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New York Times, Friday, February 16, 2018

Author:
David Steinberg
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
936/16/20113/23/201917
SunMonTueWedThuFriSatVariety
66681131232
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.645163
David Steinberg

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 70, Blocks: 32 Missing: {JKQWZ} This is puzzle # 75 for Mr. Steinberg. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
David Steinberg notes:
This is the second of two themelesses accepted in 2014 that I 'revitalized' a few months ago (the first was published December 29). ... read more

This is the second of two themelesses accepted in 2014 that I "revitalized" a few months ago (the first was published December 29). Not as much zip in this one as I'd strive to include nowadays, but I like the overall smoothness. It's like a YOGURT SMOOTHIE, with just a couple of raspberries that didn't defrost mixed in (I'm looking at you, AGENA and ONE NO!).

I'd say the highlight of the puzzle is the clues. My favorite David Steinberg Original® is [Like privates, often] for PIXELATED. Brings back memories of what was on my mind when I was 17 ;).

Jeff Chen notes:
Given David's history of debuting entries like ADULT MOVIES, GENTLEMEN'S CLUB, PLAYBOY MANSION, and TOPLESS DANCERS, I was nervous ... read more

Given David's history of debuting entries like ADULT MOVIES, GENTLEMEN'S CLUB, PLAYBOY MANSION, and TOPLESS DANCERS, I was nervous after uncovering PENTHOUSE … thankfully it was PENTHOUSE SUITE! Whew. That's a great feature entry.

I wasn't as hot on YOGURT SMOOTHIE – I drink a lot of fruit smoothies, protein shakes, etc., but YOGURT SMOOTHIE didn't immediately ring a bell. Still, it was obvious enough …

… what else goes into a YOGURT SMOOTHIE, though? Isn't it just yogurt? Why don't they just call it "yogurt"?

Tough to build a themeless around 14s, but David did a nice job of it. Classic approach, putting them in rows 4 and 12, still allowing him to build triple-stacks in the NW and SE corners, by placing a black square between TROI and ABUT. Both corners turned out pretty nice.

BOX CAMERA / SPEEDBALL / PENTHOUSE SUITE is a great triplet. I was all set to go gung-ho on the praise for it … then I realized what a SPEEDBALL is. Yikes!

And then I hit the AMBOY / ROY crossing. I had to debate ROD, ROG, ROS, ROC, ROB, ROY. Ultimately, the "king" etymology made ROY win out, but I think a more straightforward clue for ROY would have been better.

SE corner had a solid stack, too, with INAMORATA such a fancy-pants (in a good way!) term for "lover." PIXELATED was a fun term too … but oof, I don't want my crosswords to make me imagine pics that men seem to frequently text … let's leave it at that.

EADS / INAMORATA did seem iffy, but I *think* educated solvers ought to be able to work out that A ending letter, based on what they know of Romance languages.

Get it, romance?

*rimshot*

Okay, I'm sympathetic if you got that square wrong.

Overall, good use of his long slots, NEAT AS A PIN / TATE MODERN my favorite entries of the grid, what with their timeless feel. Not keen on the AGENA … rocket? … but those EADS AMBOY TROI dabs of crossword glue did enable a lot of good entries.

1
T
2
R
3
O
4
I
5
A
6
B
7
U
8
T
9
D
10
A
11
N
12
T
13
E
14
B
O
X
C
15
A
M
E
R
A
16
S
P
E
A
R
17
S
P
E
E
D
B
A
L
L
18
T
H
A
T
S
19
P
E
N
T
H
O
U
S
E
20
S
U
I
T
E
21
R
O
Y
22
A
D
D
A
M
23
S
24
A
25
F
26
L
A
C
27
G
28
A
29
B
L
E
30
S
O
Y
31
C
L
A
Y
32
N
E
M
E
A
N
33
A
D
D
34
E
A
T
35
C
O
L
B
E
R
T
36
P
E
N
37
T
M
I
38
O
D
D
I
T
Y
39
D
I
R
E
40
I
B
N
41
R
E
S
T
S
42
S
U
N
N
Y
43
C
O
L
44
A
D
A
45
G
P
S
46
Y
O
G
U
R
47
T
48
S
49
M
O
O
T
50
H
51
I
52
E
53
C
A
V
E
R
54
I
N
A
M
O
R
A
T
A
55
O
N
E
N
O
56
P
I
X
E
L
A
T
E
D
57
S
T
R
A
Y
58
S
T
I
R
59
G
E
M
S
© 2018, The New York TimesNo. 0216 ( 24,937 )

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Students & seniors
Across
1
Sci-fi character who graduated from Starfleet Academy in 2359 : TROI
5
What Iran and Iraq do : ABUT
9
"Purgatorio" poet : DANTE
14
Brownie, for one : BOXCAMERA
16
Primitive kind of poker? : SPEAR
17
Dangerous cocktail : SPEEDBALL
18
"___ fine" : THATS
19
Luxury hotel option : PENTHOUSESUITE
21
Name related to Rex : ROY
22
Wednesday, e.g. : ADDAMS
24
Insurance company whose logo contains a bill : AFLAC
27
Tudor house feature : GABLE
30
Vegan protein source : SOY
31
Pot-making supply : CLAY
32
Like a mythical lion : NEMEAN
33
Recipe directive : ADD
34
Put away the dishes? : EAT
35
Memorable White House Correspondents' Dinner host of 2006 : COLBERT
36
You might click it open : PEN
37
"Eww, stop!" : TMI
38
Singular thing : ODDITY
39
Requiring immediate attention : DIRE
40
Hebrew : ben :: Arabic : ___ : IBN
41
"Stop playing" symbols : RESTS
42
Optimistic : SUNNY
43
Strained, at the bar : COLADA
45
Dash device : GPS
46
Creamy, fruity drink : YOGURTSMOOTHIE
53
One who's frequently in the dark : CAVER
54
Fiancée, say : INAMORATA
55
Brief bridge opening : ONENO
56
Like privates, often : PIXELATED
57
Part of a pound? : STRAY
58
Recipe directive : STIR
59
Cameos and others : GEMS
Down
1
1/256 of a gal. : TBSP
2
Plastic Clue weapon : ROPE
3
Strong team : OXEN
4
Cube holder : ICETRAY
5
South ___, N.J. : AMBOY
6
Boy with a bouquet : BEAU
7
Surfing destinations : URLS
8
Something to spin : TALE
9
One who's 60-something? : DSTUDENT
10
One with a plant-based diet : APHID
11
Spotless : NEATASAPIN
12
London museum whose oldest piece is from 1900 : TATEMODERN
13
Some TV drama settings : ERS
15
Provisional : ADHOC
20
Sensitive figure, for many : SALARY
23
Most populous city in Oceania : SYDNEY
24
___ acid (dressing ingredient) : ACETIC
25
Attention-grabbing : FLAMBOYANT
26
Epitome of romantic passion : LATINLOVER
27
Fixes : GELDS
28
Bounds : AMBIT
29
Natural food coloring sources : BEETS
32
Rejection of a honey-do list : NODEAR
35
Its ribs stick out : CORDUROY
39
Cleaning cloth : DUSTRAG
42
Wind or unwind : SPOOL
44
It was boosted by Atlas : AGENA
45
Cloddish sort, in slang : GOMER
47
Things waiters wait for : TIPS
48
Huff : SNIT
49
Long dress : MAXI
50
"I ___ quotation": Emerson : HATE
51
Amazon unit : ITEM
52
James B. ___, diving bell inventor : EADS
53
Secant's reciprocal: Abbr. : COS

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

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