LA Times Crossword Answers 9 Nov 2017, Thursday

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Constructed by: Robert & Marlea Ellis
Edited by: Rich Norris

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Today’s Theme: T-Tops

Today’s themed answers are all in the down-direction. Each is a common term, but with a letter T added on TOP:

  • 52D. Features of some sports cars, and what this puzzle’s four longest answers have in common : T-TOPS
  • 3D. Conductor’s job? : TRAIN CHECK (T + “rain check”)
  • 5D. Recycling, composting, etc.? : TRASH DECISIONS (T + “rash decisions”)
  • 15D. Livestock feed approximation? : TROUGH ESTIMATE (T + “rough estimate”)
  • 30D. Tongue-in-cheek presidential tribute? : TRUMP ROAST (T + “rump roast”)

Bill’s time: 7m 00s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Animated film set partly in Insectopia : ANTZ

“Antz” was the first feature movie released by Dreamworks SKG, the studio founded by Steven Spielberg and two partners in 1994. “Antz” came out in 1998, and has a stellar cast that includes Woody Allen, Sharon Stone, Sylvester Stallone, Gene Hackman and many, many other big names. The cartoon is quite unique in that the facial features of the voice actors are reflected in the animated characters.

5. By way of, to Burns : THRO

Robert Burns is a cultural icon in Scotland and for Scots around the world. As a poet, Burns was a pioneer in the Romantic movement in the second half of the 18th century. One of his most famous works is the poem “Auld Lang Syne”, which has been set to the tune of a traditional Scottish folk song and is used to celebrate the New Year in the English-speaking world.

17. West Point, e.g.: Abbr. : ACAD

West Point is a military reservation in New York State, located north of New York City. West Point was first occupied by the Continental Army way back in 1778, making it the longest, continually-occupied military post in the country. Cadet training has taken place at the garrison since 1794, although Congress funding for a US Military Academy (USMA) didn’t start until 1802. The first female cadets were admitted to West Point in 1976, and today about 15% of all new cadets are women.

19. Currier’s partner : IVES

Currier and Ives was a printmaking concern in New York City, run by Nathaniel Currier and his partner James Merritt Ives from 1834 to 1907. The firm specialized in making affordable, hand-colored black and white lithographs.

25. Track-and-field events : SHOT PUTS

Shot put, or events like shot put, have been around for millennia, but the first events that truly resemble today’s track and field event had to come with the invention of the cannonball. Soldiers would “putt” (throw) cannonballs as far as possible in attempts to outperform each other. Shot put has been in the modern Olympic Games since day-one, with American Robert Garrett winning the gold in the first games in 1896.

27. Bugs often caught : COLDS

The common cold is caused by a viral infection of the upper respiratory tract. There are over 200 strains of virus that are known to cause the disease.

29. DOJ chiefs : AGS

Attorneys General (AGs) head up the Department of Justice (DOJ). When the office of the Attorney General was created in 1789 it was a part-time job, with no departmental support. The Department of Justice came into being in 1870.

33. Jessica Simpson’s pop-singing sister : ASHLEE

Ashlee Simpson is the younger sister of Jessica Simpson. They are both reality show stars. I know no more … I don’t want to know any more …

36. Cookie with a limited-edition Swedish Fish variety : OREO

Swedish Fish are wine gums shaped like fish that were introduced in the late fifties by Malaco, a Swedish candy company. Decades later, Swedish Fish are still around. There’s even a Swedish Fish flavor of Trident chewing gum, and a limited-edition Swedish Fish Oreo cookie.

38. Hidden supply : CACHE

A cache is a secret supply. We imported the term into English from French Canadian trappers in the 17th century. Back then, “cache” was a slang term for a “hiding place for stores”, derived from the French verb “cacher” meaning “to hide”.

42. Nigerian native : IBO

The Igbo (also “Ibo”) people are an ethnic group living in southeastern Nigeria.

45. Calligraphy supply : INK

Calligraphy is the art of fine handwriting. The term “calligraphy” comes from the Greek “kallos” meaning “beauty” and “graphein” meaning “to write”.

46. Corvallis sch. : OSU

Corvallis is a city in western Oregon that is home to Oregon State University (OSU). Corvallis was the capital of the Oregon Territory before Salem was selected as the seat of government.

47. Like either main face of El Capitan : STEEP

El Capitan is a stunning vertical rock formation in Yosemite National Park in California. The top of El Capitan has been used as the take-off point for many BASE jumps, parachute jumps made by diving off the top of the rock face. The National Park Service put a stop to the practise in 1999. Soon after, a BASE jumper made an illegal jump to protest the ban. She died …

56. Part of a proverbial secretive trio : LAMPPOST

Between you, me and the lamppost.

59. “The Wonder Years” mom : NORMA

In the sitcom “The Wonder Years”, Kevin Arnold’s mother Norma was played by actress Alley Mills.

“The Wonder Years” is a comedy drama that originally ran on television from 1988 to 1993. Star of the show was 13-year-old Fred Savage who played Kevin Arnold. Kevin’s love interest was Winnie Cooper, played by Danica McKellar.

64. Quickly, in memos : ASAP

As soon as possible (ASAP)

65. Alice’s workplace : MEL’S

The sitcom “Alice” is set in Mel’s Diner, which is supposedly frequented by locals and truckers on the outskirts of Phoenix. There is a real Mel’s Diner in Phoenix, and the restaurant’s sign is used in the opening credits. The real-world Mel’s was called “Chris’ Diner”, but the owner agreed to a temporary change in name for the purposes of the show. But, “Chris” never came back, and “Mel’s” is still serving customers today.

66. New Year’s Day word : SYNE

The song “Auld Lang Syne” is a staple at New Year’s Eve (well, actually in the opening minutes of New Year’s Day). The words were written by Scottish poet Robbie Burns. The literal translation of “Auld Lang Syne” is “old long since”, but is better translated as “old times”. The sentiment of the song is “for old time’s sake”.

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne!

For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne.
We’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

Down

2. Dipping chip : NACHO

The dish known as “nachos” were supposedly created by the maître d’ at a restaurant called the Victory Club in the city of Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico. The maître d’’s name was Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya.

4. Last letters in Canada : ZEDS

The letter named “zed” has been around since about 1400, and derives from the Greek letter zeta. The spelling and pronunciation of “zee”, used in America today, first popped up in the 1670s.

6. Greek sun god : HELIOS

Helios was the god of the Sun in Greek mythology. He was the brother of Selene, the goddess of the moon, and Eos, the goddess of the dawn. Helios drove his chariot of the sun across the sky during the day, returning to the East at night be travelling through the ocean. The Roman equivalent to Helios was Sol.

7. “Nick of Time” singer : RAITT

Bonnie Raitt is a blues singer originally from Burbank, California. Raitt has won nine Grammys for her work, but she is perhaps as well known for her political activism as she is for her music. She was no fan of President George W. Bush while he was in office, and she sure did show it.

8. Andean tuber : OCA

The plant called an oca is also known as the New Zealand Yam. The tubers of the oca are used as a root vegetable.

10. Couch potato’s device : TIVO

TiVo was introduced in 1999 and was the world’s first commercially successful Digital Video Recorder (DVR).

12. Highly respected speakers maker : BOSE

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

28. Bygone automaker : OLDS

Oldsmobile was an automobile brand founded by Ransom E. Olds (REO) in 1897. The brand was finally phased out by General Motors in 2004.

32. Bouquet : POSY

“Poesy” was the name given to a line of verse engraved on the inner surface of a ring. The related word “posy”, for a bouquet of flowers, arose with the notion that giving a posy might be a message of love, just as a poesy inside a ring could have the same meaning.

33. Italian wine city : ASTI

Asti is a city in the Piedmont region of northwest Italy. The region is perhaps most famous for its Asti Spumante sparkling white wine.

35. Mil. category : NCO

Non-commissioned officer (NCO)

36. “Garfield” dog : ODIE

Odie is Garfield’s best friend, and is a slobbery beagle. Both are characters in Jim Davis’ comic strip named “Garfield”.

46. Electrical unit : OHM

The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm (with the symbol omega) named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm. Ohm was the guy who established experimentally that the amount of current flowing through a circuit is directly proportional to the voltage applied, (V=IR) a relationship that every schoolkid knows as Ohm’s Law.

48. Yells “Fore!” at : WARNS

No one seems to know for sure where the golfing term “fore!” comes from. It has been used at least as far back as 1881, and since then has been called out to warn other golfers that a wayward ball might be heading their way. My favorite possibility for its origin is that it is a contraction of the Gaelic warning cry “Faugh a Ballagh!” (clear the way!) which is still called out in the sport of road bowling. Road bowling is an Irish game where players bowl balls along roads between villages, trying to reach the end of the course in as few bowls as possible, just like in golf!

49. Junior Jetson : ELROY

“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.

51. First name in bologna : OSCAR

The Oscar Mayer brand of meats was named for a German immigrant named Oscar F. Mayer who sold German sausages in the Chicago area in the late 1800s. The Oscar Mayer company has a famous vehicle called the Wienermobile that it has used in promotions for over 70 years.

The deli meat known as “baloney” (i.e. “Bologna sausage”) is an American invention. It was given the name “baloney” because it resembles Italian mortadella sausage, which originated in the city of Bologna in northern Italy.

52. Features of some sports cars, and what this puzzle’s four longest answers have in common : T-TOPS

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.

53. Eighth of a fluid ounce : DRAM

The dram is a confusing unit of measurement, I think. It has one value as an ancient unit of mass, and two different values as a modern unit of mass, another value as a unit of fluid volume, and yet another varying value as a measure of Scotch whisky!

54. Oxen coupler : YOKE

A yoke is a wooden beam used between a pair of oxen so that they are forced to work together.

57. Sch. support groups : PTAS

Parent-Teacher Association (PTA)

60. Army training ctr. : OCS

Officer Candidate School (OCS)

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Animated film set partly in Insectopia : ANTZ
5. By way of, to Burns : THRO
9. Try : STAB
13. Like many trees in winter : BARE
14. Respond : REACT
16. Approximately 2.2 lbs. : KILO
17. West Point, e.g.: Abbr. : ACAD
18. “Are you calling me __?” : A LIAR
19. Currier’s partner : IVES
20. Moment-of-truth words : THIS IS IT
22. Fight : OPPOSE
24. Geological period : EON
25. Track-and-field events : SHOT PUTS
27. Bugs often caught : COLDS
29. DOJ chiefs : AGS
30. Cough syrup amt. : TSP
33. Jessica Simpson’s pop-singing sister : ASHLEE
35. Extreme degree : NTH
36. Cookie with a limited-edition Swedish Fish variety : OREO
37. Went over the limit : SPED
38. Hidden supply : CACHE
40. Club charges : DUES
41. Some twitches : TICS
42. Nigerian native : IBO
43. Not covering much : SKIMPY
45. Calligraphy supply : INK
46. Corvallis sch. : OSU
47. Like either main face of El Capitan : STEEP
48. Slightly embellished truth : WHITE LIE
50. Decay : ROT
53. Energetic worker : DYNAMO
56. Part of a proverbial secretive trio : LAMPPOST
58. Jet engine sound : ROAR
59. “The Wonder Years” mom : NORMA
61. Old El Paso product : TACO
62. Related : AKIN
63. Move quickly : SCOOT
64. Quickly, in memos : ASAP
65. Alice’s workplace : MEL’S
66. New Year’s Day word : SYNE
67. Orch. section : STRS

Down

1. Taper off : ABATE
2. Dipping chip : NACHO
3. Conductor’s job? : TRAIN CHECK (T + “rain check”)
4. Last letters in Canada : ZEDS
5. Recycling, composting, etc.? : TRASH DECISIONS (T +
“rash decisions”)
6. Greek sun god : HELIOS
7. “Nick of Time” singer : RAITT
8. Andean tuber : OCA
9. Moves merrily : SKIPS
10. Couch potato’s device : TIVO
11. Brown bar orders : ALES
12. Highly respected speakers maker : BOSE
15. Livestock feed approximation? : TROUGH ESTIMATE (T + “rough estimate”)
21. Cruise stop : ISLE
23. NBA stats : PTS
26. It may be beaten : PATH
28. Bygone automaker : OLDS
30. Tongue-in-cheek presidential tribute? : TRUMP ROAST (T + “rump roast”)
31. Barely flow : SEEP
32. Bouquet : POSY
33. Italian wine city : ASTI
34. Public relations distortion : SPIN
35. Mil. category : NCO
36. “Garfield” dog : ODIE
39. Touch on : ABUT
44. Board and lodging : KEEP
46. Electrical unit : OHM
47. Hit hard, as the brakes : SLAM ON
48. Yells “Fore!” at : WARNS
49. Junior Jetson : ELROY
51. First name in bologna : OSCAR
52. Features of some sports cars, and what this puzzle’s four longest answers have in common : T-TOPS
53. Eighth of a fluid ounce : DRAM
54. Oxen coupler : YOKE
55. Carpentry fastener : NAIL
57. Sch. support groups : PTAS
60. Army training ctr. : OCS

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