IT'S ONLY "A" GAME

New York Times, Sunday, January 12, 2014

Author: Andrew Chaikin
Editor: Will Shortz
Andrew Chaikin
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11/12/20140
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This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21, Words: 140, Blocks: 72 Missing: {Q} Spans: 1 This is the debut puzzle for Mr. Chaikin. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

Andrew Chaikin notes: Last year, I was creating a game called 'May Own A's,' for the 57th Equinox word-game party in Berkeley. (That party's theme was condiments, naturally.) When I found that glorious 21-letter 'backward-gram,' I ... more
Will Shortz notes: In 2002 I published a crossword by Patrick Berry in which the only vowel in the entire grid was A, so I wasn't so impressed here that just the theme answers are univocalic. But the twist of the theme clues also ... more
Jeff Chen notes: Before I started this gig last year, doing the NYT xw was fun in itself. But I always wanted more, specifically to hear Will's thought process regarding why he chose each puzzle and how he changed it to his ... more
1
D
2
E
3
W
4
A
5
R
6
F
7
L
8
O
9
W
10
C
11
H
12
A
13
P
14
M
15
A
16
L
17
E
18
E
X
I
L
E
19
R
A
R
E
20
L
A
B
A
21
N
I
M
A
L
22
C
A
S
A
B
23
L
A
N
C
A
24
F
A
L
A
L
A
L
A
L
A
25
O
M
E
N
26
O
N
E
27
S
28
C
A
N
T
29
O
D
D
S
O
N
30
A
31
T
O
Z
32
N
E
A
L
S
33
S
M
E
E
34
T
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A
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B
L
E
T
37
B
O
L
T
S
38
S
T
A
R
W
39
A
40
R
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S
42
B
L
A
D
E
43
C
L
U
44
C
E
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S
A
R
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B
O
T
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S
O
F
A
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T
H
A
T
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C
H
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O
N
U
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P
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E
R
D
E
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P
E
T
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C
H
O
C
U
L
A
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I
D
D
O
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D
A
H
L
57
A
58
S
H
E
59
K
R
O
S
60
S
61
M
E
T
62
R
I
C
A
L
63
A
64
M
A
N
A
P
65
L
A
N
A
C
A
66
N
A
L
P
A
N
A
M
A
67
R
A
W
O
N
I
O
N
68
K
A
M
E
N
69
I
P
A
D
70
C
R
A
W
71
T
U
D
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E
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T
O
A
D
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I
E
S
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A
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B
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S
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H
I
R
E
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S
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C
A
R
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A
B
L
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E
N
D
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S
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T
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C
H
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E
L
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E
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R
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N
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R
A
S
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T
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A
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M
A
N
91
I
C
92
O
S
A
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I
S
A
A
C
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U
T
E
S
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S
L
A
N
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S
M
O
G
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A
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D
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O
R
E
S
100
P
A
I
N
E
101
G
P
A
102
R
103
A
104
J
105
A
106
M
A
G
N
A
C
107
A
R
T
A
108
B
109
A
L
A
C
110
L
A
V
A
S
111
P
Y
R
O
M
A
N
I
A
112
I
C
E
S
113
A
M
I
C
I
114
M
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E
N
115
L
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T
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O
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A
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A
© 2014, The New York Times
Across Down
1. Last name in Scotch : DEWAR
6. Stream : FLOW
10. Bloke : CHAP
14. Like blokes : MALE
18. Napoleon, e.g., twice : EXILE
19. Steakhouse order : RARE
20. Test subject : LABANIMAL
22. *Grand-slam drama that stars Bacall's man : CASABLANCA
24. *Half an Xmas "Halls" chant : FALALALALA
25. 1976 horror hit, with "The" : OMEN
26. Point value of an A in Scrabble : ONE
27. Little to no : SCANT
29. Heavily favored : ODDSON
30. All-inclusive : ATOZ
32. Beat poet Cassady and others : NEALS
33. Captain Hook's right hand : SMEE
34. 69-Across, e.g. : TABLET
37. Scrams : BOLTS
38. *Astral saga that has a Darth part : STARWARS
42. Cutting edge : BLADE
43. Gulager of TV's "The Virginian" : CLU
44. French Oscar : CESAR
46. Bit of Google programming : BOT
47. Staple of a waiting room : SOFA
48. Work on the roof, say : THATCH
50. "Movin' ___" (TV theme song) : ONUP
52. One of die Planeten : ERDE
53. Kitty, e.g. : PET
54. Count ___ : CHOCULA
55. "___ Anything" ("Oliver!" song) : IDDO
56. "The Witches" writer : DAHL
57. King Arthur of tennis : ASHE
59. Kris ___ (music duo) : KROSS
61. Like classical poetry : METRICAL
63. *Fab "backward-gram" à la "Sam, aha! Bahamas!" : AMANAPLANACANALPANAMA
67. Burger topper : RAWONION
68. Segway inventor Dean ___ : KAMEN
69. Apple product : IPAD
70. Bird's gullet : CRAW
71. Chip on one's shoulder, say : TUDE
73. Kowtowers : TOADIES
75. Pilates targets : ABS
78. Take on : HIRE
79. Poses : SITS
80. Stone figures? : CARATS
81. Equal to the task : ABLE
82. Objective : END
83. Louis Armstrong, to friends : SATCH
85. Two-time U.S. Open champ : ELS
86. Houston's old ___ Field : ENRON
87. *Black cat that packs grass and chants "Jah" : RASTAMAN
91. Prefix with -hedron : ICOSA
93. Best-selling novelist Susan : ISAACS
94. Great Basin natives : UTES
95. An op-ed has one : SLANT
96. Air apparent? : SMOG
97. Worships : ADORES
100. "Common Sense" pamphleteer : PAINE
101. Valedictorian's pride, for short : GPA
102. Bygone Bombay bigwig : RAJA
106. *Landmark vassal law act : MAGNACARTA
108. *Warm mask/cap amalgams : BALACLAVAS
111. Burning desire : PYROMANIA
112. Puts away : ICES
113. Friends, in Firenze : AMICI
114. Big name in faucets : MOEN
115. Depict : LIMN
116. Swarm : TEEM
117. Where Sharp Electronics is based : OSAKA
1. Chrysler Building style, informally : DECO
2. Physical, e.g. : EXAM
3. Smart-alecky : WISE
4. *"M*A*S*H" star : ALANALDA
5. One in a gray suit : REB
6. Modernist Kafka : FRANZ
7. A bridge might have one : LANE
8. "The Lord of the Rings" villain : ORC
9. "Pop" goer : WEASEL
10. Online gaming guilds : CLANS
11. Gatekeeper's cry : HALT
12. Lawyers' org. : ABA
13. Picasso's designer daughter : PALOMA
14. Tilex target : MILDEW
15. Latin 101 verb : AMAS
16. Score creator Schifrin : LALO
17. Style : ELAN
21. Subject of the documentary "An Unreasonable Man" : NADER
23. Spoils : LOOT
24. Two-faced : FALSE
28. *Haphazard : CATCHASCATCHCAN
31. Gift shop buy : TEE
32. Sign at an intersection : NOUTURN
33. Apple product, perhaps : STRUDEL
34. Recipe amt. : TBSP
35. Skin soother : ALOE
36. *Gala that saw "Black Swan," "Avatar" and "Ab Fab" attract claps : BAFTAAWARDS
37. *Bar glass that's half Bass, half dark malt : BLACKANDTAN
38. *Lama's art that can't last : SANDMANDALA
39. *"Shazam!" : ABRACADABRA
40. Noted political maiden name : RODHAM
41. Designer McCartney : STELLA
43. Comedian Margaret : CHO
45. "___ hear" : SOI
48. Something woeful : THEPITS
49. Item of attire for 54-Across : CLOAK
51. Square meals that are round : POTPIES
52. Minneapolis suburb : EDINA
54. Jackie of "Shanghai Noon" : CHAN
58. Maine senator after Mitchell : SNOWE
60. Striped Girl Scout cookie : SAMOA
62. Knocks : RAPS
63. Zodiac symbol : ARCHER
64. Pier place : MARINA
65. Adams and Alcott : LOUISAS
66. Most handy : NEAREST
72. '70s self-help course : EST
74. Word repeated in the "Superman" intro : ITS
76. Alliance : BLOC
77. Meaning: Fr. : SENS
81. *Flashback and halfbacks : ANAGRAMS
84. Eyelashes : CILIA
86. That, in Tijuana : ESO
88. Source of excitement : TURNON
89. TV/movie group associated with this puzzle's theme? : ATEAM
90. Agave drink : MESCAL
92. In the slightest : ONEBIT
93. Apple product : IMAC
95. The Adversary : SATAN
96. Jerk : SPASM
97. Day-and-night, in a way : AMPM
98. Belafonte hit : DAYO
99. Dungeons & Dragons figure : OGRE
100. Strait-laced : PRIM
101. Elation : GLEE
103. Reebok alternative : AVIA
104. Hike, with "up" : JACK
105. The East : ASIA
107. It goes before E except after C : ANI
109. Whiz : ACE
110. Vientiane native : LAO

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