LA Times Crossword 17 Jan 19, Thursday

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Constructed by: Jeffrey Wechsler
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Lumberjack Phrases

Themed answers are common phrases that end with a word frequently used by lumberjacks:

  • 17A. Lumberjack’s favorite pirate phrase? : SHIVER ME TIMBERS!
  • 22A. Lumberjack’s main interest in naval records? : CAPTAIN’S LOG
  • 36A. Lumberjack’s way to punch an opponent? : RIGHT IN THE CHOPS
  • 45A. Lumberjack’s preferred ABC News reporter? : DIANE SAWYER
  • 55A. Lumberjack’s reaction to an overly hard crossword? : I’M REALLY STUMPED

Bill’s time: 9m 23s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Fear of spiders, usually : PHOBIA

Here are some phobias that I find quite interesting:

  • Somniphobia – fear of falling asleep
  • Coulrophobia – fear of clowns
  • Omphalophobia- fear of the navel
  • Nomophobia- fear of being without mobile phone coverage
  • Triskaidekaphobia- fear of the number 13

7. Google Earth predecessors : ATLASES

The famous Flemish geographer Gerardus Mercator published his first collection of maps in 1578. Mercator’s collection contained a frontispiece with an image of Atlas the Titan from Greek mythology holding up the world on his shoulders. That image gave us our term “atlas” that is used for a book of maps.

14. Aesthetic feature? : SILENT A

The letter A in the word “aesthetic” is a silent A.

16. Hillary supporters : SHERPAS

In the Tibetan language, “Sherpa” means “eastern people” (sher = east, pa = people). Sherpas are an ethnic group from Nepal, but the name is also used for the local guides who assist mountaineers in the Himalayas, and particularly on Mount Everest.

Mount Everest was first summited in 1953 by New Zealander Edmund Hillary and Nepalese sherpa Tenzing Norgay. Hillary and Norgay were part of an expedition from which two pairs of climbers were selected to make a summit attempt. The first pair were Tom Bourdillon and Charles Evans, and they came within 330 feet of their goal but had to turn back. The expedition sent up the second pair two days later, and history was made on 29 May 1953.

17. Lumberjack’s favorite pirate phrase? : SHIVER ME TIMBERS!

The phrase “shiver me timbers” is a mock oath that is often uttered by a pirate in a work of fiction. Most famously, Long John Silver uses the phrase in the 1883 novel “Treasure Island” by Robert Louis Stevenson. The timbers in question are the wooden support frames of a sailing ship.

19. Theater award : TONY

Sardi’s is a famous restaurant in the Theater District of Manhattan that was opened in 1927 by Italian immigrant Vincent Sardi, Sr. Sardi’s is famous for attracting celebrities who sometimes pose for caricatures that are then displayed on the restaurant’s walls. After the death of actress and director Antoinette Perry in 1946, her friend and partner Brock Pemberton was having lunch at Sardi’s and came up with idea of a theater award that could be presented in Perry’s honor. The award was to be called the Tony Award. In fact, Vincent Sardi, Sr. was presented with a special Tony at the first award ceremony, held in 1947.

20. Actor Holm : IAN

English actor Sir Ian Holm is very respected on the stage in the UK, but is better known for his film roles here in the US. Holm played the hobbit Bilbo Baggins in two of the “Lord of the Rings” movies, and he also played the character who turns out be an android in the film “Alien”.

21. Slender Olive : OYL

“Thimble Theater” was the precursor comic strip to the famous “Popeye” drawn by E. C. Segar. Before Popeye came into the story, the brother and sister characters Castor Oyl and Olive Oyl were the protagonists. And then along comes a sailor …

22. Lumberjack’s main interest in naval records? : CAPTAIN’S LOG

The word “logbook” dates back to the days when the captain of a ship kept a daily record of the vessel’s speed, progress etc. using a “log”. A log was a wooden float on a knotted line that was dropped overboard to measure speed through the water.

27. Eero Saarinen’s father : ELIEL

Eliel Saarinen was a Finnish architect who designed entire city districts in Helsinki. He immigrated to the United States where he became famous for his art nouveau designs. He was the father of Eero Saarinen, who was to become even more renowned in America for his designs, including the Dulles International Airport terminal, and the TWA building at JFK.

30. Many Sinatra recordings : LPS

Frank Sinatra was married four times in all. His first wife, and mother of his three children, was Nancy Barbato. Barbato and Sinatra met in Jersey City while in their teens, and married in their early twenties in 1939. They divorced in 1951 following a string of affairs that Sinatra had after he moved his family to Hollywood. One of those very public affairs was with actress Ava Gardner, who became Sinatra’s second wife a few months after divorcing Barbato. That marriage lasted until 1957. Sinatra then married actress Mia Farrow, when she was 21 years old and he was 29 years her senior. That marriage only lasted a couple of years. Sinatra’s last marriage took place in 1976, and was Barbara Blakely Marx, the ex-wife of Zeppo Marx of the Marx Brothers.

33. Gig gear : AMPS

Musicians use “gig” to describe a job, a performance. The term originated in the early 1900s in the world of jazz. The derivative phrase “gig economy” applies to a relatively recent phenomenon where workers find themselves jumping from temporary job to temporary job, from gig to gig.

36. Lumberjack’s way to punch an opponent? : RIGHT IN THE CHOPS

“Chops” is an informal term meaning “jaws, side of the face”.

40. Baltic capital : RIGA

Riga is the capital city of Latvia. The historical center of Riga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, declared as such because of the city’s magnificent examples of Art Nouveau architecture.

43. Toon crime-fighter __ Possible : KIM

“Kim Possible” is an animated Disney TV series for kids that originally ran from 2002 until 2007. The title character is a teenage crimefighter, with a partner named Ron Stoppable.

45. Lumberjack’s preferred ABC News reporter? : DIANE SAWYER

Diane Sawyer was the anchor of the news program “ABC World News” from 2009 until 2014. Sawyer started her career in the Nixon White House where she was hired by the Press Secretary at the time, Ron Ziegler. She worked with Nixon to help him write his memoirs after he left office and helped prepare the ex-president for his famous series of television interviews with David Frost in 1977. Sawyer was married to Mike Nichols, the noted film director, until his passing in 2014.

49. Civil War soldier : REB

During the Civil War, the personification of the Southern states was “Johnny Reb”. The northern equivalent was “Billy Yank”.

50. __ of the woods: mushroom type : HEN

“Hen of the woods” is a common name for the mushroom Grifola frondosa, which also goes by the names “maitake” in Japanese and “signora” in Italian.

51. Athlete who wrote a history of African-American athletes : ASHE

“A Hard Road to Glory: A History of the African-American Athlete” is a 1993 book by Arthur Ashe. Originally published in three volumes, by all accounts “A Hard Road to Glory” is a well-researched and comprehensive history written by the tennis legend.

61. French’s product : MUSTARD

Despite the name, French’s is an American brand of foods. George and Francis French introduced French’s mustard to the world at the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904.

Down

2. Crackers once sold in a red box : HI-HO

Sunshine Biscuits was an independent producer of cookies and crackers that produced Hi-Ho crackers in competition to the successful Ritz brand. In 1996, Sunshine was absorbed by the Keebler Company and Hi-Ho Crackers was on the list of brands that was discontinued because of the merger.

3. Actress Lena : OLIN

Lena Olin is a Swedish actress, and clearly someone who had acting in her blood. Her mother was the actress Britta Holmberg and her father the actor and director Stig Olin. Olin had a very successful career in Sweden, often working with the great Ingmar Bergman. Olin’s breakthrough international and English-speaking role was playing opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” released in 1988. Way back in 1974, the lovely Miss Olin was crowned Miss Scandinavia in a beauty pageant for Nordic women held in Helsinki, Finland. Olin’s most famous performance was in “Chocolat” released in 2000, and then she won an Emmy in 2003 for Best Supporting actress in the TV show “Alias”.

4. Quail group : BEVY

“Bevy” is a collective noun used for a number of types of bird, including quail and swans. “Bevy” is also sometimes used as a collective noun for ladies.

“Quail” is a name used for several chicken-like wild birds. Quail are common prey for hunters.

6. Pertaining to a heart chamber : ATRIAL

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.

7. PEI setting : AST

Atlantic Standard Time (AST) is four hours behind Greenwich Mean Time and one hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time. The list of locations that use AST includes Puerto Rico, Bermuda and the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia.

Prince Edward Island (PEI) is a maritime Canadian province. The island at the center of the province was named for Prince Edward, the fourth son of King George III and the father of Queen Victoria. PEI is the smallest Canadian province, both in terms of land area and population.

8. Meteorologist’s scale: Abbr. : THI

Temperature-humidity index (THI)

9. Veal piccata chef’s needs : LEMONS

The dish named “piccata” originated in Italy, with the traditional meat used being veal. Whatever meat used is sliced and flattened with a tenderizer, seasoned, dredged in flour and browned in a pan. The juices from the pan are the base for the sauce, to which are added lemon juice, white wine, shallots, caper and butter.

10. Contrary to popular belief, its name is not derived from its trademark sandwich : ARBY’S

The Arby’s chain of fast food restaurants was founded in 1964 by two brothers, Forrest and Leroy Raffel. The name “Arby’s” is a homonym of “RB’s”, standing for “Raffel Brothers”. There is a rumor out there that the initials “RB” were chosen for “roast beef”, but that’s not true.

12. “For all in vain comes counsel to his __”: Shak. : EAR

Here are some lines spoken by the Duke of York to John of Gaunt in William Shakespeare’s play “Richard II”:

Vex not yourself, nor strive not with your breath;
For all in vain comes counsel to his ear.

13. Old draft org. : SSS

The US government maintains information on all males who are potentially subject to military conscription, using what is called the Selective Service System (SSS). In the event that a draft was held, men registered would be classified into groups to determine eligibility for service. Class 1-A registrants are those available for unrestricted military service. Other classes are 1-A-O (conscientious objector available for noncombatant service), 4-A (registrant who has completed military service) and 4-D (Minister of religion).

15. Jane Hamilton’s “__ of the World” : A MAP

“A Map of the World” is a 1994 novel by Jane Hamilton that was adapted into a 1999 movie of the same name. Both book and film center on the accidental drowning of a 2-year-old girl in a farm pond.

18. Med. specialist : ENT

Ear, nose and throat specialist (ENT)

22. “__ la vie!” : C’EST

“C’est la vie” is French for “that’s life”.

23. A, as in Athens : ALPHA

The Greek alphabet starts with the letter “alpha”, and ends with the letter “omega”.

24. __ dixit: unproven claim : IPSE

“Ipse dixit” is Latin, a phrase meaning “he himself said it”. The term is used in contemporary English to describe an unsupported assertion, one usually by someone in authority.

25. One who knows the ropes : OLD PRO

As one might expect perhaps, the phrase “learning the ropes” is nautical in origin. A new recruit on a sailing vessel would have to learn how to tie the appropriate knots and learn which rope controlled which sail or spar.

26. Tumbler, e.g. : GLASS

A tumbler is a glass. Back in the 1660s a tumbler was a glass with a rounded or pointed base so that it could not be put down without spilling its contents, as it would “tumble” over. The idea was that one had to drink up before putting the glass down.

27. 13th-century Norwegian king : ERIC II

Eric II was King of Norway from 1280 until his death in 1299. He actually was given the title of king by his father King Magnus VI in 1272, when Eric was just 5 years old. Eric shared that title with his father until Magnus died in 1280. Eric was married twice. His second consort was Isabel Bruce, the sister of Robert the Bruce, King Robert I of Scotland.

28. Sensor that detects objects using closely spaced beams : LIGHT ARRAY

A light array is a grouping of emitters. The light emitted from an array is a field, rather than a single beam.

29. Texter’s modest intro : IMHO

In my humble opinion (IMHO)

33. Jungian concept : ANIMA

The concepts of anima and animus are found in the Carl Jung school of analytical psychology. The idea is that within each male there resides a feminine inner personality called the anima, and within each female there is a male inner personality known as the animus.

35. Mate’s greeting : AHOY

“Ahoy!” is a nautical term used to signal a vessel. When the telephone was invented by Alexander Graham Bell, he suggested that “ahoy” be used as a standard greeting when answering a call. However, Thomas Edison came up with “hello”, and we’ve been using that ever since.

37. Bearded flower : IRIS

Iris is a genus of flowering plants that come in a wide variety of flower colors. The term “iris” is a Greek word meaning “rainbow”. Many species of irises are called “flags”. One suggestion is that the alternate name comes from the Middle English “flagge” meaning “reed”. This term was used because iris leaves look like reeds.

43. Food on sticks : KEBABS

The term “kebab” (also “kabob”) covers a wide variety of meat dishes that originated in Persia. In the West, we usually use “kebab” when talking about shish kebab, which is meat (often lamb) served on a skewer. “Shish” comes from the Turkish word for “skewer”.

48. Cowpoke’s polite assent : YES’M

“Cowpoke” is a term used nowadays for any cowboy, but it was originally limited to the cowboys who prodded cattle onto railroad cars using long poles.

51. Tsp. and oz. : AMTS

Amount (amt.)

53. Cilantro, e.g. : HERB

What we know here in North America as cilantro is called coriander in the UK and other parts of the world. “Cilantro” is the Spanish name for the herb.

55. Nest egg acronym : IRA

Individual retirement account (IRA)

57. Novelist Harper : LEE

Nelle Harper Lee was an author from Monroeville, Alabama. For many years, Lee had only one published novel to her name, i.e. “To Kill a Mockingbird”. That contribution to the world of literature was enough to earn her the Presidential Medal of Freedom and a Pulitzer Prize. Harper Lee was a close friend of fellow author Truman Capote who was the inspiration for the character named “Dill” in her novel. Lee was all over the news in 2015 as she had published a second novel, titled “Go Set a Watchman”. The experts seem to be agreeing that “Go Set a Watchman” is actually a first draft of “To Kill a Mockingbird”. Lee passed away less than a year after “Go Set a Watchman” hit the stores.

58. Mormon initials : LDS

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) is known colloquially as the Mormon Church.

59. Mex. neighbor : USA

The Mexico-US border stretches almost 2,000 miles, from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. It is the most frequently crossed international border in the whole world, with about 350 million legal crossings annually.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Fear of spiders, usually : PHOBIA
7. Google Earth predecessors : ATLASES
14. Aesthetic feature? : SILENT A
16. Hillary supporters : SHERPAS
17. Lumberjack’s favorite pirate phrase? : SHIVER ME TIMBERS!
19. Theater award : TONY
20. Actor Holm : IAN
21. Slender Olive : OYL
22. Lumberjack’s main interest in naval records? : CAPTAIN’S LOG
27. Eero Saarinen’s father : ELIEL
30. Many Sinatra recordings : LPS
31. Pipe shape : ELL
32. Quick cuts : TRIMS
33. Gig gear : AMPS
35. “__ pinch of … “: recipe words : ADD A
36. Lumberjack’s way to punch an opponent? : RIGHT IN THE CHOPS
39. Reverberate : ECHO
40. Baltic capital : RIGA
41. Store __ : HOURS
42. Small matter : NIT
43. Toon crime-fighter __ Possible : KIM
44. Check phrase : PAY TO
45. Lumberjack’s preferred ABC News reporter? : DIANE SAWYER
49. Civil War soldier : REB
50. __ of the woods: mushroom type : HEN
51. Athlete who wrote a history of African-American athletes : ASHE
55. Lumberjack’s reaction to an overly hard crossword? : I’M REALLY STUMPED
60. Track foundation : ROAD BED
61. French’s product : MUSTARD
62. Bottomless pits : ABYSSES
63. Ignore : PASS BY

Down

1. Sideways whisper : PSST!
2. Crackers once sold in a red box : HI-HO
3. Actress Lena : OLIN
4. Quail group : BEVY
5. Having four sharps : IN E
6. Pertaining to a heart chamber : ATRIAL
7. PEI setting : AST
8. Meteorologist’s scale: Abbr. : THI
9. Veal piccata chef’s needs : LEMONS
10. Contrary to popular belief, its name is not derived from its trademark sandwich : ARBY’S
11. Described in detail : SPELLED OUT
12. “For all in vain comes counsel to his __”: Shak. : EAR
13. Old draft org. : SSS
15. Jane Hamilton’s “__ of the World” : A MAP
18. Med. specialist : ENT
22. “__ la vie!” : C’EST
23. A, as in Athens : ALPHA
24. __ dixit: unproven claim : IPSE
25. One who knows the ropes : OLD PRO
26. Tumbler, e.g. : GLASS
27. 13th-century Norwegian king : ERIC II
28. Sensor that detects objects using closely spaced beams : LIGHT ARRAY
29. Texter’s modest intro : IMHO
32. How things are going : TREND
33. Jungian concept : ANIMA
34. Corp. get-together : MTG
35. Mate’s greeting : AHOY
37. Bearded flower : IRIS
38. Burn a bit : CHAR
43. Food on sticks : KEBABS
44. Repressed : PENT UP
46. Cries out for : NEEDS
47. “Please explain” : WHY?
48. Cowpoke’s polite assent : YES’M
51. Tsp. and oz. : AMTS
52. Places to unwind : SPAS
53. Cilantro, e.g. : HERB
54. Watery swirl : EDDY
55. Nest egg acronym : IRA
56. __ rule : MOB
57. Novelist Harper : LEE
58. Mormon initials : LDS
59. Mex. neighbor : USA

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17 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 17 Jan 19, Thursday”

  1. 38:15 with 3 errors. I had silentE for14 across and CST for 7 down
    (Canadian standard time).
    For some reason this blog is now taking a very long time to come up and on several occasions has come up “this web page not available”.
    Is it just me?
    NYT #1213……56 min and DNF. The upper right corner got me.

  2. Not one of Jeff Wechsler’s more elegant puzzles … blech fill (THI/INE etc), weak clueing (30A – Why “Sinatra”???), and (4D – BEVY can be a bunch of anything … a bevy of quail, though, is better known as a “covey.”) Bright clue at 23D (“A as in Athens”). Punny theme amusing, but overall not a Thursday standout.

    1. He chose Sinatra to clue “LPS” because it’s a singer everyone knows AND all his albums were clearly not CDs, at least not when first released. Might have been confusing had he put Tom Petty.

  3. LAT: 9:44, no errors. Newsday: 7:15, no errors. WSJ: 16:07, no errors. BEQ: 15:46, no errors; liked the gimmick. All pretty straightforward.

    Spent more time looking for the 50×50 2016 Super Mega NYT puzzle and found some fuzzy images that might allow me to reconstruct it, but I would have to do the puzzle as I reconstructed it. Probably not worth it. It seems odd to me no one has chosen to preserve such monumental artifacts of cruciverbalism for a grateful posterity … 😜.

    In other news: I’ve been enjoying David Steinberg’s Universal puzzles … definitely a step up … 😜.

    1. @Dave
      I got some images and things that would be enough to reconstruct it if I can read the clues list I have, which like you said is fuzzy. My last ditch idea (back issue conserved on library database) didn’t work. I’ll have to see what I can do.

      1. @Glenn … I’m about to take an initial step (testing to see if Across Lite will handle a puzzle of this size). In the process I will see all the answers (because I’m working from an answer sheet I came across), but my object is not to create a puzzle to do, just to preserve what I view as an object of interest.

        1. @Glenn …

          I discovered that the biggest square grid that Across Lite will handle is a 39×39; if you try to make it do a 40×40, it tells you that the “puzzle data has errors and cannot be displayed” and that “the crossword file may be corrupted” (a not terribly-helpful diagnostic). But, in hopes of finding an improved version of the software someday, I’m continuing to work on an input file for it. Perhaps we can compare notes on our translations of that blurred image of the clue page.

          I have examined a “.jpz” file and see, in general terms, how they’re constructed, so I could probably create one, if I first updated my environment to make it possible for me to write and compile my own Fortran programs again. (I need to do that soon, anyway, but I’m not looking forward to the task.)

          Keep me posted on your progress …

  4. Fun challenging Thursday Wechsler; took 39:05 on-line with one quick lookup. Very enjoyable after yesterday’s disaster.

    Funny that after I complained about not knowing about Enes Kanter about a week ago, that he shows up three times in the news starting on the day that he appeared. Seems he is of Turkish descent and a supporter/follower of the Gulen movement, which makes him an enemy of the state in Turkey. So first he decides not to travel to a game in London, with the Knicks approval, to avoid Erdogan thugs. Then on his diet/exercise cheat day he decides to eat 7 (!!) cheeseburgers, 4 of which have sunny-side eggs on them, and a basket of fries…it doesn’t go well and he calls in sick the next day – there’s video, thankfully not of the eating itself. Then Sultan Erdogan’s regime decides to demand his extradition, for the aforementioned Gulen support. And this all within about one week! So, OK, I know who he is now 🙂

  5. Hi folks!😎

    No errors but some close calls: YES’M could have been YAS’M and I didn’t know HEN, the mushroom. And I had AS A rule before MOB rule….🙀

    Dirk from yesterday re. “they all look like Corollas” — I know right?? Lately I’ve been daydreaming about getting a classic car — specifically, a 1969 Pontiac Firebird. That was my first car, bought secondhand from a neighbor. I loved that car!! I will need a new car soon, but I know I can’t indulge my foolish fantasy and will probably end up getting….another Corolla! 🙄

    Be well ~~✌🏻✌🏾🤞

  6. Oops, I didn’t mean to be critical…yikes, I totally forgot that’s what you drive. Also the Impala doesn’t look like a Corolla…but it’s not the greatest car exactly.

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