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New York Times, Saturday, January 4, 2014

Author: Kyle Dolan
Editor: Will Shortz
Kyle T. Dolan
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
65/22/20122/22/20170
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1021002
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.57020

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 70, Blocks: 32 Missing: {QZ} This is puzzle # 3 for Mr. Dolan. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Kyle T. Dolan notes: This is my third Times puzzle, and the first to appear on a Saturday. When I constructed this puzzle in late 2012, MTV's 'Jersey ... more
Kyle T. Dolan notes: This is my third Times puzzle, and the first to appear on a Saturday. When I constructed this puzzle in late 2012, MTV's "Jersey Shore" was still a big pop culture phenomenon, and the show had been referenced a couple times already in the Times crossword. I realized that nobody had used DJ PAULY D as an entry and I thought it would make a good themeless seed because of the interesting letter arrangement, especially the DJP trio. To my chagrin, "Jersey Shore" concluded its run after I submitted the puzzle, so some solvers may find the entry a bit dated — them's the breaks.

Often when I make themeless puzzles, I put in one or two 15-letter entries, but in this puzzle I wanted my grid design to highlight 9- and 10-letter entries. I was happy to be able to get in answers like ADORKABLE, THE CAPITOL, PARK RANGER, and STONEWALL without compromising much of the shorter fill. Finally, CODON puts a nice personal touch on the puzzle, since I'm a biochemist in my day job.

Will Shortz notes: 'Jersey Shore' cast members Snooki and The Situation have both appeared in Times crosswords before (Snooki four times), but this is ... more
Will Shortz notes: "Jersey Shore" cast members Snooki and The Situation have both appeared in Times crosswords before (Snooki four times), but this is a debut for DJ PAULY D (6A). With new episodes of the MTV series not being made anymore, I'm guessing this is the last such debut. Besides 6A, I admire the entries GREAT BEAR, PARK RANGER, THE CAPITOL, STONEWALL, and ADORKABLE (which was new to me, but I like).
Jeff Chen notes: Very fun puzzle today, aside from my willful ignorance of 'Jersey Shore'. I couldn't finish the NE corner of the puzzle and am proud ... more
Jeff Chen notes: Very fun puzzle today, aside from my willful ignorance of "Jersey Shore". I couldn't finish the NE corner of the puzzle and am proud of it. Don't tread on me, DJ PAULY D!

What a beautiful SW corner. I loved the crossing of STONEWALL and PATDOWN with its fun clue, "Touching scene at an airport?". Brings back hilariously unpleasant memories of going through security at a Netherlands airport back when I had my devil-length goatee. Good times. And I find CODON to be a great entry, too infrequently used given its crossword-friendly alternation of common consonants and vowels. I couldn't totally recall what a CODON was, but it came back easily enough with four letters in place. Okay fine, with five letters in place!

Overall, I really appreciated the smoothness of (most of) the grid. The NE corner was the roughest bit, with ATH and the awkward LEND A partial. If I had paid the slightest bit of attention to pop culture, I might have rolled through it. I wonder if DJ PAULY D will persist in American culture? Get on that; make yourself honestly famous, mister! Or is Pauly D a missus? Wow, am I out of touch with "popular" celebs.

Nice work today from Kyle. There were a few bits I didn't care for, PREFIGURE in particular, but I really liked all the snappy short fill accompanying the marquee answers: JET SET, PACK RAT, RUB OUT, BIG TOP all added snazz to the puzzle.

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© 2014, The New York TimesNo. 0104 ( 23,433 )
Across Down
1. Like cork trees and flying lizards : ASIAN
6. "Jersey Shore" housemate's music-biz name : DJPAULYD
14. Jersey Shore vacation option : CONDO
15. Big Dipper's setting : GREATBEAR
16. One offering help in passing? : TUTOR
17. Take up enthusiastically : LATCHONTO
18. See 34-Down : USER
19. Where Lee Harvey Oswald was a lathe operator : MINSK
20. City where some believe Cain and Abel are buried : ADEN
21. Warden in drab clothes : PARKRANGER
23. Take down with a charge : TASE
24. Spring event in the Summer Olympics? : VAULT
25. Setting that makes things right? : TAB
27. Less agreeable : CRABBIER
30. Be a lush : TIPPLE
35. Chicken à la rey? : POLLO
36. Buzzes, say : DOS
38. Tiny amount : GRAIN
39. Was revolting : ROSEUP
41. Was a rocker? : TEETERED
43. Tie ___ : TAC
45. Up : ALOFT
46. Hyperbola parts : ARCS
50. House meeting place : THECAPITOL
54. Theoretical : MOOT
55. Predictor of fame : DIXON
56. Elasticity : GIVE
57. School meeting places : AUDITORIA
59. Photometry unit : LUMEN
60. Be an unhelpful interrogee : STONEWALL
61. Lack life : ARENT
62. Life or death : SENTENCE
63. Leaf part : VERSO
1. Go on the fritz : ACTUP
2. Monty Python theme composer : SOUSA
3. Gaps : INTERVALS
4. Like cute nerds, in slang : ADORKABLE
5. "___ did you nothing hear?": Hamlet : NOR
6. Stress, to Strauss : DRANG
7. First-class regulars : JETSET
8. Keeping buff? : PACKRAT
9. Jock: Abbr. : ATH
10. Raider in the battle of the St. Lawrence : UBOAT
11. "___ Paw" (Oscar-winning Disney short) : LENDA
12. "Eyewitness" director Peter : YATES
13. Hurdy-gurdy sound : DRONE
15. Flashed : GLINTED
19. Tuareg rebellion locale of 2012 : MALI
22. Erase : RUBOUT
26. Three-ring setting : BIGTOP
27. Some rescue work : CPR
28. Neighbor of Rabbit : ROO
29. Bunk : ROT
31. Foreshadow : PREFIGURE
32. One not getting benefits, say : PARTTIMER
33. Make baloney? : LIE
34. With 18-Across, software developer's concern : END
37. Constituent of molding sand : SEACOAL
40. Touching scene at an airport? : PATDOWN
42. Animation : ELAN
44. European president who attended Harvard : CHIRAC
46. Bank : AMASS
47. Path : ROUTE
48. One of 64 in a genetic table : CODON
49. Piece of work : STINT
51. Napoleon, notably : EXILE
52. Where things may be heating up : OVENS
53. Molto adagio : LENTO
58. Bit of sportswear : TEE
59. Head : LAV

Answer summary: 6 unique to this puzzle, 2 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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