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New York Times, Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Author:
Wren Schultz
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
26/1/20164/17/20180
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0011000
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.58000
Wren Schultz

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 76, Blocks: 35 Missing: {FHQY} This is puzzle # 2 for Mr. Schultz. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Wren Schultz notes:
When I originally submitted this puzzle, I sent in two versions: one with the reveal in the SE and one with the reveal at 1-Across. I ... read more

When I originally submitted this puzzle, I sent in two versions: one with the reveal in the SE and one with the reveal at 1-Across. I could see the fun in both having the vowel hint to help fill out the grid (as would be the case if it was the first clue) and as having it as a more traditional reveal. Will liked the traditional way which suited me just fine. Another interesting twist was how to treat "Y": when is it a vowel and when is it not? I ended up removing all Ys in the rewrite to avoid the confusion (though was really sorry to lose the crossing of "ODE TO JOY" and "YO MAMA JOKE")

This is my second Times puzzle, and while the excitement of the accomplishment is less the second go 'round, it is only ever so slightly less. I've got a frame picked out and a place on my wall already chosen. Here's to running out of wall space before either my brain gives out, or our robot overlords make crossword constructors expendable.

Jeff Chen notes:
Neat that VOWEL exhibits the exact property exhibited by the entire grid – alternation between vowel and consonant. Entries that ... read more

Neat that VOWEL exhibits the exact property exhibited by the entire grid – alternation between vowel and consonant. Entries that exhibit this property are very useful for constructors, as they tend to make construction much easier. Fun inside nod to the gridmaking biz.

Not so fun: OREL / PALOMA, ODER / ELEV, CAPON, DEREG, ONED, all in a single puzzle. All in an early-week puzzle, to boot. I think everything is ultimately fair, but I worry that a puzzle this gluey is going to turn off less experienced solvers.

It's an interesting feat of construction that made me think about how it could be done. Pretty easy, as it turns out, writing some code that outputs only the vowel-consonant-alternating entries from one's list and then filling from there.

Too much of a one-trick pony for this solver's taste, the conceit not worth the price of the hiccups in execution. But a couple of fun entries that fit the pattern, POPEMOBILE the standout, and also Socrates' UNEXAMINED life. And that VOWEL revealer, exhibiting the same property, is definitely memorable.

1
B
2
O
3
N
4
O
5
O
6
D
7
E
8
R
9
S
10
O
11
D
12
A
13
C
A
R
I
B
14
B
O
L
A
15
A
R
E
S
16
U
N
E
X
A
17
M
I
N
E
D
18
L
E
V
I
19
P
A
L
O
M
A
20
A
V
O
21
C
A
D
O
S
22
N
A
G
23
A
T
24
N
A
M
E
25
J
26
A
27
D
E
S
28
Z
E
29
N
30
P
I
P
31
E
32
R
33
U
B
E
R
34
L
O
S
E
35
T
O
36
O
X
O
37
L
O
C
A
38
T
O
R
39
G
E
N
40
E
S
I
S
41
E
V
E
42
O
N
E
43
M
A
N
44
V
I
L
E
45
S
E
L
46
I
G
47
S
A
T
48
R
A
T
E
S
49
E
V
A
50
N
51
D
E
52
R
E
G
53
K
54
E
R
O
S
E
55
N
E
56
A
W
A
57
K
58
E
59
S
60
A
T
A
T
61
P
O
P
62
E
M
O
B
I
L
E
63
T
O
T
E
64
A
G
A
R
65
V
O
W
E
L
66
O
N
E
D
67
L
O
R
E
68
E
R
I
C
© 2018, The New York TimesNo. 0417 ( 24,997 )
Across
1
Rock singer who was a Time co-Person of the Year : BONO
5
Poland/Germany border river : ODER
9
Pizza party drink : SODA
13
West Indies native : CARIB
14
Hurled weapon : BOLA
15
God depicted with a spear : ARES
16
Like a life that's not worth living, per Socrates : UNEXAMINED
18
___ Strauss & Co. : LEVI
19
Picasso daughter known for her fashion designs and perfumes : PALOMA
20
Alligator pears : AVOCADOS
22
Really bother : NAGAT
24
First field in an online form, often : NAME
25
Makes weary through overexposure : JADES
28
Meditative kind of state : ZEN
30
Pan, in myth : PIPER
33
Pioneer in self-driving cars : UBER
34
Be beaten by : LOSETO
36
Kitchen brand made with love? : OXO
37
Map with a "You are here" arrow : LOCATOR
39
Book with Adam and 41-Across : GENESIS
41
See 39-Across : EVE
42
Lead-in to army or band : ONEMAN
44
Despicable : VILE
45
Bud ___, former M.L.B. commissioner : SELIG
47
Was on the bench : SAT
48
Figures posted on taxi doors : RATES
49
"___ Almighty" (2007 film) : EVAN
51
Loosening of government controls, for short : DEREG
53
Lantern fuel : KEROSENE
56
Comes to : AWAKES
60
Giant four-legged combat walker in "Star Wars" films : ATAT
61
Car with a bubble : POPEMOBILE
63
Lug : TOTE
64
Food-thickening agent : AGAR
65
Every other letter in this puzzle's grid(!) : VOWEL
66
Lacking width and depth : ONED
67
Stories passed from generation to generation : LORE
68
With 1-Down, star of Spielberg's "Munich" : ERIC
Down
1
See 68-Across : BANA
2
Cy Young winner Hershiser : OREL
3
1969-74, politically : NIXONERA
4
White House family after the Bushes : OBAMAS
5
Sash worn around the waist : OBI
6
Contributes to a Kickstarter campaign, say : DONATES
7
Mountain fig. : ELEV
8
Gas that home inspectors check for : RADON
9
Pizza topping : SALAMI
10
Lode : OREDEPOSIT
11
Rock band known for its "energy domes" : DEVO
12
Sign suggesting "caveat emptor" : ASIS
13
Recipe unit : CUP
17
People or Us, for short : MAG
21
Chicken for cooking : CAPON
23
Archipelago west of Portugal : AZORES
25
Author Verne : JULES
26
Like the sky (unless you're an astronaut) : ABOVE
27
Slow down : DECELERATE
29
Nullify : NEGATE
31
Napoleon, when on St. Helena : EXILE
32
Kentucky Derby prize : ROSES
34
Scary Chaney : LON
35
Base ___ : TEN
38
Attire on ancient statues : TOGAS
40
"Green Acres" co-star in 1960s TV : EVAGABOR
43
Did better than bogeyed : MADEPAR
46
Sticker worn proudly in November : IVOTED
48
Fixed, as a tapestry : REWOVE
50
Home to Tenzing-Hillary Airport : NEPAL
52
One making a ewe turn? : RAM
53
Bruce Lee role based on an old radio character : KATO
54
Rival school of Harrow and Radley : ETON
55
Canceled, as a launch : NOGO
57
New Zealand bird : KIWI
58
"Juice": Abbr. : ELEC
59
Salt, in France : SEL
62
"But I heard him exclaim, ___ he ..." : ERE

Answer summary: 1 unique to this puzzle, 2 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

Found bugs or have suggestions?