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New York Times, Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Author:
Ashleigh Silveira and Nick Shephard
Editor:
Will Shortz
Improves to meet a challenge … or a hint to this puzzle's circled letters
TotalDebutCollabs
110/25/20221
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0010000
CircleScrabble
11.52
Ashleigh Silveira
TotalDebutCollabs
110/25/20221
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0010000
CircleScrabble
11.52
Nick Shephard

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 78, Blocks: 40 Missing: {JQZ} Spans: 1 This is the debut puzzle for Ms. Silveira. This is the debut puzzle for Mr. Shephard.
Constructor notes:
ASHLEIGH: A while back I was solving a NYT puzzle with "Highway to Hell" and "Stairway to Heaven" step answers. This was the kind of ... read more
Jeff Chen notes:
The games people play! STEPS UP ONE'S GAME is a solid rationale for diagonally-oriented classic games. Diagonal entries are ... read more
1
D
2
I
3
S
4
C
5
R
6
A
7
S
8
P
9
M
10
A
11
P
12
S
13
O
R
E
O
14
A
N
T
E
15
P
U
R
S
E
16
L
O
E
B
17
C
A
E
N
18
I
D
E
A
S
19
A
N
S
20
Y
E
L
P
21
R
E
H
A
S
H
22
P
O
P
23
T
A
B
24
S
25
A
U
C
E
26
S
N
O
B
B
Y
27
U
N
T
E
N
28
D
29
E
30
D
31
T
A
B
32
I
P
O
S
33
E
L
Y
34
T
35
E
R
R
A
36
N
O
D
37
A
38
P
P
L
E
39
I
C
U
40
R
U
N
E
41
F
O
O
42
S
O
N
43
I
44
C
A
R
E
45
O
O
P
S
46
I
47
E
48
C
R
I
E
S
49
W
O
O
I
N
G
50
S
51
P
52
I
K
E
D
53
G
54
E
N
T
55
T
A
R
56
E
L
S
I
E
57
L
A
O
S
58
V
I
B
E
59
A
I
L
E
D
60
O
M
N
I
61
M
O
O
T
62
R
E
A
R
63
T
E
S
T
64
I
N
X
S
© 2022, The New York Times10/25/22 ( No. 26,649 )
Across
1
It's black on one side and white on the other, in Othello : DISC
5
Scratchy voice : RASP
9
Trailhead displays : MAPS
13
Snack item that might be twisted or dunked : OREO
14
Casino buy-in : ANTE
15
Holder of keys, phone and IDs : PURSE
16
Lisa with the 1994 #1 hit "Stay (I Missed You)" : LOEB
17
City in Normandy : CAEN
18
Things that thinkers think of : IDEAS
19
T or F, e.g. : ANS
20
Business review site : YELP
21
Go over again, as plans : REHASH
22
Soda can opener : POPTAB
24
Chimichurri or hollandaise : SAUCE
26
Stuck-up : SNOBBY
27
Like a weedy garden, perhaps : UNTENDED
31
Key above Caps Lock : TAB
32
Stock launches, in brief : IPOS
33
___ Culbertson, member of the contract bridge hall of fame : ELY
34
Word before firma or incognita : TERRA
36
Doze (off) : NOD
37
Mac maker : APPLE
39
Post-O.R. locale : ICU
40
Magical writing, as in Dungeons & Dragons : RUNE
41
Rock's ___ Fighters : FOO
42
Big name in electric toothbrushes : SONICARE
45
Li'l slip : OOPSIE
48
Lets the tears flow : CRIES
49
Wining and dining, say : WOOING
50
Like some volleyballs and hair : SPIKED
53
Fellow, informally : GENT
55
Road gunk … or, when doubled, tooth gunk : TAR
56
Borden Dairy cow : ELSIE
57
Country between Thailand and Vietnam : LAOS
58
Aura : VIBE
59
Wasn't well : AILED
60
Luxury hotel chain : OMNI
61
Not worth having, as an argument : MOOT
62
Butt : REAR
63
Try the patience of : TEST
64
"Need You Tonight" band, 1987 : INXS
Down
1
Practice swimming : DOLAPS
2
Like some T-shirt graphics : IRONON
3
Line from "Dick and Jane" readers : SEESPOTRUN
4
Inner ear? : COB
5
Fly past : RACEBY
6
Meticulous to a fault : ANAL
7
Improves to meet a challenge … or a hint to this puzzle's circled letters : STEPSUPONESGAME
8
Fountain ___ : PEN
9
Toledo minor-leaguer, named for a marsh bird : MUDHEN
10
Word before 51 or rug : AREA
11
Educational promos, in brief : PSAS
12
Meeting, informally : SESH
15
Jigsaw item : PIECE
20
"___ dabba doo!" : YABBA
21
They're hard to get out of : RUTS
23
Lift on a ski slope : TBAR
25
Battery end : ANODE
28
Testimony under oath : DEPOSITION
29
Loss leader? : ELL
30
Henna, e.g. : DYE
32
Harden (to) : INURE
34
"___ but a scratch!" : TIS
35
Green prefix : ECO
37
In progress : AFOOT
38
The fuzz : POPO
40
Antipest spray : RAID
43
More "ew"-inducing : ICKIER
44
Belief system : CREED
45
Takes responsibility for a mistake : OWNSIT
46
How breakfast cereal is usually packaged : INABOX
47
Heron varieties : EGRETS
50
Scorch on a grill : SEAR
51
Ballet dip : PLIE
52
Cuba, por ejemplo : ISLA
54
Periods longer than eras : EONS
57
Place to park : LOT
58
Keydets' sch. : VMI

Answer summary: 4 unique to this puzzle, 2 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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