------------------ Wednesday, June 10, 2009 Puzzle by Richard Silvestri, edited by Will Shortz Four billion, four hundred twenty million results are had on Google for the number 44. This crossword presents us with four, all referenced to FORTY FOUR (55A. See 18-, 23-, 35- and 49-Across) -- RUTHENIUM (18A. Element number 55-Across); HANK AARON (23A. Atlanta Brave who wore the number 55-Across); BARACK OBAMA (35A. President number 55-Across); SUPERBOWL (49A. Feb. 7, 2010, the date of this event’s number 55-Across). I assume the next crossword of this genre will clue FIFTY FIVE under clue #44. Twenty-three skidoo! BACTERIA and the CHINA SEA (35D. Study of Louis Pasteur and 11D. Sight from Taiwan) are the only eight-letter entries, followed by a half dozen of seven -- CAUTION (12D. Admonishment); GUANACO (40A. Cousin of a camel); ONE MORE (39D. Bar request); PASSAGE (21D. Music section); REBATES (29D. Sale sweeteners); ROSEATE (30A. Promising). Six-letter entries -- AWNING (46D. Deck cover); BORMAN (45D. Apollo astronaut Frank); ENCODE (41A. Turn “this” into “__ … .. ..,” e.g.); GLADES (47D. Forest clearings); MANILA (10D. Capital founded by Spanish invaders, 1571); ORATED (42D. Held the floor); REASON (29A. Justification); SLIGHT (1D. Snub); TEABAG (44A. Earl Grey holder); TINEAR (2D. Musical liability); TREATS (28A. Halloween candy); UNDONE (3D. Brought to ruin). Five -- ERROR (6D. Calculator message); HUMID (57A. Steamy); INANE (61A. Senseless); INDEX (17A. Encyclopedia volume); LINEA (14A. Top of some forms); OFTEN (8D. A lot); PERES (51D. Shimon of Israel); SEOUL (49D. 1988 Olympics host); SLAIN (26A. Done in); TAURO (7D. Bullish beginning?); TETRA (48A. Prefix with -hedron); TONGS (64A. Fireplace tool); UVULA (50D. Palate part). Short STUFF (1A. This and that) -- ACER, AKA, AHAB, ALAS, ATOR, BET, BOA, DALY, DEAD, ECU, ELSE, ENE, ERIE, ETON, EVES, FAX, FEE, FRA, GEO, HIT, IBM, KARA, LINT, MCCI, MEAL, MOAB, NNE, NTH, PORE, RAFT, RNA, RULE, TON, UNO. Plus 44 - "No It Isn't"
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Remaining clues -- Across: 6. Locale of famous playing fields; 10. Start of the 13th century; 15. Whole lot; 16. Obsessed mariner; 20. Bygone compact; 21. Go carefully (over); 22. Dryer remains; 34. Chemical suffix; 38. It’s a wrap; 52. Group of courses; 53. Times in want ads; 54. Cell material; 59. Lake ___, discovery of Louis Jolliet; 60. Lord over; 62. Absolutely; 63. Melodramatic cry. Down: 4. Charge; 5. Transmit electronically; 9. Nonacademic degree; 13. ThinkPad developer; 19. If not; 24. “American Idol” judge DioGuardi; 25. Suffix with liquid; 27. Santa Fe-to-Colo. Spr. Direction; 31. Euro predecessor; 32. Abbr. on a blotter; 33. Truck scale unit; 36. Stellar server; 37. Old Dead Sea kingdom; 38. Red or black, at a gaming table; 43. Tony winner Tyne; 55. Ness, for one; 56. Term of address in a monastery; 57. Any of the Billboard Top 40; 58. Game with Skip cards.