This web browser is not supported. Use Chrome, Edge, Safari, or Firefox for best results.

Christina Iverson author page

14 puzzles by Christina Iverson
with Jim Horne comments

TotalDebutLatestCollabs
147/30/20197/10/202211
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
7231010
RebusCircleScrabblePOW
221.582
Christina Iverson

Christina Iverson of Ames, Iowa, is Patti Varol's assistant crossword editor at the Los Angeles Times.

Sun 7/10/2022 Movin' On Up
ROFLAWEDTREATTEMPT
OURSCALERASTAANAIS
STUDFARMSAZTECBRINK
ARILIMITSEEOOLONGS
OTHOURIAHREBRAND
BASPANICBADRIP
TEARSATEDAMBROUHAHA
ARTDECODENIMOCTAGON
DOORSTOPSOLEMNELOPE
SSNSNUGNATOCRONES
STURIBNOTHIS
CATNAPGARBOHHIWAS
ARIALSENIORSENDHELP
RESPECTTAXEDAURELIA
LATESHOWRITARAILCAR
ASHIRANIGHTFLO
EVILEYEGENUSTOMB
HASIDICAWLAMUSEEAU
OREOSOHGEEBARCRAWLS
SCALAUBERSINGACASE
ESSAYPORESTEEDEGAD

Jim here, sitting in for Jeff Chen who is ROFL.

Sunday NYT puzzles have titles. (With rare exceptions, other days do not.) Sometimes the title gives away the trick, and for that reason, many solvers avert their eyes. Today, I was able to guess the gimmick from the title alone. Fortunately, I guessed wrong, and the real trick is more fun than just shifting ON within a word. Here's how it works:

  • In the bottom half of the grid, common phrases have their terminal ONs expurgated.
  • Following Conservation laws, those ONs have to go somewhere. They float up to the ends of the answers immediately above.

These theme types work best when the modifications completely change the meaning of the base text, and that's where this puzzle shines. 3-Down transmogrifies BAT to BATON. That ON was stolen from SEASON in the answer below. Oh, Cap'n, 'TIS THE SEAS is the perfect answer to "Why art thou queasy?"

Entertaining themes only get you so far on a big Sunday crossword. You also need a sprinkling of outstanding clues.

  • "God whose name sounds like the ammunition he uses" is Eros (aka, Cupid) whose ammunition (!) is ARROWS. Do they sound the same? Very close!
  • "Takes a car, in a way." In a way gets us thinking that this must be either something about REPO or maybe GRAND THEFT AUTO. Wrong. When one UBERS, one takes a car. I love clues that I know I could never have thought up.

This is the second recent puzzle where a word got transformed into COUP. Perhaps the next one will run on January 6.

Fri 7/1/2022
ATTAATEFORTWO
FLOWNPOLARBEAR
LEDINROLLAGAIN
ORIGAMIILLPTA
UTENACHOSPOET
REFIGOATNOTRE
DOCENTSSOD
RIDESHOTGUN
CATTHRONES
PSALMHAHAKEPT
RATEBEGETSDRE
ALTSAGLAUGHIN
YOUGOGIRLMEETS
DONOTIRONMELEE
ONEPOTATOASPS
Sun 6/5/2022 Let's Get Literature
FUSESPACEBARBOASIS
AHOYMORELABITPLANK
COMESOUTOFONESSHELLEY
THEMOORSUTILEUNEASY
PARTIDOSAMEND
GOESTHROUGHHELLERFOG
AWOKEAIDELOLSCOWL
LIPDAMNMOMOAARLO
EELSTAKESALONGWALKER
SEALESWORDSERBSTY
LEOIWISPSSOBE
OOHGUNNTHATSNARCO
PLAYSTHEFIELDINGALPS
TIREAMISSBOOBETA
ENDATLENTTYLUSAIN
DELBREAKSTHELAWRENCE
YETISTWIXALAS
TVEXECSHOOTSTRAWHAT
GIVESAFAIRSHAKESPEARE
INERTRINKEVITAEVAN
FORTSODDSRENEWDEBT
POW Sun 3/13/2022 Body Language
NELYBROILMRTLEST
HEYEINONITOSHAALTO
LENTGANGESRIVERBLIP
ENINGNEATOPAYMENS
SIEGEHOWNAMING
MPHCREEPERSSONIC
ELISEISLAMWESBELOW
SUPPRESSEDFREESASH
ASTISELASLEWTSETSE
HOTROLLSTASHUTAHAN
SATEMERITAPAT
ABLAZEEAGERTHEBACK
DIETERGROWFIEFTEAM
MNEYOGISBUDDYHOLLY
TISNTPSASELIGINLET
OOZESCALLDESKISH
YOUWINAXLTRIED
PLUGLSDPOACHCROSS
ALTACHETONGUEEKWIIG
PERTHOLASIRREEEDDA
ABESTICODEONLEES

Christina Iverson was just named Patti Varol's assistant crossword editor at the Los Angeles Times.

Sun 12/26/2021 PEST CONTROL
ORDAINAPACHEIMIGHT
COULDAUSOTOURMOTHER
HORSEBACKRIDEROPPOSE
OMAHAPLSTIVOSRUSE
ATSEANORTHPOLE
REGRETTWIGYEAS
PREPATRAINGERMGEO
MITTPUBLICHOUSESOAP
SCHOOLTIESEWEBOOZE
INSETBRISKOBGYN
ARTTRUEFALSETESTLES
BOCCETRACTNICHE
ABHORIVEMAINTHEMES
COEDSPEARHEADEDDATA
ITDTEESENHALOGPAS
ANNASPASWRESTS
SOFTDRINKNANAS
PAIRLOOIETOPCANAL
ICLOUDWORKOUTTHEBUGS
CHEESEANTENNAAMENRA
SADDENNESSIEGETSAT

The clue for 16-Down seems to be an error. The Thriller lyric is "I can thrill you more than any GHOST could ever dare try." The word "ghouls" does occur later in the song, but in a different context. And no, the A TRAIN (43-Across) doesn't quite make it all the way to Kennedy Airport.

Mon 10/4/2021
ABBOTMONTECOB
SAUNABROOMLIE
LABORDAYWEEKEND
GASXROOKS
CAPESIAGO
PUSHTHEENVELOPE
ARTIEDALISPAM
CARDIGRESSENO
ETASBELTOWNIT
DELIVERYSERVICE
DOTSLEANS
CHILIGLEE
HERECOMESMYBABY
ARKENOLAEAGLE
PBSDEISTSHOTS
Sun 8/8/2021 JIGSAW PUZZLE
CRUSTPERMJANEGOOFS
TUSHYASIAODORADMEN
RECAPRAPSSOTSMISDO
PICKUPTHEPIECES
ARLENELEAPTOTTAWA
TEAGOOVERTHEEDGEREC
OPIEKIDSSEGOBATH
NORMARAEOLDBETSY
PLAYWITHMATCHES
PIGEONSRAITTELATION
ADORESEEDIERUPDOS
YOLOHOTBEDIRAALFA
FREEDOMOFASSEMBLY
SERENEPOSIES
BAMGETITTOGETHERPAR
ARIASTEARSINTOGNOME
LENDPARTIESDOWNEPIC
SWERVEALLPRO
AERIESPICTURENOSEIN
MOVEITPERFECTABORTS
NANNYMOMENTSSENSE
Sun 2/7/2021 TODDLER TALK
DOCKPOISEPSSTABIT
OPRAHASNERLASHTENS
UTILETAKEAWAYNECHECK
LIMERICKINAFLORAS
ANELEPHANTINTHEWOMB
SOYERASEBODEREK
SWEATWIGDOORSELI
HITWOKBOTTOMNODAWOL
ANNELOUSEWEAKADEPT
DEADHEATCASHSNORES
GETWITCHQUICK
PIVOTSEKESNCAAGAME
IVANVVIESPACERALOE
ZINEHOGTHEWHEELDEAL
ZENSACHAARMUSEBY
ADASTRASALSAOYL
WEEDBETWEENTHELINES
SCHWASLOLAIRALERT
WHISKEYBUSINESSBICEP
AUTOLEONLEVEEYUCCA
GMENLEWDLEASEMOTT
Tue 1/5/2021
POMNUBSGASPS
AMAONTOCOLLIE
PATSDOWNRESALE
ANCHOSUESOVER
HIGHCPADRES
DAWNSONIKEA
ASISRBIENDAT
FITJACKSUPICE
TASTEEARBEAR
ETTAWADESIN
CHASERSLATE
CHUCKSITDALAI
BIGHITWARDSOFF
GNOMESOLAYIRS
BASEDSEGOLOO
POW Mon 5/18/2020
BARDGASUSMAP
OHIOPROINHALE
BOOTCAMPDIALER
SYSCOHATTRICK
OWENMASK
THIMBLERIGOSLO
OEROMNISNIPED
GAUDYANNOLIVE
ATLASTGUACEEO
SHEDIRONMAIDEN
SWAYSYNC
DOGTIREDDELVE
AURORAMONOPOLY
TRIBESVWSOBOE
ESTESSEAPEGS
Tue 3/31/2020
ABBABASMAKEDO
DRABRIOEXITED
DISCGOLFNETTED
SEESAWAHSTAPS
UNOACHE
ROLLINGTHUNDER
BODEELLERHINO
ASIASOAMIENDS
LISPSORANEGOS
LETSTAKEITSLOW
EASELIL
GUACIRAMAITAI
ACTORSCLAPBACK
BLANCADOTICEE
SADDAYCUESODA
Wed 1/1/2020
OHFUNARTCLIP
LEAFSRAMAAONE
MAKOCLINICLOLA
ODESEAUCAVIAR
SSNKELPREVIEWS
PARISEDEN
JAMALTHEEBLOW
ICEITY2KWAIVE
FESSDIOSELVES
EVENPALER
FINDINGDORKALP
ALOHASADOSLOE
MULEENDOFSTORK
EVILREARRANDO
DUELASSOBESE
Sun 12/15/2019 DOING A DOUBLE TAKE
POBOYSNIPERSMADAM
OHARASHONOREELAMESA
PITCHYUPGRADEPITCHY
TOSSSASEDIPSSITH
OAFTHEGEMINIDRE
PROTEAMKARATPROTEAM
TREATPINELOGENTRY
RRATINGTROTSKY
STRIPLINGSTRIPLING
HUELETHSTTONROO
ENEWSROSEPETALELATE
LEVITESTHECWLEVITES
FRERESGEEWHIZNICEST
IMCOOLNOODLE
HIDENAMESAKESNUMB
MOUSSESOMANIMOUSSES
MUDTIRESOCALALGEBRA
EATOFLANDS
BOXERSPIRATICBOXERS
MAITRETRITONEAMELIA
ITSSADSEALEGSYESMOM
Tue 7/30/2019
SLOTAXISBASKS
TASEPITTDINAH
RUINRIGAMAROLE
IRENEISAYWED
PARISHPRIESTS
STOOLSAUTO
CABARMSFOXIER
STARTUPCAPITAL
IMBUESDENTSLY
SOYSPROTIP
BERNIESANDERS
FLUHOLAGINUP
ROMEOROMEODELA
AMPEDTOTODRED
TESLASNAPYORE