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New York Times, Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Author: Dan Schoenholz
Editor: Will Shortz
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Dan Schoenholz

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 76, Blocks: 34 Missing: {FQVXZ} Spans: 2 This is puzzle # 14 for Mr. Schoenholz. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Dan Schoenholz notes: After noticing the contents of AN(GER MAN)AGEMENT, I made several iterations of a puzzle containing different European ... more
Dan Schoenholz notes: After noticing the contents of AN(GER MAN)AGEMENT, I made several iterations of a puzzle containing different European nationalities (LA(SER B)EAM, LAI(D AN E)GG, etc.), but I couldn't come up with a revealer that was clever enough to tie it all together. I set the puzzle aside for awhile, and when I revisited it months later, the whole LANGUAGE BARRIER angle just jumped out at me. It was the construction equivalent of putting down a tough Friday or Saturday puzzle, then picking it up again after a break and immediately cracking it.

I personally like solving "container" puzzles and being made aware of words hidden inside familiar phrases — I hope others get the same type of enjoyment from this one.

Will Shortz notes: I debated for a long time whether or not to highlight the four hidden language names in this puzzle's grid ... but ultimately ... more
Will Shortz notes: I debated for a long time whether or not to highlight the four hidden language names in this puzzle's grid ... but ultimately decided it would be more enjoyable if solvers had to find the hidden names themselves. Hope I'm right!
Jeff Chen notes: Nice 'hidden words' theme today, one I didn't see coming. I liked how each language runs across two words, breaking the LANGUAGE ... more
Jeff Chen notes: Nice "hidden words" theme today, one I didn't see coming. I liked how each language runs across two words, breaking the LANGUAGE BARRIER in a way. Juicy theme phrases too, ALL ATINGLE and THE BREWERS both ones that you don't see very often in crosswords. Will's comment was interesting to me — it took me long enough to figure out what the languages were, that I decided to highlight them below. I liked having to search them out, especially given that this is a Wednesday puzzle. Adds body to the solving experience.

Big, open corners give so much potential for long fill. Man oh man did I love uncovering BUG JUICE; what a beautiful entry. Same with I RESIGN. But filling a corner like that is a themeless-esque challenge, always calling for balancing snazz vs. cleanliness. Was BUG JUICE and I RESIGN worth the price of CEN, EPT (EPT is such an inept word)? Not sure. I bet Dan debated whether or not to break up BUG JUICE and go from 76 to 78 words in his puzzle.

The NW and SE corners were a much clearer case for me. I love getting ECLAIRS and YES WE DO as bonus material, and it comes at only the cost of ROS Asquith, who I know from children's lit but most people will not. Even if you don't know her though, the crossings are all fair. You might not even notice the ROS entry as you fill in the crossing words — such a minor little entry. Thumbs up on the decision to keep those two corners wide-open with long fill.

Finally, there was a clue/answer pair that took me ages to figure out. I stared at [They know beans] for the longest time, even having ?OYA in place. SOYA, perhaps? I ended up guessing (MTG feels like a weird abbreviation for "meeting") and scratched my head. Why would Francisco GOYA, the Spanish painter, know beans? Ah. It's the food company GOYA, a big supplier of beans. Clever!

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© 2014, The New York TimesNo. 0813 ( 23,654 )
Across Down
1. Eurasian plain : STEPPE
7. Sugary punch, slangily : BUGJUICE
15. Like McJobs : MENIAL
16. Worker's advocate, in brief : UNIONREP
17. Class for the hotheaded : ANGERMANAGEMENT
19. Deliver by wagon, say : CARTIN
20. Storage buildings with elevators : SILOS
21. H.R.H. part : HER
22. ___-a-brac : BRIC
24. Cirrus cloud formation : WISP
27. "... ___ can't get up!" : ANDI
29. Covered with goose bumps : ALLATINGLE
33. Cardiologist's insert : STENT
35. One with a habit : USER
36. Partner of then : NOW
37. Result of a buzz cut : SHORTHAIR
41. ___ rule : MOB
44. Veterinary school subj. : ANAT
45. "I'm outta here!" : SEEYA
49. Miller Park crew : THEBREWERS
53. Tended to, as a strain : ICED
54. They know beans : GOYA
55. Loser to paper : ROCK
57. Something to trip on : LSD
58. ___ year (annually) : ONCEA
62. NBC anchor before Williams : BROKAW
64. Foreigner's obstacle ... or a hint to hidden words in 17-, 29-, 37- and 49-Across : LANGUAGEBARRIER
68. Transpired : OCCURRED
69. Nutbag : WEIRDO
70. Diving board locales : DEEPENDS
71. Ropes in : LASSOS
1. Diminutive, in Dundee : SMA
2. Like variety stores of old : TENCENT
3. Fighting words, of sorts : ENGARDE
4. Fishing place : PIER
5. Medicare component : PARTB
6. Twain's New York burial place : ELMIRA
7. Brat holder : BUN
8. Señora's "some" : UNAS
9. Caron title role of 1958 : GIGI
10. Billy a.k.a. the Piano Man : JOEL
11. Like golf course roughs, typically : UNMOWN
12. Work stoppage declaration? : IRESIGN
13. 2000s, e.g.: Abbr. : CEN
14. Competent, facetiously : EPT
18. Indigo source : ANIL
21. Is down with : HAS
23. Desktop problem : CLUTTER
25. ___ Poke (classic candy) : SLO
26. Seat for a service : PEW
28. Good folks to know : INS
30. Volcanic spew : ASH
31. White-glove affair : TEA
32. Body part used in some recognition systems : IRIS
34. Seafarer's adverb : THAR
38. Exclamation point's key-mate : ONE
39. Lacking polish : RAW
40. Big name in outdoor gear : REI
41. Get-together: Abbr. : MTG
42. "Well, well!" : OHO
43. Music star with an accent in her name : BEYONCE
46. Oblong pastries : ECLAIRS
47. "You take credit cards?" response : YESWEDO
48. Interpose : ADD
50. Excellent, as a job : BANGUP
51. L.B.J. in-law : ROBB
52. Doctor's penmanship, stereotypically : SCRAWL
56. Home to Samsung : KOREA
59. Smoke or salt : CURE
60. Bring in : EARN
61. Kept in the cellar, maybe : AGED
63. Jenner of reality TV : KRIS
64. Israeli air hub locale : LOD
65. Big club? : ACE
66. Times V.I.P.'s : EDS
67. Children's author Asquith : ROS

Answer summary: 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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