LA Times Crossword Answers 12 Oct 2017, Thursday










Constructed by: J. Michael McHugh

Edited by: Rich Norris

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

Quicklink to comments

Theme: Wild Oats

Each of today’s themed answers includes the letters string OATS, although the string has “WILD”. The letters in the word OATS have been rearranged:

  • 64A. What young people may sow … and what’s literally hidden in the answers to starred clues : WILD OATS
  • 17A. *What may put a fire in the belly? : HOT SAUCE
  • 24A. *Commuter entertainment source : RADIO STATION
  • 38A. *Slick trick : FAST ONE
  • 52A. *Pre-release programs : BETA SOFTWARE

Bill’s time: 7m 16s

Bill’s errors: 0




Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Part of BYOB and MYOB : OWN

Bring Your Own Beer/Bottle/Booze (BYOB)

Mind your own business (MYOB)

4. Band name with a lightning bolt slash : AC/DC

The Heavy Metal band known as AC/DC was formed by two brothers Malcolm and Angus Young in Australia. The group is usually called “Acca Dacca” down under.

14. T’ai __ : CHI

More correctly called t‘ai chi ch‘uan, tai chi is a martial art that is mostly practiced to improve overall health and increase longevity.

15. Afrikaans speaker : BOER

“Boer” is the Dutch and Afrikaans word for “farmer”, a word that was used to describe the Dutch-speaking people who settled parts of South Africa during the 1700s.

Afrikaans is a language spoken mainly in South Africa that was introduced there by Dutch settlers in the 18th century. The original settlers were mainly from South Holland, so Afrikaans evolved from the Dutch vernacular that they spoke.

16. 9Lives mascot : MORRIS

Morris the Cat has appeared in movies and advertisements since 1968. Morris is currently the mascot for 9Lives cat food.

20. Window part : SASH

A movable (up and down) window frame is called a sash, from the French word for a frame “châssis”. The term is also applied to that part of a door or window into which windows are set.

21. Mother of Pollux : LEDA

In Greek mythology, Leda was the beautiful Queen of Sparta who was seduced by Zeus when he took the form of a swan. Leda produced two eggs from the union. One egg hatched into Clytemnestra and the beautiful Helen of Troy, over whom was fought the Trojan War. The other egg hatched into the twins Castor and Pollux. Castor and Pollux had different fathers according to the myth. Pollux was the son of Zeus and was immortal, while Castor was the son of Leda’s earthly husband, and so he was a mortal. In the world of the arts, William Butler Yeats wrote a famous sonnet called “Leda and the Swan” in 1924, and Peter Paul Rubens made a copy of a now-lost painting called “Leda and the Swan” by Michelangelo.

23. She plays Crawford in FX’s “Feud” : LANGE

The actress Jessica Lange is also an accomplished and published photographer. She was married for ten years to Spanish photographer Paco Grande. After separating from Grande, Lange was partnered with the great Russian dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov, with whom she had her first child.

“Feud” is a TV series that dramatizes actual events in celebrity feuds. The first season debuted in 2017 and explored the rivalry of Hollywood superstars Bette Davis and Joan Crawford (portrayed by Susan Sarandon and Jessica Lange). A second season takes on the relationship between Charles and Diana, the Princess and Princess of Wales.

32. Miracle-__ : GRO

Scotts Miracle-Gro Company was founded in 1868 by one Orlando Scott, initially selling seed to the agricultural industry. In the early 1900s, Scotts started to sell to homeowners, mainly supplying lawn seed. The company merged with the gardening company Miracle-Gro in 1955.

43. Lets hit them : NETS

As in tennis, for example.

45. Pi follower : RHO

Rho is the Greek letter that looks just like our Roman letter “p”, although it is equivalent to the Roman letter R.

48. In-land link? : LA-LA

“La-la land” is a euphemism for a state of unconsciousness.

50. Leopardlike cats : OCELOTS

The ocelot is found mainly in South and Central America, although there have been sightings as far north as Arkansas. An ocelot doesn’t look too different from a domestic cat, and some have been kept as pets. Perhaps most famously, Salvador Dali had one that he carried around everywhere with him.

52. *Pre-release programs : BETA SOFTWARE

In the world of software development, the first tested issue of a new program is usually called the “alpha” version. Expected to have a lot of bugs that need to be fixed, the alpha release is usually distributed to a small number of testers. After reported bugs have been eliminated, the refined version is called a “beta” and is released to a wider audience, but with the program clearly labeled as “beta”. The users generally check functionality and report further bugs that are encountered. The beta version feeds into a release candidate, the version that is tested just prior to the software being sold into the market, hopefully bug-free.

58. Staff symbol : REST

The sets of five horizontal lines and four spaces that are used in musical notation are known as staves. The singular of “staves” is “staff” in American English, but “stave” in British English.

64. What young people may sow … and what’s literally hidden in the answers to starred clues : WILD OATS

Traditionally, wild oats was a crop that one would regret sowing instead of “good grain”. Young and tempestuous people were rash enough to sow their wild oats, and had yet to comprehend their folly. Over time, to “feel one’s oats” came to mean “be lively and confident”.

66. Like most Chaplin films : SILENT

Charlie Chaplin earned the nickname “The Tramp” (also “Little Tramp”) from the much-loved character that he frequently played on the screen. Chaplin was much-respected as a performer. The great George Bernard Shaw referred to him as “the only genius to come out of the movie industry”.

70. Drag racing gp. : NHRA

The sport of drag racing is administered by the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA).

Back in the 18th century “drag” was slang for a wagon or buggy, as it was “dragged” along by a horse or horses. In the 1930s, the underworld adopted “drag” as slang for an automobile. This sense of the word was imported into automobile racing in the forties, giving the name to “drag racing”. A drag race is basically a competition between two cars to determine which can accelerate faster from a standstill.

Down

1. “Draft Dodger Rag” folk singer : OCHS

Phil Ochs was an American protest singer who was active in the days of the Vietnam War. Sadly, the singer’s mental health declined at the very time the war was winding down. Saigon fell in 1975, and Ochs committed suicide in 1976.

4. “Defending Liberty, Pursuing Justice” org. : ABA

The American Bar Association (ABA) was founded back in 1878 and is a voluntary association for lawyers and law students. The ABA focuses on setting academic standards for law schools and setting ethical codes for the profession.

8. “The Walking Dead” channel : AMC

“The Walking Dead” is a horror television show that is made by AMC that is based on a comic book series of the same name. There are lots of flesh-eating zombies featured, so I won’t be caught “dead” watching it …

11. Like two-time Oscar-winning director Asghar Farhadi : IRANI

Asghar Farhadi is an Iranian movie director and screenwriter. Farhadi won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film on two occasions: for his movies “A Separation” (2012), and “The Salesman (2017).

12. Late summer sign : VIRGO

The astrological sign of Virgo is associated with the constellation of the same name. The Virgo constellation is related to maidens (virgins), purity and fertility.

13. Steel city near Cologne : ESSEN

Essen is a large industrial city located on the River Ruhr in western Germany.

Cologne is the fourth largest city in Germany, and is known as “Koln” in German.

22. Orbit City pooch : ASTRO

“The Jetsons” is an animated show from Hanna-Barbera that had its first run in 1962-1963, and then was recreated in 1985-1987. When it was debuted in 1963 by ABC, “The Jetsons” was the network’s first ever color broadcast. “The Jetsons” are like a space-age version of “The Flintstones”. The four Jetson family members are George and Jane, the parents, and children Judy and Elroy. Residing with the family are Rosie the household robot, and Astro the pet dog.

26. One in a cel block : TOON

In the world of animation, a cel is a transparent sheet on which objects and characters are drawn. In the first half of the 20th century the sheet was actually made of celluloid, giving the “cel” its name.

27. FBI guy : G-MAN

The nickname “G-men” is short for “government men” and refers to agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

32. ’60s-’70s Pontiac : GTO

The Pontiac GTO was produced by GM from 1964 to 1974, and again by a GM subsidiary in Australia from 2004 to 2006. The original GTO’s design is credited to Pontiac chief engineer at the time John DeLorean, who later was found the DeLorean Motor Company.

34. City that hosts an annual Norwegian Wood music festival : OSLO

The Norwegian Wood music festival has been held annually since 1992 in Oslo, the capital of Norway. The festival is named for the Beatles song “Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)”.

“Norwegian Wood” is a Beatles song from 1965. It is a somewhat groundbreaking number in that George Harrison is playing a sitar, marking the first time the sitar was used by a rock band on a record. And, if you like to waltz around the dance floor, this is one of the few Beatles records that is in triple time.

36. Elephant flappers : EARS

There are only three species of elephant living today, with all others being extinct. These are the African bush elephant, the African forest elephant, and the Asian elephant (or “Indian elephant”). As is well known, the African elephant is distinguished from the Asian/Indian elephant by its much larger ears.

39. Singer Guthrie : ARLO

Singer Arlo Guthrie is known for his protest songs, just like his father Woody Guthrie. The younger Guthrie only ever had one song in the top 40: a cover version of “City of New Orleans”. He has lived for years in the town of Washington, just outside Pittsfield, Massachusetts. His 1976 song “Massachusetts” has been the official folk song of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts since 1981.

47. Olds compact : ALERO

The Oldsmobile Alero was the last car made under the Oldsmobile brand. The Alero was produced from 1999 to 2004.

52. Light wood : BALSA

Balsa is a very fast growing tree that is native to parts of South America. Even though balsa wood is very soft, it is actually classified as a hardwood, the softest of all the hardwoods (go figure!). Balsa is light and strong, so is commonly used in making model airplanes. Amazingly, in WWII a full-size British plane, the de Havilland Mosquito, was built largely from balsa and plywood. No wonder they called it “The Wooden Wonder” and “The Timber Terror”.

53. It’s often distributed in cc’s : EMAIL

I wonder do the kids of today know that “cc” stands for carbon copy, and do they have any idea what a carbon copy was? Do you remember how messy carbon paper was to handle?

61. Nicholas II was the last one : TSAR

The last ruler of Imperial Russia was Tsar Nicholas II (of the House of Romanov). Famously, the Tsar and his family were murdered in 1918 in the basement of a house in Yekaterinburg, Russia by members of the Bolshevik secret police. The Tsar’s youngest daughter was 16-year-old Anastasia and rumors of her escape have persisted for years. The rumors grew with the help of numerous women who claimed to be Anastasia. In 2009, DNA testing finally proved that the remains of all of the Tsar’s immediate family, including Anastasia, have been found and identified.

63. Some NFL blockers : RTS

In American football, linemen specialize in playing in the line of scrimmage. RT stands for Right Tackle. That’s about all I know, and even that I am unsure about …

65. Raiders’ org.? : DEA

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)

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Complete List of Clues and Answers

Across

1. Part of BYOB and MYOB : OWN

4. Band name with a lightning bolt slash : AC/DC

8. Unlike a couch potato : ACTIVE

14. T’ai __ : CHI

15. Afrikaans speaker : BOER

16. 9Lives mascot : MORRIS

17. *What may put a fire in the belly? : HOT SAUCE

19. Makes room on, as a schedule : CLEARS

20. Window part : SASH

21. Mother of Pollux : LEDA

23. She plays Crawford in FX’s “Feud” : LANGE

24. *Commuter entertainment source : RADIO STATION

27. Regards with surprise : GAPES AT

30. Sped : TORE

31. Botch : MISDO

32. Miracle-__ : GRO

33. One teaspoon, e.g. : DOSE

37. Sponsor’s array : ADS

38. *Slick trick : FAST ONE

42. Pampering place : SPA

43. Lets hit them : NETS

45. Pi follower : RHO

46. Heroism : VALOR

48. In-land link? : LA-LA

50. Leopardlike cats : OCELOTS

52. *Pre-release programs : BETA SOFTWARE

56. Not right : AMISS

57. Commuter’s expense : TOLL

58. Staff symbol : REST

62. Metaphorical state of agitation : LATHER

64. What young people may sow … and what’s literally hidden in the answers to starred clues : WILD OATS

66. Like most Chaplin films : SILENT

67. “Uh-huh” : I SEE

68. By way of : VIA

69. Gives a heads-up : ALERTS

70. Drag racing gp. : NHRA

71. Prompt a correction : ERR

Down

1. “Draft Dodger Rag” folk singer : OCHS

2. Stop on the trail : WHOA!

3. Quibbles : NITS

4. “Defending Liberty, Pursuing Justice” org. : ABA

5. Might’ve : COULDA

6. Con man’s forte : DECEIT

7. Set of beliefs : CREDO

8. “The Walking Dead” channel : AMC

9. Nab : COLLAR

10. Pressure-__ : TREATED

11. Like two-time Oscar-winning director Asghar Farhadi : IRANI

12. Late summer sign : VIRGO

13. Steel city near Cologne : ESSEN

18. Bit : SHRED

22. Orbit City pooch : ASTRO

25. Starting : AS OF

26. One in a cel block : TOON

27. FBI guy : G-MAN

28. Assistant : AIDE

29. “Wanna hear a secret?” : PSST!

32. ’60s-’70s Pontiac : GTO

34. City that hosts an annual Norwegian Wood music festival : OSLO

35. Blind __ : SPOT

36. Elephant flappers : EARS

39. Singer Guthrie : ARLO

40. Golf club part : SHAFT

41. Even once : EVER

44. Cutting-edge horror film? : SLASHER

47. Olds compact : ALERO

49. Approval : ASSENT

50. Wide-eyed and wise-looking : OWLISH

51. Telemarketer : CALLER

52. Light wood : BALSA

53. It’s often distributed in cc’s : EMAIL

54. Sir or sri : TITLE

55. Haul to the shop : TOW IN

59. Nesting site : EAVE

60. Ado : STIR

61. Nicholas II was the last one : TSAR

63. Some NFL blockers : RTS

65. Raiders’ org.? : DEA

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14 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 12 Oct 2017, Thursday”

  1. Quite difficult …. I had a tough time. The punny clues were beyond my ken. and I had to hunt and peck. Many, many frustrated attempts … and its only a Thursday. The puzzle may have been very cleverly constructed, but, for me, it was a stretch. The clues were so …. sophisticated, that I had a tough time getting NETS ! Maybe, I’m getting too old ….

    I saw the movies, so talked about, this year, of La La Land and Moonlight. I thought the former, was rather long, and forgettable, and the latter, I have no comment about … I just saw it because it was an Oscar winner. Well, they’re both done and over with, as far as I am concerned.

    Finally, talking about Asian and African elephants, only the former has been domesticated, or rather tamed, but not the latter. From a conservation and ‘progress’ point of view, I dont know whether the lack of domesticability means that the african elephant is above or below in the ‘development’ of the species chain …. whether it implies a higher ‘I.Q.’ or a lower one. I do realize, that unfortunately, from the human point of view, this ‘non usefulness’ to humans has ruthlessly caused it to be slaughtered and pushed towards extinction… Btw, by the sheer numbers and viability, the indian elephant should more properly be called a Thailand elephant.
    I was reading yesterday, about Hannibal ( – Barca) , who crossed the Alps, with his army, complete with war-elephants, and wondered what elephants, he and his army used… they were unlikely to be asian elephants. Elephants in Carthage – Libya / Algeria and Morroco … seems almost implausible today.

    Have a nice day, folks.

  2. Cathy, I saw your query – just as I posted.

    I can only think of, ….. “working yourself into a lather” – a phrase used. when a person is very agitated.

    The Google dictionary states that ‘lather’, by itself, is an accepted term for a ‘state of agitation’ ….
    So, we live and learn. I just faintly remembered it, while I was solving the puzzle. Hope this helps.

    Why ‘metaphorical’ ? Probably, because lather is from. like the foaming and bubbling of the mind – like shaving cream ??

  3. LAT: 9:31, no errors. Last letter in was the “A” of NHRA (unknown to me) and DEA (known to me, but, at first, the clue made me think it had something to do with a sports team – I got a chuckle out of it when I suddenly understood the actual meaning). I seem to remember that “lather” has something to do with hard-ridden horses, who sweat profusely, but I haven’t checked it out – could be my imagination.

    Newsday: 8:20, no errors, typical Thursday outing there. WSJ: 19:39, no errors, but I struggled with the lower left. BEQ: 20:42, no errors, very interesting theme/gimmick.

    Today’s NYT puzzle is also most interesting.

    1. Hi Dave. I thought the WSJ was difficult with lots of clever misdirection in the cluing that kept leading me astray with my answers. I finally saw my last error that needed correction when I saw that I had the wrong ending for 41 Across after I got 29 Down. I thought the LAT’s grid was on the easy side today.

      1. @Tony … Agree about the level of misdirection in the WSJ. In the lower left, I wrote in what I thought were the obvious answers for 57A and 60A, but then what I thought was the obvious answer for 44D wouldn’t fit and the result was a bit of a mess for awhile. (If I go off the rails using pen and paper, I have the problem that the things I’ve written in are hard to ignore.)

  4. @vidwan827 and @davekennison, you’re both right. Lather is the foam around a horses mouth after a hard ride. It also appears if a horse is nervous.

  5. 21 minutes, no errors on this. 13 minutes, no errors on the WSJ (incredibly easy for a Thursday).

    @Carrie
    It depends highly on what it is. Most baseball cards became worthless due to them being overprinted in the 1980’s, coupled with the steroid era, the big strike and people’s general disillusionment with the modern game. To wit, I destroyed a large number of baseball cards I had simply because you have to pay people to take them off your hands otherwise. I had a little fun with it and ended up filling up a trashcan by keeping a count of how many I run through a shredder.

    Now there are people that stuck to it, but focused on the older players. And baseball card providers started printing fewer cards per pack, charging more, and doing a whole lot of limited runs. If you have anything pre-1970 or one of the newer limited runs, you can do well with them on ebay or another good sellers forum as long as they’re in good shape. Otherwise, you’d do well to just keep them for your own enjoyment.

  6. The theme was easy to get. But looking for oats strewn over the answers was difficult.
    I would think, lather is what you get by agitating soap water in a bucket or what you work up while shaving. Whereas, agitated horses foam at the mouth.
    The unconventional ending and the free flow of ‘what if’ imagination for which ‘In-La La land’ stands, I loved them.
    Be safe, be well.
    Francophile

  7. 22:17 but I was surprised I didn’t remember Orbit City was the Jetsons. I did get ASTRO eventually. Clue should have been about the baseball team!

    “Don’t work yourself into a lather over it” meaning don’t get upset about it – I do know that saying, but I did not know its origin. Interesting.

    Wow – when was the last time a Morris the cat commercial ran on tv? 1975? Wiki says the original Morris the cat was found at a Chicago area animal shelter. Apparently he’s written a few books as well…..Very amusing and sardonic cat. Nice nostalgia.

    And – yes NYT is…uh…interesting today.

    Best –

  8. Pretty easy Thursday; about 25-30 minutes with no errors. Had CREDa for some reason before CREDO. Liked the “Lets hit them”, after I finally got it, which was the last to fall.

    Shared an apartment after the Uni, when my roomie got a dog (Sheltie). I offered “Astro”, when he asked for a suggestion, and so it was. Very smart dog.

    @Carrie – Thought of you when I finally got the “In-land link?”, especially the way the Dodgers are doing. No, I’m not in danger where I live, except for the excessive smoke. We had a small fire, about 10 miles away, which I learned about in the paper. My friend in Sonoma county , though, has been without electricity and with the fire(Nuns and Norrbom) only a mile away. I think he had to evacuate.

  9. Hi everyone​!
    Nice grid today; no errors. The theme actually helped in one or two places. Funny to think about things like the Jetsons and Morris the Cat! Who says Americans don’t have a history of classics? 😁
    Glenn, thanks for that input! I have very few cards from before the ’70s. Maybe I’ll cut up the others and use them in artwork…!
    Hey Dirk, glad you’re safe! Yes, we face the Cubs starting on Saturday. Nice Cubs-Nats game this evening, BTW. I don’t have tickets to any postseason games, but I may try to get a view of the action (from far away) by walking up in Elysian Park. Then I can say I was there!
    Be well~~™🌺🌻🌸

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