----------------- Tuesday, July 28, 2009 Puzzle by Tony Orbach, edited by Will Shortz Now you’re talking! This Tuesday crossword is filled with conversation. Going from the positive to the negative outlook, WITHOUT QUESTION (17A. “Sure thing”), IN ALL LIKELIHOOD (28A. “Chances are good”), MAYBE YES MAYBE NO (35A. “It could go either way”), NOT LOOKING SO HOT (43A. “Doubtful!”) and AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN (56A. “Forget it!”) are the main interrelated entries of this lively puzzle. MUM (1A. Tight-lipped) is not the word for the rest of the crossword either with entries including a GASP (8D. Shocked reaction); a MOAN (27D. Haunted house sound); WEPT (66A. Had a bawl); AYE (61D. Floor vote); 33A. “I AM I Said” (Neil Diamond hit); I DO (57D. Words said after “ … so help you God?“); MOI (10D. “You don’t mean ME?!“); 46A. “Movin’ ON UP” (The Jeffersons” theme); three entries clued as “Stat!”, e.g., PDQ, ASAP, NOW, all in all somewhat MOODY (65A. Apt to pout) and with a bit of IRE (64A. Ill temper). MOTHRA (3D. Insect monster of Japanese film) stars among the crossword's creatures with a ROLE (26D. Thing to play) in the puzzle which include an AGT (9D. F.B.I. worker: Abbr.); AHAB (25D Melville’s obsessed captain); 6D. Amazon ANT (aggressive insect); an AWOL (36D. Whom an M.P. hunts); a COUPLE (54A. Counselor’s clients, perhaps) and the 34A. DALAI Lama; EARL (19D. Banjoist Scruggs); FONDA (14A. Jane of “Monster-in-Law”); HIPPIE (47D. Cheech or Chong persona); KENNY (45D. “South Park” boy); LORI (22A. Loughlin of “90210”); MOWGLI (1D. “The Jungle Book” hero); NEO (58D. Keanu’s “The Matrix” role); OGLERS (48D. Gawking sorts); the ever-present ONO (13A. Lennon’s second wife); SON (12D. Sequel title starter, sometimes); TSAR (23A. Bygone despot); and the YETI (37D. Hulking Himalayan of legend). Other -- AGOGO (16A. Disco-era suffix); AURAE (15D. Surrounding glows); GAMES (8A. Seven-up and crazy eights); G SHARP (20A. Note in an E major scale); IDEAL (62A. Perfect) and IDYLS (31D. Pastoral poems); LIE TO (29D. More than deceive); SKI SUIT (24D. Attire on the slopes); SWEET (41A. Like dessert wines); UNISON (2D. Oneness); YOYOS (63A. Fluctuates wildly). Short stuff -- AFOR, AIG and AIM and ARM, BELT, CHOP, DIO (32D. God, in Roma); EGO, EST, HAIL, LAY, LIT, MSN, MTNS, NIGH, OAST and OSSO, RAP, SETS, SOUP, TAD, TIME, UGLY, USN, UTIL. Finally, there’s THE NET (49D. Where one might see “OMG” or TTYL”) -- I knew OMG, but not the “talk/type/talk to you later” abbreviation, so… From TokyoMonster.com, TTYL!
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Remaining clues -- Across: 21. Word before sheet or music; 25. Outfielder’s asset; 42. Water co., e.g.; 50. Turned on; 51. Studio constructions; 52. Close by; 53. Gitmo mil. Branch; 67. Ballpark fig. Down: 4. Get an ___ effort; 5. Borscht, e.g.; 11. Self-esteem; 18. Precipitation that may be the size of golf balls; 23. The so-called fourth dimension; 30. Put down; 35. AOL alternative; 38. Asteroid area, e.g.; 39. Range units: Abbr.; 40. Bailed-out co. in the news; 44. ___ buco; 53. Hideous; 54. Dojo blow; 55. Brewery dryer; 56. Deadeye’s skill; 59. Wee bit.