It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker. Please consider supporting our site by purchasing an account.

New York Times, Thursday, March 27, 2014

Author: Jean O'Conor
Editor: Will Shortz
Jean O'Conor
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
75/19/20131/19/20150
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1212100
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.64100

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 76, Blocks: 35 Missing: {JQZ} This is puzzle # 5 for Ms. O'Conor. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jean O'Conor notes: This puzzle began at Positive Pie, a restaurant in the very small town of Hardwick, Vermont. It's known for its delicious pizza ... more
Jean O'Conor notes: This puzzle began at Positive Pie, a restaurant in the very small town of Hardwick, Vermont. It's known for its delicious pizza served from a wood-fired oven and for its selection of craft beers. While anticipating both of these pleasures, and studying the menu decorated with its design of +'s and π's, my husband started the discussion of pizza/pie/pi theme ideas. The pizza pie piece eventually fell by the wayside, except for its circular shape.

The puzzle went through some revisions of the fill, during which FULL got moved around a lot. I hadn't realized what a hard word it was to "fill" around! I have to thank Will for livening up my clues. I was glad to see two of my favorites still there (for SERENADE and HOEDOWNS), but I can't take any credit for "It wraps around a chest at the beach"!

Hope you enjoy the π.

Jeff Chen notes: (warning, nerd alert) Ah, a math puzzle! Even better, a geometry puzzle! It's a shame that this didn't run on Pi Day (3/14), but a ... more
Jeff Chen notes: (warning, nerd alert) Ah, a math puzzle! Even better, a geometry puzzle! It's a shame that this didn't run on Pi Day (3/14), but a person can only dream. Jean uses the famous formula for area of a circle, pi*r^2 (or "PI R SQUARED"), and for circumference, 2*pi*r, where r is the circle's radius. It took me a while to figure out what was going on with 2 PI R because I always think of it as PI D (d = diameter), but sure enough, 2 PI R is totally legit.

And to top it off, Jean's incorporated FULL / CIRCLE into the grid, a nice revealer hinting at the two formulas. I like that it doesn't hit you over the head like some revealers do; rather, it hints at what's going on, leaving the rest up to the solver's imagination. I would have liked to seen FULL / CIRCLE not split up, or at least placed in closer proximity, since I don't like jumping all over the grid for cross-referenced clues. Placing those answers both in the SE corner would have achieved that, plus would have given the added bonus of not having the revealer appear until the solver is near the end of the puzzle. But that might have been quite difficult to achieve, given the grid layout.

Rebus squares can be tricky, and typically I like to see them kept to four letters squished in or less. SQUARED obviously can be much better represented by a superscript "2" in print, but plenty of solvers will prefer to write in SQUARED since SQUARED AWAY looks so much more correct than 2 AWAY. I did like the variety of it all, in that experienced solvers aren't used to having a mix of rebus squares, regular ones, and numbers. Neat mix.

Because the theme is squeezed into compacted areas, the rest of the grid is fairly wide open. Jean does a nice job of incorporating other long fill, such as BIKINI TOP (my favorite, of course), BANISTER with its neat misdirectional clue (flight of stairs, not airplane flight), and TAX EVADER with a great clue, "duties" meaning "levies," not "responsibilities." Great to get a healthy dose of wordplay. There are some compromises like OR IN, ORO, WE SAY, but I sure liked getting all the great long stuff. Not a bad trade-off.

Finally, for those of you wondering, FOURH is good old 4-H. It's strange to me since I never see 4-H written FOUR-H, but it's almost kooky-looking enough for me to I like it.

JimH notes: Jeff asks why 2 π R instead of π D. One reason is it makes the math easier when dealing with circles and spheres. Note that if you ... more
JimH notes: Jeff asks why 2 π R instead of π D. One reason is it makes the math easier when dealing with circles and spheres. Note that if you differentiate the area of a circle, π R2, you get the circumference, 2 π R. Integrate and quadruple to get the volume of a sphere, 4/3 π R3.

Or, there might be one other reason. π D is too short for a crossword answer. :)

1
L
2
I
3
S
4
T
5
O
6
N
7
A
8
H
9
S
10
F
11
U
12
L
13
L
14
I
N
H
A
L
E
15
F
O
E
16
O
N
E
A
17
E
L
I
X
I
R
18
R
E
R
19
O
U
T
E
S
20
L
I
F
E
O
F
21
PI
22
D
E
A
R
E
S
T
23
O
N
T
V
24
R
25
M
O
N
T
H
S
26
W
E
S
A
27
Y
28
SQUARED
A
W
A
Y
29
T
30
E
31
A
32
D
U
33
B
34
E
N
D
35
P
E
A
L
36
A
37
R
38
T
E
M
I
39
S
40
S
E
41
W
E
D
U
P
42
R
O
A
R
43
K
E
44
G
45
D
A
R
46
M
D
S
47
S
I
D
E
48
2
49
C
S
50
P
51
O
52
T
53
M
54
A
G
N
U
M
PI
55
E
R
N
O
56
E
57
L
A
S
T
I
C
58
R
59
M
60
O
V
I
E
S
61
B
A
N
I
S
T
E
62
R
63
A
R
E
N
A
S
64
A
V
I
A
65
O
R
O
66
C
I
R
C
L
E
67
N
A
A
N
68
P
S
Y
69
K
N
E
E
L
S
© 2014, The New York TimesNo. 23,515
Across Down
1. Clay pounder? : LISTON
7. Sounds at spas : AHS
10. With 66-Across, back to the beginning ... or a description of 21- and 48-Down? : FULL
14. Gobble quickly : INHALE
15. Persians, to the 300, e.g. : FOE
16. Required to serve, maybe : ONEA
17. Healthy spirit? : ELIXIR
18. Diverts : REROUTES
20. Best seller about shipwreck survivors : LIFEOFPI
22. Honey pie : DEAREST
23. Airing, in a way : ONTV
24. September through April, in a culinary guideline : RMONTHS
26. "Shall ___ ...?" : WESAY
28. Settled up : SQUAREDAWAY
29. Sleepytime ___ : TEA
32. Designate : DUB
34. Hindmost : END
35. Ring : PEAL
36. Temple of ___, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World : ARTEMIS
40. Finalized : SEWEDUP
42. Big laugh : ROAR
43. Tap site : KEG
45. Constitution Hall grp. : DAR
46. Patient helpers, for short : MDS
47. Where to find "Yesterday" on the album "Help!" : SIDE2
49. High note? : CSPOT
53. Tom Selleck title role : MAGNUMPI
55. Celebrity cosmetician Laszlo : ERNO
56. What gives? : ELASTIC
58. "The Godfather" parts I, II and III, e.g. : RMOVIES
61. It might be held on a flight : BANISTER
63. Spheres : ARENAS
64. Nike competitor : AVIA
65. Spanish valuable : ORO
66. See 10-Across : CIRCLE
67. Tandoori flatbread : NAAN
68. 2012 YouTube sensation : PSY
69. Shows subservience, say : KNEELS
1. Stay out of sight : LIELOW
2. Queued : INLINE
3. Goes from first to second, say : SHIFTS
4. Shirker of one's duties? : TAXEVADER
5. Smorgasbord : OLIO
6. Hasbro brand : NERF
7. Great Rift Valley locale: Abbr. : AFR
8. Do-si-do whoop-de-dos : HOEDOWNS
9. Courted with love notes? : SERENADED
10. County fair organizer : FOURH
11. Green : UNTESTED
12. Some jeans : LEES
13. Hindmost : LAST
19. Like some cereals : OATY
21. See 10-Across : PIRSQUARED
25. Daisy ___ : MAE
27. "Tasty!" : YUM
30. Loire contents : EAU
31. One above the Lötschberg Tunnel : ALP
33. It wraps around a chest at the beach : BIKINITOP
35. Hang in there : PERSEVERE
36. Gun, e.g. : ARM
37. Gun, in slang : ROD
38. Southernmost state : TASMANIA
39. Sirens : SEDUCERS
41. W.W. II service member : WAC
44. Definite keeper : GEM
47. Friday and others: Abbr. : SGTS
48. See 10-Across : 2PIR
50. Frog's alter ego, in a fairy tale : PRINCE
51. Low tie : ONEALL
52. Flings : TOSSES
54. ___-American : ASIAN
56. Abba not known for singing : EBAN
57. Soap with pumice : LAVA
59. Connie ___, Philadelphia Athletics manager for 50 years : MACK
60. "... now ___ the future" : ORIN
62. Dale's partner : ROY

Answer summary: 4 unique to this puzzle, 1 debuted here and reused later, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

Found bugs or have suggestions?

Previous puzzle | Next puzzle