01.20.08 -- Statistics

Sunday, January 20, 2008
TRIANGULATION, Puzzle by Natan Last, edited by Will Shortz
Note: The online and the Sunday Magazine versions of this puzzle have different clue numbering to accommodate online technology -- both the Sunday Magazine and the online versions are provided at the end of this commentary. Where reference is made in this commentary to an entry, the Sunday Magazine numbers are used, and where the numbers differ, the online number is included in parenthesis immediately following.
A triangle of highlighted squares containing circles in the center of the grid spells out TRIGONOMETRY (80A[81A] Subject of this puzzle [and proceeding counterclockwise]).
Six squares in the puzzle contain abbreviations associated with trigonometry, SIN for sine, COS for cosine, and TAN for tangent as follows:
DANTESINFERNO (3D. Whence the line “Into the eternal darkness; into fire and into ice”) crossing SINNER (37A. One succumbing to 6-Down); and TWOPEASINAPOD (69D[70D] Like things) crossing CASINOS (104D[105D] Strip joints?).
BELLICOSITY (79D[80D] Aggressiveness) crossing ACCOSTS (107A[108A] Buttonholes); and COSMOKRAMER (15D “Seinfeld” character) crossing DISCOSTU.(12A “The Simpsons” character who often refers to himself in the third person).
CATANDMOUSE (24A Something to play) crossing SATAN (6D See 37-Across); and EQUIDISTANT (116A[117A] Like any points on a circle, from the center) crossing STANZA (112D[113D] Anthem part).
Unnecessarily complex for a Sunday puzzle and without much reward in the solving, this crossword has some odd bedfellows -- starting with the center crossing of MYDARLING and RESTROOMS -- what? For patrons we have AROD, OLIVEOYL, SPITZER, ORTEGA, KEYNES, DESMOND, SADSACK, SIMONE, NATE, MAMET, SADIE, TYRONE, MELISSA, and a host of others representing both SEXES (106D[107D] Makes attractive, with "up") run AMOK (107D[108D] Every which way)!
Conversation among them includes “A sad tale’s best for winter”, “Where did I go wrong?”, “Don’t worry about me”, IMFINE, “That is as it should be”, “Catch your breath”, TAKEAREST,Unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno”, “That makes sense!”, IGETIT, “Do what you want”, IDONTCARE, ISITI, et cetera.
Other games included are CATANDMOUSE, HANGMAN, SUDOKU, SEEKERS (50A Some players in a kids’ game), GAMBLED, CASINOS, and MISC sports, including the Owls of the N.C.A.A. (77D[78D] RICE), and but one KNEEPAD (87A[88A]) Skateboarder’s accessory) for protection.
There’s also WEE, RUNT, SIZE, EQUIDISTANT…hmmm… A lot to ponder in this puzzle, but I’m starting to EXHAUST (88D[89D] Poop), and TOMORROW (128A[129A] Sunday), I must ARISE (2D. Greet the day)!
For today’s cartoon, go to
The Crossword Puzzle Illustrated.
From the Magazine (click on image to enlarge): From online (Click on image to enlarge).
The New York Times Crossword Puzzle solution above is by the author of this blog and does not guarantee accuracy. If you find errors or omissions, you are more than welcome to make note of same in the Comments section of this post -- any corrections found necessary will be executed promptly upon verification.
Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES -- Crossword Puzzles and Games
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Across: Magazine that features “Alfred’s Poor Almanac”; I.R.S. form 1099- ___; Early pulpit; “The Simpsons” character who often refers to himself in the third person; Speedy steed; “___ tale’s best for winter”: Shak.; Reddish-brown; How Mulan dresses in much of “Mulan”; Fielder’s cry; Something to play; Numbers game; They’re left behind; Turns in; Old infantry spears; Saw things; “___ Blas” (Lesage novel:; “Where ___ go wrong?”; Procter & Gamble brand; One succumbing to 6-Down; Bird: Prefix; It might be silver; Be in another form; “Don’t worry about me”; Archbishop Tutu; Censures; Some players in a kids’ game; Single, for one: Abbr.; As quickly as possible; Sinai borderer: Abbr.; King in a Steve Martin song; Star in old westerns; Home of Canadian P.M. Stephen Harper; Freight weight; “Great” boy detective; When the sun is directly overhead; Combined; Facilities; Creepy sort; Thin-framed big-footed woman of cartoons; Indian bread; Lilliputian; Chest protector; Subject of this puzzle [and proceeding counterclockwise]; Summons: Abbr.; Words of honor?; Thought; “Notes ___ Scandal,” 2006 film; Skateboarder’s accessory; Rim in which a gem is set; Guessing game; Flat ___ (some proponents of I.R.S. reform); Big picture?: Abbr.; Jazz singer Nina; Songwriters’ org.; Gag reflex?’ Cordoba kinswoman; 102 Bring (out); Bagel topper; Strip joints?”; Buttonholes; New York governor after Pataki; Place; Drink whose name is Tahitian for “good”; Like any points on a circle, from the center; X-ray ___, joke shop offering; Sandinista leader; Pipsqueak; Judge, with “up”; Went like the dickens; Mixed economy advocate; Salty septet; Disney World transport; Galas. Down: “Speed-the-Plow” playwright; Greet the day; Whence the line “Into the eternal darkness; into fire and into ice”; Medieval weapon; “That ___ it should be”; See 37-Across; PC data reader; Three-time A.L. M.V.P., familiarly; Pouty look; Working out of; What those in agreement are said to be of; Court figs.; Bats; ___ Hawkins Day; “Seinfeld” character; “Catch your breath”; “___ pro omnibus, omnes pro uno”; 1950’s stereotype; Joan Rivers’s daughter and TV co-host; Place for surfing; Star Wars, initially; Flit (about); Highlighted, as text; Second showing; Wish one could; Comprehensive; Spanish pronoun; Query to the Lord in Matthew; Quark-plus-antiquary particle; “Love of loves”; In the blink of ___; Not just hungry; Oaf; Inebriate; Place for a swing; Maria Muldaur’s “___ Woman”; Like some diet colas, in brief; Makes up?; Power in Hollywood; Like things; Chest material; Listens to; “That makes sense!”; Bottom of the ___The Owls of the N.C.A.A.; “Do what you want”; Aggressiveness; Played; It was passed in May 1773; Poop; Store on “Sesame Street”; Relic; Don Juan; Put the kibosh on; “___ Miniver”; When some nighttime news begins; Alamogordo’s county; Makes attractive, with “up”; Every which way; Wizard; Kind of melt; Jerry Scott/Jim Borgman comic; Anthem part; Tabloid twosome; “___ in Icarus” (1979 French thriller); How every letter to the Economist begins.


NYTAnonimo said...

I didn't enjoy the xword that much either Donald. Don't know how you manage the acrostic too! BTW I think you have the wrong xword key posted for yesterday.

DONALD said...


Good grief, thanks! Right church, wrong pew! Corrected -- must remember in future to delete scan files to avoid confusion, and, repeat, and, proofread more carefully.

The acrostic every other weekend does take my attention away from any recent post, but I do enjoy them so much, that an occasional faux pas, as bad as it were, is not so painful.

The regular Sunday puzzle was just work -- face it, how many of us took trig, and of those who did, who remembers, and doing math is not doing words -- but it's just a puzzle, so I suppose it's fair. From what I gather, trig is used heavily in survey work by engineers -- and moths!

Thanks for the correction!