LA Times Crossword Answers 15 Feb 2018, Thursday

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Constructed by: Elliot M. Abrams
Edited by: Rich Norris

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Today’s Theme: Holistic Diet

Themed answers are snacks that have HOLES in them, that might be part of a “HOLE-ISTIC DIET”:

  • 54A. Component of balanced health … and what each answer to a starred clue looks like it should be part of? : HOLISTIC DIET
  • 20A. *Beer hall snacks : HARD PRETZELS
  • 29A. *Deli snacks : BAGEL CHIPS
  • 35A. *Bakery snacks : CHOCOLATE DONUTS
  • 43A. *Diner snacks : ONION RINGS

Bill’s time: 8m 06s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Día de San Valentín flowers : ROSAS

In Spanish, Saint Valentine’s Day is a usually translated as “el Día de San Valentín”. Another possibility is “el Día de los Enamorados”, which translates literally as “the day of those who have fallen in love”.

6. California’s __ Gabriel Mountains : SAN

The San Gabriel Mountains are located between the Los Angeles Basin and the Mojave Desert in California. In 2014, President Obama used the Antiquities Act to protect most of the range by designating it the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument.

9. Construction rod : REBAR

A steel bar or mesh that is used to reinforce concrete is called “rebar”, which is short for “reinforcing bar”.

15. Blood type letters : ABO

The most important grouping of blood types is the ABO system. Blood is classified as either A, B, AB or O, depending on the type of antigens on the surface of the red blood cells. A secondary designation of blood is the Rh factor, in which other antigens are labelled as either positive or negative. When a patient receives a blood transfusion, ideally the donor blood should be the same type as that of the recipient, as incompatible blood cells can be rejected. However, blood type O-neg can be accepted by recipients with all blood types, A, B, AB or O, and positive or negative. Hence someone with O-neg blood type is called a universal donor.

16. Like 36 piano keys, traditionally : EBONY

The traditional materials used for the manufacture of piano keys were ebony (black) and ivory (white). Ebony is still used, but now for both white and black keys. The white keys are made by covering ebony with white plastic.
“Eighty-eight” is a slang word for a piano, coming from the fact that a modern piano usually has 88 keys: 36 black and 52 white.

17. Lewis with 12 Emmys : SHARI

Shari Lewis was the original puppeteer behind the PBS children’s show “Lamb Chop”. After Shari Lewis died in 1998, her daughter Mallory took over the role of puppeteer on the show.

18. “That ’70s Show” exchange student whose nationality isn’t revealed : FEZ

“That ‘70s Show” is a sitcom that originally aired from 1998 to 2006. As the title suggests, it is set in the 1970s and explores the issues of the time. Two actors that made it particularly big from the show are Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher.

20. *Beer hall snacks : HARD PRETZELS

Pretzels originated in Europe and are especially popular in Southern Germany where a pretzel is known as “Brezel”. Pretzels were introduced into the US in the 1800s by immigrants from Germany and Switzerland who came to be known over here as the Pennsylvania Dutch.

23. Surf and turf, say : ENTREE

“Entrée” means “entry” in French. An entrée can be something that helps one get “a way in”, an interview for example perhaps helped along by a recommendation letter. In Europe, even in English-speaking countries, the entrée is the name for the “entry” to the meal, the first course. I found it very confusing to order meals when I first came to America!

24. NASA vehicle : LEM

In the Apollo program, the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM) was the vehicle that actually landed on the moon and returned the astronauts to the command module that was orbiting overhead. The third LEM built was named “Spider”, and it participated in the Apollo 9 mission which tested the functionality of the LEM design in space. The fourth LEM was called “Snoopy” and it flew around the moon in the Apollo 10 mission, the dress rehearsal for the upcoming moon landing. Apollo 11’s LEM was called “Eagle” and it brought Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to and from the moon’s surface. Another famous LEM was Apollo 13’s Aquarius. Although Aquarius never landed on the moon, it did serve as a “lifeboat” for the three astronauts after the explosive rupture of an oxygen canister in the Service Module.

25. Tempe sch. : ASU

Arizona State University (ASU) has a long history, and was founded as the Tempe Normal School for the Arizona Territory in 1885. The athletic teams of ASU used to be known as the Normals, then the Bulldogs, and since 1946 they’ve been called the Sun Devils.

28. Time for action : D-DAY

The most famous D-Day in history was June 6, 1944, the date of the Normandy landings in WWII. The term “D-Day” is used by the military to designate the day on which a combat operations are to be launched, especially when the actual date has yet to be determined. What D stands for seems to have been lost in the mists of time although the tradition is that D just stands for “Day”. In fact, the French have a similar term, “Jour J” (Day J), with a similar meaning. We also use H-Hour to denote the hour the attack is to commence.

33. Actress Neuwirth with Tonys and Emmys : BEBE

Bebe Neuwirth is a wonderful actress and dancer who famously played Dr. Lilith Sternin, the wife of Dr. Frasier Crane on “Cheers” and “Frasier”. Neuwirth is a fabulous dancer, having studied ballet at Juilliard. In more recent years she has had starring roles on Broadway, and in 2010 played opposite Nathan Lane in “The Addams Family”. Neuwirth also plays a leading role on the show “Madam Secretary”.

34. Slim craft : CANOE

The boat know as a canoe takes its name from the Carib word “kenu” meaning “dugout”. It was Christopher Columbus who brought “kenu” into Spanish as “canoa”, which evolved into our English “canoe”.

41. “Tempt not a desperate man” speaker : ROMEO

William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” is all about the love between the two title characters, which is forbidden as the pair come from two families who are sworn enemies. Early in the play, Romeo (a Montague) sneaks into a masquerade ball being held by the Capulets in the hope of meeting a Capulet girl named Rosaline. Instead, he meets and falls for Juliet, also a Capulet. Tragedy ensues …

46. California wine valley : NAPA

The first commercial winery in Napa Valley, California was established way back in 1858. However, premium wine production only dates back to the 1960s, with the region really hitting the big time after its success at the Paris Wine Tasting of 1976. The story of that famous blind wine tasting is told in the entertaining 2008 film “Bottle Shock”.

51. One of three rhyming mos. : DEC

December is the twelfth month in our calendar but was the tenth month in the old Roman calendar, hence the name (“decem” is Latin for “ten”). Back then there were only ten months in the year. “Ianuarius” (January) and “Februarius” (February) were then added as the eleventh and twelfth months of the year. Soon after, the year was reset and January and February became the first and second months.

52. Pavement cloppers : HOOVES

Back in Ireland, the “pavement” is what we call the “footpath” (because the footpath is “paved”, often with “paving” stones!). It’s very confusing when you arrive in this country from Ireland, and a little dangerous when one has been taught from a young age to “walk on the pavement” …

54. Component of balanced health … and what each answer to a starred clue looks like it should be part of? : HOLISTIC DIET

Holism is an approach taken to the study of systems (physical, biological, economic, etc.) that views those systems as part of a whole, and not in isolation. The term “holism” was coined in a 1926 book titled “Holism and Evolution” by Field Marshal Jan Christiaan Smuts, a philosopher and former South African prime minister.

62. Car or tree feature : TRUNK

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.

64. Film with lots of shooting stars? : OATER

The term “oater” that is used for a Western movie comes from the number of horses seen, as horses love oats!

66. Stat for Clayton Kershaw : ERA

Earned run average (ERA)
Clayton Kershaw is a pitcher for the LA Dodgers. Outside of baseball, Kershaw is noted for his charitable work, especially his efforts to raise money for an orphanage in Zambia.

67. Flexible Flyers, e.g. : SLEDS

“Flexible flyer” is now a generic term for a steel runner sled that can be steered with the feet. The original Flexible Flyer was patented in 1889.

Down

1. Blitzed, in football : RUSHED

In football, a blitz (also called “red dog”) is a maneuver by players in the line of scrimmage designed to quickly overwhelm the opposing quarterback.

3. Peloponnesian War victor : SPARTA

The Peloponnesian War was fought from 431 to 404 BC between the Athenian Empire and the Peloponnesian League led by Sparta. Prior to the war, Athens was the strongest city-state in Greece. After the victory by the Peloponnesian League, Sparta emerged as the leading power.

5. Wading bird : SNIPE

Snipes are wading birds with very long and thin bills that they use to search for small invertebrates in mud. In bygone days, a shot taken by a hunter at one of these wading birds became known as a “snipe”. This usage evolved into the word “sniper” applying to anyone shooting from a hidden position.

9. Genuine article : REAL MCCOY

This idiomatic phrase “the real McCoy” means the “the real deal”. It originated in Scotland, where the expression was “the real McKay” and had the same meaning. When the expression migrated to Ireland, it mutated into “the real McCoy”, and from Ireland it crossed intact across the Atlantic to America.

13. Bread with caraway seeds : RYE

Caraway is a plant in the carrot family that is prized for its fruits. Yes, what we call caraway “seeds” and use in cooking are actually caraway “fruits”.

22. Charged fish? : EEL

Electrophorus electricus is the biological name for the electric eel. Despite its name, the electric “eel” isn’t an eel at all, but rather what is called a knifefish, a fish with an elongated body that is related to the catfish. The electric eel has three pairs of organs along its abdomen, each capable of generating an electric discharge. The shock can go as high as 500 volts with 1 ampere of current (that’s 500 watts), and that could perhaps kill a human.

25. Indigenous Japanese : AINU

The Ainu people are an indigenous race found primarily in Japan and parts of Russia close to Japan. The spoken Ainu language has nearly died out, with only a handful of native speakers alive today.

30. Old hoops org. : ABA

The American Basketball Association (ABA) merged with the National Basketball Association (NBA) in 1976. The ABA used a ball with the colors red, white and blue. The NBA uses a more traditional orange ball.

32. Solo with a Wookiee co-pilot : HAN

Han Solo is the space smuggler in “Star Wars” played by Harrison Ford. Ford was originally hired by George Lucas just to read lines for actors during auditions for “Star Wars”, but over time Lucas became convinced that Ford was right for the pivotal role of Han Solo.
Wookiees are a biped race featured in “Star Wars”. The most notable Wookiee is Chewbacca (aka “Chewie”), the loyal friend and associate of Han Solo who serves as co-pilot on the Millennium Falcon spaceship.

33. Nowheresville, with “the” : BOONDOCKS

“Boondocks” is a term used in North America for a remote, usually rural area. Often the term is used derogatively, implying that a remote location is unsophisticated. “Boondocks” was first used by American soldiers stationed in the Philippines in the early 1900s. The word evolved from the Tagalog “bundok” meaning “mountain”.

38. Board bigwig : CEO

Chief executive officer (CEO)
A bigwig is someone important. The use of the term harks back to the days when men of authority and rank wore … big wigs.

39. Heart test letters : EKG

An EKG measures electrical activity in the heart. Back in my homeland of Ireland, an EKG is known as an ECG (for electrocardiogram). We use the German name in the US, Elektrokardiogramm, giving us EKG. Apparently the abbreviation EKG is preferred as ECG might be confused (if poorly handwritten, I guess) with EEG, the abbreviation for an electroencephalogram.

40. Broth that’s the base of miso soup : DASHI

Dashi is a style of cooking stock used in Japanese cuisine. Most famously, dashi” is the stock that is used as the base for miso soup. Traditional dashi is a fish stock to which is added edible kelp called kombu and shavings of preserved and fermented skipjack tuna called katsuobushi.

44. Cath. or Prot. : REL

The Christian Church is the continuation of the early Christian community that adhered to the teachings of Jesus Christ. Jesus lived in Judea, a province of the pagan Roman Empire. Roman Emperor Constantine the Great legalized the practice of Christianity in 313, and it was declared the state church of the empire in 380. The Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches came into being with the East-West Schism of 1054. Augustinian friar Martin Luther posted his Ninety-Five Theses in 1517 “protesting” the key points of Catholic doctrine and especially the sale of indulgences. The actions of Luther and others sparked the movement in Europe called the Protestant Reformation that led to a variety of Christian denominations referred to collectively as “Protestantism”.

49. Starlike flowers : ASTERS

Apparently, most aster species and cultivars bloom relatively late in the year, usually in the fall. The name “aster” comes into English via Latin from the Greek word “astéri” meaning “star”, a reference to the arrangement of the petals of the flower.

53. Figure-eight steps, in an Argentine tango : OCHOS

The dramatic dance called the tango originated in the late 1800s in the area along the border between Argentina and Uruguay. Dancers and orchestras from Buenos Aires in particular traveled to Europe and beyond in the early twentieth century and brought the tango with them. The tango craze first struck Europe in Paris in the 1910s, and from there spread to London and Berlin, crossing the Atlantic to New York in 1913.

56. Draped garment : TOGA

In Ancient Rome the classical attire known as a toga (plural “togae”) was usually worn over a tunic. The tunic was made from linen, and the toga itself was a piece of cloth about twenty feet long made from wool. The toga could only be worn by men, and only if those men were Roman citizens. The female equivalent of the toga was called a “stola”.

57. FG’s three : PTS

In American football, three points (pts.) are awarded for a field goal (FG).

59. Many a “Call the Midwife” character : NUN

“Call the Midwife” is a BBC drama about midwives working in the East End of London in the late fifties and early sixties. I must admit, one of the reasons I am intrigued by this show is that I can well remember the midwife coming to our house in the East End of London in 1959 for the delivery of my younger brother. I am sure the attending nurse was a wonderful person, but I remember being scared every time she pulled up outside our flat on her bicycle!

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Día de San Valentín flowers : ROSAS
6. California’s __ Gabriel Mountains : SAN
9. Construction rod : REBAR
14. Remove from the bulletin board : UNPIN
15. Blood type letters : ABO
16. Like 36 piano keys, traditionally : EBONY
17. Lewis with 12 Emmys : SHARI
18. “That ’70s Show” exchange student whose nationality isn’t revealed : FEZ
19. Lessen : ABATE
20. *Beer hall snacks : HARD PRETZELS
23. Surf and turf, say : ENTREE
24. NASA vehicle : LEM
25. Tempe sch. : ASU
28. Time for action : D-DAY
29. *Deli snacks : BAGEL CHIPS
33. Actress Neuwirth with Tonys and Emmys : BEBE
34. Slim craft : CANOE
35. *Bakery snacks : CHOCOLATE DONUTS
41. “Tempt not a desperate man” speaker : ROMEO
42. Pretty good : OKAY
43. *Diner snacks : ONION RINGS
46. California wine valley : NAPA
50. Favorite : PET
51. One of three rhyming mos. : DEC
52. Pavement cloppers : HOOVES
54. Component of balanced health … and what each answer to a starred clue looks like it should be part of? : HOLISTIC DIET
57. Lose one’s cool in a big way : PANIC
60. Murmur : COO
61. Lift with force : HEAVE
62. Car or tree feature : TRUNK
63. Tote : LUG
64. Film with lots of shooting stars? : OATER
65. Ships : SENDS
66. Stat for Clayton Kershaw : ERA
67. Flexible Flyers, e.g. : SLEDS

Down

1. Blitzed, in football : RUSHED
2. In stock : ON HAND
3. Peloponnesian War victor : SPARTA
4. Put on the line? : AIR-DRY
5. Wading bird : SNIPE
6. No-risk : SAFE
7. Help with an inside job, say : ABET
8. Gas pump part : NOZZLE
9. Genuine article : REAL MCCOY
10. Flows out : EBBS
11. Feathery wrap : BOA
12. House pest : ANT
13. Bread with caraway seeds : RYE
21. Insurgent : REBEL
22. Charged fish? : EEL
25. Indigenous Japanese : AINU
26. Notice : SPOT
27. Multi-tools have many : USES
30. Old hoops org. : ABA
31. Board : GET ON
32. Solo with a Wookiee co-pilot : HAN
33. Nowheresville, with “the” : BOONDOCKS
35. Cut closely : CROP
36. Sharpen : HONE
37. Skip over : OMIT
38. Board bigwig : CEO
39. Heart test letters : EKG
40. Broth that’s the base of miso soup : DASHI
44. Cath. or Prot. : REL
45. Christmas eave decor : ICICLE
46. “The agreement is off” : NO DEAL
47. Take wing : AVIATE
48. Rather put out : PEEVED
49. Starlike flowers : ASTERS
53. Figure-eight steps, in an Argentine tango : OCHOS
54. Posterior : HIND
55. Acidic : SOUR
56. Draped garment : TOGA
57. FG’s three : PTS
58. Exist : ARE
59. Many a “Call the Midwife” character : NUN

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