05.22.09 -- Too Much Information

May 22, 2009
Puzzle by Manny Nosowsky, edited by Will Shortz
I CAN’T SAY AS I HAVE (33A. “Not in my experience), IT’S A LULU (41A. “Wait’ll you see this!”), NOW WHAT (16A. Cry upon reaching an impasse) and SO AS TO (28A. Such that one might) are four prime examples of choose-a-phrase-for-the-entry clues that are so delightfully irritating in crossword puzzles.
PANHELLENIC (24D. Of fraternities and sororities collectively) and PILTDOWN MAN (4D. Its teeth were actually a chimpanzee’s) are informationally welcome. SIXTY-NINE (20D. Cardinal that looks the same when viewed upside down) is initially mystifying and possesses a twinge of humor. TENOR SAX (25A. Ravel’s “Bolero” calls for one) is a wide-open clue with a who-would-know hard-fact answer -- just choose some instrument from the full orchestra for “Bolero” -- HERE.
This mean little crossword sports a half-dozen more eight-letter entries --
ARMOIRES (35D. Bedroom furniture); COAL MINE (34D. Where pit stops are made to get fuel?); IN DETAIL (33D. Blow-by-blow); MAZELTOV (13D. Literally, “good luck”); RHODESIA (12D. It was NE of Bechuanaland); STAGE ONE (14D. Initial part).
Lurking in its' exhausting corners are a dozen or so entries of seven letters -- AIR MILE (53A. Frequent flier’s credit); E-TAILED (15A. Accepted PayPal payments, e.g.); EYE CARE (59A. It might improve your focus);
HARPER’S (1A. Magazine since 1850); INERTIA (56A. Sluggard’s problem); INFORMS (8A. Enlightens); LESS TAR (58A. Selling point for some lights); O CANADA (55A. It’s heard before many a face-off); PHILEAS (17A. Verne’s Fogg), yesterday we had BOMBAY clued as city visited in “Around the World in 80 Days“ (that‘s a link to the trailer for the film with David Niven as Phileas Fogg); RELINES (57A. Makes warmer maybe, as boots); SPINOZA (18A. Lens-grinding Dutch philosopher).
Continuing throughout this challenging crossword, there are another dozen-plus entries of six letters --
AMEBAE (51A. Real low life?); AT HOME (2D. In familiar territory); CO-STAR (19A. Bill sharer); DAMAGE (39A. Crack, e.g.); ET ALIA (40D. Stand-in for unnamed others); HEPCAT (1D. Old swing digger); INSIDE (38A. Private); LOADER (43D. Construction machine); NO PETS (9D. Apartment restriction); 3D. RAISIN bread; UNEASE (44D. Distress); URBANA (42D. It has a twin city in the Midwest); WEALTH (30A. Assets).
The usually rampant five-letter entries are sparse today --
DALAI (23D. Ocean, in Mongolian); HASTY (31D. Precipitate); INSTR (8D. Music producer: Abbr.); NORMA (37A. Celestial neighbor of Scorpius); 47D. O DEAR Cassio!”: Othello; OUIDA (29D. “Under Two Flags” novelist, 1867); RETAG (26D. Change the price on); UNION (32A. It may be striking).
Finally, there’s a somewhat short list of short stuff -- ACEY-deucy, AMID, DEG, DIRT, ELEA, ELON and LRON, FWIW (10D. E-mail disclaimer), MADE and MALE, MITT, MRS, OWN, ORE, PELE, REAR,
SAS and SIS, SDS, STEW (20A. Stay up nights, say), TONY, and…
TMI (49A. “I didn’t need to know all that!,” informally).
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Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES -- Crossword Puzzles and Games
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Remaining clues -- 21. Acad. Goal; 22. Within; 23. Scandalmonger’s love; 24. Goal-oriented superstar?; 45. Its sports teams are called the Phoenix; 46. Accolade for a great play; 48. Hubbard of science fiction; 50. Whipped up. Down: 5. Home of Parmenides; 6. Can; 7. Port Huron Statement grp.; 11. Consistently defeat, in slang; 27. World’s first carrier with a transpolar route; 36. Provider or wearer of some hand-me-downs; 50. Paw; 52. Like some electrical plugs; 54. Questionnaire check box option; 55. 100ths of a krona.

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