LA Times Crossword 17 Nov 22, Thursday
Constructed by: Michael Schlossberg
Edited by: Patti Varol
Today’s Reveal Answer: Lunch Break
Three sets of circled letters in the grid spell out dishes served for LUNCH, and each dish is BROKEN up between one line in the grid and the one below:
- 59A Midday hiatus illustrated three times in this puzzle : LUNCH BREAK
- 17A “Fingers crossed!” : LET’S HOPE SO!
- 22A Slightly ahead : UP ONE (broken SOUP)
- 28A Denial : REFUSAL
- 33A Catchy pitch : AD SLOGAN (broken SALAD)
- 39A Grand : THOUSAND
- 45A Kansas home of McConnell Air Force Base : WICHITA (broken SANDWICH)
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Bill’s time: 7m 14s
Bill’s errors: 0
“Cobra” is the name given to a group of snakes, some of which are in different families. The term is reserved for those snakes that can expand their neck ribs to create a hood. The name “cobra” is an abbreviated form of “cobra de capello” which translates from Portuguese as “snake with hood”.
Mambas, most famously black mambas, are highly venomous snakes that used to be responsible for a great number of fatalities before anti-venoms became available. Mamba venom is a deadly mix of neurotoxins that attack the nervous system and cardiotoxins that attack the heart. A bite, if left untreated, causes the lungs and the heart to shut down.10 Some Dada pieces : ARPS
Jean Arp was a French artist renowned for his work with torn and pasted paper, although that wasn’t the only medium he used. Arp was the son of a French mother and German father and spoke both languages fluently. When he was speaking German he gave his name as Hans Arp, but when speaking French he called himself Jean Arp. Both “Hans” and “Jean” translate into English as “John”. In WWI Arp moved to Switzerland to avoid being called up to fight, taking advantage of Swiss neutrality. Eventually he was told to report to the German Consulate and fill out paperwork for the draft. In order to get out of fighting, Arp messed up the paperwork by writing the date in every blank space on the forms. Then he took off all of his clothes and walked with his papers over to the officials in charge. Arp was sent home …
Dadaism thrived during and just after WWI, and was an anti-war, anti-bourgeois and anti-art culture. The movement was launched in Zurich, Switzerland by a group of artists and writers who met to discuss art and put on performances in the Cabaret Voltaire. The same group frequently expressed disgust at the war that was raging across Europe.19 Theater award : OBIE
The Obies are the Off-Broadway Theater Awards. They have been presented annually since 1956. The recipients used to be chosen by “The Village Voice” newspaper, but now are jointly administered with the American Theatre Wing.20 Art Institute of Chicago area, with “the” : … LOOP
The historic commercial center of Chicago is known as the Loop. One theory is that the “loop” got its name from the cable loops in the city’s old cable car system. An alternative theory is that the term only arose with the construction of the elevated railway “loop” that forms the hub of the city’s “L” system.
The magnificent Art Institute of Chicago is one of the oldest art museums in the world, having been founded in 1879 as the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. The beautiful building that is home to the museum’s collection was constructed in 1893 for the Chicago World’s Fair. Some of the museum’s more famous works are “A Sunday on La Grande Jatte” by Georges Seurat, “Nighthawks” by Edward Hopper, and “American Gothic” by Grant Wood.24 Actress Thurman : UMA
Uma Thurman started her working career as a fashion model, at the age of 15. She appeared in her first movies at 17, with her most acclaimed early role being Cécile de Volanges in 1988’s “Dangerous Liaisons”. Thurman’s career really took off when she played the gangster’s moll Mia in Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction” in 1994. My favorite of all Thurman’s movies is “The Truth About Cats & Dogs”, a less acclaimed romcom released in 1996. She took a few years off from acting from 1998 until 2002 following the birth of her first child. It was Tarantino who relaunched her career, giving her the lead in the “Kill Bill” films.27 Longtime NASCAR sponsor : STP
STP is a brand name of automotive lubricants and additives. The name “STP” is an initialism standing for “Scientifically Treated Petroleum”.30 Miserly desire : AVARICE
Our word “avarice”, meaning “desire for wealth”, ultimately derives from the Latin word “avere” meaning “to crave”.34 Flour used for naan and paratha : ATTA
Atta is a whole-wheat flour used to make flatbreads in South Asian cuisine, such as chapati and naan. “Atta” is the Hindi or Urdu word for “dough”.
Naan (also “nan”) bread is very popular in Indian restaurants, as well as in other West, Central and South Asian cuisines. Indian Naan is traditionally baked in a clay oven known as a tandoor.
A paratha is an unleavened flatbread from the Indian subcontinent that is made using a whole wheat dough. It is a thick, layered bread in which the individual folds of dough have been coated with ghee or oil.37 “We card” cards, for short : IDS
The We Card program was introduced by the tobacco industry, ostensibly to prevent sales of tobacco products to those legally underage. Critics regard the program as an attempt to improve the image of the industry, and an attempt to stave off industry regulation and enforcement of existing laws. Don’t get me going …38 Novelists Patchett and Petry : ANNS
Ann Patchett is an author who lives in Nashville, Tennessee. Patchett’s most famous work is probably her novel “Bel Canto”, published in 2001. In 2012, “Time” included her in the magazine’s list of 100 most influential people in the world.
Ann Petry was an author best known perhaps for her 1946 debut novel “The Street” and her 1953 novel “The Narrows”. “The Street” was the first novel by an African-American woman to sell over a million copies.39 Grand : THOUSAND
One K, one grand, one thousand dollars.44 Furry toy spiders that move when screamed at : YELLIES!
Yellies! are cuddly-looking toy spiders that respond to the voice, moving more quickly the louder the voice gets. Sounds like a nightmare to me …45 Kansas home of McConnell Air Force Base : WICHITA
Wichita, Kansas started out as a trading post established by Jesse Chisholm in the 1860s, a stopover on the famous Chisholm Trail. Wichita became one of the railheads on the Chisholm Trail, the end point of many cattle drives from Texas. As such, Wichita earned the nickname “Cowtown”.
McConnell Air Force Base is located just outside Wichita, Kansas. The base’s main mission is to provide air refueling, and is home to the 22nd Air Refuelling Wing of the USAF and the 931st Air Refuelling Group of the USAF Reserve.49 Capitol Hill fig. : POL
The designer of Washington D.C., Pierre L’Enfant, chose the crest of a hill as the site for the future Congress House. He called the location “Jenkins Hill” and “Jenkins Heights”. Earlier records show the name as “New Troy”. Today, we call it “Capitol Hill”.50 Actor who played Clubber Lang in “Rocky III” : MR T
Mr. T’s real name is Laurence Tero Tureaud. Mr. T is famous for many things, including the wearing of excessive amounts of jewelry. He started this habit when he was working as a bouncer, wearing jewelry items that had been left behind by customers at a nightclub so that the items might be recognized and claimed. It was also as a bouncer that he adopted the name Mr. T. His catch phrase comes from the movie “Rocky III”. In the film, before he goes up against Rocky Balboa, Mr. T says, “No, I don’t hate Balboa, but I pity the fool”. He parlayed that line into quite a bit of success. He had a reality TV show called “I Pity the Fool”, and produced a motivational video called “Be Somebody … or Be Somebody’s Fool!”.
“Rocky III” is the movie in which Rocky (Sylvester Stallone) goes up against Clubber Lang (Mr. T). “Rocky III” is a forgettable film, but Mr. T was grateful for his role no doubt as it launched his career and landed him a spot on television’s “The A-Team”. Also making an appearance was professional wrestler Hulk Hogan, an appearance that raised his profile as well and kick-started his career outside of the ring. But for me, the most memorable thing is the song “Eye of the Tiger”, which was commissioned for “Rocky III”. A great tune …52 Boar’s mate : SOW
A male pig is a boar53 Elba of “Cats” : IDRIS
English actor Idris Elba played the drug lord Stringer Bell in the marvelous HBO drama series “The Wire”, and played the title character in the 2013 film “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom”. Off the screen, Elba occasionally appears as a disk jockey using the name “DJ Big Driis”.
The 2019 movie “Cats” is a much-panned big screen adaptation of the 1981 Andrew Lloyd Webber stage musical of the same name. Great musical, horrible film …55 Tirade : RANT
The term “tirade” describes a long and vehement speech, and is a word that came into English from French. “Tirade” can have the same meaning in French, but is also the word for “volley”. So, a tirade is a “volley” of words.59 Midday hiatus illustrated three times in this puzzle : LUNCH BREAK
A hiatus is a break or opening in a material object, or an interruption in time. “Hiatus” is Latin for “opening”.61 Asia’s vanishing __ Sea : ARAL
The Aral Sea is a great example of how humankind can have a devastating effect on the environment. In the early sixties the Aral Sea covered 68,000 square miles of Central Asia. Soviet irrigation projects drained the lake to such an extent that today the total area is less than 7,000 square miles, with 90% of the lake now completely dry. Sad …64 Mother of Castor and Pollux : LEDA
In Greek mythology, Leda was the beautiful Queen of Sparta who was seduced by Zeus when he took the form of a swan. Leda produced two eggs from the union. One egg hatched into Clytemnestra and the beautiful Helen of Troy, over whom was fought the Trojan War. The other egg hatched into the twins Castor and Pollux. Castor and Pollux had different fathers according to the myth. Pollux was the son of Zeus and was immortal, while Castor was the son of Leda’s earthly husband, and so he was a mortal. In the world of the arts, William Butler Yeats wrote a famous sonnet called “Leda and the Swan” in 1924, and Peter Paul Rubens made a copy of a now-lost painting called “Leda and the Swan” by Michelangelo.65 __ Spunkmeyer : OTIS
Otis Spunkmeyer is a company noted for producing muffins and cookies. Kenneth Rawlings founded the company in 1977 in Oakland, California. “Otis Spunkmeyer” isn’t a real person, and instead is a name that was made up by Rawlings’ 12-year-old daughter.Down 1 Square dance figure : CALLER
A square dance is a dance for eight participants, i.e. four couples. For much of the time, the couples are arranged so that they form the sides of a square, hence the name of the dance.2 Fútbol cheer : OLE! OLE!
In Spanish, a “fútbol” (football, soccer) supporter might shout “olé!” (bravo!).5 Bat wood : ASH
The wood of the ash tree is hardwood, although it is relatively elastic. Famously, ash is the wood of choice for baseball bats. It is also the wood of choice for hurleys, the wooden sticks used in the Irish sport of hurling.7 Manitoba people : CREE
The Cree are one of the largest groups of Native Americans on the continent. In the US, Montana is home to most of the Cree nation. They live on a reservation shared with the Ojibwe people. In Canada, most of the Cree live in Manitoba.
Manitoba is the Canadian province that borders the US states of North Dakota and Minnesota. Even though Manitoba has an area of over 250,000 square miles, 60% of its population resides in the province’s capital city of Winnipeg.22 River through Orsk : URAL
The Ural River rises in the Ural Mountains in Russia and flows for half its length through Russian territory until it crosses the border into Kazakhstan, finally emptying into the Caspian Sea. It is the third-longest river in Europe, after the Volga and Danube. The Ural is often cited as defining a long stretch of the border between Europe and Asia, although the exact position of that border is open to debate.
The city of Orsk is located about 60 miles southeast of the southern tip of the Ural Mountains in Russia. The city lies on the Ural River, which forms the boundary between Europe and Asia. As a result, Orsk can be considered situated in two continents. Orsk also lies where the Or River joins the Ural, and so the Or gives the city its name.26 Trailer park parkers, for short : RVS
Recreational vehicle (RV)29 Ryder rival : U-HAUL
The U-Haul company was started by married couple Leonard Shoen and Anna Mary Carty in Ridgefield, Washington in 1945. The Shoens used $5,000 of seed money to build trailers in their garage, and then cleverly recruited gas station owners as franchisees with whom they would split the rental revenue. There are now about 15,000 U-Haul dealers across the country.
The Ryder company was founded in 1933 in Miami, Florida by James Ryder. It started out as a concrete hauling company, but changed its focus a few years later to the leasing of trucks.31 “Stiff” and “Bonk” writer Mary : ROACH
American author Mary Roach writes books about science, using approachable language and a lot of humor. The list of her best-selling titles includes:
- “Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers” (2003)
- “Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex” (2008)
- “Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal” (2013)
“Sister Carrie” is a 1900 novel by American author Theodore Dreiser. The title character is a country girl who moves to Chicago to make a new life for herself. At first, she becomes a mistress to men whom she perceives as her superior, but eventually becomes a famous actress. The novel was adapted into a successful movie in 1952, starring Jennifer Jones and Laurence Olivier.36 E-ZPass stretch, say : TOLL ROAD
E-ZPass was a technology development driven (pun!) by the tolling agencies of New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The first E-ZPass toll booth was built on the New York Thruway, and opened at the Spring Valley toll plaza in 1993.40 Virtual citizens in a video game : SIMS
SimCity is a very clever computer game. Players build and grow cities and societies by creating the conditions necessary for people (the Sims) to move in and thrive. SimCity was launched in 1989, and to this day it is consistently ranked as one of the greatest computer games of all time.41 __ Lingus : AER
Aer Lingus is my favorite airline! Well, the service isn’t that great, but when I get on board an Aer Lingus plane I feel like I am back in Ireland. Aer Lingus is the national airline of Ireland, with “Aer Lingus” being a phonetic spelling of the Irish “aer-loingeas” meaning “air fleet”. These days Aer Lingus can only lay claim to the title of Ireland’s oldest airline as it is no longer the biggest. That honor goes to the controversial budget airline Ryanair.46 Happy cry from someone who finally deciphers a Magic Eye picture : I SEE IT!
“Magic Eye” is a series of books featuring autostereograms, images that allow viewers to see 3D images by focusing on 2D patterns. The first autostereogram was created in 1979.47 Salsa ingredient : TOMATO
“Salsa” is simply Spanish for “sauce”.54 Cuba, por ejemplo : ISLA
In Spanish, Cuba “por ejemplo” (for example), is an “isla” (island).
Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean. The exact etymology of the name “Cuba” seems a little unclear. Most believe “Cuba” to be derived from the Taíno terms for “where fertile land is abundant” (cubao) or “great place” (coabana).56 Years, in Rome : ANNI
The Latin word for year is “annus” (plural “anni”). We often see it used in Latin phrases, but usually with a different spelling. In “anno Domini”, the “anno” is the ablative case of “annus” as the phrase means “in the year of the Lord”. Another example is “per annum”, in which “annum” is the accusative case as the literal translation of the phrase is “during the year”.57 Spy-fi villain in a Nehru jacket : DR NO
A Nehru jacket is very like a regular suit jacket, except that the collar buttons at the neck. It was originally created in the 1940s in India, and then marketed as the Nehru jacket in the west in the sixties. The name Nehru was lifted from Jawaharlal Nehru, the prime minister of India from 1947 to 1964.59 Southeast Asian language : LAO
Lao is the official language of Laos. It is also spoken in the northeast of Thailand, but there the language is known as Isan.60 Software glitch : BUG
Back in 1947, famed computer programmer Grace Hopper noticed some colleagues fixing a piece of equipment by removing a dead moth from a relay. She remarked that they were “debugging” the system, and so Hopper has been given credit for popularizing the term “bug” in the context of computing.
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1 Mamba kin : COBRA
6 Peak : ACME
10 Some Dada pieces : ARPS
14 Cover name : ALIAS
15 __ and proper : PRIM
16 Exactly : TO A T
17 “Fingers crossed!” : LET’S HOPE SO!
19 Theater award : OBIE
20 Art Institute of Chicago area, with “the” : … LOOP
21 “Come with me, Spot!” : HEEL!
22 Slightly ahead : UP ONE
23 One with pointy ears and pointy shoes : ELF
24 Actress Thurman : UMA
25 Unintentionally reply all, say : ERR
27 Longtime NASCAR sponsor : STP
28 Denial : REFUSAL
30 Miserly desire : AVARICE
32 Egg layer : HEN
33 Catchy pitch : AD SLOGAN
34 Flour used for naan and paratha : ATTA
37 “We card” cards, for short : IDS
38 Novelists Patchett and Petry : ANNS
39 Grand : THOUSAND
42 Open __ night : MIC
44 Furry toy spiders that move when screamed at : YELLIES!
45 Kansas home of McConnell Air Force Base : WICHITA
49 Capitol Hill fig. : POL
50 Actor who played Clubber Lang in “Rocky III” : MR T
51 Annoy : IRK
52 Boar’s mate : SOW
53 Elba of “Cats” : IDRIS
55 Tirade : RANT
57 Floor model : DEMO
58 Murmurs lovingly : COOS
59 Midday hiatus illustrated three times in this puzzle : LUNCH BREAK
61 Asia’s vanishing __ Sea : ARAL
62 Juvenile outburst? : ACNE
63 Join : UNITE
64 Mother of Castor and Pollux : LEDA
65 __ Spunkmeyer : OTIS
66 Did well together : GOT ON
1 Square dance figure : CALLER
2 Fútbol cheer : OLE! OLE!
3 Removed with one’s chompers : BIT OFF
4 Abrasive tool : RASP
5 Bat wood : ASH
6 Legal challenge : APPEAL
7 Manitoba people : CREE
8 Deceives : MISLEADS
9 Genre with introspective lyrics : EMO
10 On : ATOP
11 Endorse without reading, say : ROBOSIGN
12 Makeshift storage container for brushes : PAINT CAN
13 Becomes more inclined? : STEEPENS
18 “That sounds rough!” : OH MAN!
22 River through Orsk : URAL
24 Employ : USE
26 Trailer park parkers, for short : RVS
29 Ryder rival : U-HAUL
31 “Stiff” and “Bonk” writer Mary : ROACH
33 Contribute : ADD
34 Out of the ordinary : ATYPICAL
35 “Sister Carrie” novelist Dreiser : THEODORE
36 E-ZPass stretch, say : TOLL ROAD
37 Educate : INSTRUCT
40 Virtual citizens in a video game : SIMS
41 __ Lingus : AER
42 Levity : MIRTH
43 “Eww!” : ICK!
45 Flinches : WINCES
46 Happy cry from someone who finally deciphers a Magic Eye picture : I SEE IT!
47 Salsa ingredient : TOMATO
48 No longer asleep : AWOKEN
54 Cuba, por ejemplo : ISLA
56 Years, in Rome : ANNI
57 Spy-fi villain in a Nehru jacket : DR NO
59 Southeast Asian language : LAO
60 Software glitch : BUG
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