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New York Times, Thursday, January 8, 2015

Author:
Jacob Stulberg
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
3012/25/20131/2/20190
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
3449640
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.597100
Jacob Stulberg

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 78, Blocks: 36 Missing: {JQZ} This is puzzle # 3 for Mr. Stulberg. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jacob Stulberg notes:
This is a revision of the first crossword I ever constructed. The original version's theme answers were PINTZCRYSTAL, HAROLDCUPER, ... read more

This is a revision of the first crossword I ever constructed. The original version's theme answers were PINTZCRYSTAL, HAROLDCUPER, OCGILLATION and HALFMEASURES. After polite rejection letters from several publications, it sat untouched for nearly a year until I thought to rework it into a rebus. Keeping QUARTZCRYSTAL in the new grid was a challenge, and I ended up using LIVINGQUARTERS instead ... not ideal, since QUART and QUARTERS share a root, but (I reasoned) less obviously so than something like STRINGQUARTETS.

For those who struggled with GILL, I'll confess that I had no idea the half-cup measure(ment) even had a name until I looked it up while working on this puzzle, though that triggered a dim memory of a "Simpsons" episode where a sneaky gifted student offers to trade Bart "1000 picoliters of my milk for 4 gills of yours."

Favorite answers: the sepia-toned pairing of MRTOAD and TENTSHOW. RIPINTWO was also a fun challenge to clue without using any form of the word "half" (already used in the revealer).

Jeff Chen notes:
I like new rebus ideas. To me, rebuses have been done so much that a single rebus, even one with a rationale (CRUSHED ICE explaining ... read more

I like new rebus ideas. To me, rebuses have been done so much that a single rebus, even one with a rationale (CRUSHED ICE explaining ICE in a single square, e.g.) is a bit passe. So although I struggled mightily to figure out what was going on here, I eventually cracked it and appreciated the clever idea, two pints – PINT PINT – making a QUART, CUP CUP making a PINT, GILL GILL making a CUP. Nice revealer too, HALF MEASURE hinting at the concept.

Gill measuring jugs

Let's address the elephant in the room. What the heck is a GILL? The unit has gone by the wayside (except apparently in measuring alcoholic spirits). Does that make it off-limits for crossword use?

I was stymied for the longest time, especially since MCGILL is only somewhat recognizable (sorry to all Canadians including but not limited to Jim and Jeffrey!). The more I think about it though, it feels not only reasonable but even desirable. I like a challenge in my crosswords, and figuring it out, even not knowing what a GILL was, gave me a great sense of accomplishment. So, thumbs up.

I can understand the desire to section off the difficult PINT PINT area up north. Working RIP IN TWO and TAP INTO side by side is no small task. However, creating a 6x3 section up north / down south often causes difficulty in normal circumstances – check out EEO, EFTS, AYR, ERS down south, for example – and with these added rebus-driven constraints, the need for glue becomes high. MFG isn't terrible, although it's not super familiar to me. ACR feels equally wonky though. And throw in a ONE K – I'm okay with an occasional FIVE K or TEN K, which are vastly more common in real life – and it feels like a lot of glue in just one area.

For all you pop culture idiots like me, KESHA apparently is very popular. Who knew? (Answer: everyone in America but me.) Thankfully, everything felt fair and I don't mind learning another person I really should know. (Sorry IMRE Kertesz and MOIRA Kelly, KESHA already filled up my new-person-learning brain cells for the day.)

1
I
2
M
3
R
4
E
5
M
6
R
7
T
8
O
9
A
10
D
11
C
12
A
13
W
14
S
O
A
R
15
F
I
A
N
C
E
16
A
D
O
17
L
I
V
I
18
N
G
PINT
PINT
E
R
S
19
R
O
W
20
A
R
E
T
E
21
W
O
K
22
C
23
H
O
R
E
24
S
A
N
R
E
25
M
O
26
V
E
I
L
E
D
27
E
R
A
28
B
29
L
A
N
C
30
C
31
O
32
M
A
33
H
34
A
R
O
L
D
CUP
35
CUP
36
E
37
R
38
A
R
C
39
T
A
H
I
N
I
S
40
I
L
L
41
R
E
GILL
42
GILL
E
R
A
T
E
D
43
P
D
F
S
44
I
N
I
T
S
45
L
46
U
I
47
K
48
A
49
R
A
T
S
50
C
Y
C
L
51
O
52
P
53
S
54
E
X
A
M
S
55
E
56
E
O
57
L
E
V
E
L
58
S
I
S
59
H
60
A
L
F
M
61
E
A
S
U
R
E
62
H
O
P
63
O
Y
S
T
E
R
64
U
L
E
E
65
A
M
Y
66
W
R
E
S
T
S
67
P
E
S
T
© 2015, The New York TimesNo. 0108 ( 23,802 )
Across
1
Nobel-winning novelist ___ Kertész : IMRE
5
"The Wind in the Willows" squire : MRTOAD
11
3-Down sound : CAW
14
Take off : SOAR
15
Engagement party? : FIANCE
16
Kerfuffle : ADO
17
Place for a bed and dresser : LIVINGQUARTERS
19
Kerfuffle : ROW
20
Excellence, to ancient Greeks : ARETE
21
What may have quite a stir? : WOK
22
It's no fun : CHORE
24
City on the Italian Riviera : SANREMO
26
Not overt : VEILED
27
Time past : ERA
28
Like some vin : BLANC
30
Bad state to be in : COMA
33
2005 Nobel-winning playwright : HAROLDPINTER
38
Ski jumper's path : ARC
39
Sesame seed pastes : TAHINIS
40
Sick : ILL
41
Got well : RECUPERATED
43
Acrobat displays? : PDFS
44
A., B. and others: Abbr. : INITS
45
Parisian pronoun : LUI
47
Word in many Bugs Bunny puns : KARATS
50
One outsmarted by Odysseus : CYCLOPS
54
They're marked : EXAMS
55
Job listing abbr. : EEO
57
Honest, informally : LEVEL
58
Family moniker : SIS
59
Inadequate effort ... or the contents of six squares in this puzzle? : HALFMEASURE
62
Pogo, e.g. : HOP
63
Word with bar or bed : OYSTER
64
1997 Peter Fonda title role : ULEE
65
Adams of "Big Eyes" : AMY
66
Forcibly removes : WRESTS
67
Nag, e.g. : PEST
Down
1
___ Marías (Mexican penal colony) : ISLAS
2
Actress Kelly : MOIRA
3
11-Across maker : RAVEN
4
African nation with a much-disputed border : ERITREA
5
Econ. sector : MFG
6
Tear asunder : RIPINTWO
7
Use as a resource : TAPINTO
8
Short race, informally : ONEK
9
Horizontally: Abbr. : ACR
10
Sinks : DESCENDS
11
"Here We Come a-Wassailing," for one : CAROL
12
Treasure : ADORE
13
Blew away : WOWED
18
"A fuller blast ___ shook our battlements": "Othello" : NEER
23
Minor problem : HICCUP
25
George of "Route 66" : MAHARIS
26
On good grounds : VALIDLY
28
One side in the Boer Wars, informally : BRITS
29
Unaided : LONE
30
Roller coaster unit : CAR
31
Part of a krone : ORE
32
Montreal university : MCGILL
34
"The Man Who Mistook His Wife for ___" (1985 book) : AHAT
35
Winged god : CUPID
36
Middle-earth inhabitant : ELF
37
Literary monogram : RLS
39
Traveling circus, often : TENTSHOW
42
Funny Terry : GILLIAM
43
Accumulates : PILESUP
46
Winningest N.C.A.A. Basketball Championship sch. : UCLA
47
Singer with the #1 debut album "Animal," 2010 : KESHA
48
Start of a mathematical proof : AXIOM
49
Not smooth : RASPY
50
Brand once pitched by Josephine the Plumber : COMET
51
Small egg : OVULE
52
Tel Aviv's ___ Center for Peace : PERES
53
Wintry mix : SLEET
55
As well : ELSE
56
Tiny amphibians : EFTS
60
Site of the first Parliament of Scotland : AYR
61
R.N. locales : ERS

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

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