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# DIME STORE

## New York Times, Sunday, June 22, 2014

 Author: Elizabeth C. Gorski Editor: Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
2197/31/19952/23/20160
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
6716363439243
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.5430225

## This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21 Words: 140, Blocks: 71 Missing: {QZ} This is puzzle # 212 for Ms. Gorski. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Elizabeth C. Gorski notes: When asked how he amassed his massive fortune, financier T. Boone Pickens said: 'the first billion is the hardest.' That's always been my philosophy ... and, coincidentally, that's our solving strategy ... more
Elizabeth C. Gorski notes: When asked how he amassed his massive fortune, financier T. Boone Pickens said: "the first billion is the hardest." That's always been my philosophy ... and, coincidentally, that's our solving strategy for today's puzzle, "Dime Store."

There's a financial incentive in solving the puzzle: when you complete it, your net worth will increase by ten cents.

You'll make real money by intersecting the letters "C" and "I" in certain (undisclosed) squares. But remember what ol' T. Boone said: the first penny is the hardest. Once you find that first cent, you'll rake in the following nine. You'll soon make sense of the whole thing. Cha-ching!

But time is money — let's get off the dime and start solving. How about some think music? Rudy Vallee's uptempo rendition of this Depression Era classic is, to coin a phrase, right on the money. Enjoy!

Jeff Chen notes: Nice concept today, ten theme entries containing the word CENT, with the C of CENT doubling as a cent sign. Additionally, the cent sign looks like an 'I' atop a 'C,' so crossing words use the vertical line within ... more
Jeff Chen notes: Nice concept today, ten theme entries containing the word CENT, with the C of CENT doubling as a cent sign. Additionally, the cent sign looks like an "I" atop a "C," so crossing words use the vertical line within the cent sign as an I. Finally, the entry TEN CENTS ties everything together. Lots of layers! At first I didn't see that all the cent signs started the word CENT — neat a-ha moment when that snapped into place.

So many constraints today. It's hard enough to work with ten theme answers in a 21x grid. It wouldn't be any harder than a typical Sunday construction, except that Liz connects several of her theme answers. Check out how PAIN PILL runs through both VICENTE FOX and CENTRIST — nice touch. Liz could have put a black square on the second P of PAIN PILL, creating PAIN and ILL, along with HOT and LATE in the across direction. I like the extra touch, giving the solver some nice fill in PAIN PILL and HOT PLATE.

Speaking of long fill, I liked seeing STATE DEPT, too. What an odd sequence when unparsed: STATEDEPT. I usually don't like abbreviations, but this one's so crazy it's pretty neat. It was also nice to see HEALTH FOOD and NO RELATION in there too. Uncovering that bonus fill in a Sunday really helps keep my attention through a long solve.

As much as I liked having long theme entries in the down direction (WRITEUPS, I SWEAR, IRON ON, PAIN PILL), I was okay seeing shorter ones like TAIL, AIDE, IAN. The longer ones are so nice, but incorporating them requires so many constraints to be placed upon the puzzle, so much inflexibility, that there were a bit too many bumpy spots for my taste. I don't mind seeing an occasional ISLIP or POLA or AME, but there were enough of them that I noticed them during my solve. The IRAE / TAL / LURIE section in particular was rough for me — I know that musicians tend to think DIES IRAE is a freebie, chess players consider TAL as quality fill, and literati like LURIE, but all together they make for a tough trio.

[Times table?] tricked me — what a nice moment when I realized a MASTHEAD is a sort of table on the NYT front page. And [Mountains have developed over them] had to be CONTINENTS or LAND MASSES or something, right? Wrong! Over EONS = clever stuff. And my favorite of the day is [It may be a credit to you], where "credit" refers to a college credit. That's the stuff that keeps me JONESin for more.

It would have been fantastic if all the cent signs were arranged in the shape of a cent sign, but that would have likely caused all sorts of compromises. Still, a guy can wish for a neat visual element, especially when he sees Liz's byline.

Finally, it was a nice touch that Liz didn't put any other C's in the puzzle. Not sure that many people would even notice this, but it adds a layer of elegance that I appreciated.

JimH notes: Elizabeth Gorski's comments are always great and if you sign up at Crossword Nation you get her puzzles and her stories every week. Ravishly recently interviewed Ms. Gorski in their Ladies we Love section. And yes we do!
 1T 2S 3L 4O 5T 6G 7O 8O 9P 10R 11I 12P 13E 14N 15D 16A 17F 18T 19A P I S H 20E B R O 21A D A N O 22E R L E 23CI E N T E 24N N I A L 25V I CI E N 26T E F O X 27L E G 28N O R E L A 29T I O N 30U P S E T 31D E 32R I V E 33H O T P 34L 35A T E 36T R A L A 37S 38N 39A I L 40CI E N T R 41I 42S 43T 44I R I D E S 45CI E N T 46I 47M L A T E 48T E A 49S A N S 50S M E W 51S 52E L K 53S S R S 54M P G 55M 56A L I 57I O 58W E 59S 60I 61D E B E T 62R A N I N 63T A R S 64I 65T U L A N E 66R 67E 68CI E N T P A 69S T 70CI E N 71T I P E D E S 72E N R A G E 73R H E 74T T 75P O S E S 76P R O P O S 77E 78I R A E 79A M I D 80S 81L 82O 83E O N S 84A 85M E 86L U 87R I E 88S T I R 89A B O 90H 91A R A S 92S 93P E R CI 94E 95N T A G E 96T E N 97CI E N T S 98T 99E S T S 100Y O U T H 101S M O O T 102H E N 103J E T S E T 104I 105N 106A W E 107H E A L 108T 109H 110F O O D 111D E 112I 113D E CI E N 114T 115M E A L 116I M I N N O 117CI E N T 118L E D A 119W E A V E 120N O N E 121N A P E S 122E D E R 123A D D E R 124A S K S 125E N T R Y
© 2014, The New York TimesNo. 0622 ( 23,602 )