Doug Peterson

# Thumbnails

## 7 collaboration puzzles by Brad Wilber and Doug Peterson

*** Click any puzzle to see the full view. ***

 B A S F L I P O N E S L I D A C H J U K E B O X H E R O T R A O R E G O N T R A I L H O M B R E W I E I S N T S P E E D D O S Y M H A H O L E P H O T O O P E L E C O L D S A W H E R B I S H O P S L E A Z Y A S S D O G S I T M I R A R E V O L T S B R A N C B E R K O S T E M P O P A R I L A V H E R E O N O R A N G E P E K O E T U E S O V I E T U N I O N A N A T B O N E S T E A K S L D L
DOUG: This is the first time, in the NY Times puzzle, that the entry DOGSIT (39-Across) has been clued as "dog-sit" (take care of a pet) instead of "dogs it" (loafs on the job). We went that route because the entry crosses ITS at 42-Down. And Brad came up with some stellar clues for dog-sit, including the one that Will used in puzzle. Here's a nice one from the cutting room floor: [Keep an afghan around you, perhaps]. I have cats, so I don't have to worry about finding a sitter. Cats are easy. If I'm going to be gone for a couple of days, I just leave a twenty-dollar bill on the counter and they're good.

BRAD: Every time I do a puzzle with stacks of 11s, I say it will be my last for a good while. But ever since Doug and I did our puzzle of last August 3, we've had orphaned stacks that we couldn't quite mesh with the grid of the moment but that we felt had the kind of panache solvers like to see — maybe enough to launch a new puzzle. Each new grid has left us with a tempting discarded scrap. I've joked to Doug that we will have an endless loop of 11-heavy puzzles and we'll just try to space them out judiciously and use other grid types in-between. I thought this one turned out especially clean. I liked Doug's clues for 34A and 57A. And the nice SE he did led to some fun digging on my part — research-based clues that Will liked and used in the final edit.

 P O V E R T Y R O W G A R R U R A N I U M O R E E P E E C A R R O T C A K E L P G A E N Y A U A R D I A L U P G A S P E N T E L E S T E R S T E A D I C A M W A R S A W P A C T N I T E O N E B O L S T E R D I A K T E L R E T I R E M E N T S A G E G R E E N B E R G S C U T S I N F A N B L A S T S O N O D I S K C A R O O T H E R W O M A N U R D U M S M A G A Z I N E P A S T E A S T O R A N G E
BRAD: Doug and I usually achieve something close to a 50/50 split on the fill in our themeless puzzles. The kind of balance we're looking for is helped along by grid patterns that are fairly modest in their demands — whatever progress I make somewhere should leave Doug lots of flexibility. What I like about grids that Doug picks (like this one) is that they are manageable but they usually present some extra degree of difficulty, like a pair of 10s feeding into the center or reaching into the corners, when we could have bailed out with cheater squares instead. Doug plunked down a nifty new 1A here and worked to 32A. We took turns on the other corners until we were done. We've got movie trivia, history, gastronomy, and baseball here — all elements we both like. I humbly submit a fresh clue for 16A. Doug has concocted some crafty ones for a couple of the 9-letter entries.

DOUG: 1A is an example of my favorite type of themeless seed entry. It may not be familiar to most solvers, but the entry is quite figure-out-able. And most importantly, it's an interesting phrase to learn. You can use it to impress your easily impressed friends at your next cocktail party. I try not to use unfamiliar names as seeds, because they're quickly forgotten once the puzzle is solved. And let me add that I always learn something new (a cool word, some fun trivia, etc.) when constructing a puzzle with Brad.

 S O T H A B E R D A S H E R W H O O N C L O U D N I N E E P A R I C K Y N E L S O N E L F M A N H A N S M R T T E A R S B A L E K A M A S A R I W O R F A N S E L O S E W A X T A B L E T P E T M I C E M A E W E S T H I T O R M I S S R P I G O E T H B A L K M S R P A R E A O R L Y T I V O S S S W G A I L W O N O U T L I E D E T E C T O R I T E O N L I N E F O R U M C U R G O L D E N S P I K E E P S
BRAD: The old adage of "good longer stacks start with the stacking of useful shorter stems" was especially true here, as I realized ONLINE went nicely atop GOLDEN, and what remained was to pick compatible tails. Doug liked LIE DETECTOR in the stack and added MALL COP; he's also responsible for those two great clues.

We tried a few design configurations in the middle and realized we'd have to have some long vertical entries too or the word count would tip over into 72 or 74. BOXER BRIEFS won out over other –EFS we tried. I had just been doing some work in the trenches at the end of the alphabet on my word list, so new addition WAX TABLET helped matters a lot, facilitating ___ FAMILY.

And we had to decide whether or not to have the vertical 15s, rather than going with SEWELL or NEWELL or LOWELL or whatever. TO A FARE-THEE-WELL had actually been on my list of possible seed entries. But did we ever take some ribbing for it (fewer people seemed to recognize it than I expected) — and since the puzzle appeared the Saturday before Lollapuzzoola, some of the ribbing was in person! Still, I think this was a grid most solvers were quite happy with.

 T H I S I S T R U E A S S T R A C O N T E U R S T K O S I N A R T I S T I C T A L K C E N T E R S R I A T A S E S T E R H O O S I E R R I P V A N W I N K L E A N I M A U V E S T E A L L A M B C L A S H S Y M S A T P A R C R E E D S P A N U R S E R A T C H E D R O S S I N I S E L M A C A V I T Y R A I S E U P O L I N A N N E B R O N T E E L S E D E A D L E T T E R N Y E T H O W D Y D O O D Y
 C A T S C R A D L E I G O R H E A T V I S I O N C A N E I R R E S O L U T E E N T S P O P E J A R S F I G H T L U A N N R I N S E R H E L E N T A B O R T W A A N O R A K L I R E A H I R A S S L E S L E B A R O N E M S L E N D M O R A L E M E L I N L E T A M P E D P L E B E S C A R T S A W A R D F A R O R I F T N A D A D I R T Y H A R R Y T R E F P A L A C E C O U P S E R F S T O N E H E N G E
 S I G H T I N G J A R F U L A S L O O S E A S A G O O S E C H A I N L I N K F E N C E S H A M S E N D E A R A R S E L I T E E E R A C N E M L S C O U R T P E C A N F O R M S D O T I M E I A C O C C A H E N N A E D C L A R A S H O N D A A L T A R L A T T E C S A N O S Y C U B R E A C T T C U P A N I C S T B A R W A I T I N G T O E X H A L E I T T A K E S A L L K I N D S N E S T E D T E L E C A S T
 C R A F T F A I R B R A C E O H S U S A N N A L I P P Y S I T Z K R I E G I S E R E I N E Z G O R P P E R C H N O R K O N R A D S T L O E S S E N S O P U P U A L D I R R E C O U R S E H A D A F I T R A W N E S S A I R M E D A L T E D T R A R E P A D L O O M S M E W S R E T E L L B E T A D U L T D E V O H E R E K A P O W E R I C C A R L E E L O P E C O C K A H O O P R E N E E K N E E P A N T S