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New York Times, Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Author: Kristian House
Editor: Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
172/17/200911/28/20160
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0153323
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.65023
Kristian House

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 74, Blocks: 40 Missing: {Q} Spans: 3 This is puzzle # 13 for Mr. House. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

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Jeff Chen notes: GONZO JOURNALISM is one of the most colorful phrases I've seen in a while. I wasn't totally sure what it meant, but it came back ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

GONZO JOURNALISM is one of the most colorful phrases I've seen in a while. I wasn't totally sure what it meant, but it came back quickly enough with a quick refresher on Hunter S. Thompson. We've seen this phrase in NYT themeless puzzles before, but it's great to see it featured in a themed.

Awesome logo representing gonzo journalism!

Not having read (or seen) FEAR AND LOATHING / IN LAS VEGAS, it was tough for me to squee over the theme. But I did admire Kristian's gridwork. A 10/15/15/15/10 set of themers is tough to work with. It often results in compromises in the west and east section, where plenty of down answers must interact with two themers. Check out the east — SINO is only a minor ding, and he managed to work in the beautiful CUDDLE UP. Excellent deployment of black squares.

Additionally, Kristian wisely used the least-constrained part of the puzzle to work in some Scrabbliness, an X and a Z. Since that SE corner only has the end of LOATHING fixed into place, there's all sorts of freedom. Sure, ETES is a minor gluey bit, but to work in RIB CUT, HE/SHE, and X GAMES along with that X and Z is solid.

I did hitch slightly on NAV, which seems like a curious abbreviation for NAVAL (or NAVY?). But I personally like NAV, as it's commonplace in finance. A mutual fund's NET ASSET VALUE is an important indicator of (insert sound of readers falling asleep).

Finally, a great clue for US STEEL, throwing back to a heyday where US Steel built the "Unisphere" for the NY World's Fair. It's a company that has always fascinated me, because 1.) its ticker symbol on the New York Stock Exchange is the awesome "X" and 2.) it reminds me of Asimov's "U.S. Robotics," a company in his books that produced humanoid robots. And an actual company (which makes modems) took up that name! Life imitating art imitating life.

1
H
2
O
3
H
4
O
5
D
6
R
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A
8
G
9
S
10
C
11
O
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P
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A
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15
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K
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J
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J
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I
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S
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M
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B
E
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Y
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B
E
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L
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U
L
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H
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H
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P
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© 2015, The New York TimesNo. 0303 ( 23,856 )
Across Down
1. Treat similar to a Yodel : HOHO
5. What RuPaul dresses in : DRAG
9. Extent : SCOPE
14. Big name in computers : ACER
15. Gentle hill : RISE
16. "Congrats!" : KUDOS
17. Shoulder muscle, informally : DELT
18. He played one of the lead roles in the film version of 50-/55-Across : JOHNNYDEPP
20. Gambler's last words? : ALLIN
22. Tattled : TOLD
23. Writing style popularized by 35-Across : GONZOJOURNALISM
30. Native Nebraskan : OTO
31. Flagmaker Ross : BETSY
32. Misrepresent : BELIE
33. Fragrant neckwear : LEIS
34. Bone below the elbow : ULNA
35. Author of 50-/55-Across : HUNTERSTHOMPSON
42. "Looking at it differently ...," to a texter : OTOH
43. "___ kleine Nachtmusik" : EINE
44. How some right turns are made : ONRED
46. One who sniggles : EELER
47. "Toy Story" dinosaur : REX
50. See 35-Across : FEARANDLOATHING
53. Some Wharton degs. : MBAS
54. Image on the last page of an alphabet book : ZEBRA
55. See 35-Across : INLASVEGAS
61. Flimflam : SCAM
62. Aussie known for sleeping most of the day away : KOALA
63. Elegance : LUXE
64. Leviathan-like : HUGE
65. Physicist Mach : ERNST
66. Something cooked in a slow cooker : STEW
67. Summers on the Seine : ETES
1. Tried : HADAGO
2. Spotted cat : OCELOT
3. "Not a chance!" : HELLNO
4. Baseball slugger David known as Big Papi : ORTIZ
5. N.B.A. star who started in the A.B.A. : DRJ
6. 1982 double-platinum Duran Duran album : RIO
7. Bat wood : ASH
8. Aristocrats : GENTRY
9. Space station that crashed in 1979 : SKYLAB
10. Get cozy together : CUDDLEUP
11. Laudatory verse : ODE
12. Punch in the face, informally : POP
13. Subj. of a thought experiment : ESP
19. Result of a 1995 Québec secession referendum : NON
21. Aristocrat : NOBLE
24. Razz : JEER
25. Soulful Redding : OTIS
26. Company that built the Unisphere for the 1964-65 New York World's Fair : USSTEEL
27. Woes of society : ILLS
28. ___-Japanese War : SINO
29. Signify : MEAN
35. Foot for the Greek god Pan : HOOF
36. ___ Reader (alternative magazine) : UTNE
37. Romance novelist Roberts : NORA
38. Long johns : THERMALS
39. Big city on the Big Island : HILO
40. Draft classification : ONEA
41. Neighbor of the Ricardos on "I Love Lucy" : MERTZ
45. Pats lightly : DABSAT
46. Famous flops of the '50s : EDSELS
47. Barbecue beef choice : RIBCUT
48. Make hot under the collar : ENRAGE
49. Event featuring motocross and snocross : XGAMES
51. Maritime org. : NAV
52. Pronoun with a slash : HESHE
55. "Likable" prez : IKE
56. Neither's partner : NOR
57. PC linkup : LAN
58. Eviscerate : GUT
59. Give the boot : AXE
60. Darn, e.g. : SEW

Answer summary: 5 unique to this puzzle.

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