LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Nov 2017, Wednesday

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Constructed by: C.C. Burnikel
Edited by: Rich Norris

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Today’s Theme: Snapchat

The starting and ending letters in today’s themed answers spell out a synonym of CHAT. So, those CHAT words have been SNAPPED, to make room for the middle letters in each answer:

  • 38D. Popular mobile app … and, as shown by circles, what the inner parts of the answers to starred clues do : SNAPCHAT
  • 16A. *Golfer’s guide for measuring distances : YARDAGE BOOK (“yak” snapped)
  • 28A. *Philatelist’s find : RARE STAMP (“rap” snapped)
  • 44A. *Hybrid retriever : GOLDEN LAB (“gab” snapped)
  • 61A. *Winter warming spell : JANUARY THAW (“jaw” snapped)

Bill’s time: 6m 15s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5. “__ and the Swan”: Rubens painting : 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.

9. Paper Mate product : PEN

The Paper Mate pen was introduced in 1949 by the Frawley Pen Company, with the attraction being that it delivered a revolutionary ink that dried instantly on paper.

12. 1936 Olympics standout : OWENS

Jesse Owens is famous for winning four gold medals at the Berlin Olympic Games in 1936, much to the chagrin of Adolph Hitler. Jesse’s real name was James Cleveland Owens, and he went by “JC” as a child. However, his Alabama accent was misconstrued at school when his family moved to Cleveland, so teachers and classmates called him “Jesse” instead of “JC”, and the name stuck.

15. “Te __”: Rihanna song : AMO

The singer Rihanna was born and grew up on the island of Barbados and moved to the US when she was 16-years-old to pursue a singing career. “Rihanna” is her stage name, as she was born Robyn Rihanna Fenty. The name “Rihanna” is derived from the Welsh name “Rhiannon”.

21. Contact lens solution brand : RENU

ReNu is a brand name of contact lens products sold by Bausch & Lomb.

22. Soft boot material : SUEDE

Suede is leather made from the underside of the skin, mainly from a lamb. As such it is very soft, although not as durable as leather made from the exterior skin. The soft leather was, and is still used for making gloves. Back in 1859 these gloves were called “gants de Suede” in France, or “gloves of Sweden”. So, the name “suede” comes from the French word for Sweden.

24. Winner’s wreath : LAUREL

In the Ancient Olympic Games, the winner of an event was awarded an olive wreath. When the games were revived in 1896, the winners were originally given a silver medal and an olive branch, with runners-up receiving a bronze medal and a laurel branch. The tradition of giving gold, silver and bronze medals began at the 1904 Summer Olympic Games held in St. Louis, Missouri.

26. Church seating : PEWS

A pew is a bench in a church, one usually with a high back. The original pews were raised and sometimes enclosed seats in the church used by women and important men or families. “Pew” comes from the Old French “puie” meaning “balcony, elevation”.

28. *Philatelist’s find : RARE STAMP (“rap” snapped)

“Philately” is the more formal name given to the practice of collecting postage stamps. The term “philately” was coined (in French, as “philatélie) in 1864 by French collector Georges Herpin. He came up with it from the Greek “phil-” meaning “loving” and “ateleia” meaning “exemption from tax”. Apparently “exemption from tax” was the closest thing Herpin could find to “postage stamp”.

36. Superhero in an armored suit : IRON MAN

Iron Man is another one of those comic book superheroes, this one created by Stan Lee for Marvel Comics. The character has become very famous in recent years since the appearance of the 2008 action movie “Iron Man” starring Robert Downey, Jr. in the title role. Iron Man’s love interest, Pepper Potts, is routinely played by Gwyneth Paltrow in the same series of films.

41. “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” novelist : STOWE

Harriet Beecher Stowe’s most famous and most successful work is “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”. It was also her first novel. Her second was published in 1856:”Dred: A Tale of the Great Dismal Swamp”.

44. *Hybrid retriever : GOLDEN LAB (“gab” snapped)

A golden Labrador is a cross between a golden retriever and a Labrador. The same cross is also referred to as a “goldador”.

50. One of his stories is the source of the idiom “sour grapes” : AESOP

Our expression “sour grapes” is an allusion to one of Aesop’s fables, the story of “The Fox and the Grapes”. In the fable, a squirrel could climb up to grapes high in a tree that a fox was unsuccessful in getting to. On seeing this, the fox said, “It’s okay, the grapes were sour anyway”.

54. Sonny and Cher, e.g. : POP DUO

Singing duo Sonny & Cher started out in the mid-1960s as backing singers working with Phil Spector. The couple married in 1964, and the next year released their breakthrough numbers “Baby Don’t Go” and “I Got You Babe”. Sonny and Cher divorced in 1975, and dissolved their act that same year. Cher moved onto a successful solo career that continues to this day. Sonny Bono was elected as a US Congressman for California in 1995. Sadly, he didn’t finish his term in the House as he died from injuries sustained in a skiing accident in 1998.

57. Sulu portrayer John : CHO

John Cho is an actor and musician who was born in Seoul, South Korea but who has lived in the US since he was a young boy. Cho’s break in movies came in playing Harold Lee in the ”Harold & Kumar” films. He is now making a name for himself playing Mr. Sulu in the latest “Star Trek” movies.

60. Kin of net : COM

The .com domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:

  • .com (commercial enterprise)
  • .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
  • .mil (US military)
  • .org (not-for-profit organization)
  • .gov (US federal government entity)
  • .edu (college-level educational institution)

66. Mario Bros. console letters : NES

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. Nintendo replaced the NES with Wii, which is also the biggest-selling game console in the world.

Mario Bros. started out as an arcade game back in 1983, developed by Nintendo. The more famous of the two brothers, Mario, had already appeared in an earlier arcade game “Donkey Kong”. Mario was given a brother called Luigi, and the pair have been around ever since. In the game, Mario and Luigi are Italian American plumbers from New York City.

Down

1. Georgetown hoopster : HOYA

The athletic teams of Georgetown University are known as the Hoyas. The name is derived from “Hoya Saxa”, a traditional cheer yelled out at Georgetown games as far back as 1893. The term is a mixture of Greek and Latin, with the Greek word “hoya” meaning “such” or “what”, and “saxa” translating from Latin as “rocks” or “small stones”. The cheer is usually rendered in English as “what rocks!”.

6. Musk of Tesla Motors : ELON

Elon Musk is successful businessman who has founded or led some very high-profile companies, namely PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX. Musk was born and raised in South Africa, and moved to Canada when he was seventeen years old, and then to the US two years later.

9. Bakery-café chain : PANERA

Panera Bread is a chain of bakery/coffeehouses. A Panera restaurant is a good place to get online while having a cup of coffee. Back in 2006 and 2007, Panera was the largest provider of free Wi-Fi access in the whole of the US.

10. “8 Mile” rapper : EMINEM

Rap star Eminem’s real name is Marshall Mathers. Mathers grew up poor in Saint Joseph, Missouri. He was raised by a single-mom as the family was abandoned by his father when he was 18 months old. Marshall and his mother moved around the country before settling in a suburb of Detroit. He didn’t do well at school, and dropped out at the age of 17. But in the end he made it pretty big …

23. “Miracle on Ice” team, for short : USA

Team USA won the gold medal in men’s hockey at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid. The victory was a surprising one given the decades-long dominance of the USSR team. The “big result” for the American team was the epic victory against the Soviets, a victory often referred to as the “Miracle on Ice”. The US went on to defeat Finland in the final and secured the gold medal.

25. Yoga position : ASANA

“Asana” is a Sanskrit word literally meaning “sitting down”. The asanas are the poses that a practitioner of yoga assumes. The most famous is the lotus position, the cross-legged pose called “padmasana”.

26. “Masterpiece” network : PBS

PBS’s wonderful “Masterpiece Theatre” changed its name to “Masterpiece” in 2008. At the same time, three different versions of the show were introduced:

  • “Masterpiece Classic” introduced by Gillian Anderson, and then Laura Linney
  • “Masterpiece Mystery!” introduced by Alan Cumming
  • “Masterpiece Contemporary” introduced by Matthew Goode, and then David Tennant

29. Sleep study subject : APNEA

Sleep apnea (“apnoea” in British English) can be caused by an obstruction in the airways, possibly due to obesity or enlarged tonsils.

38. Popular mobile app … and, as shown by circles, what the inner parts of the answers to starred clues do : SNAPCHAT

Snapchat is a messaging system that allows users to send photos and video clips to a limited list of recipients. The photos and clips, called “snaps”, can be viewed for only a few seconds before they are deleted from the recipient’s device, and from the Snapchat servers.

39. __ capita : PER

“Per capita” is a Latin term used to mean “per person, per unit of population”. The literal translation of the term is “by heads”.

41. Badlands Natl. Park site : SDAK

Badlands may be “bad lands” for agriculture (hence the name), but they can be beautiful. A badlands is an extensive area from which the topsoil has been eroded by wind and water, leaving exposed rock and very little vegetation. One of the most beautiful badlands areas in the US is preserved for the nation as South Dakota’s Badlands National Park.

45. 1962 Lawrence portrayer : O’TOOLE

Irish actor Peter O’Toole got his big break in movies when he played the title role in the 1962 epic film “Lawrence of Arabia”. My favorite of O’Toole’s movies is much lighter fare, namely “How to Steal a Million” in which he stars opposite Audrey Hepburn. O’Toole never won an Oscar, but holds the record for the greatest number of Best Actor nominations without a win.

“Lawrence of Arabia” is a 1962 movie that recounts the real life story of T. E. Lawrence, a British army officer famous for his role in the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of World War I. The title role in the film is played by Irish actor Peter O’Toole. The role of Sherif Ali ibn el Kharish is played by Omar Sharif.

51. Lux. setting : EUR

Luxembourg is a relatively small country in the middle of Europe, just 1,000 square miles in area with a population of over half a million. The country is a representative democracy (just like the United Kingdom) and it has a constitutional monarch, namely Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg. As such, Luxembourg is the only remaining sovereign Grand Duchy in the world.

52. Tofu beans : SOYS

Tofu is another name for bean curd, and is a Japanese word meaning just that … bean that has curdled. Tofu is produced by coagulating soy milk, using either salt or something acidic. Once the protein has coagulated, the curds are pressed into the familiar blocks. Personally I love tofu, but my wife, she absolutely hates it …

56. Fourth-down play : PUNT

That would be football.

62. Article in some hip-hop titles : THA

I guess “tha” is slang for “the” in the world of rap …

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. “That cracks me up!” : HA HA!
5. “__ and the Swan”: Rubens painting : LEDA
9. Paper Mate product : PEN
12. 1936 Olympics standout : OWENS
14. Goes it alone : SOLOS
15. “Te __”: Rihanna song : AMO
16. *Golfer’s guide for measuring distances : YARDAGE BOOK (“yak” snapped)
18. Playful bite : NIP
19. House vote : AYE
20. Like much store-brand merchandise : LOW-END
21. Contact lens solution brand : RENU
22. Soft boot material : SUEDE
24. Winner’s wreath : LAUREL
26. Church seating : PEWS
28. *Philatelist’s find : RARE STAMP (“rap” snapped)
31. On __ of: for : BEHALF
34. Family guys : PAPAS
35. Overhead expanse : SKY
36. Superhero in an armored suit : IRON MAN
38. Place for a hot stone massage : SPA
41. “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” novelist : STOWE
42. Became clear to, with “on” : DAWNED
44. *Hybrid retriever : GOLDEN LAB (“gab” snapped)
48. Tough to learn : HARD
49. “Finally!” : AT LAST!
50. One of his stories is the source of the idiom “sour grapes” : AESOP
53. Relax in the tub : SOAK
54. Sonny and Cher, e.g. : POP DUO
57. Sulu portrayer John : CHO
60. Kin of net : COM
61. *Winter warming spell : JANUARY THAW (“jaw” snapped)
63. Fla. neighbor : ALA
64. Athlete’s rep : AGENT
65. Facebook option : SHARE
66. Mario Brothers console letters : NES
67. Exercise break : REST
68. Casino conveniences : ATMS

Down

1. Georgetown hoopster : HOYA
2. On the road : AWAY
3. “These are the reasons” : HERE’S WHY
4. “Go on … ” : AND …
5. Place for a hoop : LOBE
6. Musk of Tesla Motors : ELON
7. Kid’s drawing tablet : DOODLE PAD
8. Pose a question : ASK
9. Bakery-café chain : PANERA
10. “8 Mile” rapper : EMINEM
11. Orange juice specification : NO PULP
13. Customer-drawing sign word : SALE
14. Waste conduit : SEWER
17. Supreme being : GOD
21. Road grooves : RUTS
23. “Miracle on Ice” team, for short : USA
25. Yoga position : ASANA
26. “Masterpiece” network : PBS
27. “There’s a mouse in our house!” : EEK!
29. Sleep study subject : APNEA
30. Ewe guy : RAM
32. Low-calorie brews : LITES
33. Place for big headlines : FRONT PAGE
37. Hooting bird : OWL
38. Popular mobile app … and, as shown by circles, what the inner parts of the answers to starred clues do : SNAPCHAT
39. __ capita : PER
40. Mix in : ADD
41. Badlands Natl. Park site : SDAK
43. Detective’s question : WHO?
44. Garage container : GAS CAN
45. 1962 Lawrence portrayer : O’TOOLE
46. Peruvian pack animals : LLAMAS
47. Not skilled in : BAD AT
51. Lux. setting : EUR
52. Tofu beans : SOYS
55. Change for a five : ONES
56. Fourth-down play : PUNT
58. Inflict pain on : HARM
59. Is in arrears : OWES
61. Cookie container : JAR
62. Article in some hip-hop titles : THA

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