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New York Times, Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Author: Jacob Stulberg
Editor: Will Shortz
Jacob Stulberg
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
2512/25/201312/15/20170
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2238640
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.59770

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 78, Blocks: 36 Missing: {QZ} This is puzzle # 18 for Mr. Stulberg. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jacob Stulberg notes: The first version of this puzzle contained the theme answers RADICALLEFT, NOTNEGOTIABLE and HECTORBERLIOZ. Will suggested ... more
Jacob Stulberg notes:

The first version of this puzzle contained the theme answers RADICALLEFT, NOTNEGOTIABLE and HECTORBERLIOZ. Will suggested replacing BRO with a longer synonym, so I decided on ILEDUDIABLE after searches for *PAHC* and *EKOLB* fell short. If a suitable 12-letter answer containing EDUD had turned up, NETNEGATIVE might have been OFTNEGLECTED. (That said, there may well be another puzzle theme in Canada's FUDDLEDUDDLE incident.)

Jeff Chen notes: STAND UP GUYS getting their due, GENT, DUDE, and FELLA 'standing up' within theme phrases. Interesting phrases — GENT inside ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

STAND UP GUYS getting their due, GENT, DUDE, and FELLA "standing up" within theme phrases. Interesting phrases — GENT inside NET NEGATIVE was fun, as well as FELLA within RADICAL LEFT (although the latter is a mite too charged for my taste).

ILE DU DIABLE … what the devil?! Jacob tends to use a lot of high culture terms in his puzzles, which I generally like and admire. This one went over my head, though. Devil's Island, yes. But even after five years of high school French, remembering that it should be DU and not DE was rough, not to mention piecing together DIABLE (no surprise that I didn't do well in AP French). I like the name after studying it for a while, but it threw me for a loop during my solve.

I don't like being thrown during a Tuesday solve. But it's good for me every once in a while.

I did like BORGIAS; not hard to dig out of memory. Crazy how powerful the House of Borgia was during the Renaissance. That's the kind of interesting class-up-the-joint entry I've come to expect and like from Jacob.

A couple of small blips in the fill, unexpected out of one of Jacob's puzzles, especially since there are only four total themers. I wouldn't have minded IN BAD, TKT, OLEO, the oddball LAIN, B AND B (rarely seen in non-ampersand form outside crosswords), CTA (Chicago Transit Authority) if there had been five themers. But with four, I expect a smoother result, especially if there's not a lot of bonus longer fill. (Given that Jacob has won a ton of my POWs, the bar is very high for him.)

On that note, I would have liked a fifth themer — hiding BRO would have been fine with me. It a sufficient amount of theme with just three guys hidden, but I think it would have been more satisfying to have a fourth. (Not surprisingly, I really like barbershop quartets.)

Great clue in [Southernmost U.S. state]. I embarrassingly plunked in FLORID and then corrected it to GEORGI before completely confusing myself. (Which is worse, my geography or my French? Both.) I'm committing that neat trivia to memory.

JimH notes: Update: Reader Jordan Cahn caught an error in my previous remarks in this section. HAWAII is, yes, the southernmost state. Alaska is the ... more
JimH notes: Update: Reader Jordan Cahn caught an error in my previous remarks in this section. HAWAII is, yes, the southernmost state. Alaska is the northernmost. Alaska also stretches out over the 180th Meridian, making it the westernmost and the easternmost state as well. Thanks, Jordan!
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© 2017, The New York TimesNo. 0228 ( 24,584 )
Across Down
1. ___ jacket (bit of casualwear) : JEAN
5. Dish that's sometimes rated in "alarms" : CHILI
10. Curds and ___ : WHEY
14. Wagon part : AXLE
15. Like much music : TONAL
16. In fine fettle : HALE
17. Widespread : VAST
18. 1960s activist Hoffman : ABBIE
19. Has : OWNS
20. ___ friends (not having to be on one's guard) : AMONG
22. Quaint inn, informally : BANDB
24. Cry after "Ready!" : AIM
25. Muffed one : ERRED
27. Bearlike : URSINE
29. Powerful Renaissance family : BORGIAS
32. A book collector might seek a first one : EDITION
33. Available : ONHAND
34. Spanish girlfriend : AMIGA
35. Italy's shape : BOOT
36. Setting for much of the movie "Lion" : INDIA
38. Zippo : NADA
42. People encountered by Pizarro : INCAS
44. Things ghosts lack : BODIES
46. Riga native : LATVIAN
49. Charms : ALLURES
50. In addition : ASWELL
51. What tryptophan is said to induce : SLEEP
52. Place to go for a "me day" : SPA
53. Munchkins : ELVES
55. Nash who wrote "Parsley / Is gharsley" : OGDEN
59. Turner or Fey : TINA
61. Bother greatly : EATAT
63. Tell to "Do it!" : URGE
64. Lead-in to a conclusion : ERGO
65. Movie, informally : FLICK
66. Class with mats : YOGA
67. Feature of a late-night show set : DESK
68. Words to live by : TENET
69. Catch sight of : SPOT
1. Morning joe : JAVA
2. Start of many a doctor's visit : EXAM
3. In addition : ALSO
4. Outcome that's overall unfavorable : NETNEGATIVE
5. Windy City 'L' overseer : CTA
6. Imaginary tiger friend in the comics : HOBBES
7. Not on good terms (with) : INBAD
8. Done nothing : LAIN
9. Infamous prison featured in the 1969 best seller "Papillon" : ILEDUDIABLE
10. "___ knew?" : WHO
11. Southernmost U.S. state : HAWAII
12. Weather concern in 11-Down : ELNINO
13. Lackeys : YESMEN
21. Sheepish look : GRIN
23. Two-masted vessel : BRIG
26. Socialist Workers Party's ideology : RADICALLEFT
28. Honest sorts ... or what the circled squares contain? : STANDUPGUYS
29. Palindromic boy's name : BOB
30. "Be My Yoko ___" (first single by Barenaked Ladies) : ONO
31. Pi's follower : RHO
32. Former Big Four record co. : EMI
34. They're taken out in newspapers : ADS
37. Palindromic girl's name : NAN
39. Lungful : AIR
40. Hollywood ending? : DEE
41. Nincompoop : ASS
43. River that feeds Lake Nasser : NILE
45. Topping in kosher restaurants : OLEO
46. Didn't run out : LASTED
47. Have dreams : ASPIRE
48. Features of some country singers : TWANGS
49. Region on the Rhine : ALSACE
51. Took effect : SETIN
54. Area between mountains : VALE
56. Plunge : DROP
57. Breakfast food with a rhyming slogan : EGGO
58. In order : NEAT
60. Totally fine : AOK
62. Box office purchase: Abbr. : TKT

Answer summary: 5 unique to this puzzle.

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