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New York Times, Monday, January 26, 2015

Author: Ian Livengood
Editor: Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
554/12/20109/15/20164
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617667112
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.64371
Ian Livengood

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 78, Blocks: 38 Missing: {JQVZ} This is puzzle # 45 for Mr. Livengood. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

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Ian Livengood notes: Do solvers know Hieronymus Bosch outside of crosswords? I certainly don't. I do, however, celebrate Brennan Boesch's entire ... more
Ian Livengood notes:

Do solvers know Hieronymus Bosch outside of crosswords? I certainly don't. I do, however, celebrate Brennan Boesch's entire collection. BOSCH is a notch below some A-listers like Monet, Renoir and Picasso, but the highbrow entry should appeal to the NYT demographic, I think.

Hope solvers like it!

Jeff Chen notes: Themers starting with sassy synonyms, all disguised using other meanings: SMART as in smart-mouthed, FLIP as in flippant, FORWARD as ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

Themers starting with sassy synonyms, all disguised using other meanings: SMART as in smart-mouthed, FLIP as in flippant, FORWARD as in "that incredibly good-looking Asian crossword blogger was a little too forward but man did I flip at his bold commentary!"

Or something like that.

It's been great following Ian's puzzles over the past years, seeing him constantly pushing his skills. It wasn't enough to be able to execute a five-themer puzzle as clean as a whistle. Next came five-themers with four long downs – still clean. Then six themers was the new challenge. And now six themers, plus four long downs? I love seeing that drive to push one's boundaries.

Ian does something really interesting today with his themers. Usually it's best to alternate them left right left right etc., but he stacks SMART COOKIE over PERT PLUS on the right side. Makes for a very hard overlap in the RUER area. With six themers, an alternating pattern often makes grid design very difficult — especially when an answer is as long as SMART COOKIE — because it creates many areas where you need to work around three themers at a time. This arrangement, while still very difficult to nail cleanly, reduces the number of said areas.

It's unusual to see a RUER in one of Ian's puzzles, given how exacting he is about his fill standards. But look at how much goodness that one entry enabled: SENIOR PROM in the NE (and PADDYWAGON in the SW). Well worth it.

Bosch's "The Garden of Earthly Delights"

Sorry to those of you struggling with that Starship captain crossing BOSCH, but I feel like it's fair, even for a Monday. I'd personally categorize BOSCH as one of the greats, and Jean-Luc Picard is clearly the best of all the Enterprise captains. (Don't even get me started on Captains Janeway or Archer, and Kirk supporters are fresh heathens.)

And congrats is in order for Ian, one of the four new members of CrosSynergy, a syndicate providing daily xws to the Washington Post. The others are Patti Varol, editor of the Crosswords Club, Brad Wilber, editor of the Chronicle of Higher Education, and Todd McClary.

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© 2015, The New York TimesNo. 0126 ( 23,820 )
Across Down
1. Attendees : GOERS
6. Genre for Jay Z or J. Cole : RAP
9. Hop, ___ and a jump : SKIP
13. What subjects and verbs should do : AGREE
14. Right-hand man or woman : AIDE
15. Furry red monster on "Sesame Street" : ELMO
16. 1970s comedian whom Time magazine dubbed "TV's First Black Superstar" : FLIPWILSON
18. Puppy bites : NIPS
19. Bank charges : FEES
20. Drink in a stein : ALE
21. Aches (for) : PINES
22. Upper-left computer key: Abbr. : ESC
23. Clever person : SMARTCOOKIE
26. Copycatting : APISH
28. One with misgivings : RUER
29. Tiny nation surrounded by France and the Mediterranean : MONACO
31. Shampoo in a green bottle : PERTPLUS
35. Washerful : LOAD
36. Verbal thumbs-up : AOK
37. Relaxation : REST
38. Type meant to stand out : BOLDTEXT
41. Sounded like a cannon : BOOMED
43. Days of ___ (past times) : YORE
44. Cocktail with vodka, triple sec, cranberry juice and lime juice : COSMO
45. Counterpart to a lateral : FORWARDPASS
49. "Weekend Edition" airer : NPR
52. Achilles epic : ILIAD
53. Jean-___ Picard (U.S.S. Enterprise captain) : LUC
54. Eye affliction : STYE
55. Smelting waste : SLAG
56. New beginning ... or what 16-, 23-, 31-, 38- and 45-Across each have? : FRESHSTART
59. Longtime Yugoslav leader : TITO
60. Attire for one lounging at a 58-Down : ROBE
61. Peeling gadget : PARER
62. Ian : Scotland :: ___ : Ireland : SEAN
63. Poem of praise : ODE
64. Fidgeting : ANTSY
1. Mistake that people laugh about : GAFFE
2. Stares rudely at : OGLES
3. Albany-to-Buffalo waterway : ERIECANAL
4. Bench press count : REPS
5. Use needle and thread : SEW
6. Chorus stand : RISER
7. "Much ___ About Nothing" : ADO
8. Pig's digs : PEN
9. Tuxedo rental occasion : SENIORPROM
10. "Hogan's Heroes" colonel : KLINK
11. Chinese-born American architect : IMPEI
12. Group helping a sheriff : POSSE
14. To whom Muslims pray : ALLAH
17. Retort to "You are not!" : IAMSO
21. Browning or Kipling : POET
23. "___ 'em!" ("Attack!") : SIC
24. Wearying journey : TREK
25. Junkyard dog : CUR
27. Police van : PADDYWAGON
29. Org. for the A's and O's : MLB
30. Winning "Hollywood Squares" line : OOO
31. Container at the end of a rainbow : POT
32. Tangy teatime offering : LEMONTART
33. "___ the Force, Luke" : USE
34. The "S" in E.S.T.: Abbr. : STD
36. Pink-slipped : AXED
39. Warty creature : TOAD
40. Go wrong : ERR
41. "The Garden of Earthly Delights" artist : BOSCH
42. W.W. II spy org. : OSS
44. "Rebel Without a ___" : CAUSE
45. What boxing gloves cover : FISTS
46. Kukla, Fran and ___ : OLLIE
47. Looped calf-catcher : RIATA
48. West Point newcomer : PLEBE
50. Combustible funeral piles : PYRES
51. Hear again, as a court case : RETRY
54. Musial of Cardinals fame : STAN
56. Jimi Hendrix's do, informally : FRO
57. Curtain hanger : ROD
58. Where one might get a facial : SPA

Answer summary: 2 unique to this puzzle, 3 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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