Mount Ararat is in Turkey. Ararat is a snow-capped, dormant volcano with two peaks. The higher of the two, Greater Ararat, is the tallest peak in the country. Ararat takes its name from a legendary Armenian hero called Ara the Beautiful (or Ara the Handsome). According to the Book of Genesis, Noah’s ark landed on Mount Ararat as the Great Flood subsided.

50. Armed ocean dweller? : SEA STAR

Starfish (sometimes “sea stars”) come in many shapes and sizes, but commonly have “pentaradial symmetry”, meaning they have symmetric body-shapes with five points. Most starfish are predators, mainly living on a diet of mollusks such as clams and oysters.

52. Pride parade letters : LGBT

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT)

The first pride parades were held all on the same weekend in 1970, in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

53. “Macbeth” spot descriptor : DAMNED

Lady Macbeth is an evil and treacherous woman in William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”. The most famous line uttered by Lady Macbeth has to be:

Out, damned spot! Out, I say!

In this line, Lady Macbeth is frantically rubbing at her hand trying to get rid of an imaginary bloodstain left there after she committed four murders.

55. Division of the Justice Dept. : ATF

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is today part of the Department of Justice (DOJ). The ATF has its roots in the Department of Treasury dating back to 1886 when it was known as the Bureau of Prohibition. “Explosives” was added to the ATF’s name when the bureau was moved under the Department of Justice (DOJ) as part of the reorganization called for in the Homeland Security Act of 2002.

57. Buffalo’s county : ERIE

There are three Erie Counties in the US:

  • Erie County, New York (with Buffalo as the county seat)
  • Erie County, Ohio (with Sandusky as the county seat)
  • Erie County, Pennsylvania (with Erie as the county seat)

64. Nasdaq competitor : NYSE

The roots of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) go back to 1792 when a group of 24 stock brokers set up the New York Stock & Exchange Board. They did so in an agreement signed under a buttonwood tree outside 68 Wall Street. That document became known as the Buttonwood Agreement. Today, the NYSE is located in National Historic Landmark building with the address 11 Wall Street in Lower Manhattan, New York City.

The NASDAQ trading system created in 1971 is the successor to the over-the-counter (OTC) trading system that was common at the time. OTC trading is done directly between two parties without being facilitated by an exchange.

65. Like Vikings : NORSE

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

Down

1. Emperor after Galba : OTHO

AD 69 was a year of civil war in ancient Rome. The unrest started with the death of emperor Nero in AD 68, after which followed the brief rule of Galba, of Otho, of Vitellius, and of Vespasian all in the same year. As a result, AD 69 became known as the Year of the Four Emperors.

2. Bach works : CHORALES

Johann Sebastian Bach died when he was 65-years-old, in 1750. He was buried in Old St. John’s Cemetery in Leipzig, and his grave went unmarked until 1894. At that time his coffin was located, removed and buried in a vault within the church. The church was destroyed in an Allied bombing raid during WWII, and so after the war the remains had to be recovered and taken to the Church of St. Thomas in Leipzig.

3. Word associated with Sleepy Hollow : HEADLESS

The Headless Horseman is a character in Washington Irving’s “The Legend of Sleep Hollow “.

5. Checkout correction, perhaps : RESCAN

The first UPC-marked item to get scanned in a store was on June 26, 1974 at 08:01 a.m. at Marsh’s supermarket in Troy, Ohio. It was a 10-pack of Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit chewing gum.

6. “Point Break” co-star : BUSEY

The actor Gary Busey is perhaps most acclaimed for playing Buddy Holly in the 1978 biographical film “The Buddy Holly Story”. In 1988, Busey was suffered a skull fracture in a motorcycle accident in which he was not wearing a helmet. Busey himself has stated that the resulting brain injury has altered his behavior, causing him to speak and act impulsively.

10. Informal discussion : CONFAB

“Confab”, meaning “chat” is a shortened form of “confabulation”. The word “confabulation” derives from the Latin from “com” (together) and “fabula” (a tale). “Fabula” is also the root of our word “fable”.

11. Last book of Puzo’s “Godfather” trilogy : OMERTA

The novelist and screenwriter Mario Puzo, was best known for his book “The Godfather”, which he also co-adapted for the big screen. Puzo also wrote two sequels, “The Last Don” and “Omertà”, that latter being published after his death. His name is less associated with some very famous screenplays that he wrote, including “Earthquake”, “Superman” and “Superman II”. Puzo won two Oscars for Best Adapted Screenplay: for “The Godfather” (1972) and for “The Godfather Part II” (1974).

“Omertà” is a code of honor in southern Italian society. The term has been adopted by the Mafia to mean a code of silence designed to prevent a Mafioso from becoming an informer. For example, the famous Joe Valachi was someone who broke the code of silence in 1963, informing on the New York Mafia. Valachi’s story was told in the movie “The Valachi Papers”, with Charles Bronson playing the lead.

18. “Trophy, Hypertrophied” artist : ERNST

Max Ernst was a painter and sculptor, a pioneer in the Dada movement and Surrealism. Ernst was born near Cologne in Germany in 1891 and he was called up to fight in WWI, as were most young German men at that time. In his autobiography he writes “Max Ernst died the 1st of August, 1914” a statement about his experiences in the war. In reality, Ernst died in 1976 having lived to the ripe old age of 85.

24. __ Men: “Who Let the Dogs Out” band : BAHA

The Baha Men are so called because they hail from the Bahamas. Their big hit was “Who Let the Dogs Out?”, which has been ranked as third in a list of the world’s most annoying songs!

27. Rail system that services 20-Across : CTA
(20A. Airport NNW of IND : ORD)

Chicago Transit Authority (CTA)

28. Dahomey, since 1975 : BENIN

The Republic of Benin is a country in West Africa. Benin used to be a French colony, and was known as Dahomey. Dahomey gained independence in 1975, and took the name Benin after the Bight of Benin, the body of water on which the country lies.

33. Actor Damon : MATT

Matt Damon is an actor and screenwriter from Cambridge, Massachusetts. Damon’s big break came with the 1997 movie “Good Will Hunting” in which he starred. He co-wrote the screenplay with his childhood friend Ben Affleck.

36. OPEC founding member : IRAN

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was founded in 1960 at a conference held in Baghdad, Iraq that was attended by Iraq, Kuwait, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. Nine more countries joined the alliance soon after, and OPEC set up headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland and then Vienna, Austria in 1965. The basic aim of OPEC was to wrench control of oil prices from the oil companies and to put it in the hands of the sovereign states that own the natural resource.

37. Ring fighter : TOREADOR

“Toreador” is an old Spanish word for a bullfighter, but it’s a term not used any more in Spain nor in Latin America. In English we use the term “toreador”, but in Spanish a bullfighter is a “torero”. A female bullfighter in a “torera”.

38. Pop-up items : TOASTERS

The electric toaster is a Scottish invention, created by the Alan McMasters in Edinburgh in 1893.

39. As of 1937, he was the all-time N.L. home run leader until Mays surpassed him in 1966 : OTT

At 5′ 9″, baseball legend Mel Ott weighed just 170 lb (I don’t think he took steroids!) and yet he was the first National League player to hit over 500 home runs. Sadly, Ott died in a car accident in New Orleans in 1958 when he was only 49 years old.

41. Like many a successful poker player : DEADPAN

The term “deadpan”, slang for an impassive expression, comes from dead (expressionless) and pan (slang for “face”).

44. Keys : ISLETS

A “key” (also “cay”) is a low island offshore, as in the Florida Keys. Our term in English comes from the Spanish “cayo” meaning “shoal, reef”.

45. Unilever deodorant brand : DEGREE

Degree is a brandname of deodorant in North America. The same product is marketed in the UK as Sure.

49. Serling’s birth name : RODMAN

Rodman “Rod” Serling was the man behind, and in front of, the iconic science-fiction TV series “The Twilight Zone”. Serling used a lot of the shows he created to advance his strongly held views against war (he was a soldier in WWII), and against racism and censorship.

51. Ouzo flavoring : ANISE

Ouzo is an aperitif from Greece that is colorless and flavored with anise. Ouzo is similar to pastis from France and also has a flavor like sambuca from Italy.

54. “Serpico” author Peter : MAAS

Peter Maas was journalist and author. Maas wrote a couple of books that were adapted into successful movies. He wrote a biography of New York City Police officer Frank Serpico that was made into the 1973 “Serpico” starring Al Pacino in the title role. He also wrote a biography of a low-level Mafia informant called “The Valachi Papers” that was was made into a 1972 film of the same name starring Charles Bronson as Valachi.

59. “Star Trek: DSN” changeling : ODO

Odo is a character in the “Star Trek” spin-off “Deep Space Nine”. He is the chief of security on the space station and is a Changeling, meaning that he can assume any shape that he wishes. Odo is played by René Auberjonois, an actor you might remember as Father Mulcahy in the movie version of “M*A*S*H”.

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Earth tone : OCHER

6. Popular speaker : BOSE

10. Unlike Wabash College : CO-ED

14. “Voilà!” : THERE!

15. Over : UPON

16. Company with a Select Guest loyalty program : OMNI

17. Ladies’ man with laryngitis? : HOARSE STUD (from “stud horse”)

19. Ultimately earns : NETS

20. Airport NNW of IND : ORD

21. Spicy cuisine : CREOLE

22. A native of : FROM

23. Goneril’s husband : ALBANY

25. Revered sage, in India : MAHATMA

27. Sweeps, e.g. : CLEANS

28. Infant at bath time? : BARE BABY (from “baby bear”)

29. 1995 “Live at Red Rocks” pianist : TESH

30. African scourge : TSETSE

32. Indian silk-producing region : ASSAM

34. Suffix with ethyl : -ENE

35. “Same here” : DITTO

40. Counsel : ADVISE

43. Cheer : ROOT

44. High schooler just hanging out? : IDLE TEEN (from “teen idol”)

48. Highest peak in the Armenian plateau : ARARAT

50. Armed ocean dweller? : SEA STAR

51. Makes it right : ATONES

52. Pride parade letters : LGBT

53. “Macbeth” spot descriptor : DAMNED

55. Division of the Justice Dept. : ATF

57. Buffalo’s county : ERIE

58. Ordinary-looking fashion VIP? : PLAIN MODEL (from “model plane”)

60. Marketing opener : TELE-

61. “What a shame” : ALAS

62. Really like : ADORE

63. Aren’t really, maybe : SEEM

64. Nasdaq competitor : NYSE

65. Like Vikings : NORSE

Down

1. Emperor after Galba : OTHO

2. Bach works : CHORALES

3. Word associated with Sleepy Hollow : HEADLESS

4. Goof : ERR

5. Checkout correction, perhaps : RESCAN

6. “Point Break” co-star : BUSEY

7. Vision: Pref. : OPTO-

8. They’re meant for each other : SOUL MATES

9. Makes beloved : ENDEARS

10. Informal discussion : CONFAB

11. Last book of Puzo’s “Godfather” trilogy : OMERTA

12. Bury : ENTOMB

13. Alarm : DISMAY

18. “Trophy, Hypertrophied” artist : ERNST

24. __ Men: “Who Let the Dogs Out” band : BAHA

26. Follow : HEED

27. Rail system that services 20-Across : CTA

28. Dahomey, since 1975 : BENIN

31. One at a time : SEVERALLY

33. Actor Damon : MATT

36. OPEC founding member : IRAN

37. Ring fighter : TOREADOR

38. Pop-up items : TOASTERS

39. As of 1937, he was the all-time N.L. home run leader until Mays surpassed him in 1966 : OTT

41. Like many a successful poker player : DEADPAN

42. Consumed : EATEN

44. Keys : ISLETS

45. Unilever deodorant brand : DEGREE

46. Likely to change : LABILE

47. Regard : ESTEEM

49. Serling’s birth name : RODMAN

51. Ouzo flavoring : ANISE

54. “Serpico” author Peter : MAAS

56. Hightail it : FLEE

59. “Star Trek: DSN” changeling : ODO

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13 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 17 Feb 17, Friday”

  1. ATF is also known, in Gov circles, as BBBB – Booze, Butts, Bullets and Bombs. With that combination, what could possibly go wrong?

  2. Ouch. I just didn’t have the time/patience (acumen?) to finish this one. Just too much to do and too much I didn’t know. Gary Busey was in Point Break? It’s been a long time since I saw that movie. Very good puzzle. I would have liked to have tried it in a more relaxed state. But bottom line – a big fat DNF…or more accurately, a finish with a lot of cheating.

    I always thought of confabulating as lying. I was close – the second definition is “making up stories to compensate for a lack of memory”. I’m hoping that’s a few years away for me….

    Now I have a David Steinberg grid waiting for me over at the NYT. That will have to wait until this evening or tomorrow. Dave – I saw your time so I’ll wait until I have time to battle it.

    How many thousands equal one gazillion? 🙂

    Best –

  3. @Dirk
    Yes, minibats really do exist as collectibles. It’s kind of along the same lines as keeping baseballs. They make them in various sizes and designs. Personally I have three, the most interesting one being one painted red that was made in commemoration of Mark McGwire and his 1998 season.

  4. 14:50. Had BAJA before getting the silent treatment and immediately changing it to BAHA, otherwise no errors.

    BBBB. Never heard that one. Funny … 🙂

    @Dirk and @Carrie … totally agree … delusional madman at the helm … 🙁

    Running late … discombobulated … depressed …

    @Jeff … There are a bazillion thousands in a gazillion … 🙂 ?

  5. Was doing great and moving along when I got really stuck in a couple of places. I had “bare” but didn’t come up with the “baby” part which alarms me a bit since “infant” was in the clue. I didn’t know Goneril’s husband so that caused me to get stuck in that part of the grid.
    “Severally” fell into place but I didn’t know this word and had to look up its meaning.
    Cute theme.

  6. This seemed pretty easy for a Friday. Had a little stare and think time before “damned” got filled in for Macbeth’s spot descriptor clue. Now on to the WSJ!

  7. Thanks Anon. I did not know that – must remember.

    I had an awful tough time with the puzzle. I found it very difficult. Quite a lot of mafia related themes/names. But the newer TV shows and movies gave me the most trouble. I also found out the CTA is not ELL.

    Erie County NY and PA, are within an hour driving, ( 100 mi.) of each other. Erie OH is close to Toledo and the MI border. almost 5 hours away. Probably tells you how widespread the tribe was.

    Always confuse between Ararat ( the mountain peak) and Arafat ( the political leader).

    Have a nice day, all.

  8. 29 minutes, no errors on this one. See @Jeff? Back to earth.

    Of course, then there’s today’s WSJ…that one…was bad. (DNF after 40 minutes and surprised I got as much as I did)

    1. Hi Glenn – I too thought today’s WSJ grid was tough. I had a sea of ink splotches from all the strike overs, but eventually it came together with no final errors. I aim on basking in my Friday glory until tomorrow undoubtedly undoes me!

  9. This one was fun. Not at first though. Took me a while to get enough Swiss cheese in there to be able to guess at the holes! Finally getting the theme helped. And today there were no groaners for me, unlike yesterday.

    @Carrie – nice ‘Airplane’ reference. Funny movie. 🙂

  10. Just like yesterday, in terms of difficulty, but I did in one sitting. A lot of good guesses, but I ran out of steam in the SW. About 1.5 hours with 7 errors.

    Had sEcREt instead of DEGREE which screwed up the whole SW, even though I ultimately knew idle teen. Also changed LGBT to aclu, to accommodate secret; doh!

    SEVERALLY is a new one for me. I did like “popular speaker”, BOSE. Dahomey becoming Benin is also new to me; will have to read up on that.

  11. Hi all!
    Thanks @mtnwest! 😊
    Dave, be strong! 🍀
    Great puzzle today, and a worthy challenge. Seemed to take me HOURS, but I did finish successfully. Gad, that NW corner had me flummoxed for awhile!!! I had UMBER instead of OCHER, and I wasn’t sure how to spell OTHO, whom I only know from that puzzle a couple of weeks ago. And I guess I didn’t know what SEVERALLY meant until now. Felt positively victorious when everything fell into place. @Bill, how you finished this in under 9 minutes is a mystery!!! Great write-up today BTW — thanks!🙆
    Terrible wind and rain here in LA today, yet I guess I can’t complain, considering the storms back east lately. This HUGE branch split off one of my trees, and I can’t find my chainsaw!!! (LOL – don’t actually have one…Must call gardener once the sun comes out….!!)

    Be well~~™🍷🍷🍷

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