LA Times Crossword Answers 3 Feb 2018, Saturday

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Constructed by: Pawel Fludzinski
Edited by: Rich Norris

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Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 10m 03s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

7. EPA concern : AQI

The air quality index (AQI) is monitored by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

14. Field meeting : HUDDLE

That would be football.

19. Jesse Owens, e.g. : OLYMPIC ATHLETE

Jesse Owens is famous for winning four gold medals at the Berlin Olympic Games in 1936, much to the chagrin of Adolf 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.

22. Part of NAFTA: Abbr. : AMER

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is between Canada, Mexico and the United States. When NAFTA came into force in 1994, it set up the largest free trade zone in the world.

23. Rats along the Rhine? : ACH!

The German exclamation “ach!” is usually translated into English as “oh!”

The river running through Europe that we know in English as the Rhine, is called “Rhein” in German, “Rhin” in French and “Rijn” in Dutch.

27. Where snowbirds flock in winter? : SUNBELT

Snowbirds are people from Canada and the northern US who head south for the winter, to places like Florida and California.

34. Cheap smoke : STOGIE

A stogie (also “stogy”) is both a rough, heavy shoe and a long, cheap cigar. Both items were favored by the drivers of the covered wagons called Conestogas that wended their way across the Midwest in days gone by. The term “stogie” is derived from the name of the wagon, which itself is named after the area in which the wagons were built, i.e. Conestoga, near Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

36. Hamm from Alabama : MIA

Mia Hamm is a retired American soccer player, a forward who played on the US national team that won the FIFA women’s World Cup in 1991. Hamm has scored 158 international goals, more than other player in the world, male or female. Amazingly, Hamm was born with a clubfoot, and so had to wear corrective shoes when she was growing up.

38. Windows predecessor : MS-DOS

MS-DOS (short for Microsoft Disk Operating System) was the main operating system used by IBM-compatible PCs in the eighties and for much of the nineties.

39. Five-book collections : TORAHS

The Torah, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, are traditionally believed to have been written by Moses. As such, they are sometimes referred to as the Law of Moses, or Mosaic Law.

41. Serious betrayals : TREASONS

Treason is a serious crime committed against the nation (or the sovereign). One who commits “treason” is called a “traitor”. In the past, the term treason also applied to lesser crimes so there was a differentiation between high treason against the king, and “petit treason” against a more common citizen.

43. Henry VIII’s third : SEYMOUR

Jane Seymour was the third wife of Henry VIII, and queen of England from 1536 until her death the following year. She attracted the interest of the king while he was still married to Anne Boleyn, Henry’s second wife. The pair were married just one day after Anne’s execution, having been found guilty of adultery, incest and treason. Seymour became pregnant, and gave birth to the future King Edward VI. However, she never recovered from the strain of a long birth that lasted three days and two nights. She was dead within two weeks. Seymour was the only one of Henry’s six wives to receive a queen’s funeral, and was the only wife who was buried alongside him in Windsor Castle.

45. Kunal Nayyar’s role in “The Big Bang Theory” : RAJ

Raj Koothrappali is a character on the sitcom “The Big Bang Theory” who is played by British-Indian actor Kunal Nayyar. Nayyar is married to Neha Kapur, a former Miss India.

46. Ultra-secret org. : NSA

National Security Agency (NSA)

47. River to the Seine : AUBE

The Aube in France is a tributary of the Seine. The former gives its name to the département known as Aube.

48. Winged figure of myth : EROS

Eros, the Greek god of love, gives rise to our word “erotic”, meaning “arousing sexual desire”. Also known as Amor, the Roman counterpart to Eros was Cupid.

50. Canine epithet : MAN’S BEST FRIEND

An epithet is a word or phrase, one often used in a name to describe a quality of the person or thing bearing that name. For example, King Richard I was also known as Richard the Lionheart.

56. Monthly subtitled “The Magazine of Maine” : DOWN EAST

The coast of Maine is often referred to as “Down East” by the people of New England. There is even a monthly magazine aimed at the people of Maine called “Down East”, that is published in Camden, Maine.

57. Portugal’s capital, locally : LISBOA

In Portuguese, “Lisboa” (Lisbon) and “Porto” (Oporto) are the two largest cities in Portugal.

60. Astronomical dist. : LT YR

A light-year (lt. yr.) is a measure of distance, not time. It is the distance that light travels in a vacuum in one year, which is almost six trillion miles. The accepted abbreviation for a light-year is “ly”. A light-second is a much shorter distance: about 186,282 miles.

61. Slight opening? : ESS

The opening letter in the word “slight” is a letter S (ess).

62. End zone quartet : PYLONS

That would be football.

Down

4. __ apple : ADAM’S

The voice box or larynx is where pitch and volume of sound are manipulated when we talk. The structure called the Adam’s apple that protrudes from the human neck is formed by the thyroid cartilage that surrounds the larynx. The Adam’s apple of males tends to increase in size during puberty, so the feature tended to be associated more with males in days gone by, perhaps leading to the name “Adam’s” apple.

7. Quatrain rhyme scheme : ABAA

A quatrain is a group of four lines of poetry. The most common quatrain schemes are AAAA, AABB and ABAB.

8. Airline with a kangaroo on its logo : QANTAS

QANTAS is the national airline of Australia. The company name was originally an acronym for Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services. QANTAS has featured a koala in advertising campaigns for many years, although the company’s logo is a kangaroo.

9. Common canal site : ISTHMUS

The word “isthmus” (plural “isthmi”) comes the Greek word for “neck”. An isthmus is a narrow strip of land that usually connects two large land masses. The most notable examples of the formation are the Isthmus of Corinth in the Greek peninsula, and the Isthmus of Panama, connecting North and South America.

11. Spare tyre site : BOOT

In North America we use the word “trunk” for the storage space in the back of a vehicle as that space is reminiscent of the large travelling chest called a “trunk”. Such trunks used to be lashed onto the back of automobiles before storage was integrated. On the other side of the Atlantic, a trunk is known as a “boot”. The original boot was a built-in storage compartment on a horse-drawn carriage on which a coachman would sit.

13. “Pioneer Woman” cookbook writer Drummond : REE

Ree Drummond is a food writer and blogger. Drummond’s blog “The Pioneer Woman” recounts her daily life on her family’s working ranch outside of Pawhuska, Oklahoma.

16. Voting bloc term used by Nixon and Trump : SILENT MAJORITY

The phrase “silent majority” was popularized in recent years by President Richard Nixon. He used the term in a 1969 speech when referring to those who did not participate in the large demonstrations held to protest the Vietnam War. An earlier use of the phrase in the 19th century referred to the dead, the vast number of people who are no longer living, and who greatly outnumber the population today.

24. Techie on “24” : CHLOE

One of the few characters in the television show “24” that wasn’t killed off was Chloe O’Brien, the abrasive computer scientist played by Mary Lynn Rajskub. In the real world, the Department of Homeland Security has a development program aimed at protecting airliners from missile attacks. It is called Project CHLOE, after the character on “24”. Apparently the show was a favorite of former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.

25. Hirsute : HAIRY

“Hirsute” means “hairy”. The Latin word “hirsutus” means “rough, shaggy”.

28. __ Heath: Thomas Hardy setting : EGDON

Thomas Hardy set most of his novels and short stories in the south and southwest of England, in an area that he called “Wessex”. Even though the name “Wessex” was not used officially during Hardy’s lifetime, Wessex was an Anglo-Saxon kingdom that existed in that part of the island during the Middle Ages. A favorite spot within Hardy’s Wessex is Egdon Heath, a sparsely inhabited moorland that features in the author’s “The Return of the Native”, “The Mayor of Casterbridge” and “The Withered Arm”.

29. They have their pride : LIONS

A group of lions is known as a pride. It’s possible that the term “pride”, in this context, derives from the Latin “praeda” meaning “prey”.

30. Championship ice dancer __ Virtue : TESSA

Tessa Virtue is a Canadian ice dancer who won the 2010 Olympic championship along with her partner Scott Moir.

37. Rue stop? : ARRET

“Arrêt” is the French word for “stop”, and “rue” the word for “road”.

44. Piece maker : REESE’S

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups were invented by Harry Burnett “H.B.” Reese. Peanut Butter Cups were originally called penny cups, reflecting the price at which they were sold. Then inflation took over, and maybe that’s why they were broken into smaller “Pieces” …

49. Twine fiber : SISAL

The sisal plant is an agave, and as far as I can tell, its flesh is not used in making tequila. Sisal is grown instead for the fibers that run the length of its leaves. The fiber is used extensively for twine, rope, carpeting, wall coverings etc. My favorite application though, is in the construction of dartboards. Sisal takes its name from the port of Sisal in Yucatan, Mexico that was a major shipping point for sisal plants.

Our word “twine”, meaning a light string, has the same root as our word “twin”. The original Old English “twin” was a double thread.

50. Suffragist who co-founded Swarthmore : MOTT

Lucretia Coffin Mott (what a name!) was an American Quaker, and an advocate for women’s rights. Mott has been called the first American “feminist”. Her first job was teaching in the Quaker school in which she was educated. There she learned that her salary was to be one third of that paid to the males with the same job (she married one of the male teachers!). That injustice initiated her interest in women’s rights.

Swarthmore College is a liberal arts school located in the borough of Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, which is just a few miles southwest of Philadelphia. Originally a Quaker school, Swarthmore has been non-sectarian since the early 1900s.

52. EPA issuances : STDS

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

53. Iberian river : EBRO

The Iberian Peninsula in Europe is largely made up of Spain and Portugal. However, also included is the Principality of Andorra in the Pyrénées, a small part of the south of France, and the British Territory of Gibraltar. Iberia takes its name from the Ebro, the longest river in Spain, which the Romans named the “Iber”.

55. Aykroyd and Patrick : DANS

Dan Aykroyd is a Canadian comedian and actor who was born in Ottawa, Ontario, although he is now a naturalized US citizen. Aykroyd was an original cast member on “Saturday Night Live” and fronted the Blues Brothers along with John Belushi.

Dan Patrick is a sportscaster and radio personality. He is host of “The Dan Patrick Show” on the radio and is co-host of “Football Night in America” on NBC television.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Bundles together, as wheat : SHEAFS
7. EPA concern : AQI
10. Cab alternative : UBER
14. Field meeting : HUDDLE
15. Choral extreme : BASS NOTE
17. Predestine : ORDAIN
18. Countermeasure : ANTIDOTE
19. Jesse Owens, e.g. : OLYMPIC ATHLETE
21. Advance : SPOT
22. Part of NAFTA: Abbr. : AMER
23. Rats along the Rhine? : ACH!
26. Rage : IRE
27. Where snowbirds flock in winter? : SUNBELT
31. Feller’s tool? : CHAINSAW
34. Cheap smoke : STOGIE
35. Stick : CLING
36. Hamm from Alabama : MIA
38. Windows predecessor : MS-DOS
39. Five-book collections : TORAHS
41. Serious betrayals : TREASONS
43. Henry VIII’s third : SEYMOUR
45. Kunal Nayyar’s role in “The Big Bang Theory” : RAJ
46. Ultra-secret org. : NSA
47. River to the Seine : AUBE
48. Winged figure of myth : EROS
50. Canine epithet : MAN’S BEST FRIEND
56. Monthly subtitled “The Magazine of Maine” : DOWN EAST
57. Portugal’s capital, locally : LISBOA
58. Having an accent : STRESSED
59. Speedily : AT A RUN
60. Astronomical dist. : LT YR
61. Slight opening? : ESS
62. End zone quartet : PYLONS

Down

1. Wave off : SHOO
2. Fling : HURL
3. Result of pulling the plug? : EDDY
4. __ apple : ADAM’S
5. Real estate investment strategy : FLIPPING HOUSES
6. Year-ending ceremony participants : SENIORS
7. Quatrain rhyme scheme : ABAA
8. Airline with a kangaroo on its logo : QANTAS
9. Common canal site : ISTHMUS
10. Position near the top of some organizational structures : UNDERBOSS
11. Spare tyre site : BOOT
12. Kitchen finish? : -ETTE
13. “Pioneer Woman” cookbook writer Drummond : REE
16. Voting bloc term used by Nixon and Trump : SILENT MAJORITY
20. Backups’ backups : C-TEAM
23. Bank nos. : ACCTS
24. Techie on “24” : CHLOE
25. Hirsute : HAIRY
28. __ Heath: Thomas Hardy setting : EGDON
29. They have their pride : LIONS
30. Championship ice dancer __ Virtue : TESSA
32. So to speak : IN A MANNER
33. Verbal deftness : WIT
37. Rue stop? : ARRET
40. Naval fortification : SUB BASE
42. Winter cap feature : EARFLAP
44. Piece maker : REESE’S
49. Twine fiber : SISAL
50. Suffragist who co-founded Swarthmore : MOTT
51. Off the mark : AWRY
52. EPA issuances : STDS
53. Iberian river : EBRO
54. Truth or consequences, e.g. : NOUN
55. Aykroyd and Patrick : DANS
56. Broadband choice, briefly : DSL

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