New York Times, Monday, February 14, 2011

Author: Victor Fleming and Lynn Lempel
Editor: Will Shortz
Victor Fleming
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
433/29/20053/13/201521
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
73106656
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.55023
Lynn Lempel
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
7012/9/19792/9/20151
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
55092130
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangrampre-WS
1.610512

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15, Words: 76, Blocks: 38 Missing: {FJZ} Spans: 4 This is puzzle # 28 for Mr. Fleming. This is puzzle # 52 for Ms. Lempel. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

Puzzazz
Constructor notes:

VIC: I admire Lynn's thematic tautness and deft touch with early-week clues. Always have. In late October 2010 she did a CrosSynergy titled "A Bone to Pick." The title made me think of "with you." as in, "I have a bone to pick with you." Her theme consisted of ILSAs (in-the-language stand-alones), the first unit of which could precede "bone", e.g. TAILWIND and WISH YOU WERE HERE.

My idea was to use "with you" as a reveal, with four partial phrases that could end with those two words. Falling flat, this idea morphed into, first, phrases ending with "you." And then into song titles, and then love song titles. I had trouble making a grid that would accommodate the lengthy theme — a good time to seek help.

Since Lynn had inspired the idea, I asked her if she'd collaborate. Her initial reaction: "Your proposed theme is pretty far afield from a bone to pick!" But she agreed, made a great grid, and wrote the clues. We pitched it to Will as a Valentine's Day special.

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© 2011, The New York Times
Across Down
1. Soothing ointment : BALM
5. Big ___ (sandwich) : MAC
8. "Well done!" : BRAVO
13. Word after rest or residential : AREA
14. Puts frosting on : ICES
16. Take great pleasure (in) : REVEL
17. "___ 62-Down" (1962 Ray Charles hit) : ICANTSTOPLOVING
20. Tops worn with shorts : TSHIRTS
21. Uncooked : RAW
22. Depot: Abbr. : STA
23. Mauna ___ : LOA
24. Gets ready to shoot : AIMS
25. "___ 62-Down" (1953 Eddie Fisher hit) : IMWALKINGBEHIND
33. Six-sided game piece : DIE
34. Give for a while : LEND
35. More confident : SURER
36. Keep ___ on (watch) : TABS
38. Aptitude : SKILL
41. First, second, third or home : BASE
42. Change, as the Constitution : AMEND
44. Drubbing : ROUT
46. Some milk ctns. : QTS
47. "___ 62-Down" (1989 Milli Vanilli hit) : GIRLIMGONNAMISS
51. "Not much longer" : SOON
52. ___ Guevara : CHE
53. Sack : BAG
56. Lennon's second mate : ONO
57. Takes one's pick : CHOOSES
61. "___ 62-Down" (1995 Hootie & the Blowfish hit) : ONLYWANNABEWITH
64. Peeling one may make a person tear up : ONION
65. Rural grain holder : SILO
66. "___, Brute?" : ETTU
67. Word puzzle with pictures : REBUS
68. Big name in stunt bikes : BMX
69. Faculty head : DEAN
1. Cheese in a mousetrap : BAIT
2. Firecrackers' paths : ARCS
3. Jacob's first wife : LEAH
4. Philippine capital : MANILA
5. Errata : MISTAKES
6. Every play of Shakespeare has five of them : ACTS
7. Corp. honcho : CEO
8. Reads a little here and there : BROWSES
9. Sun. sermon giver : REV
10. Rara ___ : AVIS
11. Air outlet : VENT
12. ___ Korbut, 1972 Olympic gymnastic sensation : OLGA
15. Parsley bit : SPRIG
18. Dweller under a bridge, in fairy tales : TROLL
19. Mary had a little one : LAMB
24. Fireplace log holder : ANDIRON
25. It helps you claim a suitcase : IDTAG
26. City known for its Heat : MIAMI
27. Big name in outdoor grills : WEBER
28. Sign, as a deal : INK
29. Wheel's center : HUB
30. Baghdad native : IRAQI
31. Hatchlings' homes : NESTS
32. Gown : DRESS
37. NBC weekend skit show, for short : SNL
39. Chaney of old films : LON
40. Carrier of a sandwich, soda and cookies, say : LUNCHBOX
43. Renounces : DISOWNS
45. California/Nevada resort lake : TAHOE
48. "___ Lisa" : MONA
49. Thugs : GOONS
50. Made Persian or Siamese sounds : MEOWED
53. Socially inept sort : BOOR
54. Meara of comedy : ANNE
55. Smooth-talking : GLIB
57. Smooth, as seas : CALM
58. Web page : SITE
59. Jazzy singer ___ James : ETTA
60. Steer clear of : SHUN
62. Object of affection in 17-, 25-, 47- and 61-Across : YOU
63. Penpoint : NIB

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