LA Times Crossword Answers 5 Jun 2018, Tuesday

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Constructed by: Samuel A. Donaldson
Edited by: Rich Norris

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Today’s Reveal Answer: Loss Leaders

Each of today’s themed answers starts with a word that is often seen just on front of (LEADING) the word “LOSS”:

  • 58A. Retail come-ons … and what the starts of the longest Across answers can be? : LOSS LEADERS
  • 17A. Gym bar addition : WEIGHT PLATE (giving “weight loss”)
  • 24A. Fairness principle for bandwidth providers : NET NEUTRALITY (giving “net loss”)
  • 36A. Judicial fact finder : HEARING EXAMINER (giving “hearing loss”)
  • 48A. What a crossword clue typically starts with : CAPITAL LETTER (giving “capital loss”)

Bill’s time: 6m 52s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Plunk down in front of, as a counter : SIT AT

When we sit at a “counter” in a diner say, there’s a connection with money lenders. Back in the mid-1300s, a counter was the table used by a money lender doing business. The term came into English from Latin via French, ultimately from “computare” meaning “to count”.

6. 1-BR listings : APTS

An apartment (apt) might have one bedroom (br)

10. Ph.D. wannabe’s obstacle : GRE

Passing the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is usually a requirement for entry into graduate school here in the US.

13. Heart chambers : ATRIA

The heart has four chambers. The two upper chambers (the atria) accept deoxygenated blood from the body and oxygenated blood from the lungs. The atria squeeze the blood into the two lower chambers of the heart (the ventricles), “priming” the pump, as it were. One ventricle pumps deoxygenated blood to the lungs, and the other pumps oxygenated blood to the rest of the body.

14. Blue Ribbon beer : PABST

Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) is the most recognizable brand of beer from the Pabst Brewing Company. There appears to be some dispute over whether or not Pabst beer ever won a “blue ribbon” prize, but the company claims that it did so at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. The beer was originally called Pabst Best Select, and then just Pabst Select. With the renaming to Blue Ribbon, the beer was sold with an actual blue ribbon tied around the neck of the bottle until it was dropped in 1916 and incorporated into the label.

19. In days of yore : AGO

We use the word “yore” to mean “time long past” as in “the days of yore”. “Yore” comes from the Old English words for “of years”.

21. Seat of Allen County, Kansas : IOLA

Iola is a city in Southeast Kansas. The city is named for Iola, wife of J. F. Colburn, one of the owners of the land that was chosen as a site for the town in the late 1850s.

22. Pricey watch : ROLEX

My most-prized possession is a beautiful stainless steel Rolex watch that my uncle bought while serving with the RAF in Canada during WWII. Rolex watches were made available to the Canadian servicemen at that time as they were shipping overseas. My uncle brought his Rolex home to Ireland after the war. He needed money for booze one weekend and so sold the watch to my Dad, for five pounds. My Dad gave it to me just before he died, as he knew I loved the watch, and my brothers weren’t interested in it all. Not so long ago I had the watch appraised ($3,000), and my brothers suddenly took a liking to it! Still, it’s not something that will ever be sold, that’s for sure …

24. Fairness principle for bandwidth providers : NET NEUTRALITY (giving “net loss”)

The principle of Net neutrality holds that those entities managing the Internet should treat all data passing through equally. The term “Net neutrality” was coined in 2003 by Tim Wu, a media law professor at Columbia University. Net neutrality is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the US.

28. Dodos : NINNIES

The dodo was a direct relative of the pigeon and dove, although the fully-grown dodo was usually three feet tall. One of the reasons the dodo comes to mind when we think of extinction of a species, is that it disappeared not too long ago (last recorded alive in 1681) and humans were the reason for its demise. The dodo lived exclusively on the island of Mauritius and when man arrived, we cut back the forests that were its home. We also introduced domestic animals, such as dogs and pigs, that ransacked the dodo’s nests. The dodo was deemed to be an awkward flightless bird and so the term “dodo” has come to mean a dull-witted person.

31. “__ Baby”: “Hair” song : ABIE

The full name of the famed show from the sixties is “Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical”. This controversial work outraged many when it was first performed in the sixties, as it attacked many aspects of life at the time. For example, the song “Air” is a satirical look at pollution, sung by a character who comes onto the stage wearing a gas mask. The opening lines are “Welcome, sulfur dioxide. Hello carbon monoxide. The air … is everywhere”. How things have changed in fifty years said he … satirically …

32. Genie’s offering : WISH

The “genie” in the bottle takes his or her name from “djinn”. “Djinns” were various spirits considered lesser than angels, with people exhibiting unsavory characteristics said to be possessed by djinn. When the book “The Thousand and One Nights” was translated into French, the word “djinn” was transformed into the existing word “génie”, because of the similarity in sound and the related spiritual meaning. This “génie” from the Arabian tale became confused with the Latin-derived “genius”, a guardian spirit thought to be assigned to each person at birth. Purely as a result of that mistranslation the word genie has come to mean the “djinn” that pops out of the bottle. A little hard to follow, I know, but still quite interesting …

33. Hoppy beer, for short : IPA

India pale ale (IPA) is a style of beer that originated in England. The beer was originally intended for transportation from England to India, hence the name.

The foodstuff that we call “hops” are actually the female flower of the hop plant. The main use of hops is to add flavor to beer. The town in which I live here in California used to be home to the largest hop farm in the whole world. Most of the harvested hops were exported all the way to the breweries of London, where they could fetch the best price.

41. Mo. port on the Miss. : STL

The city of St. Louis, Missouri was settled by French explorers in 1763. Sitting on the Mississippi River, it grew into a very busy port. By the 1850s, it was the second busiest port in the country, with only New York moving more freight. St. Louis was named for Louis IX of France. Louis was canonized in 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII, and was the only French king to be declared a saint.

42. Mark Harmon TV series : NCIS

NCIS is the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which investigates crimes in the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. The service gives its name to the CBS TV show “NCIS”, a spin-off drama from “JAG” in which the main “NCIS” characters were first introduced. The big star in “NCIS” is the actor Mark Harmon. “NCIS” is now a franchise, with spin-off shows “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “NCIS: New Orleans”.

Actor Mark Harmon is best known today for playing the lead in the drama show “NCIS”. Harmon played a similar character for several episodes on “The West Wing”. Mark is the son of a football star Tom Harmon, and was the brother-in-law of rock and roll star Ricky Nelson and automotive executive John DeLorean (through his sisters). Harmon has been married since 1987 to actress Pam Dawber, who played the female title role on “Mork & Mindy”.

43. “Now!” in the ER : STAT!

The exact etymology of “stat”, a term meaning “immediately” in the medical profession, seems to have been lost in the mists of time. It probably comes from the Latin “statim” meaning “to a standstill, immediately”. A blog reader has helpfully suggested that the term may also come from the world of laboratory analysis, where the acronym STAT stands for “short turn-around time”.

44. Ruler until 1917 : TSAR

The year 1917 saw two revolutions in Russia, with the pair collectively called “the Russian Revolution”. As a result of the February Revolution that centered on Petrograd, the last Emperor of Russia (Tsar Nicholas II) abdicated and members of the Imperial parliament took control of the country, forming the Russian Provisional Government. The Provisional Government was itself overthrown in the October Revolution, which was led by Vladimir Lenin and the Bolshevik party.

45. iPad and Kindle Fire : TABLETS

The groundbreaking iPad was introduced by Apple in 2010. The iOS-based iPads dominated the market for tablet computers until 2013, when Android-based tablets (manufactured by several companies) took over the number-one spot.

Amazon’s Kindle line of e-book readers was introduced in 2007. The name “kindle” was chosen to evoke images of “lighting a fire” through reading and intellectual stimulation. I bought myself a Kindle Fire HD a few years ago. I’ve started reading e-books for the first time in my life, as well as enjoying other computing options available with the tablet device …

48. What a crossword clue typically starts with : CAPITAL LETTER (giving “capital loss”)

Arthur Wynne is generally credited with the invention of what we now known as a crossword puzzle. Wynne was born in Liverpool, England and emigrated to the US when he was 19-years-old. He worked as a journalist and was living in Cedar Grove, New Jersey in 1913 when he introduced a “Word-Cross Puzzle” in his page of puzzles written for the “New York World”. The first book of crossword puzzles was published by Shuster & Shuster, in 1924. The collection of puzzles was a huge hit, and crosswords were elevated to the level of “a craze” in 1924 and 1925.

53. Out of the wind : ALEE

Alee is the direction away from the wind. If a sailor points into the wind, he or she is pointing aweather.

58. Retail come-ons … and what the starts of the longest Across answers can be? : LOSS LEADERS

A loss leader is an item of merchandise that is sold at a loss in order to draw in customers, with the intent of selling goods at a profitable price.

62. “Live __”: Taco Bell slogan : MAS

Taco Bell was founded by a former US Marine, 25-year-old Glen Bell. His first restaurant was Bell’s Drive-In, located in Southern California. After opening that first establishment, Bell bought up some more restaurants including four named El Taco. He sold off the El Taco restaurants but used the name in part when he opened his first Taco Bell in 1962. Bell sold then sold franchises, with the 100th Taco Bell opening in 1967. The ex-Marine sold off the whole chain to PepsiCo in 1978, and I am guessing he made a pretty penny. Taco Bell has been using the “Live Más” slogan since 2012, with “más” being the Spanish word for “more”.

63. Take off the TiVo : ERASE

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

64. Lustrous furs : MINKS

There are two species of mink extant, the European Mink and the American Mink. There used to be a Sea Mink which was much larger than its two cousins, but it was hunted to extinction (for its fur) in the late 1800s. American Minks are farmed over in Europe for fur, and animal rights activists have released many of these animals into the wild when raiding mink farms. As a result the European Mink population has declined due to the presence of its larger and more adaptable American cousin.

66. Mannerless one : BOOR

Back in the early 1500s, a boor was a rustic person, a peasant farmer, someone associated with the countryside. The term “boor” ultimately comes from the Latin “bos” meaning “cow, ox”. By the mid-1500s, someone described as boorish was considered rude in manner, which is our usage today.

Down

2. Southern coast-to-coast hwy. : I-TEN

I-10 is the most southerly of the interstate routes that cross from the Atlantic right to the Pacific. I-10 stretches from Santa Monica, California to Jacksonville, Florida. Various stretches of the route have been given different names, for example, the Rosa Parks Freeway, the Santa Monica Freeway, the San Bernardino Freeway and the Christopher Columbus Transcontinental Highway.

4. 2008 bailout co. : AIG

AIG is the American International Group, a giant insurance corporation. After repeated bailouts by American taxpayers starting in 2008, the company made some serious PR blunders by spending large amounts of money on executive entertainment and middle management rewards. These included a $444,000 California retreat, an $86,000 hunting trip in England, and a $343,000 getaway to a luxury resort in Phoenix. Poor judgment, I’d say …

5. South Pacific getaway : TAHITI

Tahiti is the most populous island in French Polynesia, which is located in the central Southern Pacific. Although Captain Cook landed in Tahiti in 1769, he wasn’t the first European to do so. However, Cook’s visit was the most significant in that it heralded a whole spate of European visitors, who brought with them prostitution, venereal disease and alcohol. Included among the subsequent visitors was the famous HMS Bounty under the charge of Captain Bligh.

7. Micronesian setting for the 10th season of “Survivor” : PALAU

Palau is a tiny island nation lying 500 miles east of the Philippines, and 2,000 miles south of Japan. Palau was once a Spanish possession and was sold by Spain to Germany in the late 19th century. During WWI, Japan invaded the islands (Japan had declared war on Germany) and was awarded the islands as a territory by the League of Nations at the end of hostilities. In WWII the US took Palau from the Japanese in a bloody battle in 1944. Palau emerged from American administration in 1994 and is now a sovereign state.

The reality show “Survivor” is based on a Swedish television series created in 1997 called “Expedition Robinson”.

8. Letters in an incomplete schedule : TBA

Something not yet on the schedule (“sked” or “sched.”) is to be advised/announced (TBA).

9. Retired flier, briefly : SST

The most famous supersonic transport (SST) is the retired Concorde. Concorde was developed and produced under an Anglo-French treaty by France’s Aérospatiale and the UK’s British Aircraft Corporation (BAC). Concordes were mainly operated by Air France and British Airways, with both companies buying the planes with substantial subsidies from the French and British governments. The final Concorde flight was a British Airways plane that landed in the UK on 26 November 2003.

10. Ex-U.N. head Boutros-__ : GHALI

Boutros Boutros-Ghali is an Egyptian diplomat, and the sixth Secretary-General of the United Nations. Boutros-Ghali was nominated for a second term as Secretary-General in 1996, but the US used its right of veto to block the appointment. According to senior delegates, the US wasn’t too happy with his handling of the international crisis in Bosnia.

11. Thesaurus compiler : ROGET

Peter Mark Roget was an English lexicographer. Roget was an avid maker of lists, apparently using the routine of list-making to combat depression, a condition he endured for most of his life. He published his famous thesaurus in 1852, with revisions and expansions being made years later by his son, and then in turn by his grandson.

15. Resistance unit equal to one trillion of the basic units : TERAOHM

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 school kid knows as Ohm’s Law.

The prefix “tera-” signifies a trillion, and comes from the Greek word “teras” meaning “monster”.

23. Yellowstone’s __ Faithful : OLD

Old Faithful is a geyser in Yellowstone National Park. It erupts almost every 63 minutes on the nose, making it one of the most predictable geographic features on the planet. It was this predictability that led to the name “Old Faithful”. In the early days of Yellowstone’s existence as a park, the geyser was used as a laundry. Dirty linen clothing was placed in the geyser’s crater during the quiet period. The clothing was ejected during the eruption, thoroughly washed.

25. Cabinet dept. concerned with nukes : ENER

The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) was set up right after WWII in 1946, with the aim of promoting the peaceful use of atomic energy. Establishing the AEC was a significant move made by President Truman, as it passed control of atomic energy from the military to the civilian sector. The AEC continued to operate until 1974 when its functions were divided up into two new agencies: the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Energy Research and Development Administration (NRDA). The NRDA was merged with the Federal Energy Administration in 1977 to form the Department of Energy.

26. Candy from Mars : TWIX

I remember Twix bars from way back in 1967 when they were introduced in the British Isles. Twix bars made it to the US over a decade later, in 1979. The name “Twix” is a portmanteau of “twin bix”, short for “twin biscuit”.

27. Rights icon Parks : ROSA

Rosa Parks was one of a few brave women in days gone by who refused to give up their seats on a bus to white women. It was the stand taken by Rosa Parks on December 1, 1955 that sparked the Montgomery, Alabama Bus Boycott. President Clinton presented Ms. Parks with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1996. When she died in 2005, Rosa Parks became the first ever woman to have her body lie in honor in the US Capitol Rotunda.

32. “Rushmore” director Anderson : WES

Film director Wes Anderson’s most famous movie is probably “The Royal Tenenbaums” that was released in 2001, and is not my favorite film by any stretch. However, Anderson’s 2007 release “The Darjeeling Limited”, that I enjoyed.

“Rushmore” is a 1998 comedy-drama film co-written Owen Wilson and Wes Anderson, with the later also directing. Lead roles are played by Jason Schwartzman, Olivia Williams and Bill Murray.

34. Bog fuel : PEAT

When dead plant matter accumulates in marshy areas, it may not fully decay due to a lack of oxygen or acidic conditions. We are familiar with this in Ireland, because this decaying matter can form peat, and we have lots and lots of peat bogs.

35. “Fine” studies : ARTS

The term “fine art” is reserved for art created purely for its beauty and aesthetic appeal. Examples of fine art would be painting, sculpture and music. “Applied art” describes the application of design and decoration to render everyday objects aesthetically pleasing. Examples of applied arts would be industrial design and fashion design.

38. Frozen Four org. : NCAA

The semi-finals and finals of the NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Championship tournaments are collectively referred to as the “Frozen Four”. This term is a play on “Final Four”, which is the name given to the final of rounds of the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship tournament.

45. Penn’s silent partner : TELLER

The illusionist Teller, of Penn & Teller, was born Raymond Teller in Philadelphia, although has legally changed his name so simply “Teller”. Teller decided not to speak during his performances way back in his youth. He was doing magic at college fraternity parties and discovered that by remaining silent the potentially rowdy audience focused on his act and refrained from throwing beer at him!

48. Pink drink, for short : COSMO

Like so many famous cocktails, the actual origins of the cosmopolitan are disputed. It is a nice drink. One of the standard recipes is 4 parts citrus vodka, 1.5 parts Cointreau, 1.5 parts lime juice and 3 parts cranberry juice.

51. Catcher at a rodeo : LASSO

Our English word “lasso” comes from the Spanish “lazo”, and ultimately from the Latin “laqueum” meaning “noose, snare”.

60. __ Paulo, Brazil : SAO

São Paulo is the largest city in Brazil. It is also the city with the highest number of helicopters in the world. This is partly driven by the horrendous traffic jams in São Paulo, but also by the wealthy having a very real fear of being kidnapped on the city’s streets.

61. Yahtzee cube : DIE

The dice game called Yahtzee was introduced in 1956 and is a variant of earlier dice games, especially the game “Yacht” (which even has a similar name). Yahtzee is required playing in our house at holidays. The game involves the rolling of five dice, with the intent of getting certain combinations. A lot of those combinations resemble poker hands, such as “three of a kind”, “four of a kind” and “full house”.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Plunk down in front of, as a counter : SIT AT
6. 1-BR listings : APTS
10. Ph.D. wannabe’s obstacle : GRE
13. Heart chambers : ATRIA
14. Blue Ribbon beer : PABST
16. Short flight : HOP
17. Gym bar addition : WEIGHT PLATE (giving “weight loss”)
19. In days of yore : AGO
20. Opposite of SSW : NNE
21. Seat of Allen County, Kansas : IOLA
22. Pricey watch : ROLEX
24. Fairness principle for bandwidth providers : NET NEUTRALITY (giving “net loss”)
28. Dodos : NINNIES
30. Lumber : WOOD
31. “__ Baby”: “Hair” song : ABIE
32. Genie’s offering : WISH
33. Hoppy beer, for short : IPA
36. Judicial fact finder : HEARING EXAMINER (giving “hearing loss”)
41. Mo. port on the Miss. : STL
42. Mark Harmon TV series : NCIS
43. “Now!” in the ER : STAT!
44. Ruler until 1917 : TSAR
45. iPad and Kindle Fire : TABLETS
48. What a crossword clue typically starts with : CAPITAL LETTER (giving “capital loss”)
52. “I didn’t expect to see you here” : OH HEY
53. Out of the wind : ALEE
54. Itinerary word : VIA
57. Habitat of many schools : SEA
58. Retail come-ons … and what the starts of the longest Across answers can be? : LOSS LEADERS
62. “Live __”: Taco Bell slogan : MAS
63. Take off the TiVo : ERASE
64. Lustrous furs : MINKS
65. Poetic tribute : ODE
66. Mannerless one : BOOR
67. Behold, of old : SEEST

Down

1. Like lumber : SAWN
2. Southern coast-to-coast hwy. : I-TEN
3. Occurring every third year : TRIENNIAL
4. 2008 bailout co. : AIG
5. South Pacific getaway : TAHITI
6. Orchard fruit : APPLES
7. Micronesian setting for the 10th season of “Survivor” : PALAU
8. Letters in an incomplete schedule : TBA
9. Retired flier, briefly : SST
10. Ex-U.N. head Boutros-__ : GHALI
11. Thesaurus compiler : ROGET
12. Hobbyist’s glue : EPOXY
15. Resistance unit equal to one trillion of the basic units : TERAOHM
18. Musical quality : TONE
23. Yellowstone’s __ Faithful : OLD
25. Cabinet dept. concerned with nukes : ENER
26. Candy from Mars : TWIX
27. Rights icon Parks : ROSA
28. Casual denials : NAHS
29. “Su-r-r-r-re” : I BET
32. “Rushmore” director Anderson : WES
33. Play peacemaker : INTERVENE
34. Bog fuel : PEAT
35. “Fine” studies : ARTS
37. Current, as fashion : IN STYLE
38. Frozen Four org. : NCAA
39. Lass : GIRL
40. 5-Down or 7-Down : ISLE
44. Deadlock : TIE
45. Penn’s silent partner : TELLER
46. Perfectly, with “to” : A TEE
47. Backup squads : B-TEAMS
48. Pink drink, for short : COSMO
49. On the horizon : AHEAD
50. Temporary stage : PHASE
51. Catcher at a rodeo : LASSO
55. Really gets to : IRKS
56. Certain prof.’s designation : ASST
59. Poetic planet : ORB
60. __ Paulo, Brazil : SAO
61. Yahtzee cube : DIE

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