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New York Times, Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Author: Bruce Haight
Editor: Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
411/3/20137/27/20183
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312117440
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.58032
Bruce Haight

This puzzle:

Rows: 16, Columns: 15 Words: 81, Blocks: 38 Missing: {JQZ} This is puzzle # 35 for Mr. Haight. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

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Bruce Haight notes: I remember deciding to try to find some kind of boxed thing to do a puzzle on. No new ideas were popping up on the XWord Info ... more
Bruce Haight notes:

I remember deciding to try to find some kind of boxed thing to do a puzzle on. No new ideas were popping up on the XWord Info list, so I just went to Google and typed in "boxed" and then tried one letter after another till I got to "r" and boxed roses showed up. It didn't Google very well, but there were lots of pretty pictures of boxed roses, so it seemed commercially significant.

I was pretty lucky to be able to stack the two words, and super lucky when HAVE A HEART popped up randomly on the fill. STEAL A KISS was a great sidekick, but ARIKARA was a bitter pill to swallow. It was nice that their tribe had just "starred" in "The Revenant," but it's still pretty rough sledding for a Tuesday.

Jeff Chen notes: BOXED / ROSES, represented as R O S E in a 2x2 set of squares. That felt thin by itself, so I'm glad Bruce tossed in a ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

BOXED / ROSES, represented as R O S E in a 2x2 set of squares. That felt thin by itself, so I'm glad Bruce tossed in a quasi-kinda-sorta-mini-theme. HAVE A HEART and STEAL A KISS hinting at Valentine's Day candy. They weren't consistent since one could be a literal "have a (candy) heart!" statement, while the other was wordplayish. Still, flowers and candy are traditional, so it all kinda sorta meshes.

Quasi.

Nice to get some bonuses for us VDay questioners. BATCHED IT! Love that one. I've also seen it as BACHED IT, but that looks more like you listened to a bunch of baroque music. (My kind of batching it! Sadly.)

ALMA MATER, I BELIEVE SO, FLAX SEED, GO SIDEWAYS rounds out some excellent bonuses in the fill. Great choices for those long slots.

Nice gridsmanship through the R O S E boxes and that central BOXED / ROSES. The letters are common and easy to work with, but usually, constructors would hit at least a hiccup or two. Only thing that bugged me was STEERER, but I suppose the person with the rudder in a bobsled is the STEERER?

At least it's gettable.

The SIT PAT clue … huh. I appreciate attempts at new and fresh ways of cluing shorter entries. Invoking PAT Sajak seemed … odd. A bit too kooky for my taste.

Not a bad VDay tribute. It didn't all quite tie together for me — a DOZEN / ROSES (with ROSE hidden 12 times) would have felt more apt (is it just me, or do BOXED / ROSES seem old-fashioned?), and the HEART / KISS mini-theme hit my ear off-key — but a good attempt, at least with good gridwork.

1
S
2
P
3
A
4
M
5
M
6
E
7
A
8
L
9
S
10
H
11
O
12
L
13
A
14
T
E
R
I
15
A
B
B
O
T
16
A
R
O
D
17
A
S
O
F
18
I
B
E
L
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19
E
V
E
S
O
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N
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F
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A
T
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A
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S
N
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R
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F
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S
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O
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R
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G
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E
L
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C
H
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A
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P
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B
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C
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R
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B
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D
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A
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O
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R
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C
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D
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K
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© 2018, The New York TimesNo. 0213 ( 24,934 )
Across Down
1. Unwanted email : SPAM
5. Series of courses? : MEALS
10. "Buenos días!" : HOLA
14. Actress Polo : TERI
15. Top Trappist, maybe : ABBOT
16. 14-time M.L.B. All-Star, to fans : AROD
17. Beginning, datewise : ASOF
18. "Yes, that's my opinion" : IBELIEVESO
20. Like skim milk : NONFAT
22. Takes to the station house : ARRESTS
23. Wolf (down) : SNARF
26. One-named singer with the 2016 #1 hit "Cheap Thrills" : SIA
27. The "O" of NATO: Abbr. : ORG
30. Physics Nobelist Bohr : NIELS
32. Big rift : CHASM
36. Intrinsically : PERSE
38. Lived like a single guy : BATCHEDIT
40. The "E" of Q.E.D. : ERAT
41. With 44-Across, Valentine's Day gift ... or a hint to the shaded squares : BOXED
42. Regarding : ASTO
43. The Eternal City : ROME
44. See 41-Across : ROSES
45. Knocks : RAPS
46. Old school : ALMAMATER
48. North Africa's ___ Mountains : ATLAS
49. On the down-low : SLYLY
50. Looks to be : SEEMS
52. When to expect someone, for short : ETA
53. Airer of "The Bachelor" and "The Catch" : ABC
55. Stonehenge priest : DRUID
57. Dakota tribe that attacked "The Revenant" trappers : ARIKARA
61. Enthusiastic : RARING
65. Get fouled up, idiomatically : GOSIDEWAYS
68. Manual reader : USER
69. Father of Phobos : ARES
70. Snicker sound : TEHEE
71. "Encore!" : MORE
72. Some hard drinks : RYES
73. Does some post-shooting film work : EDITS
74. Reason for a school closing : SNOW
1. Baseball's Musial : STAN
2. 100 centavos : PESO
3. Elvis's middle name : ARON
4. Irks : MIFFS
5. Tiki bar drink : MAITAI
6. Flow out : EBB
7. Fiver : ABE
8. The "her" in the lyric "I met her in a club down in old Soho" : LOLA
9. Excites : STIRS
10. Try some Valentine's Day candy? : HAVEAHEART
11. Shipments to smelteries : ORES
12. Heading on a poster with a picture of a dog : LOST
13. Hubbubs : ADOS
19. Philosopher Fromm : ERICH
21. Fashion's Klein : ANNE
24. PC start-overs : REBOOTS
25. Big source of omega-3 fatty acids : FLAXSEED
27. Schedule at the Met : OPERAS
28. Keep going in Yahtzee : REROLL
29. One of 22 for U2 : GRAMMY
31. Pilot : STEERER
33. Commercial success? : ADSALE
34. Poker advice for Sajak? : SITPAT
35. Greek peak, briefly : MTOSSA
37. Try some Valentine's Day candy, sneakily? : STEALAKISS
39. Investments with fixed rates, for short : CDS
41. Item under a blouse : BRA
47. "Oops, sorry!" : MYBAD
48. Locale of both the 2018 and 2020 Olympics : ASIA
51. Bags for guys : MURSES
54. Home of King Minos : CRETE
56. Bongos, e.g. : DRUMS
57. Lab medium : AGAR
58. Actor Calhoun : RORY
59. "Hmm ..." : ISEE
60. Bedazzled : AWED
62. Has the stage : ISON
63. Famed "fiddler" : NERO
64. Sprouted : GREW
66. Sushi fish : AHI
67. "Nevertheless ..." : YET

Answer summary: 3 unique to this puzzle.

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