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New York Times, Thursday, April 30, 2015

Author:
Herre Schouwerwou
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
81/15/201511/29/20180
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0113300
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.62100
Herre Schouwerwou

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 74, Blocks: 30 Missing: {JQVXZ} This is puzzle # 2 for Mr. Schouwerwou. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Herre Schouwerwou notes:
Just a week after my debut crossword I got an email from Joel accepting this one without any changes. Will and Joel liked the theme ... read more

Just a week after my debut crossword I got an email from Joel accepting this one without any changes. Will and Joel liked the theme and the "big, chunky corners" and said that it would be tentatively scheduled for a Thursday. That surprised me because I always viewed Thursday puzzles as having some sort of trickery as part of the theme. In the same email, another submission that I thought was Thursday material was rejected as being "a bit too crazy."

Will addressed my comments to him in his notes for the 2/5/2015 crossword, "In truth, though, at least to me, Thursday is just supposed to be harder than Wednesday and easier than Friday. That is all."

About half of the clues were toughened up to be Thursday-worthy. My submitted clue for POEHLER BARE was "Sensationalist headline for Amy's autobiography 'Yes Please'?". I was going for a more subtle approach to the word "bare" with it being more about her revealing details of her life. Will went the more direct route. Good thing that I didn't use "Kerr bare" — "Revealing cooking show featuring the Galloping Gourmet?"!

Of the clues that were changed, my favorite was "Paper work not usually done at the office". My favorite clue that survived the cut was "Skips the rite stuff?" (for ELOPES).

Hope you found this "air" apparent crossword to my debut to be the right stuff for your Thursday puzzling!

Jeff Chen notes:
Neat idea, double homonyms where one word is the name of a famous person. I was confused when I came up on CHER WEAR — I'm so ... read more

Neat idea, double homonyms where one word is the name of a famous person. I was confused when I came up on CHER WEAR — I'm so oblivious to fashion that I tried to research what kind of clothing was in the CHERWEAR line — but eventually got a laugh out of the kooky themer. And my wife and I just finished most of "Parks and Recreation," so seeing POEHLER BARE was a hoot.

Interesting layout. Although it's only a 74-word puzzle, it has a themeless feel to it because of those huge NW and SE corners. So many colorful entries, i.e. CODE RED, ORIGAMI, PIGGIES all atop each other! Great bonus for a themed puzzle. I did hitch on RETAR and EMEER — I personally steer well clear of variants — but overall the NW corner was so fun that I found these gluey bits to be acceptable trade-offs.

Only silver conducts better than copper

Because CHER WEAR, POEHLER BARE, and BELLE HEIR are all near-perfect homonyms, it was jarring to uncover THOREAU FAIR. That phrase does bring up a funny image, so it succeeded for me in that way, but THOREAU and THOROUGH are pronounced so differently that it felt inelegant compared to the other themers. (Note: reports differ on how Thoreau actually pronounced his name, some saying it was actually quite close to "thorough.")

And then when I hit HERR KERR … not knowing the Galloping Gourmet, I had to work all the crossings, and expecting that the proper name would be at the start threw me off. Since all four others are two-word phrases with the name kicking them off, it would have felt so much more elegant if the fifth followed suit. Consistency is a thing of beauty.

Two beautiful clues, both nicely headlined at the top of the puzzle:

  • [Conductor of note] plays upon famous music conductors often being seen in crosswords. What a twist, to refer to a notable electrical conductor, COPPER.
  • [Case for a lawyer, maybe] has nothing to do with criminal law. Just an ATTACHE case he/she might being into a courtroom. Genius.
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© 2015, The New York TimesNo. 0430 ( 23,914 )
Across
1
Emergency status : CODERED
8
Case for a lawyer, maybe : ATTACHE
15
Paper work not usually done at the office : ORIGAMI
16
Performers with lots of fans? : GEISHAS
17
Quintet in a nursery rhyme : PIGGIES
18
Longs : HANKERS
19
Naked "Parks and Recreation" star? : POEHLERBARE
21
Fig. for a dietitian : RDA
22
What may follow anything? : ELSE
23
Some expensive hors d'oeuvres : ROES
24
Spread on a farm : SOW
26
Surface again, as a road : RETAR
28
Layered lunch orders : BLTS
30
Mourn openly : WEEP
33
Wooden rod : DOWEL
35
Recently : OFLATE
37
"Say ___" : AAH
40
Tempo : CADENCE
42
Unpolished : RAW
43
Bizarre : FREAKY
45
Balderdash : HOKUM
47
Describe as : TERM
48
Out and about : SEEN
50
Two numbers? : DUETS
54
Onetime owner of NBC : RCA
56
Hitch : LIMP
58
Like some fees and feet : FLAT
59
Bit of discouragement : TSK
61
Event at Walden Pond? : THOREAUFAIR
64
Like some shopping : ONESTOP
66
Of the highest reputation : TOPLINE
67
"The last thing I wanted to do was to be a ___ president": Lyndon Johnson : WARTIME
68
Firm, in a way : ALDENTE
69
Neatens (up) : SPRUCES
70
Most baggy : LOOSEST
Down
1
Conductor of note : COPPER
2
Maker of a hanging nest : ORIOLE
3
Compilation : DIGEST
4
Brainiac : EGGHEAD
5
Transit option : RAIL
6
Mideast title: Var. : EMEER
7
Stripped : DISROBED
8
Horrified : AGHAST
9
Well up : TEAR
10
Ends of some utensils : TINES
11
"Don't ___" : ASK
12
Clothing line from an Oscar-winning singer? : CHERWEAR
13
Brain-busting : HARD
14
Italian pronoun : ESSA
20
Offspring of Beauty? : BELLEHEIR
25
Snowy ___ : OWL
27
Wear, and look great doing it : ROCK
29
Wallop : SOCK
31
Landing info, briefly : ETA
32
___ Research Center (polling group) : PEW
34
Routes : WAYS
36
Long row : FEUD
37
Like a mizzenmast on a ship : AFT
38
Equals, in math : ARE
39
The Galloping Gourmet in Germany? : HERRKERR
41
Any of about 18 elements on the periodic table : NONMETAL
44
"The Walking Dead" channel : AMC
46
Quiets : MUFFLES
49
Skips the rite stuff? : ELOPES
51
Paige of Broadway and London's West End : ELAINE
52
Pollutes : TAINTS
53
Word with price or parking : STREET
55
Top level of many a 62-Down : ATTIC
57
Veronese who painted "The Wedding at Cana" : PAOLO
59
Followers of many breakdowns : TOWS
60
Rude way to call a waiter : SNAP
62
See 55-Down : HOME
63
Pageant coif, maybe : UPDO
65
Man's name that's an alphabet run : STU

Answer summary: 5 unique to this puzzle, 4 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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