LA Times Crossword 21 Feb 24, Wednesday - LAXCrossword.com (2024)

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Glow of virtue : HALO

The Greek word “halos” is the name given to the ring of light around the sun or moon, which gives us our word “halo” that is used for a radiant light depicted above the head of a saintly person.

5 Fort Knox supply : GOLD

Fort Knox is actually a US Army base that lends its name to the adjacent facility that is more correctly called the United States Bullion Depository. Most of the US gold reserves are in “Fort Knox”, although it isn’t the biggest gold repository in the US. That honor goes to the vault under the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in Manhattan. Most of the gold stored in the New York vault belongs to foreign nations and banks.

14 __ of March : IDES

In Act I of William Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar”, a soothsayer warns the doomed leader to “beware the ides of March”. Caesar ignores the prophecy and is subsequently killed on the steps of the Capitol by a group of conspirators on that fateful day.

16 Run onstage? : EMCEE

The term “emcee” comes from “MC”, an initialism used for a Master or Mistress of Ceremonies.

17 Some inbox attachments : PDFS

Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format introduced by Adobe Systems in 1993. PDF documents can be shared between users and read using many different applications and platforms, making them more universally accessible than documents saved by one particular program.

20 Make a fool of : PUT ONE OVER ON (hiding “NEO”)

Neo is the character played by Keanu Reeves in “The Matrix” series of films. One of Neo’s actions is to choose a red pill over a blue pill. The blue pill would have allowed him to remain in the Matrix, a fabricated reality. The red pill led to his escape into the real world, and a much more difficult life.

29 Air filter acronym : HEPA

Air filters can be specified as “HEPA”, with the acronym standing for “high-efficiency particulate absorption”. To be given the name “HEPA”, the filter must remove 99.7% of particles with a size of 0.3 microns or larger.

31 Christmas poem contraction : ‘TWAS

The poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas” was published anonymously in 1823, and is better known today by its first line “‘Twas the night before Christmas”. Most scholars believe that the poem was written by Clement Clarke Moore, a theologian from New York City. Others say that it was written by Henry Livingston, Jr., a poet from Upstate New York.

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ’kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash …

33 Smooching on the kiss cam, say : PDA

Public display of affection (PDA)

34 Hide-and-seek exclamation : THERE YOU ARE! (hiding “REY”)

Rey is a central character in the “Star Wars” universe who first appeared in 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. She is trained as a Jedi by Luke Skywalker and his sister Princess Leia Organa. In honor of her mentors, she takes the name Rey Skywalker, and eventually becomes “The Last Jedi”. Rey is played by British actress Daisy Ridley.

39 Joan of __ : ARC

Joan of Arc (also “Jeanne d’Arc”, her birth name) led the French Army successfully into battle a number of times during the Hundred Years War with England. When she was eventually captured, Joan was tried in Rouen, the seat of the occupying English government in France at that time. There she was burned at the stake having been found guilty of heresy. In fact, after the fire died down, the executioner raked the coals to display the charred body, proving Joan had died, and then burned the corpse again, twice, so that relics could not be collected. The remaining ashes were then cast into the Seine River. Joan of Arc was canonized some 600 years later, in 1920, and is now one of the patron saints of France.

41 Big name in anonymity : DOE

Though the English court system does not use the term today, “John Doe” first appeared as the “name of a person unknown” in England in 1659, along with the similar “Richard Roe”. An unknown female is referred to as “Jane Doe ”, and the equivalent to Richard Roe is Jane Roe (as in Roe v. Wade, for example). Variants of “John Doe” used outside of the courts are “Joe Blow” and “John Q. Public”.

42 Determines the age of, as archaeological finds : CARBON-DATES (hiding “BOND”)

Carbon-14 is a radioactive isotope of carbon that is found in nature in small amounts. Carbon-14 is used in the technique known as radiocarbon dating, a relatively accurate way of determining the age of something up to about 60,000 years old. When an organism is alive, the amount of radioactive carbon-14 it has compared to the amount of regular carbon-12, is a fixed ratio. After the organism dies, it is no longer exchanging carbon with the atmosphere through metabolism. So, the stable carbon-12 stays in the body as it rots but the radioactive carbon-14 gradually decays, causing the ratio of carbon-14 to carbon-12 to fall. Scientists can determine the age of remains by measuring this carbon-14/carbon-12 ratio.

Ian Fleming’s spy first introduced himself with the words “Bond, James Bond” in the 1953 novel “Casino Royale”. Sean Connery first uttered the words on the silver screen in the first Bond movie, “Dr. No”.

49 Astronaut Ellen Ochoa, for one : LATINA

Ellen Ochoa was the first Hispanic woman in space, serving on a nine-day mission on the space shuttle Discovery in 1993. She spent over 1,000 hours in space over the course of four missions. In 2013, Ochoa became only the second woman to serve as Director of the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

55 Sub, and an apt description of 20-, 34-, or 42-Across : HERO SANDWICH

A hero is a submarine sandwich. It originated in New York City in the 1800s among Italian immigrants who wanted an Italian sandwich that reminded them of home. The name “hero” was coined in the 1930s, supposedly by a food critic in the “New York Herald Tribune” when he wrote that “one had to be a hero” to finish the gigantic sandwich. Hero is a prevalent term to this day in New York City, reserved for a submarine sandwich with an Italian flavor.

63 Pasta __ checca: trattoria dish : ALLA

Pasta alla checca comprises cooked pasta in an uncooked tomato sauce. As well as tomatoes, checca sace includes basil, mozzarella cheese, olive oil and garlic. Pasta alla checca is usually served during the warmer summer months.

A trattoria is an Italian restaurant. In Italian, a “trattore” is the keeper of said eating house.

64 Animated British piglet of kid’s TV : PEPPA

“Peppa Pig” is a children’s animated show that is produced in the UK and airs all over the world. There’s even a Peppa Pig World theme park located in Hampshire, England.

67 Fleming subjects : SPIES

The character James Bond was the creation of writer Ian Fleming. Fleming “stole” the James Bond name from an American ornithologist. The number “007” was “stolen” from the real-life, 16th-century English spy named John Dee. Dee would sign his reports to Queen Elizabeth I with a stylized “007” to indicate that the reports were for “her eyes only”. There’s an entertaining miniseries that aired on BBC America called “Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond” that details Ian Fleming’s military career, and draws some nice parallels between Fleming’s experiences and aspirations and those of his hero James Bond. Recommended …

69 Loved ones blessed at the Feast of St. Francis : PETS

Francis of Assisi was a Catholic friar and preacher who founded the Franciscan order. Because he is honored for his love of animals and nature, many churches hold ceremonies to bless animals on the feast day of Saint Francis, October 4th, every year.

Down

1 River-dwelling mammal related to whales and dolphins : HIPPO

The name “hippopotamus” comes from the Greek for “river horse”. Hippos are the third-largest land mammals, after elephants and rhinos. The closest living relatives to hippos don’t even live on land. They are the whales and porpoises of the oceans.

2 Tally : ADD UP

Back in the mid-1600s, a tally was a stick marked with notches that tracked how much one owed or paid. The term “tally” came from the Latin “talea” meaning “stick, rod”. The act of “scoring” the stick with notches gave rise to our word “score” for the number in a tally.

6 Double Stuf treats : OREOS

Double Stuf Oreos were introduced in 1975, and have twice the normal amount of white cream filling as the original cookie. Nabisco really went big in 2013, introducing the Mega Stuf Oreo that has even more white cream filling.

7 Actor Schreiber : LIEV

Liev Schreiber is highly regarded as a stage actor, and has many classical roles under his belt. He won a Tony in 2005 for his Broadway performance in “Glengarry Glen Ross”, and earned excellent reviews for his performance in Shakespeare’s “Cymbeline”.

9 Guilty feeling : REMORSE

Remorse is a “gnawing” distress associated with a guilty feeling for past wrongs. The term “remorse” comes from the Latin “re-” meaning “back” and “mordere” meaning “to bite”. Those past wrongs bite back …

10 Kitchen appliance brand : AMANA

The Amana Corporation takes its name from the location of its original headquarters, in Middle Amana, Iowa. Today, the Amana name is very much associated with household appliances. The company was founded in 1934 to manufacture commercial walk-in coolers.

27 Elicit : EDUCE

To educe is to draw out, although the term can also have a meaning similar to “deduce”.

31 __Tax: Intuit software package : TURBO

TurboTax is a software- and online-based income tax preparation service. It’s what I’ve used since I retired, and I have no complaints …

32 City on the Brazos : WACO

The Brazos River is the longest river in the state of Texas. It was originally called “Rio de los Brazos de Dios” by the Spanish, which translates as “the River of the Arms of God”. So, the Brazos is literally “the arms” in English.

34 Word with pool or basin : TIDAL

A tidal pool (also “rock pool”) is a pool of seawater that is left along a rocky coastline after an ebb tide.

A tidal basin is an area that fills with water at high tide, and then that water level is maintained by artificial means. I used to live in a village on the East Coast of Ireland where there was a saltwater swimming pool that would be filled by the high tide twice a day. The same principle I guess.

35 Ruckus : HOO-HA

The word “ruckus” is used to mean “commotion”, and has been around since the late 1800s. “Ruckus” is possibly a melding of the words “ruction” and “rumpus”.

36 Dinghy duo : OARS

Our term “dinghy” comes from the Hindi “dingi”, a word meaning “small boat”.

40 Actor Kilmer : VAL

Val Kilmer’s first big leading role in a movie was playing Jim Morrison in Oliver Stone’s 1991 biopic “The Doors”. A few years later, Kilmer was chosen for the lead in another big production, “Batman Forever”. Things haven’t really gone as well for Kilmer since then, I’d say. Off the screen, he flirted with the idea of running for Governor of New Mexico in 2010. A Hollywood actor as a governor? Would never happen …

42 Projection places : CINEMAS

A cinema is a “movie” theater, and a term that comes from the Greek “kinema” meaning “movement”. The idea is that cinemas and movie theaters rapidly project a succession of photographs onto a screen creating the illusion of “movement”. Back in Ireland, we go to the “cinema” to see a film, and to the “theatre” to see live performances on stage. “Movie theater” is considered a very American expression …,

44 Time when shadows are shortest : NOONDAY

Our word “noon”, meaning “midday”, comes from the Latin “nona hora” that translates as “ninth hour”. Back in ancient Rome, the “ninth hour” was three in the afternoon. Over the centuries, traditions such as church prayers and “midday” meals shifted from 3 p.m. to 12 p.m., and so “noon” became understood as 12 noon.

45 Petered out : DIED

The verb phrase “to peter out”, meaning “to fizzle out”, originated in the 1840s in the American mining industry. While the exact etymology isn’t clear, it probably derives from the term “saltpeter”, a constituent of gunpowder.

53 Brilliance : ECLAT

“Éclat” can describe a brilliant show of success, as well as the applause or accolade that one receives for that success. The word “éclat” derives from the French “éclater” meaning “to splinter, burst out”.

54 Dean Martin’s “__ Amore” : THAT’S

“That’s Amore” is a pop standard written by Harry Warren and Jack Brooks in 1952. It became the signature song for Dean Martin after he sang it (with some help from Jerry Lewis) in the 1953 comedy film “The Caddy”. “When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s amore …”

“Dean Martin” was the stage name of singer and actor Dino Crocetti. Martin was famous for his numerous hit songs such as “That’s Amore”, “Volare” and “Everybody Loves Somebody”, as well as his film career with Jerry Lewis. Off screen, Martin was a member of the famous “Rat Pack” as he was a great friend of Frank Sinatra. Martin was always associated with Las Vegas and when he passed away in 1995 the lights on the strip were dimmed in his honor.

58 Insect that first appeared in the Jurassic era : WASP

The Jurassic geologic period lasted from about 200 to 145 million years ago, following the Triassic and followed by the Cretaceous. Limestone strata from the period were first identified in the Jura Mountains in the Western Alps. It is this mountain range that gives us the name “Jurassic”.

61 Brand at a nail salon : OPI

Opi (originally “Odontorium Products Inc.”) is a manufacturer of nail polish based in North Hollywood, California. One of Opi’s marketing coups was the introduction of a line of Legally Blonde 2 polishes, which featured in the film.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Glow of virtue : HALO
5 Fort Knox supply : GOLD
9 Wet : RAINY
14 __ of March : IDES
15 57-Down for a diva : ARIA
16 Run onstage? : EMCEE
17 Some inbox attachments : PDFS
18 Change course suddenly : VEER
19 Puts together : MAKES
20 Make a fool of : PUT ONE OVER ON (hiding “NEO”)
23 Decline, with “out” : OPT …
24 Sounds of pain : OWS
25 Pencil topper : ERASER
29 Air filter acronym : HEPA
31 Christmas poem contraction : ‘TWAS
33 Smooching on the kiss cam, say : PDA
34 Hide-and-seek exclamation : THERE YOU ARE! (hiding “REY”)
37 Bae : LUV
38 Charged particles : IONS
39 Joan of __ : ARC
40 Harmful habit : VICE
41 Big name in anonymity : DOE
42 Determines the age of, as archaeological finds : CARBON-DATES (hiding “BOND”)
46 Sounds of relief : AHS
47 In case that’s the case : IF SO
48 Masseur’s supply : OILS
49 Astronaut Ellen Ochoa, for one : LATINA
51 Sock part : TOE
52 Seasoned pro : VET
55 Sub, and an apt description of 20-, 34-, or 42-Across : HERO SANDWICH
59 Wedding figure : GROOM
62 Invalidate : VOID
63 Pasta __ checca: trattoria dish : ALLA
64 Animated British piglet of kid’s TV : PEPPA
65 Feminine Spanish pronoun : ELLA
66 Shutter section : SLAT
67 Fleming subjects : SPIES
68 In someone’s business : NOSY
69 Loved ones blessed at the Feast of St. Francis : PETS

Down

1 River-dwelling mammal related to whales and dolphins : HIPPO
2 Tally : ADD UP
3 Flew off on one’s own : LEFT THE NEST
4 Bone, in Italian : OSSO
5 Collapsed : GAVE WAY
6 Double Stuf treats : OREOS
7 Actor Schreiber : LIEV
8 Be bold enough : DARE
9 Guilty feeling : REMORSE
10 Kitchen appliance brand : AMANA
11 Grossed-out reaction : ICK!
12 Wedding page word : NEE
13 “Let’s” : YES
21 “Forget it” : NOPE
22 Foster : REAR
26 Potential “destination” for a troubled relationship : SPLITSVILLE
27 Elicit : EDUCE
28 Gushes : RAVES
30 Verbal stumbles : ERS
31 __Tax: Intuit software package : TURBO
32 City on the Brazos : WACO
34 Word with pool or basin : TIDAL
35 Ruckus : HOO-HA
36 Dinghy duo : OARS
40 Actor Kilmer : VAL
42 Projection places : CINEMAS
43 Hardly a hop, skip, and a jump away : AFAR
44 Time when shadows are shortest : NOONDAY
45 Petered out : DIED
50 Optimist’s words : I HOPE
51 Follows surreptitiously : TAILS
53 Brilliance : ECLAT
54 Dean Martin’s “__ Amore” : THAT’S
56 Baker : OVEN
57 Song for one : SOLO
58 Insect that first appeared in the Jurassic era : WASP
59 Family docs : GPS
60 Sales agt. : REP
61 Brand at a nail salon : OPI

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LA Times Crossword 21 Feb 24, Wednesday - LAXCrossword.com (2024)
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