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REPRESENT!

New York Times, Sunday, December 2, 2018

Author:
Paul Coulter
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
36/5/201712/2/20180
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1110000
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.59010
Paul Coulter

This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21 Words: 140, Blocks: 82 Missing: {QX} This is puzzle # 3 for Mr. Coulter. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Paul Coulter notes:
After checking the databases, I was surprised to see no one had done this theme before. There are countless possibilities for brain teasers. Some other favorites I didn't use: ser 12' ... read more

After checking the databases, I was surprised to see no one had done this theme before. There are countless possibilities for brain teasers. Some other favorites I didn't use:

ser 12" ious
ONEFOOTINTHEGRAVE
ii
night
DARKUNDERTHEEYES
ser 12" ious
ONEFOOTINTHEGRAVE
fre4nch
FOREIGNLANGUAGE
Interstate
"No, thanks"
HIGHWAYOVERPASS
sssssssssse dance
TENNESSEEWALTZ
Formerly
12:01 p.m.
ONCEUPONATIME
12345
America
COUNTONUS
poTUNAol
BIGFISHINALITTLEPOND

And my favorite, though it's too long, the classic:

F
R
I
E
N
D

standing
miss
F
R
I
E
N
D
A LITTLE MISUNDERSTANDING
BETWEEN FRIENDS

Then there was the title I originally submitted:

Bleachers Maine
0_23456789

This translates to NO ONE UNDERSTANDS ME, which I thought was appropriate.

Jeff Chen notes:
Reminds me so much of rebus puzzles in GAMES Magazine, visual gags that I loved as a kid. PUB next to PUB = PARALLEL BARS? That's groan-worthily fantastic! PER SPIRE reminded me of ... read more

Reminds me so much of rebus puzzles in GAMES Magazine, visual gags that I loved as a kid. PUB next to PUB = PARALLEL BARS? That's groan-worthily fantastic!

PER SPIRE reminded me of an element within a friend's clever word puzzle — he mused that a steeplejack (a chimney cleaner) gets paid "per spire."

Groan!

Double groan (in a good way), that PER SPIRE is literally BREAKING A SWEAT.

To Paul's point, there have been hundreds (maybe thousands) of these visual interpretation puzzles in various publications, so today's theme felt too loose for my taste. There were the standard ones, like LONG (OVER) DUE and BREAKING A SWEAT.

Then there was won – er, one – using homophones, (two) BIG (two) IGNORE.

Another involving parsing, FRANKS IN ATRA?

(ODDS AND ENDS is so apt!)

FRANKS IN ATRA was my favorite of the bunch, having never seen that spacing change before. I would have loved a full set of six or seven themers that worked in this way.

Pretty good gridwork, only the bottom with ESTA / SRTA and SWARD / SLUE making me hitch. I could have used more colorful long bonus fill though, in the vein of ADAM AND EVE and ONE DAY SALE. I'd be interested to see if Paul could have removed the black square between TED and TILL and gotten something great out of that 8-letter slot. Or worked the NE a couple more times, to get something stronger out of one of the BEANERIES / SALT MARSH slots.

Wrapping up with a standout clue: [All you can eat] baffled me. Great a-ha, realizing that it was a factual description of EDIBLES. Almost qualifies as another themer!

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© 2018, The New York TimesNo. 1202 ( 25,226 )
Across
1. Tennis judge's cry : FAULT
6. Locks in a barn? : MANE
10. Icon leading to checkout : CART
14. Traveled in trunks? : SWAM
18. Large green moths : LUNAS
19. Dateless, say : ALONE
21. It's frequently in Italian : ARIA
22. Greek ally in the "Iliad" : HERA
23. 13579 AZ : ODDSANDENDS
25. Hash houses : BEANERIES
27. Country on the Red Sea : ERITREA
28. Home sick? : OUT
29. Brackish coastal habitat : SALTMARSH
30. Citrus drink : ADE
31. Egyptian god of the universe : AMENRA
33. It often comes before the fall : TRIP
34. Summer clock setting: Abbr. : DST
36. Large large skip skip : TOOBIGTOIGNORE
43. Victoria's Secret item : BRA
46. Sandra Denton, in hip-hop's "Whatta Man" trio : PEPA
48. A miner concern? : ORE
49. Opening in a battlement : CRENEL
50. Some transitional movie shots : FADEINS
52. Sporting a feathery crest : TUFTED
55. First name on the Supreme Court : ELENA
56. AT hot dog hot dog RA : FRANKSINATRA
58. Tags : IDS
60. The Lions or Tigers, on scoreboards : DET
61. Many a fête d'anniversaire attendee : AMIE
62. Writer Wiesel : ELIE
63. Invincibility power-up in Mario games : STAR
65. Blow away : AWE
66. Wound + dis : ADDINSULTTOINJURY
72. "___ Vickers," Sinclair Lewis novel : ANN
74. Doesn't keep : ROTS
75. Perch for a pie : SILL
76. Comment on a blog : POST
78. Dad ___ : BOD
79. After all deductions : NET
80.
P P
U U
B B
: PARALLELBARS
84. Big name in watches : OMEGA
86. Creator of a draft : BREWER
88. All you can eat : EDIBLES
89. Masters : MAVENS
91. Six-foot runner? : ANT
92. Cut, as a log : SAWN
93. Scratch (out) : EKE
94. Per spire : BREAKINGASWEAT
99. Farrokh Bulsara ___ Freddie Mercury : AKA
101. ___ Caovilla, Italian shoe designer : RENE
102. Part of a buck : ANTLER
104. End of the British alphabet : ZED
107. Something studied in toponymy : PLACENAME
112. Altar avowal : IDO
113. Creator of the detective Adam Dalgliesh : PDJAMES
116. Fiery peppers : HABANEROS
117.
Yearn
do
: LONGOVERDUE
119. Currier's partner : IVES
120. Something to take lying down : REST
121. Grassy expanse : SWARD
122. Certain reunion attendee : NIECE
123. It's better than never, they say : LATE
124. Spanish title: Abbr. : SRTA
125. Pivot around an axis : SLUE
126. Less crazy : SANER
Down
1. White sheet : FLOE
2. Broadway's McDonald : AUDRA
3. Reversed : UNDID
4. Kept on going : LASTED
5. Evictor of the Jews in "Fiddler on the Roof" : TSAR
6. Palindromic title : MADAM
7. Pint glass fill : ALE
8. "That's all wrong!" : NONONO
9. Off-road motorcycle race : ENDURO
10. Street fleet : CABS
11. What a Mercator projection map notably distorts : AREA
12. ___ Bridge (Venice landmark) : RIALTO
13. Like some yoga : TANTRIC
14. Explosion fragments : SHRAPNEL
15. Small dam : WEIR
16. Trojan ally in the "Iliad" : ARES
17. Moonshine maker's need : MASH
20. Cornerstone abbr. : ESTAB
24. Puts in order : NEATENS
26. Political refugees : EMIGRES
32. Announcement over a plane's P.A. : ETA
35. Like cleats : SPIKED
37. Minute amount : IOTA
38. Test for a college sr. : GRE
39. "Father ___" (bygone British sitcom) : TED
40. Store event that people may stand in line for : ONEDAYSALE
41. Freshen : RENEW
42. Give a major lift : ELATE
43. Soul sister, say : BFF
44. ___ avis : RARA
45. Garden parties? : ADAMANDEVE
47. Telepathy term : PSI
51. Children's author Blyton : ENID
52. Anklebone : TALUS
53. Abbr. that rhymes with "bill," appropriately : UTIL
54. Woodworking tool : FRETSAW
57. Catbird seat? : NEST
58. "At Seventeen" singer Janis ___ : IAN
59. He wore #6 for the Sixers : DRJ
63. Like some clean energy : SOLAR
64. Ones place : TILL
67. Boiling blood : IRE
68. "Ask ___ ..." : NOT
69. Flag : TIRE
70. Satellite connection : UPLINK
71. Eldest Stark son on "Game of Thrones" : ROBB
72. Manhattan Project creation : ABOMB
73. Baseball's Garciaparra : NOMAR
77. Long haul : TREK
79. Durable yellow cotton cloth : NANKEEN
80. Darlings : PETS
81. Grassy expanse : LEA
82. Boy king in Shakespeare's "Richard III" : EDWARDV
83. Atlanta-to-Miami dir. : SSE
85. Transmission part : GEARCASE
86. Groceries holder : BAG
87. Genetic info carrier : RNA
90. What all people are, per the Bible : SINNERS
92. Cardinal letters : STL
95. "___, My God, to Thee" (hymn) : NEARER
96. Sings the blues : WAILS
97. Funds : ENDOWS
98. Discordant : ATONAL
100. Hank who voices Moe and Chief Wiggum : AZARIA
103. Lyric poem : EPODE
105. German port in Lower Saxony : EMDEN
106. Two in the hand : DEUCE
107. Knight who co-founded Nike : PHIL
108. What obsidian forms from : LAVA
109. Partner of aid : ABET
110. Lion's share : MOST
111. "Cómo ___ usted?" : ESTA
114. Norwegian P.M. Stoltenberg : JENS
115. Sibyl : SEER
118. "Despicable Me" supervillain : GRU

Answer summary: 7 unique to this puzzle, 2 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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