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New York Times, Thursday, February 22, 2018

Author:
Zhouqin Burnikel
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
6411/13/20126/26/201919
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
620187472
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.56281
Zhouqin Burnikel

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 78, Blocks: 37 Missing: {JQW} Spans: 2 This is puzzle # 53 for Ms. Burnikel. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Zhouqin Burnikel notes:
Will and the team helped me with the current theme set. I originally had SOUP OR SALAD (later on CAESAR SALAD/CHICKEN SOUP), they ... read more

Will and the team helped me with the current theme set. I originally had SOUP OR SALAD (later on CAESAR SALAD/CHICKEN SOUP), they gently let me know that those were dishes rather than courses.

Jeff Chen notes:
I like theme type mashups – so interesting to cram together two tried-and-true ideas to form something new. 1.) ... read more

I like theme type mashups – so interesting to cram together two tried-and-true ideas to form something new.

1.) Reversals. Many puzzles over the years have featured backwards entries. BACK, UP, REVERSE, FLIP are usually hints or revealers.

2.) Different definitions of a key word. Take a word that has many disparate meanings, find phrases that define said meanings. (Many moons ago, I wanted to use LOG as my key word, and Jill suggested something scatological as we were brainstorming. I knew then she was a keeper.)

Mash these two up, and you get a three COURSE meal – reversed! AUGUSTA NATIONAL is a golf COURSE, PREALGEBRA is a school COURSE, and APPETIZERS are a meal COURSE. I like the innovation.

Great bonuses in the fill has become C.C.'s trademark. No surprise to get awesome AU NATUREL, PICANTE, DON'T PANIC, GONDOLA.

Sometimes I've critiqued C.C.'s work with an eye on her craftsmanship, her slight overreliance on crossword glue. I think she's come a long way, and today I didn't notice much at all. A bit of ELEC URI, that's it? Excellent work.

I score each new entry as they get introduced into our Xword Info word list, and I waffled on ADD ME. Is this a thing? Granted, I'm not a huge fan of the Facebook ("the" added for humor, of course, I knew that, I REALLY DID!), but do people say ADD ME? Huh.

ANALOG got such a great clue. I can just imagine the kids though, saying "wot the heck are watch hands?"

More likely, "wot the hell is a watch?"

Overall, I liked the innovation. If "reversing A course" had been a real phrase, I might have given this some POW! love. But as is, the anal grammaratician in me hitched on the awkwardness of REVERSING COURSE as a revealer, without that "A." I know, I'm so darn annoying!

1
A
2
D
3
D
4
M
5
E
6
A
7
G
8
E
9
S
10
F
11
O
12
G
13
S
14
D
R
O
O
P
15
N
O
R
A
16
O
R
A
L
17
L
A
N
O
I
18
T
A
N
A
T
19
S
U
G
U
A
20
E
N
T
21
C
O
L
D
S
22
P
L
A
N
B
23
R
O
P
24
E
25
T
O
O
26
H
A
U
N
T
27
A
R
28
B
E
G
L
29
A
E
R
P
30
A
31
N
N
O
Y
32
A
I
R
33
A
34
M
35
Y
36
T
R
I
S
E
37
C
38
T
39
L
E
40
I
41
S
U
R
E
42
M
A
C
43
U
M
44
P
45
M
I
N
I
S
46
S
47
R
E
Z
I
48
T
49
E
P
P
A
50
A
51
C
H
E
D
52
C
A
L
53
S
T
54
A
55
B
56
F
L
O
R
A
57
D
A
R
E
58
D
59
U
S
E
60
R
E
V
E
R
61
S
I
N
G
C
O
62
U
R
S
E
63
A
X
E
D
64
A
N
T
E
65
C
R
E
E
P
66
T
A
N
S
67
M
E
E
T
68
K
I
L
T
S
© 2018, The New York TimesNo. 0222 ( 24,943 )
Across
1
Request to be connected on social media : ADDME
6
A long, long time : AGES
10
Becomes obscure, in a way, with "up" : FOGS
14
Wilt : DROOP
15
Writer/filmmaker Ephron : NORA
16
Like instructions you have to hold in your mind : ORAL
17
Home of the Masters : AUGUSTANATIONAL
20
Doc who might treat sleep apnea : ENT
21
They're often caught and passed around : COLDS
22
Fallback strategy : PLANB
23
Mountaineer's need : ROPE
25
Word before little and late : TOO
26
Stomping ground : HAUNT
27
Something unknowns are introduced in : PREALGEBRA
30
Needle, say : ANNOY
32
Producer of inflation : AIR
33
Minnesota senator Klobuchar : AMY
36
Divide into 120° sections, say : TRISECT
39
It's not working : LEISURE
42
Bub : MAC
43
One who might be second-guessed by instant replays : UMP
45
Easy-to-park cars : MINIS
46
Starters : APPETIZERS
50
Didn't feel like moving, maybe : ACHED
52
Orioles legend Ripken : CAL
53
Shot in the dark : STAB
56
Plant life : FLORA
57
Ventured : DARED
59
"___ caution" : USE
60
Backtracking ... or what 17-, 27- and 46-Across are doing? : REVERSINGCOURSE
63
Pink-slipped : AXED
64
Couple of chips, maybe : ANTE
65
Despicable sort : CREEP
66
Whups : TANS
67
Cross : MEET
68
What bagpipes are often played in : KILTS
Down
1
Alfred who coined the term "inferiority complex" : ADLER
2
Max Build-Up Remover brand : DRANO
3
"Easy! Everything will be O.K." : DONTPANIC
4
Sound on Old MacDonald's farm : MOO
5
Way impressive : EPIC
6
Having hands, in a way : ANALOG
7
Ski resort transport : GONDOLA
8
Low ones are best, in brief : ERAS
9
Didn't get bought : SAT
10
Muff : FOULUP
11
Nonmonetary donation : ORGAN
12
Haggard : GAUNT
13
More than a sliver : SLAB
18
Schlep : TOTE
19
Bicker (with) : SPAR
24
Match maker? : EROS
26
"Take one" : HERE
28
"Later!" : BYE
29
Feel under par : AIL
30
Convenience store convenience : ATM
31
Publisher of American Hunter magazine, for short : NRA
33
Nude : AUNATUREL
34
X-ray alternative : MRI
35
"Absolutely!" : YES
37
Like forgetful actors : CUED
38
Celebrity gossip site : TMZ
40
Frequent visitor to a principal's office : IMP
41
Nurses : SIPS
44
Hot : PICANTE
46
Reduces to bits : SHREDS
47
Back end : REAR
48
Firing range sight : TARGET
49
Standard util. : ELEC
50
Amazon's voice-controlled assistant : ALEXA
51
Group of 13 : COVEN
54
___ management : ASSET
55
Traffic signals : BEEPS
56
Brotherhood, for short : FRAT
57
Banquet : DINE
58
Come to port : DOCK
61
Toucan ___, Froot Loops mascot : SAM
62
New England state sch. : URI

Answer summary: 3 unique to this puzzle, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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