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New York Times, Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Author: Jason Flinn
Editor: Will Shortz
Jason Flinn
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1.54030
Puzzle of the Week

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 76, Blocks: 36 Missing: {JQVZ} Spans: 2 This is puzzle # 10 for Mr. Flinn. Jeff Chen's Puzzle of the Week pick NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jason Flinn notes: The idea for this puzzle came while enjoying a cold beverage at a 'nineteenth hole'. That's golf lingo for the bar at the course. ... more
Jason Flinn notes:

The idea for this puzzle came while enjoying a cold beverage at a "nineteenth hole". That's golf lingo for the bar at the course. This got me thinking about similar cases, in which adding one to the typical number of items in a familiar set yields an entirely new thing.

This puzzle is a revision. My original submission lacked a revealer, and Will and Joel felt one was needed to help solvers understand the theme. That submission also had SECOND HOME, which doesn't fit the theme well, and TWELFTH MAN, which is a little boring compared to the others. I would have liked to work NINETEENTH HOLE into the puzzle, but 14 letters is a killer here. I'll have to make do with LPGA, ACE, and ELS in the NE corner.

Finally, since this puzzle has an ordinal theme, it's appropriate that it is my 10th published puzzle. I hope you enjoyed it!

Jeff Chen notes: Love this theme. I hadn't heard of FIFTY FIRST STATE before, but what a beautiful phrase and concept! Jason kept me guessing until ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

Love this theme. I hadn't heard of FIFTY FIRST STATE before, but what a beautiful phrase and concept! Jason kept me guessing until the end, wondering how 51st, 6th, 3rd, and 5th might all tie together. Excellent a-ha moment when I hit AND ANOTHER THING — a perfect revealer. As Jason mentioned, I found it so much fun that each one of these themers is derived from "adding one," but they each become something all their own.

One of my personal heroes

As if that weren't enough, Jason executes so well. Today's is a tough construction task, with longish themers plus a middle one cutting the grid in half. He does strong work in the four corners, incorporating some DASHING STOPGAP INFIDEL type bonuses while keeping the crossword glue to a minimum. All I could find was an ERN in the SW and an ELEC in the NE — excellent result, especially considering the difficulty of his task.

LOVE the EBERT clue: [He once asked "How far down can a thumb go?"]. EBERT was such a big part of my youth, my dad and I often watching "At the Movies" together. His wit and quotability make him my pick for the 21st century Alexander Pope or Oscar Wilde.

FEH might be unfamiliar to some, but the crossings are fair. And I find it fun to get the assorted MEH BAH GUH sort of entries in crosswords. (I'm easily amused.)

Wonderful puzzle; very close to my idea of the perfect Wednesday.

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© 2016, The New York TimesNo. 0615 ( 24,326 )
Across Down
1. Kimono closer : OBI
4. Luxuries : FRILLS
10. Org. for women taking courses? : LPGA
14. Enjoyable : FUN
15. A Jackson sister : LATOYA
16. Tesla power source: Abbr. : ELEC
17. Country that's an extremely close American ally, so to speak : FIFTYFIRSTSTATE
20. Bit of name-calling : SLUR
21. They'll check your bag at the airport, for short : TSA
22. Buds in Bordeaux : AMIS
23. Tiny, informally : ITSY
24. Special perception : SIXTHSENSE
28. ___ embarrassment : DIEOF
30. "Shows you!" : HAH
31. Sashimi selection : EEL
32. Follows : ENSUES
34. ___ jeans : MOM
35. Theater, design, etc. : ARTS
36. Power source for a subway train : THIRDRAIL
39. M.L.B. Triple Crown category : RBIS
42. Rejections : NOS
43. Billed to be : SOLDAS
47. Sea eagle : ERN
48. Like monsoon season : WET
49. Meager : SCANT
50. Unwanted tagalong : FIFTHWHEEL
55. Concerning : ASTO
56. Oxymoronic purchase at a blowout sale? : TIRE
57. Up in the air, as what to air, for short : TBA
58. Word with work or window : SHOP
59. Rant continuation ... or a hint to this puzzle's theme : ANDANOTHERTHING
63. College in Portland, Ore. : REED
64. Cavalry attack : CHARGE
65. Actress Long : NIA
66. Pal of Stan on "South Park" : KYLE
67. In need of some garage work : DENTED
68. Measure of econ. strength : GNP
1. In the wrong place at the wrong time? : OFFSIDE
2. Permanent, as bookshelves : BUILTIN
3. Pervades : INFUSES
4. No-___ zone : FLY
5. Travels à la Huckleberry Finn : RAFTS
6. Formal response to "Who goes there?" : ITISI
7. Title Seuss character, with "the" : LORAX
8. Fleur-de-___ : LYS
9. Used a rocker, e.g. : SAT
10. "I can do that for you" : LETME
11. Easier to see : PLAINER
12. Braces oneself : GETSSET
13. One-hit wonder? : ACE
18. Auditions : TRYOUTS
19. Boy Scout uniform part : SASH
25. Avenger with a hammer : THOR
26. Mideast group : HAMAS
27. He won the 1994 U.S. Open in a 20-hole playoff : ELS
29. "Bah!" : FEH
33. Muscle power : SINEW
34. Scrip writers : MDS
35. Like a home purchase without financing : ALLCASH
37. Hyman ___, main antagonist in "The Godfather Part II" : ROTH
38. Android alternative : IOS
39. Red card issuer, for short : REF
40. Pop diva Spears : BRITNEY
41. Nonbeliever : INFIDEL
44. Debonair : DASHING
45. Late justice Scalia : ANTONIN
46. Temporary solution : STOPGAP
48. Not just if : WHEN
51. Quid pro quo : TRADE
52. Allen who led the Green Mountain Boys : ETHAN
53. He once asked "How far down can a thumb go?" : EBERT
54. Elephantine : LARGE
59. Couples cruise ship? : ARK
60. Condition affecting TV's Monk, informally : OCD
61. Not just a : THE
62. Politico Cruz : TED

Answer summary: 3 unique to this puzzle.

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