LA Times Crossword Answers 10 Dec 2017, Sunday

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

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Today’s Theme: It’s Amazing

Today’s themed answers include the five circled letters “GRACE”. Those letters have been MIXED, moved around into different sequences. Oh, and I just worked out the relationship of the title to the puzzle: “Amazing Grace”, the hymn. The old synapses are definitely firing a lot slower these days …

  • 121A. It’s not all good … and it’s literally found in this puzzle’s circles : MIXED BLESSING (and “mixed GRACE”)
  • 22A. Tehran tinderbox for 14-plus months : HOSTAGE CRISIS
  • 34A. Making the Guinness Book, say : SETTING A RECORD
  • 55A. World Cup events : SOCCER GAMES
  • 84A. Recycling center item : BEVERAGE CAN
  • 101A. Log holder : FIREPLACE GRATE
  • 16D. What a Facebook post might draw : STRONG REACTIONS
  • 43D. Violet Crawley’s title in “Downton Abbey” : DOWAGER COUNTESS

Bill’s time: 20m 47s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. /, on some score sheets : SPARE

In bowling, a spare is recorded on a score sheet with a forward slash mark. A strike is recorded with a large letter X.

6. Herbal tea : TISANE

“Tisane” is another word for herbal tea. “Tisane” comes into English via French from the Greek “ptisane”, the word for crushed barley.

12. Premier League powerhouse : CHELSEA

Chelsea Football Club is a soccer team based in London that was founded in 1905. Since day one, the team has played in the London borough of Fulham, although it uses the name of the neighboring borough of Chelsea. That’s because there already was a Fulham Football Club in existence (founded in 1879).

20. Calligraphy container : INK POT

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

22. Tehran tinderbox for 14-plus months : HOSTAGE CRISIS

When a group of Iranian students took over the US embassy in Tehran in 1979, it precipitated longest hostage crisis in history. 52 diplomats and citizens were held hostage for a total of 444 days.

26. Super, slangily : UBER

“Über” is the German word for “over, across, above”.

27. Batman after Michael : VAL

Val Kilmer’s first big leading role in a movie was playing Jim Morrison in Oliver Stone’s 1991 biopic “The Doors”. A few years later, Kilmer was chosen for the lead in another big production, “Batman Forever”. Things haven’t really gone as well for Kilmer since then, I’d say. Off the screen, he flirted with the idea of running for Governor of New Mexico in 2010. A Hollywood actor as a governor? Would never happen …

28. Google : Android :: Apple : __ : IOS

iOS is what Apple now call their mobile operating system, It was previously known as iPhone OS.

30. It borders three oceans : ASIA

The continent of Asia is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean to the east, the Indian ocean to the south, and the Arctic Ocean to the north.

32. Resort near Boston : CAPE ANN

Cape Ann is located 30 miles north of Boston and is on the northernmost edge of Massachusetts Bay. The Cape was first mapped by the explorer John Smith. Early in his adventurous life Smith had been captured and enslaved by the Ottoman Empire. His “owner” in his days of slavery was a woman called Tragabigzanda, and apparently the slave and owner fell in love. Smith originally called Cape Tragabigzanda in her memory, but King Charles I changed the name to Cape Ann in honor of his own mother, Anne of Denmark.

34. Making the Guinness Book, say : SETTING A RECORD

“The Guinness Book of World Records” holds some records of its own. It is the best-selling, copyrighted series of books of all time and is one of the books most often stolen from public libraries! The book was first published in 1954 by two twins, Norris and Ross McWhirter. The McWhirter twins found themselves with a smash hit, and eventually became very famous in Britain hosting a TV show based on world records.

44. Long stretches : AEONS

Geological time is divided into a number of units of varying lengths. These are, starting from the largest:

  • supereon
  • eon (also “aeon”)
  • era
  • period
  • epoch
  • age

45. Netflix alternative : HULU

Hulu.com is a website providing streaming video of full television shows. It is a joint venture of NBC and Disney, and so features a lot of their content. The service is free and is supported by advertising, but you can sign up for a premium subscription and get access to more shows. A lot of younger folks seem to use it a lot …

46. Down tune : DIRGE

A “dirge” is a slow and mournful musical piece, like a funeral hymn.

48. Ocean rings : ATOLLS

An atoll is a coral island that is shaped in a ring and enclosing a lagoon. There is still some debate as to how an atoll forms, but a theory proposed by Charles Darwin while on his famous voyage aboard HMS Beagle still holds sway. Basically an atoll was once a volcanic island that had subsided and fallen into the sea. The coastline of the island is home to coral growth which persists even as the island continues to subside internal to the circling coral reef.

54. Investment firm T. __ Price : ROWE

T. Rowe Price is an investment company based in Baltimore that was founded in 1937 by Thomas Rowe Price, Jr.

55. World Cup events : SOCCER GAMES

The International Federation of Association Football (“Fédération Internationale de Football Association” in French) is usually referred to by the acronym “FIFA”. FIFA is the governing body of the game of soccer (association football), and the organizer of the FIFA World Cup held every four years.

60. Plummeted : SANK

To plummet is to plunge downwards. The verb comes from the noun “plummet”, which is an alternative name for a plumb bob. A plumb bob is a weight that is suspended from a string so as to provide a vertical reference line.

61. Ne’er-do-well : KNAVE

We’ve been using “knave” to mean a cad since about 1200, and as an alternative name for the jack in a deck of cards since the mid-1500s. “Knave” comes from the Old English word “cnafa”, a “boy, male servant”.

66. Euro divs. : CTS

The euro is divided in 100 cents, sometimes referred to as “euro cents”. Some countries within the European Union (Ireland, for example) have taken steps to withdraw the 1-cent and 2-cent coins from circulation by allowing cash transactions to be rounded to the nearest five cents. I found it a little odd when buying something in Ireland recently that was priced at 99 cents, and getting no change after handing over a euro coin …

72. Sault __ Marie : STE

Sault Ste. Marie is the name of two cities on either side of the Canada-US border, one in Ontario and the other in Michigan. The two cities were originally one settlement in the 17th century, established by Jesuit Missionaries. The missionaries gave the settlement the name “Sault Sainte Marie”, which can be translated as “Saint Mary’s Falls”. The city was one community until 1817, when a US-UK Joint Boundary Commission set the border along the St. Mary’s River.

75. Jerry-rigged, in a way : TAPED ON

“To jury-rig” (sometimes “jerry-rig”) is to execute a makeshift repair or to manufacture a temporary contrivance. The term comes from sailing ships in which a jury rig is an improvised mast and yards that is erected as a replacement when the original mast is damaged or lost.

79. Ekberg of “La Dolce Vita” : ANITA

Anita Ekberg is a Swedish model and actress, famous for her role on the big screen in the 1960 Fellini film “La Dolce Vita”. You might remember her cavorting in the Trevi Fountain in Rome in one famous scene, with the male lead, Marcello Mastroianni.

82. Crime scene figure : PERP

Perpetrator (perp)

88. National summer sport of Canada : LACROSSE

Lacrosse is a game very much associated with the cultural tradition of the Iroquois people, and may have originated as early as the 12th century. The original games lasted all day long, and perhaps for two or three days, and were played as part of a ceremonial ritual. In the native language, the activity was referred to as “the Creator’s Game”. It was French Jesuit missionaries who coined the name “lacrosse”. In French, a “crosse” is a “stick with a curved end”.

90. Luanda is its cap. : ANG

Luanda is the capital city of Angola. Luanda is a large seaport that was founded by the Portuguese in 1576. For centuries, Luanda served as the main center of the slave trade from Africa to the Portuguese colony of Brazil.

91. Mourning on the court : ALONZO

Basketball player Alonzo Mourning played most of his career with the Miami Heat, and in 2009 was the first person to have his number retired. In 2003, Mourning had a kidney replacement, a donation from a cousin that he had not seen in 25 years.

93. Distant : ALOOF

I suppose one might guess from the “feel” of the word “aloof” that is has nautical roots. Originally “aloof” meant “to windward” and was the opposite of “alee”. A helmsman might be instructed to stay aloof, to steer the boat into the weather to keep a distance from a lee-shore. It is from this sense of maintaining a distance that aloof came to mean “distant” in terms of personality. Interesting, huh …?

99. Lush : SOT

Our word “sot” comes from the Old English “sott”, meaning “fool”. The word “sot” started to be associated with alcohol and not just foolery in the late 1500s.

“Lush” is a slang term for a heavy drinker. Back in the 1700s, “lush” was slang for “liquor”.

100. Lady Tigers’ sch. : TSU

The Tigers and Lady Tigers are the athletic teams of Tennessee State University (TSU) in Nashville.

108. Queen in “Frozen” : ELSA

“Frozen” is a 2013 animated feature from Walt Disney Studios that is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Snow Queen”. The film is all about the exploits of Princess Anna, the younger sister of Elsa, Snow Queen of Arendelle.

115. Mother of Castor : 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.

121. It’s not all good … and it’s literally found in this puzzle’s circles : MIXED BLESSING (and “mixed GRACE”)

A grace is a short prayer recited before or after a meal.

Down

2. Lara’s husband in “Doctor Zhivago” : PASHA

The heroine of Boris Pasternak’s epic novel “Doctor Zhivago” is Lara. The Lara character was inspired by Pasternak’s mistress Olga Ivinskaya.

8. Aspen traveler’s item : SKI BAG

Aspen, Colorado used to be known as Ute City, with the name change taking place in 1880. Like many communities in the area, Aspen was a mining town, and in 1891 and 1892 it was at the center of the highest production of silver in the US. Nowadays, it’s all about skiing and movie stars.

9. Cathedral recess : 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.

11. Movie makeup dept. creations : ETS

Extraterrestrial (ET)

15. ’60s protest : LIE-IN

A die-in (also “lie-in”) is a protest in which those demonstrating lie on the ground and pretend to be dead. One of the more famous die-ins was held in Washington D.C. in 2007 to protest the Iraq War. There were several thousand protesters, almost two hundred of whom were arrested, including ten veterans of the Iraq War.

18. Adams of “Her” : AMY

Amy Adams is an American actress. although she was actually born in Vicenza, Italy while her father was a US serviceman stationed on an Italian base. My favorite Amy Adams film so far is the outstanding “Julie & Julia” in which she acted alongside Meryl Streep. I highly recommend this truly delightful movie.

2003’s “Her” is a rather unusual film. It stars Joaquin Phoenix as a man who develops a relationship with a computer operating system called “Samantha”, which is voiced by Scarlett Johansson.

19. __ Tzu : SHIH

The Shih Tzu is one of the oldest breeds of dog, a breed that originated in China. Shih Tzus have long hairy coats but they don’t shed.

23. Sister of Clio : ERATO

In Greek mythology, the muses are the goddesses who inspire the creation of literature and the arts. The number of muses is a subject of debate at times, but the most popular view is that there are nine:

  • Calliope (epic poetry)
  • Clio (history)
  • Erato (lyric poetry)
  • Euterpe (music)
  • Melpomene (tragedy)
  • Polyhymnia (choral poetry)
  • Terpsichore (dance)
  • Thalia (comedy)
  • Urania (astronomy)

Before the adoption of the nine muses of Greek mythology, there were originally three muses, the three Boeotian Muses. These were:

  • Mneme (memory)
  • Melete (meditation)
  • Aoede (song)

32. Dopey frame, e.g. : CEL

In the original Brothers Grimm fairy tale called “Snow White”, the seven dwarfs were not given any names. The names were added for the 1937 classic Disney film “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”. The seven dwarfs are:

  • Doc (the leader of the group)
  • Grumpy (that would be me, according to my wife …)
  • Happy
  • Sleepy
  • Bashful
  • Sneezy
  • Dopey

33. Short lines at the post office? : ADDR

Address (addr.)

35. 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 addressed some difficult sexual themes including rape, and sexual double standards (attitudes 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 just says “To Sharon”.

36. Now, in Nicaragua : AHORA

“Ahora” is the Spanish for “now”. “Hoy día” is Spanish for “today”.

41. Shenanigan : LARK

I suppose one could be forgiven for thinking that “shenanigan” is an Irish term, as it certainly sounds Irish. Usually written in the plural, shenanigans are acts of mischief, pranks. Apparently the word is of uncertain derivation, but was coined in San Francisco and Sacramento, California in the mid-1800s.

42. School since 1440 : ETON

The world-famous Eton College is just a brisk walk from Windsor Castle, which itself is just outside London. Eton is noted for producing many British leaders including David Cameron who took power in the last UK general election. The list of Old Etonians also includes Princes William and Harry, the Duke of Wellington, George Orwell, and the creator of James Bond, Ian Fleming (as well as 007 himself as described in the Fleming novels).

43. Violet Crawley’s title in “Downton Abbey” : DOWAGER COUNTESS

Originally, a dowry was money that was set aside by a man for his wife and children, to be used in the event that he passed away. A widow who receives said money was known as a “dowager”. Over time, “dowry” became a term used for the money, goods or estate that a woman brought into a marriage, and “dowager” came to mean an elderly woman with an elevated social position.

Violet Crawley, Countess of Grantham is a marvelous character on the PBS hit show “Downton Abbey”. Lady Violet is played superbly by the great Dame Maggie Smith.

52. One-named Tejano pop star : SELENA

Singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez, known professionally simply as “Selena”, was murdered in 1995 by the president of her own fan club at the height of her career. In a 1997 biopic about Selena’s life, Jennifer Lopez played the title role. Selena had often been referred to as the “Queen of Tejano” during her career.

“Tejano” is the Spanish word for “Texan”. Tejano music is strongly influenced by Cajun culture, because of the proximity of Texas to Louisiana. The other strong influence came with immigrants from the Poland and what is now the Czech Republic. These immigrants brought with them the waltz, polka … and the accordion.

53. This, to Picasso : ESTA

The artist Pablo Picasso’s full name was Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso, a name he was given right from birth. Got that?

56. Plains folks? : OSAGES

The Osage Nation originated in the Ohio River valley in what we now call Kentucky. The Osage were forced to migrate west of the Mississippi by the invading Iroquois tribe. Most of the tribe members now live in Osage County, Oklahoma.

57. Belgium winter hrs. : CET

Central European Time (CET)

58. Social division : CASTE

Although caste systems exist in several societies around the world, we tend to associate the concept with the social stratification that is still found in many parts of India. The term “caste” comes from the Portuguese word “casta” meaning “race, breed”. The Portuguese used the term to describe the hereditary social groups that they found in India when they arrived in the subcontinent in 1498.

62. Pro with a siren : EMT

Emergency medical technician (EMT)

70. Comfy slip-on : MOC

“Moc” is short for “moccasin”, a type of shoe. The moccasin is a traditional form of footwear worn by members of many Native American tribes.

71. Skinny : INFO

The use of the word “skinny” meaning information, comes from WWII military slang for “the truth”, probably a derivative of the expression “the naked truth” (evocative of “skinny-dipping”).

77. Important animal in ’70s U.S.-China diplomacy : PANDA

The phrase “panda diplomacy” is used to describe China’s practice of presenting giant pandas to other countries as diplomatic gifts. One of the more famous examples of panda diplomacy was the presentation of Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing to the US following President Nixon’s historic visit to China in 1972.

80. “Unexpected blends” tea brand : TAZO

The Tazo Tea Company was founded in 1994 in Portland, Oregon. Tazo was purchased in 1999 by Starbucks. Starbucks now runs tea shops that are fully dedicated to Tazo teas.

85. Ben of “Roots” : VEREEN

Ben Vereen is an American actor and dancer who is probably best known for playing Chicken George in the magnificent television miniseries “Roots”. When he was applying for a passport in the sixties, Vereen discovered that he was adopted. He then went looking for his birth parents and identified his birth mother (who had passed away by this time). She went away on a trip when Ben was very young only to return and find that her child and the person minding him had disappeared. She never saw her son again.

86. Film lioness : NALA

In “The Lion King”, Nala is a lioness and the childhood friend of Simba. By the end of the story, Nala and Simba become wedded. “The Lion King” is inspired by William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”, with Simba representing the title character, and Nala representing Hamlet’s love interest Ophelia.

95. What “4” may mean: Abbr. : APR

The exact etymology of “April”, the name of the fourth month of our year, seems to be uncertain. The ancient Romans called it “mensis Aprilis”, which roughly translated as “opening month”. The suggestion is that April is the month in which fruits, flowers and animals “open” their life cycles.

96. Porcelain with a pale green glaze : CELADON

Celadon ceramics are pieces of pottery that have been glazed a distinctive green color. The name of the pottery comes from the “celadon” shade of green. In turn, “Celadon” was a character in the novel “L’Astree” by Honoré d’Urfé, a character who wore green clothes.

97. Justice Dept. bigwigs : 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.

98. Beaning aftermath, sometimes : BRAWL

To bean someone is to hit them on the head (the “bean”). I think that the reference here is to a potential brawl that might break out after a pitcher “beans” a hitter in a baseball game.

102. Odysseus’ kingdom : ITHACA

Ithaca is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. The island features in Homer’s “Odyssey” as it was the home of the mythological hero Odysseus, who was Ithaca’s king.

110. “Hot corner” base : THIRD

In baseball, third base is referred to as the “hot corner”. Right-handed hitters tend to hit the ball hard in that direction, keeping the third baseman on his toes.

112. Cartesian connection : ERGO

The great French philosopher Rene Descartes made the famous statement in Latin, “Cogito ergo sum”. This translates into French as “Je pense, donc je suis” and into English as “I think, therefore I am”.

Anything pertaining to the philosophy of the great Rene Descartes can described by the adjective “Cartesian”.

113. Kathryn of HBO’s “Oz” : ERBE

The actress Kathryn Erbe is best known for playing Det. Alexandra Eames on the TV show “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”. Paradoxically perhaps, Erbe’s other noted role is as Shirley Bellinger in the HBO series “Oz”, a death row inmate.

115. Old Parmesan bread : LIRE

The word “lira” is used in a number of countries for currency. “Lira” comes from the Latin for “pound” and is derived from a British pound sterling, the value of a Troy pound of silver. For example, the lira (plural “lire”) was the official currency of Italy before the country changed over to the euro in 2002.

Parma is a city in northern Italy, famous for its ham (prosciutto) and cheese (parmesan). The adjective “Parmesan” means of or from Parma.

121. Like Twiggy’s style : MOD

“Twiggy” is the nickname of English model, actress and singer Lesley Lawson. Twiggy was a thin woman (hence the nickname) and was a modelling sensation in the mid-sixties. She had a boyish look with short, blonde hair. Some consider Twiggy to be the world’s first “supermodel”.

“Mod” is short for “modernist”, and describes a subculture that originated in London in the late fifties. Young men who called themselves mods tended to wear tailored suits, listen to pop music and drive around on Italian motor scooters. Mods came into conflict with another subculture that emerged at the same time in the UK called the rockers. Rockers were into rock and roll music, and drove motorcycles I remember as a young kid in school having to declare myself as either a mod or a rocker. I don’t think our “gangs” back then were quite the same as they are today though …

122. Places to crash, in ads : BRS

Bedroom (BR)

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. /, on some score sheets : SPARE
6. Herbal tea : TISANE
12. Premier League powerhouse : CHELSEA
19. Ascended : SCALED
20. Calligraphy container : INK POT
21. Top-seller : HOT ITEM
22. Tehran tinderbox for 14-plus months : HOSTAGE CRISIS
24. Getting on in years : ELDERLY
25. Asthmatic’s device : INHALER
26. Super, slangily : UBER
27. Batman after Michael : VAL
28. Google : Android :: Apple : __ : IOS
29. Got the word : HEARD
30. It borders three oceans : ASIA
32. Resort near Boston : CAPE ANN
34. Making the Guinness Book, say : SETTING A RECORD
38. Wander (about) : GAD
41. Took charge of : LED
44. Long stretches : AEONS
45. Netflix alternative : HULU
46. Down tune : DIRGE
48. Ocean rings : ATOLLS
50. Earned : WON
51. Some charges : USER FEES
54. Investment firm T. __ Price : ROWE
55. World Cup events : SOCCER GAMES
60. Plummeted : SANK
61. Ne’er-do-well : KNAVE
63. Catch of the day, perhaps : SEA BASS
64. Inc., in Toronto : LTD
66. Euro divs. : CTS
67. Workout addicts : GYM RATS
69. “That’s no kidding” : I MEAN IT
72. Sault __ Marie : STE
74. Pull : TUG
75. Jerry-rigged, in a way : TAPED ON
79. Ekberg of “La Dolce Vita” : ANITA
82. Crime scene figure : PERP
84. Recycling center item : BEVERAGE CAN
87. Stable baby : FOAL
88. National summer sport of Canada : LACROSSE
90. Luanda is its cap. : ANG
91. Mourning on the court : ALONZO
93. Distant : ALOOF
94. Sudden attack : RAID
96. Dish alternative : CABLE
99. Lush : SOT
100. Lady Tigers’ sch. : TSU
101. Log holder : FIREPLACE GRATE
106. More offensive : NASTIER
108. Queen in “Frozen” : ELSA
109. Lackluster finish : MATTE
113. And the like: Abbr. : ETC
114. Sweetie : HON
115. Mother of Castor : LEDA
117. Choice word : WHETHER
119. Get going, as an oven : PREHEAT
121. It’s not all good … and it’s literally found in this puzzle’s circles : MIXED BLESSING (and “mixed GRACE”)
123. Roll call discovery : ABSENCE
124. Figure of speech? : ORATOR
125. Oddball : WEIRDO
126. Agreement often reluctant but still respectful : YES, DEAR
127. Mischief-makers : DEMONS
128. Thrills : SENDS

Down

1. Teahouse treat : SCONE
2. Lara’s husband in “Doctor Zhivago” : PASHA
3. Wedding settings : ALTARS
4. Genuine article : REAL DEAL
5. Barely beat (out) : EDGE
6. It may be nervous : TIC
7. Reduced to rubble : IN RUINS
8. Aspen traveler’s item : SKI BAG
9. Cathedral recess : APSE
10. Detective fiction genre : NOIR
11. Movie makeup dept. creations : ETS
12. Inferior : CHEAPO
13. Cry out loud : HOLLER
14. Flight takeoff fig. : ETD
15. ’60s protest : LIE-IN
16. What a Facebook post might draw : STRONG REACTIONS
17. Fish trapped in pots : EELS
18. Adams of “Her” : AMY
19. __ Tzu : SHIH
23. Sister of Clio : ERATO
27. Space devoid of matter : VACUUM
31. Lust, e.g. : SIN
32. Dopey frame, e.g. : CEL
33. Short lines at the post office? : ADDR
35. Hardy’s “Pure Woman” : TESS
36. Now, in Nicaragua : AHORA
37. Climbing aids : RUNGS
39. Mole, perhaps : AGENT
40. Classroom array : DESKS
41. Shenanigan : LARK
42. School since 1440 : ETON
43. Violet Crawley’s title in “Downton Abbey” : DOWAGER COUNTESS
47. Uncertainties : IFS
49. Impose, as a tax : LEVY
50. Bug catcher : WEB
52. One-named Tejano pop star : SELENA
53. This, to Picasso : ESTA
56. Plains folks? : OSAGES
57. Belgium winter hrs. : CET
58. Social division : CASTE
59. Remark to the audience : ASIDE
62. Pro with a siren : EMT
65. Paternity test letters : DNA
68. Uses elbow grease on : RUBS
70. Comfy slip-on : MOC
71. Skinny : INFO
72. Impact sound : SPLAT
73. Dabbling ducks : TEALS
76. Thin as __ : A RAIL
77. Important animal in ’70s U.S.-China diplomacy : PANDA
78. Future chicken : EGG
80. “Unexpected blends” tea brand : TAZO
81. Heaps : A LOT
83. Golf course figure : PRO
85. Ben of “Roots” : VEREEN
86. Film lioness : NALA
89. Send-__: farewells : OFFS
92. “Hmm … ” : LET ME SEE …
95. What “4” may mean: Abbr. : APR
96. Porcelain with a pale green glaze : CELADON
97. Justice Dept. bigwigs : AGS
98. Beaning aftermath, sometimes : BRAWL
102. Odysseus’ kingdom : ITHACA
103. Revolting sort? : RIOTER
104. Formally give : CEDE TO
105. Takes courses at home? : EATS IN
107. Felt the pain : ACHED
110. “Hot corner” base : THIRD
111. Ministers : TENDS
112. Cartesian connection : ERGO
113. Kathryn of HBO’s “Oz” : ERBE
115. Old Parmesan bread : LIRE
116. Eye __ : EXAM
118. Adheres (to) : HEWS
119. Settle up : PAY
120. Biloxi-to-Mobile dir. : ENE
121. Like Twiggy’s style : MOD
122. Places to crash, in ads : BRS

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13 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 10 Dec 2017, Sunday”

  1. LAT: 29:13 after getting the silent treatment and trying every possible final vowel for 6A. (I should have gotten the “E” from 11D … but I didn’t … so there … ? … and I had similar problems with today’s NYT … not one of my better days … ?.)

    Newsday: 19:42, no errors.

    @Glenn … As I said (rather late) yesterday, I finished the ten BEQ puzzles from last fall and found them to be very similar to more recent ones, so if he’s made his puzzles easier over time, it happened before then. I will try the earlier ones you’ve mentioned later today or (more likely) tomorrow.

    I found a way to justify my answer for Friday’s WSJ meta and sent it in, so … we’ll see …

    1. BEQ #10 (from 2009/05/22): 39:04, with a one-square error (that I should have been able to avoid) at the intersection of 1D and 19A. (The answer for 1D was more or less unknown to me and I misread the clue for 19A.) A pretty hard puzzle, but not too unusual for a BEQ.

      My answer for Friday’s WSJ meta was what they had in mind, so I have a chance at the mug! … ?

  2. Should PRO be in the grid at 83 down and in a clue 62 down? I was trying to fit in YDS as a golf course figure. Slowed me down. ?

  3. Not too bad for a Sunday puzzle. Meaning that I could do it without going crazy.

    Bill, thanks for the insight to the clue. I couldn’t come up with it to save my life. I got the “grace’ but never connected to the “amazing”. But I guess it didn’t really matter as I got through it without knowing the connection.

    1. I’m with you. How is “grace” a mixed blessing? Maybe it has to do with Amazing Grace, the words of which I don’t know?

  4. Hi y’all! ?
    Looked up four answers but did okay otherwise.
    Re mods and rockers: In the movie “A Hard Day’s Night,” a reporter asks Ringo: “Are you mods or rockers?” and Ringo replies: “Actually, we’re mockers.” He might have improvised that — the Beatles had such funny quips. (Of course, on first hearing I was too young to understand most of them….) ?
    I don’t get why GRACE is “not all good!?!” Of course I get the MIXED part with letters scrambled, but when is grace not a good quality?
    One can “fall from grace,” but then the word no longer applies! You’ve fallen out of it! ?
    Be well~~™?

      1. @R.J.B & Carrie
        I really did a terrible job of explaining the theme to this puzzle!

        The reveal clue is “It’s not all good”, with the answer “MIXED BLESSING”. True, something that’s a “mixed blessing” is not all good. To explain the theme, we need to understand that a GRACE is a BLESSING, a short prayer with a meal (bless these gifts, this food). Each of the themed answers includes the letters in the word GRACE, but they have been MIXED up in order. So, each themed answer includes a MIXED GRACE, a MIXED BLESSING. And, the constructor has chosen to entitle the puzzle “It’s Amazing”, which is a reference to the hymn “Amazing Grace”.

        Complicated, for sure …

  5. Luv your wry, Irish sense of humor.

    On the Edna Ferber clue comment there is a small error. The phrase Should be: “….which were adapted successful (ly)….”

    1. @Bob King

      Thanks for catching that typo, Bob (in Tuesday’s puzzle, I think). All fixed now. I really appreciate the help!

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