09.05.14 — WAITING

Friday, September 5, 2014

Puzzle by Joe Krozel / Edited by Will Shortz

WAITING (20D. On hold … or what the seven rows of black squares in this puzzle’s grid spell in Morse code), reading up or down as an ambigram, e.g., .- -, . -, . ., -, ., - . and - - . seems to be the raison d’être of this overwrought Friday crossword featuring eight 15-letter across answers:

OLD AGE PENSIONER, Elderly person on a fixed income
REEDUCATION CAMP, Propagandists’ detention site
RACE TO THE BOTTOM, Deterioration of standards by competitive forces
ASSET ALLOCATION, Diversified investment strategy
NICKEL-AND-DIMING, Charging for every little thing
PATRONAGE HIRING, Political machine practice
GREAT GRAND NIECE, Eugenia Washington (co-founder of the Daughters of the American Revolution), to George Washington

Other across — 18. 1957 Patrick White novel adapted into a 1986 opera, VOSS; 19. Comprehends, KENS; 20. Didn’t class (with), WENT; 21. What a chicken feels, FEAR; 24. G.P. grp., HMO; 32. Corp. whose name is also its stock symbol, ITT; 33. L. Frank Baum princess, OZMA; 34. Title heroine of a Wagner opera, ISOLDE; 35. Ford from the past, TORINO; 37. It’s easy to swallow, CAPLET; 38. “Beats me”, I DUNNO; 39. Go outside the calling area, say, ROAM; 41. Dawg, BRO; 45. With 11-Down, become a part of, GET; 46. With 53-Down, many Marcel Duchamp works, DADA; 47. ALDO Ray of old pictures; 48. It’s a mouthful, CHAW; 51. Silents actress POLA Negri.

Other down — 1. Bruin legend, ORR; 2. Heartlessly abandons, LEAVES TO DIE; 3. Break down, DECONSTRUCT; 4. Hymn opener, ADESTE; 5. Courage, GUTS; 6. Friendly start?, ECO; 7. Word that is its own synonym when spelled backward, PAT; 8. Biblical ending, ETH; 9. Baseball Hall-of-Famer Phil NIEKRO; 10. PepsiCo brand, SOBE; 12. Fall mos., OCTS; 13. D.C. player, NAT; 14. Lke some broody teens, EMO; 15. Dash letters, RPM; 21. Pasta FAZOOL (Italian dish, informally); 22. Smooth-leaved ELM; 23. Much like, A LA; 24. Some backwoods folks, HILLBILLIES; 25. Alvin Ailey’s field, MODERN DANCE; 26. “Just about done”, ONE TO GO; 28. Metric weight, TONNE; 29. One coming out of its shell?, CICADA; 30. “Me too”, AS AM I; 31. Best, TOP; 36. Contents of a well, INK; 39. It’s stranded, for short, RNA; 40. Head-scratching, ODD; 43. Televised fights?, AD WARS; 44. Native New Zealanders, MAORIS; 48. Pack (in), CRAM; 49. Lanford Wilson’s “The HOT L Baltimore”; 50. Messenger ANGE de Dieu; 51. Pina COLADA; 52. “War and Peace” has a lot of them: Abbr., PGS; 53. See 46-Across, ART; 54. Silkscreen target, TEE; 55. Oomph, GAS; 56. Lang. class, ENG; 57. Blood test letters, HDL; 58. Some appliances, for short, GES.


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