WEATHER REPORT

New York Times, Sunday, January 15, 2012

Author: Finn Vigeland
Editor: Will Shortz
Finn Vigeland
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This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21, Words: 140, Blocks: 72 Missing: {JQ} Spans: 1 This is puzzle # 2 for Mr. Vigeland. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

Finn Vigeland notes: I dreamed this foul-weather puzzle up on a beautiful sunny day. The goal was to think of 21-letter phrases that hadn't before appeared in the Times, and the revealer at 66-Across came to mind pretty quickly. While it was always the idea to have the theme answers go down (and with circles representing raindrops), for some reason, it never crossed my mind to make that revealer go vertically down as well — I was always beholden to the idea that the theme answers should intersect 66-Across.

So, contrary to what Rex Parker wrote in his review, it actually proved very difficult to find theme entries containing cats and dogs, of equal length, and which intersected the central answer at the right moment. As it often is, the weakest of the theme answers (CABLE SITCOMS ... it's not really a real phrase, though I think my clue redeems it) was the first one I came up with, and my favorite themer (BREAKING THE RULES) was the last one in place. Rejected entries include TRAIN ROBBERY (tabby), PROOF OF DELIVERY (poodle), and OBTUSE TRIANGLE (beagle). At one point in time, I also had ANIMAL CRACKER going down the center of the puzzle, clued as something like [Kid's snack ... or what you are when you solve this puzzle?] before I realized that was just a liiiittle too over the top.

1
C
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© 2012, The New York Times
Across Down
1. DNA testing might reopen one : COLDCASE
9. Uses a 13-Across on : ZAPS
13. "Star Trek" weapon : PHASER
19. Person who's a zero? : OPERATOR
20. What will the French think of next? : IDEE
21. Troop group : PHALANX
22. Dream setting : CASTLEINSPAIN
24. After-dinner choices : SORBETS
25. PC key : ALT
26. Some online communications, for short : IMS
27. QB Tebow : TIM
28. Thérèse de Lisieux, for one : SAINTE
30. :D, e.g. : EMOTICON
33. Battle-ax : OLDBAG
37. Grp. that coordinates E.T.A. and E.T.D. : ATC
40. Letter-shaped girder : HBEAM
42. Basis of a lawsuit : TORT
43. "By ___!" : GEORGE
44. Slip-on : LOAFER
46. Places for rings, maybe : SAFES
48. Humble response to praise : ITRY
50. Organ repair sites, briefly : ORS
51. Polished : URBANE
52. ___ B. Driftwood ("A Night at the Opera" role) : OTIS
53. Org. that may assess violence levels : MPAA
54. PBS flagship station : WNET
55. Part of a pinochle round : MELD
56. Former U.N. secretary general Kofi ___ : ANNAN
58. Get ready to drive : TEEUP
59. x, y and z : AXES
60. Scot's "not" : NAE
61. Ousted from the ring, for short : TKOD
62. TV station, e.g. : AIRER
64. Cicely or tarragon : HERB
66. Weather comment represented visually by this puzzle's circled letters : ITSRAININGCATSANDDOGS
72. Major artery through San Antonio : ITEN
73. Plant tissue : XYLEM
74. Hunted : PREY
75. TV tavern keeper : MOE
76. Bud : MATE
78. Feel (for) : GROPE
80. The Mediterranean has a warm one : CLIME
82. Shade of a swan's bill in a Keats poem : EBON
83. Kindergarten stuff : ABCS
84. Gravitate : TEND
85. Not cheating : FAIR
86. Many wonks : DWEEBS
88. Scat syllable : DOO
89. One of the Everly Brothers : PHIL
90. Fate : KARMA
91. Fictional Simon : LEGREE
92. Esteem : ADMIRE
94. Rolling ___ (rich) : INIT
96. Kaput : ENDED
98. Overseas Mr. : SRI
99. Austrian physician who lent his name to an English word ending in "-ize" : MESMER
100. Propose : NOMINATE
102. "True Colors" singer, 1986 : LAUPER
104. Roam : GAD
105. Letters on some N.Y.C. luggage : LGA
108. Actress Tyler : LIV
111. Subject of a Vatican investigation : MIRACLE
114. Artificial plot device : DEUSEXMACHINA
118. "The Conqueror," e.g. : EPITHET
119. "___ it" ("Understood") : IGET
120. Some bills have them : EARMARKS
121. Dolls : HONEYS
122. Brit's teapot cover : COSY
123. Like some boards : DRYERASE
1. Chewed stimulant : COCA
2. Precious girl's name? : OPAL
3. In the event that : LEST
4. 2000 title role for Richard Gere : DRT
5. LL Cool J's "Going Back to ___" : CALI
6. "Lemme ___!" : ATEM
7. "That is quite clear" : SOISEE
8. Directional suffix : ERN
9. "Shut your trap!" : ZIPIT
10. Nudists : ADAMITES
11. Nascar Hall of Fame architect : PEI
12. Part of a security system : SENSOR
13. It's lowered to hear music : PHONOGRAPHNEEDLE
14. Taft's partner in a 1947 act : HARTLEY
15. Light reflection ratio : ALBEDO
16. R.S.V.P. facilitator: Abbr. : SAE
17. Tolkien creature : ENT
18. Pharmacies fill them, in brief : RXS
21. Fourth letter after 49-Down : PSI
23. Leaf pores : STOMATA
29. You probably raise your arm for this : ANTIPERSPIRANT
31. It's north of the South : MASONDIXONLINE
32. Stock page listings: Abbr. : COS
34. Big Apple team : BRONXBOMBERS
35. Side (with) : AGREE
36. Heroic deeds : GESTS
37. ___ Hall (site on many a campus) : ALUMNI
38. Attacked : TOREAT
39. Shows that can be racier than their network counterparts : CABLESITCOMS
40. Nest maker : HEN
41. Cheating : BREAKINGTHERULES
45. Angry Birds, e.g. : FAD
47. Manipulate to one's advantage : FINAGLE
49. Fourth letter before 21-Down : TAU
53. Track ___ : MEET
54. Prison unit : WARD
57. Security Council veto : NON
58. Mine transport : TRAMCAR
61. ___ kwon do : TAE
63. Put away : ICE
65. Big name in frozen desserts : EDY
67. 72-Across and others: Abbr. : RTES
68. "Cagney & Lacey" org. : NYPD
69. Bazooka, e.g. : ARM
70. Yokel : GOOBER
71. Martial arts master : SENSEI
76. Lady : MADAM
77. Villa, e.g. : ABODE
79. Portuguese king : REI
81. Tart drink : LIMEADE
82. Doc's reading : EEG
85. Battle wear : FATIGUES
87. Bond : WED
89. Tediously didactic : PREACHY
90. North Korean leader or his father : KIM
93. White Rabbit's cry : IMLATE
95. Certain skiing competition : NORDIC
97. California beach town with a racetrack : DELMAR
101. Vicious : NASTY
103. Doll : PET
106. Player of golf : GARY
107. Climax : ACME
108. The euro replaced it : LIRA
109. Signs : INKS
110. One with a neck and a lip : VASE
111. "I can't get excited about it" : MEH
112. Bit of investors' news, for short : IPO
113. ___ Tin Tin : RIN
115. I, to Tiberius : EGO
116. Struck : XED
117. Laugh syllable : HAR

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