Thursday, June 25, 2009

NYT Thursday 6/25/09 - By The Numbers

Seneca RocksThis is an abbreviated form of my usual blog, as I'm on vacation with only occasional internet access. Yesterday we drove from Buckhannon, WV to Harrisonburg, VA, along the rollercoaster that is US-33 as it crosses the Allegheny Mountains.

We had fine views of the wittily named Seneca Rocks and I even saw my first black bear in the wild as it crossed the road in front of us. Now we're staying a couple of days in Staunton, VA, birthplace of Woodrow Wilson and home to his Presidential Library.
Solving time: 12 mins (solo, no solving aids)
Clue of the puzz: 6a spas {Places to press the flesh?}
Theme

The clue number forms part of five answers, the left arrows helping to point this out. (It is easier to make the theme work with down answers, because this allows more low numbers to be incorporated.)
3d three sheets to the wind {<--- Plastered}
5d five card stud {<--- Gambling game}
7d Seven Percent Solution {<--- Sherlock Holmes novel, with "The"}
20d twenty something {<--- One starting a career, perhaps}
40d forty hour week {<--- Work period}
Solution

Bill Zais
Grid art by Sympathy [about the grid colors]

Crucimetrics
CompilersBill Zais / Will Shortz
Grid15x15 with 40 (17.8%) black squares
Answers74 (average length 5.00)
Theme squares55 (29.7%)
Scrabble points284 (average 1.54)
Letters usedABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Other Clues

1a assoc. {Formal club: Abbr.}; 6a spas {Places to press the flesh?}; 10a rah-rahs {Spirited cries}; 13a pottery {Some arts and crafts}; 16a eye-drop {Red remover, maybe}; 17a rewards {Bonuses}; 18a tie {It's just a formality}; 19a do as I do {"Follow me"}; 21a cot {Motel extra}; 22a -ettes {Diminutive endings}; 24a Mom {Apple pie companion?}; 25a avers {States}; 27a Srta. {Sp. title}; 29a madmen {Psychos}; 31a outrun {Leave in the dust, say}; 33a ere {Long introduction?}; 34a Eton {English town near Windsor Bridge}; 37a Tso {General on a Chinese menu}; 38a diptych {Hinged pair of pictures}; 41a Ste {___-Foy, Que.}; 42a beta {Kind of blocker}; 44a Mah {Start of a Chinese game}; 45a co-host {Either of two emcees}; 47a Hawaii {Where "wikiwiki" means "to hurry"}; 49a Auel {"The Shelters of Stone" author}; 50a shear {Clip}; 52a NNE {Anchorage-to-Fairbanks dir.}; 54a re-ups {Signs on for another tour}; 57a tow {Result of an emergency call, maybe}; 58a outgrow {Get too big for}; 61a tri- {Prefix with -logy}; 62a epistle {Philemon, e.g.}; 64a Grecian {Like the Trojan horse}; 66a linseed {Oil source}; 67a step one {Starting instruction}; 68a ends {What circles lack}; 69a kinks {Garden hose problems}.

1d arête {Craggy crest}; 2d say it {"Tell me!"}; 4d ord {JFK : New York :: ___ : Chicago}; 6d sta {RR building}; 8d ardor {Heat}; 9d systs. {Methods: Abbr.}; 11d hoo {Part of a sob}; 12d spam {Rarely read letters}; 13d primary {Race before a race}; 14d OED {20-vol. work}; 15d two am {Wee hour}; 23d err {Drop the ball}; 26d vee {Migration formation?}; 28d anima {Inner self}; 30d Decca {Record label of Bill Haley and His Comets}; 31d OTB {Gambling site: Abbr.}; 32d use {Milk}; 35d OTs {What buzzer beaters may lead to, briefly}; 36d net {What you keep}; 39d painted {___ Desert}; 43d aaa {Like some baseball teams}; 46d hee {Tee follower}; 48d wrote {Penned}; 50d stele {Archaeological find}; 51d hop in {Cabbie's line}; 53d ergs {Parts of a joule}; 55d prank {Call that may result in an abrupt hang-up}; 56d sines {Math figures}; 59d -ule {Diminutive ending}; 60d ort {Crumb}; 63d sss {Snake's warning}; 65d CPI {Cost-of-living meas.}.

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