It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker. Please consider supporting our site by purchasing an account.

DON'T SUE US!

New York Times, Sunday, March 13, 2016

Author: Tom McCoy
Editor: Will Shortz
Tom McCoy
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
3011/14/201311/19/20170
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
15815100
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.61351

This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21 Words: 140, Blocks: 76 Missing: {QZ} This is puzzle # 18 for Mr. McCoy. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Tom McCoy notes: Initially, I thought about making this a two-way rebus that was the letters OR in one direction and the registered trademark symbol in the other, with the idea being that solvers would have to figure out to write ... more
Tom McCoy notes:

Initially, I thought about making this a two-way rebus that was the letters OR in one direction and the registered trademark symbol in the other, with the idea being that solvers would have to figure out to write the R inside the O. It seemed like a bit of a stretch to have solvers figure out the writing-one-letter-inside-the-other part, though, so I changed it to the current version.

Jeff Chen notes: Clever idea, using the 'registered trademark' sign — a circled R — inside theme answers. It was a nice a-ha moment to realize that those circled Rs in the middle of themers were indeed ... circled Rs! ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

Clever idea, using the "registered trademark" sign — a circled R — inside theme answers. It was a nice a-ha moment to realize that those circled Rs in the middle of themers were indeed ... circled Rs! I couldn't remember anything quite like this idea. Unique and fun.

True fact: Frisbees are not used in Ultimate Frisbee! (We use the Discraft brand disc.)

It's too bad that the grid didn't somehow reflect that the circled R symbol is always in superscript. It feels like there could have been something really cool done in the pdf, with boxes raised from their usual orderly positions? As it is, the conceit works pretty well, but it feels like it could have been really memorable if somehow the solver was forced to put those special Rs in as superscript.

I think most constructors should strive to make Sunday constructions like this one. Note that Tom doesn't push the boundaries, sticking with a 140-word puzzle (the max Will allows), giving us a little bit of bonus fill, but not so much that the grid is overly strained.

For almost any Sunday NYT puzzle, there's bound to be a little OSA, IT IS I, ATA kind of stuff, but if it's kept to pretty harmless stuff and spread throughout the grid, it doesn't really bog down the solving experience. And to get a few goodies like SUNDRIED TOMATO, LOOK WHAT I FOUND, ROMAN EMPERORS, TO BE FAIR is a nice bonus. I find that this balance makes for a pleasurable, quality solve.

That's not to say that this is the only type of fun solve — sometimes it's kind of nice to get 10+ great bonus entries, even if it means you have to slog through globs of crossword glue, sometimes it's cool to get a puzzle with ultra-high theme density, etc. — but today's puzzle is the type I think most constructors can realistically shoot for. Sometimes I get co-constructors trying to go big or go home on Sunday constructions, and too often the latter is the result.

Innovative idea that I might have absolutely loved if the superscripting had somehow been achieved.

JimH notes: Circles in grids have referred to circular things in the past. Elizabeth C. Gorski did it with champagne bubbles and with car wheels. Mr. McCoy goes a step further. As Jeff points out, today, the circles represent circles. Nice.
1
D
2
S
3
T
4
D
5
E
6
P
7
T
8
S
9
O
10
R
11
E
12
O
13
A
14
S
15
K
16
S
17
T
18
O
19
R
N
A
20
A
P
A
R
T
21
P
E
T
A
22
S
C
O
U
R
S
23
P
O
P
24
S
I
C
L
E
R
25
S
T
I
C
K
26
N
A
R
N
I
A
27
H
O
P
E
S
O
28
S
I
E
29
T
30
H
E
R
E
D
S
31
I
T
E
M
32
T
33
U
P
P
E
34
R
35
W
36
A
R
E
R
P
A
R
T
37
Y
38
L
Y
R
I
39
C
40
T
A
E
41
O
H
Y
E
S
42
I
A
M
43
O
44
P
U
S
45
M
I
N
E
46
P
47
E
48
S
E
T
A
49
V
50
E
51
L
52
C
R
O
R
S
53
T
54
R
A
P
55
D
E
C
O
D
E
56
A
S
O
F
T
E
N
57
R
U
N
58
C
59
H
E
R
O
O
T
60
S
T
O
L
E
61
H
E
H
E
62
Y
O
L
O
63
T
O
64
E
65
E
E
K
66
X
67
E
68
R
O
X
R
M
69
A
C
H
I
N
70
E
71
M
A
72
N
73
E
W
74
S
75
L
O
N
E
76
P
O
L
O
77
C
78
E
A
S
E
79
H
I
80
J
I
N
K
S
81
E
K
E
82
S
83
T
A
R
T
E
R
84
T
A
B
O
O
S
85
F
R
I
S
86
B
E
E
R
G
O
L
F
87
G
O
T
S
E
T
88
T
89
O
R
O
90
I
D
E
D
91
U
B
I
92
B
O
R
E
R
93
A
T
A
94
S
95
P
96
A
97
S
98
M
99
T
E
F
100
L
101
O
102
N
R
P
R
E
S
103
I
D
E
N
104
T
105
A
L
T
O
106
F
O
O
T
E
R
S
107
M
R
I
108
E
109
S
P
I
E
D
110
G
A
U
C
H
E
111
P
112
I
113
N
114
G
P
O
N
115
G
R
T
A
B
L
E
116
O
I
N
K
E
D
117
I
D
E
A
118
I
T
I
S
I
119
I
L
L
120
O
R
D
E
R
S
121
N
O
O
B
122
T
O
N
E
R
123
S
A
T
© 2016, The New York TimesNo. 0313 ( 24,232 )
Across Down
1. It returns just before spring: Abbr. : DST
4. Univ. parts : DEPTS
9. Black-and-white treat : OREO
13. Sends an invitation for : ASKSTO
19. Cell material : RNA
20. Independently : APART
21. Fur fighters? : PETA
22. Combs : SCOURS
23. Wooden arts-and-crafts piece : POPSICLESTICK
26. Fantasy land : NARNIA
27. "Fingers crossed!" : HOPESO
28. "Sprechen ___ Deutsch?" : SIE
29. Great American Ball Park team : THEREDS
31. Collector's ___ : ITEM
32. Quaint social occasion : TUPPERWAREPARTY
38. Kind of poem : LYRIC
40. ___ Bo : TAE
41. "I almost forgot ..." : OHYES
42. Positive response : IAM
43. Work : OPUS
45. "Hands off!" : MINE
46. Pre-euro coin : PESETA
49. Shoelace alternative : VELCROSTRAP
55. Get the message, say : DECODE
56. With equal frequency : ASOFTEN
57. Streak : RUN
58. Cigar type : CHEROOT
60. "Borrowed" : STOLE
61. Titter : HEHE
62. Modern "Carpe diem" : YOLO
63. Locale for phalanges : TOE
65. Cry that's a homophone of 81-Across : EEK
66. Tool for reproduction : XEROXMACHINE
71. "Heaven and earth in miniature," per a Chinese proverb : MAN
73. Expressions of disgust : EWS
75. Sole : LONE
76. Marco ___ (shirt sold on Rubio's website) : POLO
77. Come to an end : CEASE
79. Shenanigans : HIJINKS
81. Barely make, with "out" : EKE
82. Appetizer : STARTER
84. Section of a foreign travel guide, maybe : TABOOS
85. Hybrid outdoor game : FRISBEEGOLF
87. Prepared : GOTSET
88. Fatty cut of fish at a sushi bar : TORO
90. Named, informally : IDED
91. Where, to Cato : UBI
92. Burrowing insect : BORER
93. ___ glance : ATA
94. Convulsion : SPASM
99. Reagan, with "the" : TEFLONPRESIDENT
105. Prefix with cumulus : ALTO
106. Identifying lines at the bottoms of pages : FOOTERS
107. Certain hosp. exam : MRI
108. Caught sight of : ESPIED
110. Ungraceful : GAUCHE
111. Fixture in many a basement : PINGPONGTABLE
116. Emulated one of Old MacDonald's animals : OINKED
117. One that's out of one's head? : IDEA
118. Response to "Who goes there?" : ITISI
119. Poorly : ILL
120. Brotherhood and sisterhood : ORDERS
121. Neophyte, in modern slang : NOOB
122. Cartridge filler : TONER
123. Convened : SAT
1. Self-help guru who wrote "Life Code" : DRPHIL
2. Hoity-toity : SNOOTY
3. Jake of CNN : TAPPER
4. Place for a throne : DAIS
5. World Showcase site : EPCOT
6. Hang (around) : PAL
7. Take unwanted steps? : TRESPASS
8. Line at the zoo : STRIPE
9. Elect : OPT
10. King, in Portugal : REI
11. Series finale? : ETC
12. Image on the Connecticut state quarter : OAKTREE
13. Grant portrayer on TV : ASNER
14. Line of cliffs : SCARP
15. Land in two pieces? : KOREA
16. Ingredient that's been left out? : SUNDRIEDTOMATO
17. Pertaining to Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia, e.g. : TRISTATE
18. Spanish she-bear : OSA
24. One for two of four : SEMI
25. Show (out) : SEE
30. "___ a real nowhere man ..." : HES
33. Complete reversal : UTURN
34. Source of the names of two months : ROMANEMPERORS
35. Trounce : WHIP
36. "Atlas Shrugged" author Rand : AYN
37. Soprano Sumac : YMA
39. Think piece? : CORTEX
44. Writer of the line "Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December" : POE
46. Leader elected in 1946 : PERON
47. Prefix with tourism : ECO
48. Fossil fuel residue : SOOT
49. Still-life object : VASE
50. First name in cosmetics : ESTEE
51. Discoverer's cry : LOOKWHATIFOUND
52. Org. of the Argonauts and the Alouettes : CFL
53. Some natural history museum displays, for short : TREXES
54. Tributary of the Rhine : RUHR
55. Substation? : DELI
58. The four seasons and others : CYCLES
59. Brown-and-white treat : HOHO
61. Start of many a bumper sticker : HONK
64. Backing at a business meeting? : EASEL
67. "Four Quartets" poet : ELIOT
68. Two 1980s White House personages : RONS
69. Isao of the P.G.A. : AOKI
70. Online greetings : ECARDS
72. Toy brand with soft sales? : NERF
74. Genealogical grouping, informally : SIBS
78. Bit of a joule : ERG
80. Average guy : JOE
82. French city said to have given its name to a car : SEDAN
83. Bit of gymwear : TEE
84. Start of a concession : TOBEFAIR
85. Unoccupied : FREE
86. Start eating : BITEINTO
87. Inner feeling : GUT
88. Court technique : TOPSPIN
89. Bobby in skates : ORR
92. "It's f-f-freezing!" : BRR
93. Artful : ADROIT
95. Daddy : PAPA
96. Crime stories? : ALIBIS
97. "Streetcar" call : STELLA
98. You could have it in any color you wanted, as long as it was black : MODELT
100. "Two Treatises of Government" philosopher : LOCKE
101. Smallest slice of a pie chart, maybe : OTHER
102. Must have : NEEDS
103. Scapegrace : IMP
104. Facetious response to "Describe yourself in three adjectives" : TERSE
109. Recipe instruction : STIR
110. Sticky stuff : GOO
112. Line at a wedding : IDO
113. Role for Keanu Reeves : NEO
114. Chatter : GAB
115. Ingredient in a white lady : GIN

Answer summary: 13 unique to this puzzle, 1 debuted here and reused later, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

Found bugs or have suggestions?