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New York Times, Friday, June 9, 2017

Author:
Steve Overton
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
22/18/20176/9/20170
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0000011
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.62000
Steve Overton

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 70, Blocks: 30 Missing: {JQ} This is puzzle # 2 for Mr. Overton. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Steve Overton notes:
Greetings, solvers. Just a bit of snarky, frivolous, late-week fun. Never seen the phrase YOUR OTHER LEFT in a crossword before, felt ... read more

Greetings, solvers. Just a bit of snarky, frivolous, late-week fun. Never seen the phrase YOUR OTHER LEFT in a crossword before, felt compelled to rectify that. Got a couple of yuks out of this one, hope you did too (I'd feel silly laughing by myself).

Have a great weekend, everyone.

Jeff Chen notes:
Great feature entry in YOUR OTHER LEFT. Hard to parse out, and such a fun clue: [Not right, sarcastically]. The wordplay around the ... read more

Great feature entry in YOUR OTHER LEFT. Hard to parse out, and such a fun clue: [Not right, sarcastically]. The wordplay around the word "right" was beautiful, misdirecting me toward the "correct" sense of the word "right." A WITT-y themeless seed (wish I thought of that).

Standard themeless layout, featuring four sets of stacked answers, one in each corner, and a diagonal of black squares from NE to SW helping to break things up. Newer constructors ought to give a pattern like this a shot; a good place to start.

It might not look like those NW and SE corners would be hard to fill, but they tend to be tricky. The black squares at the ends of YOUR OTHER LEFT turn out to be mighty helpful in filling those corners — in this type of themeless grid skeleton, I frequently use cheater squares positioned like this. Helps to produce cleaner and snazzier results.

And beautiful work in those corners! The NW is near PERFECTO, with just DAS as a minor dab of crossword glue, and DASH CAM / ENTER KEY and ME TARZAN standing out. The other corner wasn't quite as nice — TAIL ENDS didn't shine as well for me — but with OXICLEAN and NO SWEAT, it also felt polished.

Not as polished-feeling were the other two corners. Not surprising, given the fact that they both have to "turn the corner," i.e. SHAGUAR / ANACONDA / WASH DOWN have to intersect RANTED / ADWARE / UNODOS. I don't mind DAT, as I like the New Orleans Saints' WHO DAT! cry, but UNO DOS is a puzzle-killer for me. Yes, it's linked to TRES up top, but UNO DOS is essentially a six-letter partial that can't be saved in this constructor's eyes.

I do think CARTE crossing HASTA is fair, since "A la CARTE" and "Hasta la vista, baby!" are well-known enough. But toss in LUZON, and it feels not as smooth as it could have been.

I also wondered about the SHAGUAR. I loved the Austin Powers movies, but it was depressing to see that the first one is 20 years old now. Twenty. TWENTY. Well, I feel old now. I do think DR EVIL holds up well over time since he's an iconic character, but SHAGUAR feels on the fringe of crossworthiness. I wonder if it'll produce more smiles from solvers or groans.

But overall, some nice feature entries.

1
D
2
A
3
S
4
H
5
C
6
A
7
M
8
E
9
T
10
R
11
A
12
D
13
E
14
E
N
T
E
R
K
E
15
Y
16
D
R
E
V
I
L
17
P
E
R
F
E
C
T
O
18
G
E
N
E
V
A
19
E
M
O
T
E
20
A
U
21
R
A
S
22
M
I
N
23
N
I
P
S
24
E
R
R
O
R
25
C
A
N
T
26
D
A
S
27
L
U
Z
O
N
28
C
O
R
E
R
29
C
A
R
A
T
30
S
H
E
I
L
A
31
A
32
W
A
Y
O
N
H
33
O
L
I
D
A
Y
34
S
N
A
R
L
S
35
E
X
I
T
S
36
H
A
S
T
A
37
B
R
I
M
S
38
M
39
A
40
R
41
A
C
H
E
42
D
O
L
C
E
43
S
A
G
A
44
G
O
D
45
Y
O
D
E
L
46
M
I
X
E
R
47
U
N
O
48
D
O
S
49
F
E
50
M
I
N
I
N
E
51
A
D
W
A
R
E
52
T
A
I
L
E
N
D
S
53
R
A
N
T
E
D
54
N
O
S
W
E
A
T
© 2017, The New York TimesNo. 0609 ( 24,685 )
Across
1
Road movie producer? : DASHCAM
8
Brokerage famous for its "spokesbaby" : ETRADE
14
It'll give you a break : ENTERKEY
16
Movie villain modeled after Ernst Stavro Blofeld : DREVIL
17
"Nailed it!" : PERFECTO
18
Home of the Red Cross : GENEVA
19
Overplay a part : EMOTE
20
Fields of energy : AURAS
22
-1, for sine: Abbr. : MIN
23
Small drinks : NIPS
24
Unwelcome kind of message : ERROR
25
Terse refusal : CANT
26
"Was ist ___?" : DAS
27
Where Manila is : LUZON
28
Apple apparatus : CORER
29
Unit of brilliance? : CARAT
30
Aussie girl : SHEILA
31
Out for a week or two, say : AWAYONHOLIDAY
34
Tie-ups : SNARLS
35
Flight attendants point them out : EXITS
36
Mañana preceder : HASTA
37
Hat features : BRIMS
38
Natl. Women's History Month : MAR
41
Really long : ACHE
42
Sweet, in scores : DOLCE
43
Story with many parts : SAGA
44
Mars, but not Earth : GOD
45
Long-distance call? : YODEL
46
Seltzer, e.g. : MIXER
47
With 9-Down, Spanish leaders? : UNODOS
49
Like "Roma," to Romans : FEMININE
51
It can dirty your Windows : ADWARE
52
Rears : TAILENDS
53
Fulminated : RANTED
54
"Easy peasy" : NOSWEAT
Down
1
Count (on) : DEPEND
2
Lack of oomph : ANEMIA
3
Razor sharpeners : STROPS
4
Weighs, in a way : HEFTS
5
Manitoba tribe : CREE
6
Lab grp. : AKC
7
Famous introduction that was never actually used : METARZAN
8
Mystery prize : EDGAR
9
See 47-Across : TRES
10
"Star Wars" villain Kylo ___ : REN
11
Mass number : AVEMARIA
12
From on high : DIVINELY
13
Korean compact : ELANTRA
15
Not right, sarcastically : YOUROTHERLEFT
21
Ginny's brother, in the Harry Potter books : RON
24
They may have images of Mozart and Cervantes : EUROS
25
Some University of Virginia undergrads in 1969, for the first time : COEDS
27
1972 top 10 hit that ran for 7+ minutes : LAYLA
28
Markers : CHITS
29
Garçon's offering : CARTE
30
Snail trail : SLIME
31
Rain forest menace : ANACONDA
32
Chase with a drink : WASHDOWN
33
Household brand famous for its infomercials : OXICLEAN
34
Austin Powers's car with a portmanteau name : SHAGUAR
37
Dad ___ : BOD
38
Rep. Waters of California : MAXINE
39
Set of priorities : AGENDA
40
Like AB negative among blood types : RAREST
42
Treated, in a way : DOSED
43
Might : SINEW
45
Time long ago : YORE
46
Units of wire thickness : MILS
48
"Who ___?" : DAT
50
Italian possessive : MIO

Answer summary: 7 unique to this puzzle, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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