----------------- Wednesday, March 25, 2009 Puzzle by Jerry E. Rosman, edited by Will Shortz Fun puzzle! Four interrelated across entries actually help with the solution of this crossword! CATCHES GLITCHES (17. Debugs computer programs, e.g.); SCRATCHES ITCHES (24. Responds to rashes); PATCHES BRITCHES (41. Does some mending); MATCHES STITCHES (54. Lines up the sewing). Once one gets a couple of the TCHES, other TCHES follow easy! Alas, no LATCHES SNITCHES (Incarcerates informers)... ARISTA (40A. Record label owned by Sony) and ARTISTA (36D. Da Vinci or Michelangelo, to Romans), JETSET (9D. Glitterati) and JESSE (9A. Heartbreaker who’s “back in town” in a 1980 Carly Simon hit), AIM HIGH (40D. Set a lofty goal) and HIGHLY (43D. To a great degree), ETCETC (10D. Blah, blah, blah, for short) add to the puzzle’s pleasant repetitiveness. Other entries of length include 21A. San ANSELMO, Marin County and ANTIGUA (47A. One of the Leeward Islands), IN SEASON (35D. What oysters “R” during “R” months); O NEGATIVE (58A. Blood type historically considered the universal donor) and OPEN WEAVE (14A. Feature of mesh fabrics), 8D. Ethiopia’s Haile SELASSIE and WHARTON (15D. Prestigious business school). Mid-size entries -- 36A. “What ADRAG“ (“Ho-hum“); ATOLL (57A. Coral creation); CASBAH (6D. Quarter of Algiers); CHICLE (42D. Raw material for Wrigley‘s, once); COCOA (25D. Tiramisu topper); DOPEY (59A. Only beardless Disney dwarf); ELATE (29D. Give a lift); ESTAB (27D. Business sign abbr.); ETATS (16A. The Carolinas, e.g., to the French); HARSH (28D. Like Siberian winters); INUIT (18D. Umiak passenger); REELECT (5D. Return to one‘s seat?); REVUE (39D. Florenz Ziegfeld offering); ROOST (26D. Place to rule); ROUTES (44D. MapQuest offerings); SAGAS (30D. Long tales); STUMP (24D. Speech spot); TOOHOT (31A. Like Papa Bear‘s porridge); UCONN (34A. Nutmeg State sch.). Short stuff -- ALA, ALB and ALS, AMAD and ASEA, AVG, BAHN, BOCA, BOLE, BREA, DICT, ENC, ESSO, HIVE, ITE, LETS, MOS, NASA and NATO, NOSH, OMIT, OPAL, RCAS, REVS, RNA, SAHL, SHIA, SIT, SNO, SRA, STEM, SUET, TTOP and UHS (50A. Hesitant sounds)…. Uh?!…and then there’s The Sneetches!
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Remaining clues -- Across: 1. Tree trunk; 5. Some HDTVs; 19. Two of racing‘s Unsers; 20. Neighbor of B.C.; 22. La ___ Tar Pits; 23. Bird feeder fill; 32. Collect splinters, so to speak; 33. Tuskegee‘s locale: Abbr.; 35. Ore suffix; 38. Rap sheet entries, for short; 39. Messenger ___; 45. Cellular construction; 46. Overlook; 50. Hesitant sounds; 51. Mexicali Mrs.; 60. Have a knish, say; 61. Orbiting telescope launcher. Down: 1. Florida city, for short; 2. Australian gem; 3. “Sure, why not?!”; 4. Business letter abbr.; 7. Batter’s fig.; 11. Satirist Mort; 12. Skier’s turn; 13. Gas brand in Canada; 22. Road, in the Rheinland; 37. Wordsmith’s ref.; 47. Make ___ dash; 48. Brussels-based alliance; 49. “Vette roof option; 51. Islamic sect; 52. Amps up; 53. On the main; 55. ___ -Cat (winter vehicle); 56. Doz. eggs, commonly.