It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker. Please consider supporting our site by purchasing an account.

New York Times, Friday, June 30, 2017

Author: Damon Gulczynski
Editor: Will Shortz
Damon J. Gulczynski
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
3411/8/20045/5/20180
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
14507710
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.65320

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 70, Blocks: 32 Missing: {JQWX} This is puzzle # 25 for Mr. Gulczynski. NYT links: Across Lite PDF

Support XWord Info

Donation Amount

XWord Info is only possible when people like you choose to support it through donations.

Donate to get access to XWord Info for a year.

Benefits vary by donation level. Thank you!

Damon J. Gulczynski notes: Pretty typical Friday fare with a pretty typical back story. I put in a couple of long seed entries (CHARM OFFENSIVE and ... more
Damon J. Gulczynski notes:

Pretty typical Friday fare with a pretty typical back story. I put in a couple of long seed entries (CHARM OFFENSIVE and FRANZ FERDINAND) and went from there. I was happy to find HA-HA FUNNY (making its debut), and I was relieved to find Lindsey VONN – she saved me in the SW corner.

I'm also glad my clue for HANOI survived. When I first learned about recursive algorithms The Tower of Hanoi was the example problem, and I thought it was the coolest thing ever. After seeing it, I wrote a computer program to solve it and kicked it off with 100 discs, wondering how long it would take. It ran for four days straight on my parents' Power Mac before I killed it. I later learned that if I would have only waited like 600 billion more days I would have seen it finish.

Jeff Chen notes: I admire Damon's use of 14-letter entries. So tough to build around, since they automatically force placement of black squares, ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

I admire Damon's use of 14-letter entries. So tough to build around, since they automatically force placement of black squares, reducing flexibility right off the bat. I hadn't heard of CHARM OFFENSIVE before, but it was easily grokkable and a fun term to learn. FRANZ FERDINAND wasn't as interesting to me — he's no doubt crossworthy as a fuse for WWI — but it's tough to clue him in a clever way.

This puzzle isn't as segmented as it could be, but there are three sub-regions that are only connected by two answers apiece. Notice that once you drop in HAHA FUNNY and CHARM OFFENSIVE, you can work on the upper right region independently of the rest of the puzzle. It's a great boon for the constructor, but it's not great flow for the solver.

Still, having just two entries connecting a section is better than having only one. And it does allow Damon to do so well with that upper right. It's a huge swath of white space, daunting to fill. To weave in ZOOKEEPER, HAYMAKER and RAM HOME is excellent work.

I wish a few black squares had been moved to open up that corner, connecting it much more strongly to the rest of the puzzle — something like blackening in the ED of PLAYED and making the square after PIZZERIA white. But doing so would likely have weakened the corner's fill.

Never easy.

I liked how Damon kept his crossword glue to a minimum, just an ILO, ECU, OLEO and perhaps UNSAY. I was loving the puzzle, feeling like it might win my POW! what with all its great ZEN GARDEN sort of sizzling entries. But then I hit NANU NANU. Even as a "Mork and Mindy" fan in my youth, it feels dated to use as s feature entry. And HA HA FUNNY felt like it ought to be FUNNY HA HA, as per the old SNL sketch. Throw in a NEEDLER, I LOVE LA (a common constructor's crutch, given its friendly consonant/vowel alternation) and it didn't quite hit my threshold for a POW!-level themeless.

Still, generally well done and an entertaining solve.

1
S
2
H
3
A
4
F
5
T
6
E
7
D
8
A
9
P
10
T
11
Z
12
E
13
D
14
C
A
R
R
A
C
E
15
G
L
U
16
C
O
S
E
17
A
N
N
A
S
U
I
18
R
A
M
H
O
M
E
19
M
O
A
N
S
20
H
A
Y
M
A
K
E
R
21
P
I
Z
Z
E
22
R
23
I
A
24
E
I
R
E
25
F
L
U
S
H
26
D
E
M
E
27
A
28
N
29
F
30
A
31
Z
E
32
E
L
A
33
N
34
S
O
P
P
Y
35
O
V
E
R
36
D
E
F
A
37
T
38
F
E
S
S
39
M
E
N
D
40
S
41
T
U
D
E
42
F
R
E
E
43
O
R
G
I
E
44
S
45
N
I
E
46
C
E
47
A
N
A
L
48
N
A
N
U
N
49
A
50
N
51
U
52
V
53
O
R
A
C
I
54
T
Y
55
C
S
P
A
N
56
O
L
D
N
A
V
Y
57
B
58
I
K
I
N
I
S
59
N
E
E
D
L
E
R
60
I
L
O
V
E
L
A
61
N
O
N
62
F
R
O
63
T
O
O
E
A
S
Y
© 2017, The New York TimesNo. 0630 ( 24,706 )
Across Down
1. Given the short end of the stick : SHAFTED
8. Prone : APT
11. What many Brits don't spell "realize" with : ZED
14. 500, e.g. : CARRACE
15. Natural energy source : GLUCOSE
17. Designer behind the Dolly Girl perfume : ANNASUI
18. Really stress : RAMHOME
19. Wind sounds : MOANS
20. Strong connection? : HAYMAKER
21. Locale in "Do the Right Thing" : PIZZERIA
24. Where the Shannon flows : EIRE
25. One may be straight : FLUSH
26. Put down : DEMEAN
29. Disconcert : FAZE
32. Spirit : ELAN
34. Excessively sentimental : SOPPY
35. No more : OVER
36. Trim, in a way : DEFAT
38. Own (up) : FESS
39. Tapes, maybe : MENDS
41. Impudence, slangily : TUDE
42. For the taking : FREE
43. Bacchanals : ORGIES
45. Flower girl, sometimes : NIECE
47. Like a control freak : ANAL
48. Classic sitcom sign-off : NANUNANU
52. Big appetite : VORACITY
55. House shower : CSPAN
56. H&M competitor : OLDNAVY
57. Providers of limited coverage? : BIKINIS
59. Noodge : NEEDLER
60. 1983 song that begins "Hate New York City" : ILOVELA
61. Only word spoken in Mel Brooks's "Silent Movie" : NON
62. Back again : FRO
63. "That's no challenge" : TOOEASY
1. Rogue : SCAMP
2. Tower of ___ (classic math puzzle) : HANOI
3. Desi Jr. of the 1960s group Dino, Desi & Billy : ARNAZ
4. His assassination sparked W.W. I : FRANZFERDINAND
5. Tarboosh feature : TASSEL
6. Coin introduced by Louis IX : ECU
7. ___ gratia : DEI
8. Famed Indian burial site : AGRA
9. Took for a fool : PLAYED
10. Food processors, informally : TUMMIES
11. One involved in monkey business? : ZOOKEEPER
12. Titular Salinger girl : ESME
13. Puma prey : DEER
16. Campaign of flattery : CHARMOFFENSIVE
20. Humorous as opposed to strange : HAHAFUNNY
22. Wished could be undone : RUED
23. Key : ISLET
27. Place to pray : APSE
28. Where Molson Coors is TAP : NYSE
29. Feeling that everyone's having fun without you, in modern lingo : FOMO
30. More than conjecture : AVER
31. Place of outdoor meditation : ZENGARDEN
33. Tennis's Petrova : NADIA
37. ___ Vogue : TEEN
40. Harbor seal : SEACALF
44. Dieter's piece of cake? : SLIVER
46. Crackpot : CUCKOO
49. Trouble in the night : APNEA
50. Catches in the act : NAILS
51. Retract : UNSAY
52. Skiing great Lindsey : VONN
53. Nondairy spread : OLEO
54. Newbie : TYRO
57. Jot : BIT
58. 1969 Peace Prize agcy. : ILO

Answer summary: 8 unique to this puzzle, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

Found bugs or have suggestions?