I pulled out 48A Sniffed (around): NOSED because I had originally and for a long time had CASED there instead. Why wasn’t it CASED? Other than that because it was NOSED. I get the nosed-sniffed link, but meh. That slowed me down a whole bunch.
20A Basic, practical details: NUTSANDBOLTS. 34A What expensive things cost: ANARMANDALEG. 42A Magnet for criticism: LIGHTNINGROD.
58A Doctor whose shopping list might include 20-, 34- and 42-Across?: FRANKENSTEIN. Right before the world shut down, Calah and I saw a version of Frankenstein at The Wallis in Beverly Hills. This version of Frankenstein was done by Four Larks. It was unexpected in its level of interpretation and executed exactly as intended.
I pulled out 22A Dead even: ALLTIEDUP because right now the Dodgers are up by two after one inning, and all tied up would be the best case outcome of tomorrow’s game. Now I’m back to this post, and Dodgers are down 5-2 at the Seventh Inning Stretch. Ridiculous.
19A *Children’s book whose title character says “If I can fool a bug, I can surely fool a man. People are not as smart as bugs”: CHARLOTTESWEB. 6D *Chain known for its soft pretzels: AUNTIEANNES. 25D *Prominent left-leaning political action committee: EMILYSLIST.
28D Literary trio found in the answers to this puzzle’s starred clues: THEBRONTES. Charlotte Bronte, Anne Bronte, and Emily Bronte.
I pulled out 35D Most common answer in New York Times crosswords (more than 6% of all puzzles): ERA because I was convinced that the answer was ETA, even 42A Info for an airport limo driver: ETA was an answer already. I’ve felt it’s just the amount of sloppiness to expect from the NYTXW. But it turned out to be ERA instead. It robbed me of about a minute, but I’m kinda relieved that it wasn’t a duplicate answer.
17A Game that has only a single round: RUSSIANROULETTE. 23A Single item seemingly always found at the bottom of a McDonald’s bag: FRENCHFRY. 49A Entrance divided in half horizontally: DUTCHDOOR. 58A Board game played on a big hexagram: CHINESECHECKERS. SETTLERSOFCATAN also fits. Terrible game, though.
37A Portmanteau coinage describing this puzzle’s theme: ALLITERNATION. I now understand the theme. It’s alliteration with names of countries. Not terrible.
I pulled out 39D Toque: CHEFSHAT because I learned a while ago that a toque is what Canadians call a beanie. How did I learn that? Well, it was in an episode of Nathan for You. I looked it up back then and saw that here it’s a chef’s hat.
Kind of a sad theme in today’s puzzle.
17A Classic work with chapters titled “Attack by Stratagem” and “Maneuvering an Army”: THEARTOFWAR -> T[HEART]OFWAR. 24A Signature Phil Collins hit ranked among VH1’s “100 Greatest Songs of the 80s”: INTHEAIRTONIGHT -> INT[HEA]I[RT]ONIGHT.
38A Changes political affiliation: SWITCHESPARTIES -> SWITC[HE]SP[ART]IES. 48A Flee to remote safety: HEADFORTHEHILLS -> [HEA]DFO[RT]HEHILLS.
60A Despondent … as progressively suggested by 17-, 24-, 38- and 48-Across?: HEARTBROKEN. Though I had initially put BROKENHEART, it became evident quickly that it was not in that order.
Since I am off today due to the holiday of Shmini Atzeret, here’s the puzzle I missed from last week due to the first day of the holiday of Sukkot.
I pulled out 51D How many people get around town: INACAB because that’s such a stereotypical New York answer. Even in New York, though, do people still take cabs? I mean didn’t the price of New York taxi medallions plummet because everyone takes Lyft or Uber or Via over there? Michael Cohen made that claim many times.
And on the topic of lawyers or former lawyers or whatever, it’s time for the theme!
17A Advocate for U2’s frontman?: PROBONOATTORNEY. Maybe the rest of the attorneys were hired by bandmate The Edge as he attempted to destroy part of California. You know, because the band cares about the environment and poverty and whatever. Suck it, The Edge. And, for that matter, Bono. Try making a song that doesn’t sound like every other one of your songs. Jeez. 27A Swing of a bowler’s arm?: MOVETOSTRIKE. I took bowling class in college. My best score ever was 182 or 186. Maybe 184. I still have my bowling shoes. They have flames that glow in UV light, so you know they go fast. 49A A little tied up at the moment?: MOTIONDENIED. It had looked real bad for a while with the whole Sweetwater Mesa thing, but then he was the one who was denied. In your FACE, The Edge. 65A Attire for gym period?: CLASSACTIONSUIT. It’s like that time there was the class action lawsuit against Red Bull because no one actually got wings. I got money because I was part of the class. Probably better than wings. I distinctly remember buying three cans of Red Bull in college during finals week for my friend Mitchell. The total came to $6.66. I received no wings.
I pulled out 63A Readers of mss.: EDS because I didn’t know what this clue meant. Now I know, and it’s dumb and I hate it. Mms. meaning manuscripts. And who reads manuscripts? Editors! What a clue. Good going, Christopher Adams! Way better than Helms and Asner.
15A “Everlasting” candy from Willy Wonka: GOBSTOPPER. 22A Teeny-tiny futuristic machines: NANOBOTS. Really? 46A Tale of woe: SOBSTORY. 9D Orchestra once conducted by John Williams: BOSTONPOPS. 13D Some vaccine shots: BOOSTERS. The dream at the moment. 26D Places to sign in in inns: GUESTBOOK. What do they do with the guestbooks when they’re full? 32D “Peter Pan” group: LOSTBOYS.
57A 2013 Best Musical Tony winner … with a hint to this puzzle’s theme: KINKYBOOTS. Because BOOTS is jumbled up in the other clues.
I pulled out 6A Features of Sophocles plays: ODES because I hadn’t realized until I got the blue Congratulations! box that I’d done today’s puzzle from 2010. But it proves that for more than a decade ODES has been a go-to answer in the New York Times Crossword Puzzle.
17A In consecutive order: SEQUENTIAL -> (S)(E)QUENTI(A)(L) -> SEAL. 25A Just barely legit: BORDERLINE -> (B)(O)RDERLI(N)(E) -> BONE. 36A What a slow person may need: HEADSTART -> (H)(E)ADSTA(R)(T) -> HEART. 50A Slip-up: MINORERROR -> (M)(I)NORE(R)(R)(O)(R) -> MIRROR.
59A Fragile articles … or a hint to the things named by the circled letters: BREAKABLES.
Break a seal, break a bone, break a heart, break a mirror.
It’s the first day of Rosh Hashanah. Rather than entirely miss out on a puzzle, here’s one from today’s date in 2010. Why 2010? Because the days match up.
I pulled out 1D Very, very soft, in music: PPP because 11 years ago was a simpler time. PPP just meant pianississimo and not the Paycheck Protection Program. We were out of the Great Recession by September 2010. I was just about to start my final year in college. I had finished an internship at Gigapix Studios, which later fell due to the FBI’s allegations of fraud. What a time it was to be alive.
The theme of this puzzle was on of those add-to-the-word to make it a pun that actually works. I repeat: What a time to be alive.
20A Meat slice on the highest shelf?: ACUTLETABOVE. It’s a cut above but a cutlet. It works. 27A Advertising sheet blowing in the wind?: LOOSELEAFLET. Loose leaf paper does blow in the wind, and an advertisement sheet is a leaflet. 52A Dribble from an icicle?: EAVESDROPLET. This one is kind of a stretch because eavesdropping doesn’t have to do with dribbling. But 2/3 ain’t bad. Refreshing change from the 0-for-at-least-August and September of this year.
I pulled out 2D Grassy South American plain: LLANO because that’s a word that I had missed time after time in the NYT Spelling Bee. Finally I learned it and find it almost routinely. Solving this clue was super easy for me, and I’m very proud of that.
This puzzle was another of those bad-pun theme ones. I use the term pun loosely because puns can work both ways. These really couldn’t.
18A Good snack for a pilot?: WINGNUTS. Wingnuts are a terrible snack for anyone. I mean I get that nus can be on a plane, and wins are on a plane, but wingnuts are not food.
24A Good snack for a gangster?: TOUGHCOOKIES. Tough cookies may be a great snack for a teething child. I mean if frozen minibagels are good for teething children, tough cookies should be fine. But for a gangster? Lame. 39A Good snack for a flea market dealer?: BARGAININGCHIPS. We all know about bargaining at flea markets, but if they’re going with flea market, why not make a flea joke? And if they’re not going to make a flea joke, why not just opt for used car lot? And bargaining chips aren’t meant for eating! Then you can’t use them! 51A Good snack for an arsonist?: FIRECRACKERS. Also not food! Hot Tamales would have been way better because it would have made sense.
Or Flamin’ Hot Cheetos
Firecrackers are not food.
62A Good snack for an optometrist?: EYECANDY. Shame on you, Eric Bornstein. Let’s get Eric Baird in there instead.
I pulled out 6A Wry reply to “How’d you do that?”: MAGIC because it’s a thing I say to Calah all the time. Or I say that I’ve got the magic touch. The difference is that that frequently is the case. At her mother’s wedding Sunday night I pulled my keys, sunglasses, and wallet out of the cloth napkin that had been on the table. Magic!
17A *Miniaturized reference: POCKETATLAS. 60A *Iconic photograph taken by Voyager 1 at the request of Carl Sagan: PALEBLUEDOT. Really, I didn’t expect to be as awed by the photo as I am.
And then there’s a new one!
23D *Facility where things are always looking up?: PLANETARIUM, a word I have difficulty reading with the T pronounced.
11D *Computer program that blurs out military installations: GOOGLEEARTH.
32A With 39- and 44-Across, promise that Aladdin sings to Jasmine (and a hint to the answers to the starred clues): ICANSHOW YOU THEWORLD.