LA Times Crossword 16 Jan 19, Wednesday

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Constructed by: Susan Gelfand
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Car Interiors

Themed answers include CAR models as hidden words, shown by the circled letters in the grid:

  • 57A. Passenger compartments, and an apt description of this puzzle’s circles : CAR INTERIORS
  • 20A. “The Iceman Cometh” playwright : EUGENE O’NEILL (hiding “Neon”)
  • 28A. Sir Winston Churchill’s ancestral home : BLENHEIM PALACE (hiding “Impala”)
  • 39A. Victim of Artemis, in some accounts : ORION (hiding “Rio”)
  • 47A. Cocoa butter treat : WHITE CHOCOLATE (hiding “Echo”)

Bill’s time: 6m 54s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Aesop’s “The __ in the Lion’s Skin” : ASS

“The Ass in the Lion’s Skin” is one of “Aesop’s Fables”. In the most common version of the tale, an ass dons the skin of a lion in order to terrify other animals. His plan is successful until he encounters a fox. The fox recognizes the braying sound made by the ass, and so is not fooled. The moral of the story is usually cited as:

Clothes may disguise a fool, but his words will always give him away.

15. “Star Wars” critter : EWOK

The Ewoks are creatures that live on the moon of Endor in the “Star Wars” universe. First appearing in “Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi”, they’re the cute and cuddly little guys that look like teddy bears.

17. “Don’t know yet,” on skeds : TBA

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

18. iPad model : MINI

The iPad mini is line of smaller iPads that was introduced by Apple in 2012. The iPad mini has a screen size of 7.9 inches, whereas the regular iPad’s screen is 9.7 inches.

20. “The Iceman Cometh” playwright : EUGENE O’NEILL (hiding “Neon”)

The playwright Eugene O’Neill was born in a New York City hotel room in what is now called Times Square, in 1888. That building no longer exists and there is a Starbucks on the site today, but you can go take a look at the commemorative plaque at the Northeast corner of 43rd and Broadway. O’Neill died in 1953, in room 401 of the Sheraton Hotel on Bay State Road in Boston. His last words were, “I knew it. I knew it. Born in a hotel room, and God damn it, died in a hotel room.” Eugene O’Neill won a Pulitzer for his play “Anna Christie”.

“The Iceman Cometh” is a play written by American playwright Eugene O’Neill that was first performed in 1946 on Broadway. The play centers on some down-and-out men in a shabby saloon in Manhattan. The title is a reference to the “iceman”, the man who would have delivered ice to homes back in the time of the play. The reference is to a bawdy joke in which the “iceman” was having an affair with someone’s wife.

The Neon was made by Chrysler from 1994 to 2005. It was introduced to the rest of the world as the Chrysler Neon, but was sold under the Dodge and Plymouth brands in the US.

23. Emmy category : DRAMA

The Emmy Awards are the television equivalent of the Oscars from the world of film, the Grammy Awards in music and the Tony Awards for the stage. Emmy Awards are presented throughout the year, depending on the sector of television being honored. The most famous of these ceremonies are the Primetime Emmy Awards and the Daytime Emmy Awards. The distinctive name of “Emmy” is a softened version of the word “immy”, the nickname given to the video camera tubes found in old television cameras.

24. Fed. accounting agency : OMB

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is the successor to the Bureau of the Budget that was formed in 1970 during the Nixon administration. The main task of the OMB is to prepare the budget for the federal government. The Director of the OMB is a member of the Cabinet.

28. Sir Winston Churchill’s ancestral home : BLENHEIM PALACE (hiding “Impala”)

Blenheim Palace is a magnificent country house in Oxfordshire, England that was constructed by the Crown for John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough. The grant was a reward for the duke’s military victories in the War of Spanish Succession, and in particular in the 1704 Battle of Blenheim. The 1st Duke of Marlborough’s most famous descendent was Sir Winston Churchill, who was born in the palace in 1874.

34. High-end 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 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 …

39. Victim of Artemis, in some accounts : ORION (hiding “Rio”)

According to Greek mythology, Orion was a giant hunter who was placed in the night sky by Zeus, the king of the gods. Orion is very recognizable as a constellation, especially with the three bright stars known as “Orion’s Belt”. Additionally, the brightest star in the sky, Sirius, is said to be Orion’s hunting dog, and this star sits at Orion’s “foot”.

Artemis was an ancient Greek goddess, and the equivalent of the Roman goddess Diana. Artemis was also a daughter of Zeus and Leto, and the twin sister of Apollo. Among other things, she was the goddess of the hunt, and so often is depicted carrying a bow and arrows.

Kia have making the subcompact model called a Rio since 2000.

45. “NFL on CBS” sportscaster Gumbel : GREG

Greg Gumbel is a sportscaster. Greg is the older brother of TV journalist and sportscaster Bryant Gumbel.

47. Cocoa butter treat : WHITE CHOCOLATE (hiding “Echo”)

Ground cocoa beans are melted to form chocolate liquor. Chocolate liquor comprises roughly 50% cocoa butter, and 50% cocoa solids. It is the cocoa solids that give chocolate its dark color. White chocolate is white because it contains no cocoa solids.

The Yaris is a subcompact car made by Toyota since 1999. The Yaris was sold into some markets from 1999 to 2005 as the Toyota Echo. The name “Yaris” was inspired by the Charites (singular “Charis”), the Greek goddesses of charm and beauty.

54. “__-ching!” : CHA

The interjection “cha-ching!” is used to celebrate a windfall, lots of money. The term is imitative of the sound made by a mechanical cash register when ringing up a transaction. “Cha-ching!” was popularized by the 1992 movie “Wayne’s World”. It was also used around the same time in a TV spot for Rally’s hamburgers that featured a young Seth Green.

61. Italian sub meat : SALAMI

“Salame” (note the letter E at the end) is an Italian sausage that is traditionally associated with the peasant classes. The meat in the sausage is preserved with salt, and it can be hung and stored for as long as ten years. The name “salame” comes from “sale”, the Italian word for salt, and “-ame”, a suffix indicating a collective noun. Our English word “salami” is actually the Italian plural for “salame”.

65. Stroller rider : TOT

The baby carriages that we know as “strollers” over her in North America are more usually referred to “pushchairs” or “buggies” in Britain and Ireland.

67. British singer __ Ora : RITA

Rita Ora is a British singer who was born in Pristina, Yugoslavia. She was born “Rita Sahatçiu” to Albanian parents. The family name “Sahatçiu” comes from a Turkish word meaning “watchmaker”. Rita’s parents changed their name to make it easier to pronounce. So, they moved from “watchmaker” to “Ora”, the Albanian word for “time”.

68. “True Detective” network : HBO

“True Detective” is a crime drama made by HBO that has an interesting format. Each series has its own narrative and cast. The show seems to be attracting some great actors. The first season was led by Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, and the second by Colin Farrell and Rachel McAdams.

Down

2. Commuter’s destination : SUBURB

Our verb “to commute”, meaning “to go back and forth to work”, ultimately derives from the Latin “commutare”, meaning “to often change”. Back in the late 1800s, a “commutation ticket” was a season pass, so named because it allowed one to “change” one kind of payment into another. Quite interesting …

3. Action star Steven : SEAGAL

Steven Seagal is known in the US as a martial artist turned actor. Seagal started his career as an Aikido instructor in Japan and was the first foreigner to operate an Aikido dojo in that country.

4. Leftover : REMNANT

A remnant is a small part that’s left over from something larger. The term comes from the Latin “remanour” meaning “to remain”. So, a “remnant” is something “remaining”.

6. Irish singer/philanthropist : BONO

Irish singer Bono is a Dubliner who was born Paul David Hewson. As a youth, Hewson was given the nickname “Bono Vox” by a friend, a Latin expression meaning “good voice”, and so the singer has been known as Bono since the late seventies. His band’s first name was “Feedback”, later changed to “The Hype”. The band members searched for yet another name and chose U2 from a list of six names suggested by a friend. They picked U2 because it was the name they disliked least …

7. Onion exterior : SKIN

I hear that there’s a rumor going around that an onion is a fruit. Well, a fruit, by definition, bears a seed or multiple seeds. Onion bulbs have no seeds. Onions are vegetables.

10. Blue, in Barcelona : AZUL

In Spanish, “el mar” (the sea) is “azul” (blue) and is full of “agua” (water).

Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain, after the capital Madrid. Barcelona is the largest European city that sits on the Mediterranean coast. It is also the capital city of the autonomous community of Catalonia.

11. Insect egg : NIT

A nit is the egg of a louse.

Lice (singular “louse”) are small wingless insects of which there are thousands of species, three of which are human disease agents. The three kinds of lice affecting humans are head lice, body lice and pubic lice. Most lice feed on dead skin found on the body of the host animal, although some feed on blood. Ick …

12. Chute opening? : CEE

The first letter in the word “chute” is a letter C (cee).

21. Suffix with morph : -EME

“Morpheme” is a term used in linguistics. A morpheme is a language’s smallest grammatical unit. A word may have several morphemes. A prefix such as “un-” is an example of a morpheme in English, as is the letter “s” added at the end of a word to make a plural.

22. Around the 30th: Abbr. : EOM

End of month (EOM)

31. “The Princess Bride” swordsman __ Montoya : INIGO

In the William Goldsmith novel “The Princess Bride”, the title character is kidnapped by a trio of outlaws that includes fencing master Inigo Montoya. In the 1987 film adaptation, Montoya is played by Mandy Patinkin.

35. Top-grossing film of 1975 : JAWS

“Jaws” is a thrilling 1975 movie directed by Steven Spielberg that is based on a novel of the same name by Peter Benchley. The film has a powerful cast, led by Roy Scheider, Richard Dreyfuss and Robert Shaw. “Jaws” was perhaps the first “summer blockbuster” with the highest box office take in history up to that time, which was a record that stood until “Star Wars” was released two years later.

37. Tube rider, perhaps : BRIT

The official name “London Underground” is a little deceptive, as over half of the track system-wide is actually “over ground”, with the underground sections reserved for the central areas. It is the oldest subway system in the world, having opened in 1863. It was also the first system to use electric rolling stock, in 1890. “The Tube”, as it is known by Londoners, isn’t the longest subway system in the world though. That honor belongs to the Shanghai Metro. My personal favorite part of the Tube is the Tube map! It is a marvel of design …

40. Tolkien creature : ORC

According to Tolkien, Orcs are small humanoids that live in his fantasy world of Middle-earth (also called “Mordor”). They are very ugly and dirty, and are fond of eating human flesh.

41. “The Matrix” hero : NEO

Neo is the character played by Keanu Reeves in “The Matrix” series of films.

The 1999 movie sensation “The Matrix” was meant to be set in a nondescript urban environment. It was actually shot in Australia, as one of the co-producers of the film was the Australian company, Village Roadshow Pictures. You can pick up all sorts of clues about the location when watching the film, including a view of Sydney Harbour Bridge in a background shot. Also, traffic drives along on the left and there are signs for the “lift” instead of an “elevator”.

44. Literally pulls up stakes : DECAMPS

Those would be tent stakes, tent pegs.

46. Give the evil eye : GLARE AT

The evil eye is a curse that is cast by giving a malicious glare.

48. Resurrection figure : CHRIST

In the Christian tradition, it is believed that three days after Jesus was put to death, he rose from the dead. Christians commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus on Good Friday, and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday, two days later.

50. “True Detective” star Mahershala __ : ALI

Mahershala Ali is an actor and sometime rapper. Among the more memorable roles Ali has had are lobbyist Remy Danton in TV’s “House of Cards”, and Colonel Boggs in “The Hunger Games” series of movies. He also won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for playing Juan in the 2016 drama “Moonlight”.

“True Detective” is a crime drama made by HBO that has an interesting format. Each series has its own narrative and cast. The show seems to be attracting some great actors. The first season was led by Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, and the second by Colin Farrell and Rachel McAdams.

58. Lightweight ball brand : NERF

Nerf is soft material used in a whole series of toys designed for “safe” play indoors. The Nerf product is used to make darts, balls and ammunition for toy guns. “NERF” is an acronym, standing for Non-Expanding Recreational Foam.

60. “¿Cómo __ usted?” : ESTA

“¿Cómo está usted?” is the more formal way of asking “How are you?” in Spanish.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Aesop’s “The __ in the Lion’s Skin” : ASS
4. Rips off : ROBS
8. Batter’s position : STANCE
14. Phone ringing onstage, perhaps : CUE
15. “Star Wars” critter : EWOK
16. More homey : COZIER
17. “Don’t know yet,” on skeds : TBA
18. iPad model : MINI
19. Ways to go : ROUTES
20. “The Iceman Cometh” playwright : EUGENE O’NEILL (hiding “Neon”)
23. Emmy category : DRAMA
24. Fed. accounting agency : OMB
25. Winery vessel : VAT
28. Sir Winston Churchill’s ancestral home : BLENHEIM PALACE (hiding “Impala”)
33. Pulled in different directions : TORN
34. High-end watch : ROLEX
35. Quick punches : JABS
39. Victim of Artemis, in some accounts : ORION (hiding “Rio”)
42. Cream of the crop : BEST
43. Pungent : ACRID
45. “NFL on CBS” sportscaster Gumbel : GREG
47. Cocoa butter treat : WHITE CHOCOLATE (hiding “Echo”)
53. Stage background : SET
54. “__-ching!” : CHA
55. Single-handed : ALONE
57. Passenger compartments, and an apt description of this puzzle’s circles : CAR INTERIORS
61. Italian sub meat : SALAMI
64. Facility : EASE
65. Stroller rider : TOT
66. Gets dolled up : PRIMPS
67. British singer __ Ora : RITA
68. “True Detective” network : HBO
69. Certify : ATTEST
70. No longer fizzy : FLAT
71. “Uh-huh” : YEP

Down

1. Played the part : ACTED
2. Commuter’s destination : SUBURB
3. Action star Steven : SEAGAL
4. Leftover : REMNANT
5. Toddler’s scrape, to the toddler : OWIE
6. Irish singer/philanthropist : BONO
7. Onion exterior : SKIN
8. Act frugally : SCRIMP
9. Handy strip of computer icons : TOOLBAR
10. Blue, in Barcelona : AZUL
11. Insect egg : NIT
12. Chute opening? : CEE
13. Stumbling sounds : ERS
21. Suffix with morph : -EME
22. Around the 30th: Abbr. : EOM
25. Low-lying area : VALE
26. Breezes through : ACES
27. Written words : TEXT
29. Follower of boo, woo or yoo : -HOO
30. Choose answer (a) instead of (b), say : ERR
31. “The Princess Bride” swordsman __ Montoya : INIGO
32. Arcing shot : LOB
35. Top-grossing film of 1975 : JAWS
36. Ice pack target : ACHE
37. Tube rider, perhaps : BRIT
38. Grab a chair : SIT
40. Tolkien creature : ORC
41. “The Matrix” hero : NEO
44. Literally pulls up stakes : DECAMPS
46. Give the evil eye : GLARE AT
48. Resurrection figure : CHRIST
49. Japanese yes : HAI
50. “True Detective” star Mahershala __ : ALI
51. Like some grins : TOOTHY
52. Dress for the choir : ENROBE
56. Legally prohibit : ESTOP
57. Got to the party : CAME
58. Lightweight ball brand : NERF
59. Shadow : TAIL
60. “¿Cómo __ usted?” : ESTA
61. Massage venue : SPA
62. Hotel lobby display : ART
63. Illuminated : LIT

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16 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 16 Jan 19, Wednesday”

  1. LAT: 9:15, no errors. WSJ: 16:02, 6 errors. Pretty difficult. Big headline on this one is that Mike Shenk actually outed himself as opposed to the other 40% of the WSJ puzzles (total!) he did where he used a pseudonym. Newsday: 5:35, no errors.

    I’m sure there’s some fatigue hangover from doing the 50×50 in (mostly, had to take care of the laundry) one session yesterday morning.

  2. You need to know what a morpheme is to solve this … puzzle (down answers EME and EOM are needed to ensure the correct spelling of Churchill’s old home place, you see). There’s little more to be said for it — although crossing the “Princess Bride” swordsman with Artemis’s alleged victim at the dead center of it was … something.

  3. LAT 22:47 with one error. I spelled cozier with an s.
    NYT#1212 38:02 with no errors.
    I have tried everything you guys have suggested and still can’t get Bills NYT blog on this iPad so Rex Parker will have to do.

  4. LAT: 7:22, no errors. Newsday: 5:28, no errors. WSJ: 14:19, no errors; slightly puzzled by the theme until the very end.

    2017 NYT Super Mega Crossword: 2 hours, 43 minutes, with two … glitches … I refuse to call them outright errors 😜: I somehow left one square unfilled and another square uncorrected and, in both cases, I knew exactly what I thought I had ended up with in the square, so I blame sheer fatigue for the oversights. Again, an easy puzzle except for its size: 2025 squares to be filled in. (The 2018 NYT Super Mega had 2124.)

    I would also point out, by the way, that I found errors in the 2017 puzzle (four errors in clues and one in the grid itself) and one error in the 2018 puzzle (a clue). So I think I’m allowed a glitch or two – perhaps even an outright error or two! – in my solutions … 😳😜🤪

  5. 16:02. Had to overcome a lot of missteps, but I survived. Just kind of been hit and miss for me as far as crosswords go. Just very busy these days. Those of you who lose sleep over my absence can finally get some rest tonight.. 😛

    I knew morphEME from a linguistics class I took in college. I was a physics major in for a tough semester, and I took the linguistics class as it wasn’t going to take a lot of time and was reputed to be an EASY A (crossword staple). It turned out to be a pretty interesting class….learning things like morphemes etc..

    ..and Dave – I’ll take my bottle of Don Julio 1942 anytime…

    Best –

    1. @Jeff … Deal! So … let me see … the last time I was in Las Vegas was Christmas, 1982 … I think … so … any day now … I’ll be in touch … 😜.

      (Actually, my SO has tried to get me to go to Vegas more recently than that, so … who knows? … 😜)

  6. Pretty hard one. 3 omissions and 2 errors in our usual pretty fast time of
    about an hour. Took some changing and some digging in the dictionary.
    I didn’t know Churchill’s ancestral home or Montoya’s first name. Really
    enjoyed that movie a lot. Averaging over 98% for the week; I’ll take it.
    Come on, Thursday; we are waiting for you.

  7. I didn’t know what a MORPHEME is, but I do know that Churchhill was born at Blenheim when his mother went into labor while on a visit.

    Oh, the odd morsels waiting around in the far corners of my mind.

  8. No errors or Googles. The things I don’t know are about young people or sports: ALI, INIGO, RITA, GREG, ORC. The Inigo I know is an Architect named Jones. Had fAme before JAWS. Do people really know the years movies come out? wait til they’re may age.

  9. Mahershala Ali ( or in the formal name form … Maher-shalal-hashbaz Ali Gilmore ..) is far more famous nowadays as Don Shirley, the classical pianist in The Green Book… which is an Oscars favorite and has had fantastic reviews.

    I also knew of Blenheim Palace after reading the autobiography of W Churchill, …. ’Oh My darling Clementine’ .. clementine was his wife’s name…Churchill’s mother was an American.

    Onion do have seeds from the umbels of white flowers … but it’s more convenient and advantageous to replant some of the bulbs…..allium

    There is a black seed spice called kalonji ( Nigella Sativa -) in South Asia also referred to as “onion seeds” …. but are not related to the onion. !!
    When roasted or sautéed, they have a Very strong onion flavor !!! (To be used very very sparingly ,,,,)

    I had a moderately tough time with this puzzle but the big long answers were a big help. I was lucky to guess morpheme ….

    Have s great day tomorrow folks

  10. Pretty tough Wednesday for me, with all kinds of proper nouns; took about 45 minutes with 4 errors. It would’ve been a lot more except for some propitious guesses. Had oRs instead of ERR and lNeGO instead of INIGO.

    Ugh, just ugh, all the way around…and for a Wednesday.

  11. Hi gang!😎

    No errors on a challenging Wednesday. Felt like a Thursday to me, actually. Wasn’t sure of morphEME till I came here. 🤔

    I was thrown by the reveal answer! Couldn’t get past thinking it referred to overhead storage on an airplane.

    Never heard of INIGO anybody….😯

    Sfingi! FWIW I always remember the year movies were released. Its interesting in that it’s a glimpse into a certain time period. I have memorized all the Best Picture Oscar winners by year. Not that I’m big into the Oscars, but over the years I have found it a great way to help me fall asleep !!! Going thru the list is like counting sheep. A strange habit, I guess….most interesting juxtaposition: 1968 — Oliver. 1969 — Midnight Cowboy. 😁

    Be well ~~🥂

  12. Yeah, I was looking up the battle of Blenheim, the namesake of Blenheim Palace…pretty interesting. Also looked up the cars – pretty much all look like Toyota Corollas. Also didn’t know the story of Artemis and Orion – that sneaky, mean Apollo!

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