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New York Times, Thursday, February 16, 2017

Author:
Keith Redwine
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutCollabs
12/16/20170
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0000100
RebusCirclePangram
100
Keith Redwine

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 73, Blocks: 42 Missing: {FJQWXZ} Grid is asymmetric. This is the debut puzzle for Mr. Redwine. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Keith Redwine notes:
I'm a 28-year-old PhD student in Baltimore, MD finishing up a degree in Astrophysics. I've been doing the NYT puzzle everyday for many ... read more

I'm a 28-year-old PhD student in Baltimore, MD finishing up a degree in Astrophysics. I've been doing the NYT puzzle everyday for many years now, so it seemed like a natural jump to start writing them, and this puzzle was my first shot at it.

The constructors who play with the symmetry and the physical structure of the grid are always my favorite, and I had this idea for a rebus that (I think) I hadn't seen before. Hope to have my name keep showing up every once in a while here.

Jeff Chen notes:
Yet another debut! That make four days in a row, as well as four Thursdays in a row. New voices and new ideas are a great thing. ... read more

Yet another debut! That make four days in a row, as well as four Thursdays in a row. New voices and new ideas are a great thing.

Love this particular idea, BLACK rebus squares helping to take away the perceived ASYMMETRY. (I've grayed out the rebus squares to better illustrate this point.) I saw this idea maybe seven years ago (in a different venue) and thought it was the coolest concept ever! Even though the novelty wasn't there for me this time, I still enjoyed the effect.

Some great entries, starting off with the themers. Particularly cool to get a BLACK box in the middle of a phrase, in THE BLACK KEYS. But even BLACK BEAR, which looks so close to BLACK BEARD (there's a crossword theme in there somewhere …), and the finance term IN THE BLACK are awfully fun.

Loved TERMINATOR in the fill, too. I hope this factoid — 100% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes — doesn't prompt crossword trolls to go give it negative ratings. Don't do it, people!

Some mid-length MAMMOTH, CARNAGE, SHINTO also added to the quality of my solve. A singular SCRUPLE was a bit odd, but it does have dictionary support.

Just a little too much crossword glue for my taste today. I didn't start noticing it until I hit SES / TET, but then I started picking up OLEO (which admittedly some people think is fine), MAL, ARA, MTS. Nothing cringeworthy, but as a whole, just up against my threshold.

Two great clues:

  • [Needing salt, maybe] doesn't refer to seasoning, but salt for ICY snow conditions.
  • Nice misdirect in [Shoots in the jungle], making it look like "shoots" is a verb, not a noun, for BAMBOO.
1
BLACK
2
B
3
O
4
A
5
R
6
D
7
A
8
U
9
S
10
BLACK
11
S
12
E
13
A
14
B
A
M
B
O
O
15
M
P
H
16
H
A
N
S
17
E
L
I
C
I
T
18
P
R
I
19
V
A
T
E
S
20
A
L
T
21
L
E
22
V
23
O
N
E
T
I
M
E
24
R
O
T
25
C
26
E
27
M
O
T
E
28
A
I
R
29
T
E
R
30
M
31
I
N
A
T
O
R
32
T
E
T
33
D
O
T
C
O
M
34
S
E
S
35
A
S
Y
M
M
36
E
37
T
38
R
Y
39
BLACK
40
C
41
A
T
42
O
T
H
E
R
43
S
44
M
A
L
45
A
46
E
47
S
T
H
E
T
I
C
48
S
49
A
R
A
50
I
N
T
H
E
BLACK
51
A
R
A
52
B
53
I
N
S
54
I
D
E
R
55
R
K
56
O
57
U
S
E
58
L
A
K
E
E
R
I
59
E
60
E
L
61
A
P
S
E
62
E
G
A
D
63
G
P
A
64
Y
E
L
L
E
R
65
D
E
N
66
Y
E
T
67
S
O
L
E
D
© 2017, The New York TimesNo. 0216 ( 24,572 )
Across
1
Menu holder at many a cafe : BLACKBOARD
7
Where Schwarzenegger was born: Abbr. : AUS
10
Body of water near Georgia : BLACKSEA
14
Shoots in the jungle : BAMBOO
15
Abbr. on a ticket : MPH
16
Composer Zimmer with four Grammys : HANS
17
Provoke : ELICIT
18
Grunts : PRIVATES
20
Cockpit reading: Abbr. : ALT
21
Book after Exod. : LEV
23
Erstwhile : ONETIME
24
Some campus marchers, briefly : ROTC
26
Overdo it, in a way : EMOTE
28
Show : AIR
29
1984 movie with a 100% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with "The" : TERMINATOR
32
Hanoi holiday : TET
33
End of an address : DOTCOM
34
French possessive : SES
35
Feature of this puzzle that's "fixed" by a literal reading of four squares : ASYMMETRY
39
Worry for the superstitious : BLACKCAT
42
The rest : OTHERS
44
Ill, in Lille : MAL
45
It's a matter of taste : AESTHETICS
49
Longtime Notre Dame coach Parseghian : ARA
50
Solvent : INTHEBLACK
51
Pan-___ : ARAB
53
Leak source : INSIDER
55
Film studio once owned by Howard Hughes : RKO
57
Take advantage of : USE
58
Maumee River outlet : LAKEERIE
60
Go by : ELAPSE
62
"Gosh!" : EGAD
63
A good one gets you on a list, briefly : GPA
64
Old ___ : YELLER
65
Cubs' home : DEN
66
Nevertheless : YET
67
Thick-___ shoes : SOLED
Down
1
University of Maine mascot : BLACKBEAR
2
Tickets are found on it : BALLOT
3
Left out : OMITTED
4
"Modern Family" network : ABC
5
Stir up : ROIL
6
Coddle, with "on" : DOTE
7
Gig need : AMP
8
Displace : UPROOT
9
Religion with public shrines : SHINTO
10
Villain : BLACKHAT
11
Give plenty : SATIATE
12
Pakistan and India, e.g. : ENEMIES
13
Claim : ASSERT
19
Really go out of one's way? : VEER
22
Bile : VENOM
25
Hungarian's neighbor : CROAT
27
Animal found in the La Brea Tar Pits : MAMMOTH
30
Ski area locales: Abbr. : MTS
31
Needing salt, maybe : ICY
34
Civil war locale beginning in 2011 : SYRIA
36
It will put you to sleep : ETHER
37
Five-time Grammy-winning duo from the 2010s : THEBLACKKEYS
38
Abbr. in a military title : RET
39
Extorted from : BLACKMAILED
40
Result of war : CARNAGE
41
Like malamutes : ALASKAN
43
Small moral misgiving : SCRUPLE
45
Senate staffer : AIDE
46
Cabinet department : ENERGY
47
Feature of a credit card : STRIPE
48
Gave lip : SASSED
52
"Suds" : BEER
54
Mil. danger : IED
56
Butter substitute : OLEO
59
Snack, say : EAT
61
Word after a number in a score : ALL

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

Found bugs or have suggestions?