Saturday, December 5, 2009

NYT Sunday 12/6/09 - In My End Is My Beginning

We're currently experiencing serious problems with our internet service: its up-time is significantly less than its down-time, and I'm not going to attempt the usual commentary until the issue is fixed. In the meantime, here is just the solution and theme of the Sunday New York Times crossword for you.
Solving time: 34 mins (with Magdalen, no solving aids)
Clue of the puzz: 12d class clowns {School cards}
Solution

Patrick Berry
Grid art by Sympathy [about the grid colors]

Theme

"Double break point". The last letter of the first word in a two-part phrase is copied to the start of the second word, making a pun.
20a changing grooms {Deciding the best man is better, perhaps?}
25a sports scar {Memento of an old athletic injury?}
32a assault trifles {Nitpicks?}
52a new wager {Double or nothing, say?}
60a troop pleaders {Begging soldiers?}
67a lab brats {Young scientists who are impossible to work with?}
81a carpenter rants {Things heard after thumbs are hit with hammers?}
93a atomic cage {Holder of pet electrons, protons and neutrons?}
100a mixed demotions {Reductions in rank that aren't entirely bad?}
Crucimetrics
Compilers
Patrick Berry / Will Shortz
Grid
21x21 with 72 (16.3%) black squares
Answers
134 (average length 5.51)
Theme squares
105 (28.5%)
Scrabble points
558 (average 1.51)
Letters used
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Other Clues

1a scaled {Like mountains and maps}; 7a Gimli {"The Lord of the Rings" dwarf}; 12a Cobra {Attack helicopter}; 17a Carnera {1930s heavyweight champ known as the Ambling Alp}; 18a eat out {Choose not to cook, say}; 19a blares {Plays at maximum volume}; 22a latent {As yet unactualized}; 23a Canaan {Where Caleb was sent as a spy}; 24a ern {Seaside bird}; 27a Prell {Suave competitor}; 28a steel {Many a shipment to Detroit}; 30a pass {Air play?}; 31a HMO {Med. care provider}; 36a cites {Uses as a source}; 38a gray {Like a foreboding sky}; 39a bran {What white flour lacks}; 40a PLO {West Bank grp.}; 41a stately {Majestic}; 45a tweed {Professorial material?}; 47a footer {Bottom line?}; 50a piles {Sorters' formations}; 51a Gehry {Architect of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao}; 54a I'm in {Gambler's declaration}; 55a Gloria {Hymn starter}; 57a woven {Like many rugs}; 58a Ode {Keats's "___ on Indolence"}; 59a Reb {Pickett's Charge participant}; 62a TWA {Co. of which Howard Hughes became the principal shareholder in 1939}; 63a à la {___ rigueur (literally)}; 64a heads {Call before a football game}; 65a maters {Manchester moms}; 66a grip {Handle}; 69a lists {Tips}; 70a Seine {View from the Quai d'Orsay}; 71a Gareth {Sir ___, nephew of King Arthur}; 72a bones {X-ray view}; 73a whelped {Gave birth to a litter}; 75a yes {Triumphant cry}; 76a prod {Kick in the rear, maybe}; 77a veep {Senate tie breaker}; 78a Ghana {Country whose name means "warrior king"}; 87a rot {Languish}; 88a main {Water carrier}; 90a Deere {Maker of "the plow that broke the Plains"}; 91a Rahab {Prostitute who protected Israelite spies, in Joshua}; 97a end {Windup}; 98a patria {Pro ___ (for one's country)}; 99a manage {Get by somehow}; 103a pianos {Key holders}; 104a aspens {Spectacular autumn trees}; 105a elevate {Up}; 106a Arles {Setting of Van Gogh's "Cafe Terrace at Night"}; 107a short {Shy}; 108a resets {Adjusts for daylight saving, e.g.}.

1d Sahara {Large hot spot}; 2d cranes {Heavy lifters}; 3d annals {Archival material}; 4d legal ages {They're set for drinking and smoking}; 5d Erin {John-Boy Walton's sister}; 6d Dan {Brown who wrote "The Lost Symbol"}; 7d garner {Earn}; 8d Ito {Skater Midori}; 9d moos {Farmyard chorus}; 10d lump {Mattress problem}; 11d it's open! {"Come on in!"}; 12d class clowns {School cards}; 13d oats {Muesli ingredients}; 14d Brecht {"Mother Courage and Her Children" playwright}; 15d rename {Call again?}; 16d Astros {Minute Maid Park players}; 17d CCCP {Letters on old rubles}; 18d egret {Great white ___}; 19d BLTs {Lunch orders that are typically sliced in half}; 21d Getty {Los Angeles museum, with "the"}; 26d RAs {Coll. dorm overseers}; 28d slay {Off}; 29d liberal-minded {Tolerant of other opinions}; 33d URL {It might have an extension: Abbr.}; 34d Frey {James who wrote "A Million Little Pieces"}; 35d lad {Boyo}; 37d iota {Trace}; 40d powers {Superheroes have them}; 41d spiral {Galaxy shape}; 42d time-lag {Delay}; 43d Ali Baba {"Arabian Nights" opener?}; 44d ten {Olympics ideal}; 45d Terps {Competitors of Wahoos and Tar Heels}; 46d whip {It's most useful when it's cracked}; 47d fever {Peggy Lee's signature song}; 48d ego trip {Vanity case?}; 49d red wine {Médoc, for one}; 51d goods {Stock in trade}; 52d nodes {Stem joints}; 53d reaped {Brought in}; 55d greats {Hall-of-Famers}; 56d loath {Reluctant}; 57d Watts {South Los Angeles district}; 60d Three Amigos {1986 film featuring Chevy Chase as Dusty Bottoms}; 61d ease {Affluence}; 66d gel {Cream alternative}; 68d Bryn {___ Mawr College}; 69d loop {Ankh's top}; 70d separates {Becomes layered while settling}; 72d brr {Shaker's sound}; 73d we're {"___ here!"}; 74d Her {"Away From ___" (Julie Christie film)}; 76d Panamas {Headwear also known as jipijapas}; 77d Verde {Colorado's Mesa ___}; 78d grampa {Rocking chair storyteller}; 79d hot-air {Empty words}; 80d atonal {Keyless}; 81d CIC {Pres. title}; 82d needn't {"You ___ bother"}; 83d tends {Looks after}; 84d native {Best guide around town, probably}; 85d throat {Dewlap's place}; 86d saints {They're all good}; 89d aces {Bullets, in Texas hold'em}; 92d base {Dishonorable}; 94d mane {Horsehair source}; 95d Gish {"Intolerance" actress Lillian}; 96d expo {Fair}; 98d pole {Subway car feature}; 101d -eer {Suffix with slogan}; 102d Mer {France's Belle-Île-en-___}.

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