34D MAX (Mel Gibson's "mad" role) ----------------- Wednesday, December 12, 2007 Puzzle by Daniel Kantor, edited by Will Shortz AGOODDEAL (60A What 17-, 25-, 36- or 50-Across is); BLACKJACK (17A 21 in two cards); TWOFORONE (25A Happy hour offering, maybe); GOLDENPARACHUTE (36A C.E.O. protector); and BAJILLION (50A Huge amount , slangily) are the inter-related entries, or as some might say, THEMA (4A Discourse topic) of this Wednesday crossword. The topic is centered on an activity performed with the hands, a saloon special, a career guarantee, and a hyperbole for an infinitesimal number. Appropriately enough, there is a good deal of oft-seen crossword entries with clues constituting just one degree of separation. MAX (34D Mel Gibson’s “mad” role) in dead center astride the A in “golden parachute” is the best example -- relating to a maximum good deal, and giving it the most. The dwindling numbers are as follows: Eight letters: ITSOYOU (11D Dress shop compliment) and LEEJCOBB (38D Willy Loman player on Broadway). Seven letters: BENDERS (29A Drinking sprees); SPOTTER (46A Gymnast’s helper); CANDIDE (18D 1956 Bernstein operetta); OFFRAMP (22D Means of exit); RENTALS (30D Bowling shoes, often); and PHOTOID (35D Airport security request). Six letters: HOBNOB (1D Pal around [with]); ABLARE (2D Loud, like trumpets); DIALIN (3D Try to reach a talk show, say); ENACTS (6D Puts into effect); SHADOW (9D Follow secretly); ELAYNE (45D Comic Boosler); SNOOZE (46D Catch some Z’s); TINEAR (47D Musical inability); ESCAPE (48D Go over the wall, maybe); REALTY (Donald Trump’s field). Five letters: SKIED (9A Raced the Super G, say); SONAR (15A Underwater wave generator); HITME (16A Vegas request); ANSON (19A Williams of “Happy Days”); ORING (23A Circular seal); POISE (53A Runway asset); GOOEY (58A Like melted caramel); URBAN (62A Citified); HAZES (63A Initiates, in a cruel way); SABRE (65A Brit’s blade); SNELL (66A Fishhook attachment); MACAW (7D Brilliantly colored bird); KINER (10D Seven-time N.L. home run champ); IHEAR (51D Rumormonger’s start); and ORGAN (52D Item with pedals). Four letters: NALA, ODES, POUR, IDEE, CHAS , INCA, HOJO, GERE, OVER, NAUT, EYRE, GIBB, ODEA, PERI, COOP, and NOEL. Three letters: HAD, OBI, OCA, VFW, YAY, IRE, MER, TEX, MOO, BEE, EAR, RON, APT, REY, TSK, ARK, EMO, DEN, MAX , GUS, ORA, AHS, and DSL. The amount of retread entries and speedy clues? The max for the solver! ----------------- For today’s cartoons, go to The Crossword Puzzle Illustrated. The New York Times Crossword Puzzle solution above is by the author of this blog and does not guarantee accuracy. If you find errors or omissions, you are more than welcome to make note of same in the Comments section of this post -- any corrections found necessary will be executed promptly upon verification. Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES -- Crossword Puzzles and Games
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Across: 1. Snookered; 14. Butterfly ___ (sash); 20. “The Lion King” queen; 21. Andean tuber; 22. Sapphic works; 31. Ex-G.I.’s grp.; 32. “Hurrah!”; 33. Dander; 34. Fruits de ___ (seafood); 35. Use a ewer; ___ fixe; 42. Ranch moniker; 43. Ranch call; 44. Annual Scripps event; 45. Drum site; 54. Cartoonist Addams; 55. ___ Kovic, role for Tom Cruise; 57. Machu Picchu dweller; 64. Quick to learn; 67. Carlos or Felipe.
Down: 4. Sound uttered while shaking the head; 5. “28 Flavors” chain, for short; 8. Neighbor of Mo.; 12. Funny Philips; 13. Iniquity site; 24. “Primal Fear” star, 1996; 26. Recovered from; 27. Suffix with aqua; 28. Bronte heroine; 34. Mel Gibson’s “mad” role; 36. Bee Gees’ surname; 37. Concert halls; 39. Gilpin of “Frasier”; 40. Place to brood; 56. December air; 58. Gloomy guy?; 59. “… ___ mouse?”; 60. Starts of sneezes; 61. Fast www link.