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New York Times, Saturday, March 12, 2016

Author:
Josh Knapp
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
232/26/20109/7/20180
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
20102810
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.70002
Josh Knapp

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 68, Blocks: 33 Missing: {JZ} This is puzzle # 19 for Mr. Knapp. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jeff Chen notes:
Josh is one of my favorite themeless makers. It was really fun to see him use JIMMY FALLON in an earlier puzzle (he works on the ... read more

Josh is one of my favorite themeless makers. It was really fun to see him use JIMMY FALLON in an earlier puzzle (he works on the Tonight Show) — and today feature QUESTLOVE! I'm terrible with most kinds of pop music, and I stopped watching the Tonight Show maybe 10 years ago because it's on too late (man, I'm old), but QUESTLOVE has a prominent place as a famous bandleader on par with Doc Severinson and Paul Shaffer. Great entry.

QUESTLOVE (one word, not two)

I like that Josh draws from a huge range of sources for this grid. You get something for the older crowd (USO SHOW, BOX SOCIAL), the very old crowd (OLD NORSE), all the way to QUEST LOVE and THAT'S WHAT UP.

Josh is quite a bit younger than me, so I wasn't sure if THAT'S WHATS UP is in current use? I work with some foster youth in their teens, and THAT'S WHAT IM TALKIN ABOUT seems much more common. But solidly in my mid-40s now, it's hard for me to judge if THAT'S WHATS UP really deserves its place in such a spotlighted feature location (one of the two longest across entries) today.

Great cluing:

  • A villain withholding an ANTIDOTE is such a vivid image.
  • I thought a [Joint issue] might be a co-written book? No, it had to be some clever marijuana thing, like POT SMOKE? Turns out it's an issue with a (body) joint. Great stuff.
  • Even after filling in BBQ PIT (great answer!), I didn't understand why people would put their dogs there. Good head-slap when I realized it meant (hot) dogs!

I love puzzles which have this much creativity and wordplay leading up to solid, colorful answers. It's so satisfying to wring your hands and struggle, and then finally have a moment where you realize how great the twisting of language is.

There were a few slots I thought had missed potential (BROADENS, WEEKDAYS) and a few gluey bits (REOIL, DYS), but overall, I thought this was really well done.

1
B
2
R
3
O
4
A
5
D
6
E
7
N
8
S
9
G
10
R
11
O
12
S
13
S
14
B
O
X
S
O
C
I
A
15
L
16
M
E
L
E
E
17
Q
U
E
S
T
L
O
V
E
18
C
O
D
E
X
19
P
R
Y
20
H
A
B
I
T
21
I
N
K
S
22
I
K
E
23
A
24
T
E
N
D
25
S
L
O
S
H
26
T
E
S
T
27
S
28
G
O
29
U
T
30
R
O
O
31
T
H
32
A
33
T
S
W
H
A
34
T
S
U
P
35
F
36
A
I
R
L
Y
37
N
O
T
Y
E
T
38
P
E
N
C
I
L
P
39
U
S
H
E
R
40
A
R
T
41
N
Y
E
S
42
D
O
43
D
44
O
45
S
46
R
A
I
47
S
E
48
C
O
49
S
50
T
51
L
E
S
H
52
A
L
D
A
53
A
S
H
E
54
R
55
N
P
R
56
S
C
O
L
57
D
58
S
H
A
R
E
59
W
A
R
E
60
K
A
T
E
Y
61
T
O
P
S
E
E
D
E
D
62
I
T
E
M
S
63
W
E
E
K
D
A
Y
S
© 2016, The New York TimesNo. 0312 ( 24,231 )
Across
1
Spreads : BROADENS
9
Shipping quantity : GROSS
14
Old-fashioned affair à la "Oklahoma!" : BOXSOCIAL
16
Big scrap : MELEE
17
"Tonight Show" bandleader with a signature 'fro : QUESTLOVE
18
Ancient manuscript : CODEX
19
Jimmy : PRY
20
Something a mother wears : HABIT
21
Works on the strip? : INKS
22
The world's largest one is in South Korea, the second-largest in Sweden : IKEA
24
See to : TEND
25
Sound of moving water : SLOSH
26
Pushes to the limit : TESTS
28
Joint issue : GOUT
30
Bush junior? : ROO
31
"Hell, yeah!" : THATSWHATSUP
35
Kind of : FAIRLY
37
"Hang on, hang on" : NOTYET
38
Office drudge : PENCILPUSHER
40
Something off the wall? : ART
41
Oakland's Bill ___ Climate Lab : NYES
42
Dummies : DODOS
46
Up : RAISE
48
Not be free : COST
51
Grateful Dead bassist Phil : LESH
52
Robert of "The Girl Who Knew Too Much" : ALDA
53
One of the 12 tribes of Israel : ASHER
55
Big inits. in podcasting : NPR
56
Termagant : SCOLD
58
Once-popular free computer download : SHAREWARE
60
Sagal of "Married ... With Children" : KATEY
61
#1 going in : TOPSEEDED
62
Twos in the news : ITEMS
63
All but the outer columns, typically : WEEKDAYS
Down
1
Where dogs may be put in the backyard : BBQPIT
2
Golden Globe winner for "The Wrestler" : ROURKE
3
Bright yellow bouquet : OXEYES
4
Jerk : ASS
5
"The fool ___ think he is wise": Shak. : DOTH
6
Acclaim : ECLAT
7
Personification of Turkey's Weeping Rock : NIOBE
8
Piggy bank contents : SAVINGS
9
Canyon maker : GMC
10
Keep lubed, say : REOIL
11
Source of the word "saga" : OLDNORSE
12
Targets on a hunt : SEEKSOUT
13
Once-common Times Square establishment : SEXSHOP
15
Bummers : LETDOWNS
23
Horror movie locale : ATTIC
25
Aforementioned : STATED
27
Dome of the Rock, e.g. : SHRINE
29
"Eeep!" : UHOH
32
Get together : ALLY
33
Not having many different parts? : TYPECAST
34
Alpine region : TYROL
35
Target of a trap-neuter-return program : FERALCAT
36
Vial that a villain might withhold : ANTIDOTE
38
Make a flying jump in the winter : PARASKI
39
Morale booster on base : USOSHOW
43
"No problemo" : DENADA
44
Keen-eyed fisher : OSPREY
45
Does a virtuoso guitar solo, slangily : SHREDS
47
Home of the real-life House of the Seven Gables : SALEM
49
Condition : SHAPE
50
Like the answer "No." : TERSE
54
Fetor : REEK
57
Start to function? : DYS
59
One of the 63-Across: Abbr. : WED

Answer summary: 4 unique to this puzzle, 1 debuted here and reused later, 3 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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