01.16.08 -- Secrets

King Oscar II of Norway and Sweden Contemplating the Universe
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Click here for LARGE PRINT.
Puzzle by Barry C. Silk, edited by Will Shortz
We all love a secret. Perhaps that is why crossword puzzles continue to hold their own in this world as we wend our PATH (44D.) from our ARRIVAL (45D.) to the LASTEXIT (38D.). While so many LASH (19A.) out when VEXED (61A.) at what they cannot control, the solver of the crossword toils ‘til IGOTIT (27A.) with an appreciative FAROUT (51A. “Groovy!”).
Today, we have a mystery, a problem, a puzzle, and an enigma in the form of the inter-related entries of MYSTERYALASKA (20A. 1999 Russell Crowe movie); PROBLEMCHILD (32A. Parent’s handful); PUZZLEPALACE (41A. Nickname for the National Security Agency); and ENIGMAMACHINE (55A. W.W. II encryption device).
ASHARP (13D.) solver into sports has an advantage -- AZTEC (6D. San Diego State player) and MIZE (33D. Baseball’s Johnny, known as the Big Cat), along with ZEES (15A. A lot of pizzazz?) cleared the way past such missteps as CHIDE for SCOLD (appropriately crossing PROBLEM CHILD), CLAY for SOIL, or ELAN (then ZEST then ZEAL) for ZEES (that’ll give up OSCARII instead of OTTO whatever), ad infinitum. It doesn’t hurt to know BASKET (12D. Two- or three-pointer), MANILA (47D. 1975 “Thrilla” city), STP, TDS, MATS, and TENS, also all from the world of sports.
WAD and WADES share the upper left corner, PAR and PARE, along with AFRO ABBA, AVISO, ARISEN, and ARIOSI, are common and similar, while the odd-looking ZETAPSI surely hasn’t appeared often, IFEVER. Also on the ROSTER are DORMROOM BEASTS, then DERAT to SETSAIL -- and down in the right-hand corner is LETON and DON.
The clues are fair and fresh -- Across: 1. Gets one’s feet wet?; 6. Frizzy do; 10. Pop group whose music was the basis of a hit 2001 Broadway musical; 14. Hut material; 16. Some socials; 17. Rid of vermin; 18. French chalk mineral; 19. Corporal punishment unit; 23. Something to shoot for; 25. N.R.C. forerunner; 26. Scorecard listing; 27. Fielder’s cry; 29. Potter’s need; 31. “The racer’s edge”; 35. SAMS Club (retail chain); 36. Cyclotron particle; 37. Deplaned, e.g.; 46. The Monkees’ “IMA Believer”; 49. Scholarship consideration; 50. Popped up; 53. Orch. Section; 54. QB stats; 59. Fretted fiddle; 60. Whittle; 61. In a pique; 64. Last word in an ultimatum; 65. Getz of jazz; 66. Dispatcdh boat; 67. Black Flag alternative; 68. Manhattan, e.g.; 69. Reveal one’s feelings.
Down: Tobacco buy; 2. Suffix with cannon; 3. Campus quarters; 4. 24/7 auction site; 5. Shove off; 7. Goose bumps cause; 8. Depend (on); 9. Last king of the united Sweden and Norway; 10. Travel aid; 11. Coarse sorts; 12. Two- or three-pointer; 13. Black key; 21. French noodle?; 22. Lounge; 23. Domino features; 24. Red Fort city; 28. Cookbook amt.; 29. Dress down; 30. “Die Frau OHNE Schatten” (Strauss opera); 34. Mustachioed Surrealist; 38. End of the road, possibly; 39. Like some coffee; 40. Gymnastics coups; 42. E pluribus UNUM; 43. Fraternity founded in 1847 at New York University; 44. Walkway; 45. Stork’s bundle; 46. Assuming hypothetically; 48. Melodic passages; 52. Looked libidinously; 53. Public to-do; 56l Dojo accessories; 57. Asia’s ARAL Sea; 58. Campbell of “Three to Tango”; 62. “ESO Beso”; and 63. Mafia figure.
Something that not a secret? -- this a classic crossword puzzle!
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NYTAnonimo said...

I saw your link to the Bletchley Park codebreakers Donald. Info and pics on U.S. codebreakers is here.

Anonymous said...

You continue to amaze me with the variety of images you find for your posts. Very cool.

DONALD said...

Thanks for the Bletchley Park link nytanonimo!

DONALD said...


Well, we can try! Loved your dissertation on SQIN! Your blog is so very cool itself!

Aw, shucks!