Thursday, October 18, 2012
Puzzle by Samuel A. Donaldson / Edited by Will Shortz
Switching the first and last words in five common four-word phrases accompanied by justifying clues constitutes the interrelated group of this sly Thursday crossword:
SADDLE IN THE BACK (17A. Bit of riding gear on a truck’s flatbed?)
HOLE IN THE ACE (28A. Evidence of some marksmanship?)
DARK IN THE SHOT (37A. Lighting director’s woe?)
HAY IN THE ROLL (45A. Baking hazard at a manger?)
GRASS IN THE SNAKE (59A. Diagnosis for a stoned viper?)
Other — ABASES, ANYHOO (1A. “Changing the subject …”), AMBIENCE, AUTO LOAN, DETAIN, HAREMS, JOE PESCI, MUTTER, OIL SLICK (5D. Film about the sea?), ONE PIN (6D. The first to go on a strike, usually), POETIC, REST STOP, SPEEDS UP, SPELLS (68A. Ones cast in “Wicked“).
Five-letter — ALIAS, ASPCA, BOTOX (35D. Crow’s-feet treatment), CACTI, CRABS, Mary DORIA Russell, EARTH, “J. EDGAR,” 2011 film, ENIAC, ETHER, HIT ON, INKED, PETIT four, PONDS, SOARS, STILT, TARTE, TORME, USRDA.
Short stuff — ADS, ANTE, ATL, BAR, CASE, ELBA, ERS, ETC and ETH, “If I HAD A nickel …”, ICE T, ILYA Ulyanov, INT, IS IT, “IT’S Magic“, JANA Kramer, KEL, LIE, LOO, MCI, METH lab, NCO, NEA, NOIR, OUT, “That’s what SHE said“, SID, SST, TBS, TLC, TUSH, UAE, UTEP, XTC, YTD.
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Puzzle available on the internet at