12.24.08 -- PLUGS

Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Puzzle by Warren Biro, edited by Will Shortz
PLUGS (40A. Power connectors or a way to describe 17-, 22-, 55-, and 61-Across);
TV ADVERTISEMENT (17A. Show interrupter); TOBACCO CHEW (22A. Copenhagen wad); BATH STOPPER (55A. Old-fashioned tub feature); HAIR REPLACEMENT (61A. Expensive alternative to a toupee) are the interrelated entries of this Wednesday crossword.
Other long entries -- BEDSPREAD (35D. Top layer, in a way) and HEADBANDS (3D. Tennis accessories); IGUESSSO (21A. “Sure, why not”);
PERSONAE (58A. Play characters).
Mid-size -- APEMEN (51D. “2001” extras);
AVATARS (27A. Images representing Internet users); ENMASSE (50A. How crowds move); FREEWAY (9D. It lets you go without charges); LABORED (44D. Strained); NODSAT (4D. Signals, as to an auctioneer).
Five-letter -- ADDER (37D. Abacus user); 33D. “AGNES of God,” Jane Fonda film; APHIS (52D. Sap sucker); ATEST (11D. Historic 1940s event, for short); ATTIC (7D. Heirloom locale); BLASÉ (36D. Unconcerned);
EDSEL (43A. Dearborn debut of 1958); ERNES (45A. Coastal fliers); ESTOP (13D. Prevent, legally); FRAME (9A. Bowling unit); HELGA (57D. Hägar the Horrible’s wife); IRATE (66A. Furious); LEIGH (8d. Vivien of film); LOOFA (31A. Shower sponge); MEARA (53D. Stiller’s comedy partner); MENSA (12D. Group of brains); 25D. “OSOLE Mio”; OVOID (23D. Roundish); SALAD (69A. Soup alternative); SMOKE (46D. Feature of many a 1970s rock concert); 16A. Last RITES; TAPAS (56D. Spanish appetizers); 22D. “There’s no accounting for TASTE”; TRIAL (54D. “Perry Mason” climax); VOCAL (18D. Speaking one’s mind); YABBA (34A. Start of a Fred Flintstone cry).
DATE (15A. December 25, e.g.), the sole nod to the Holiday Season leads the four-letter entries -- AGRO (67A. Farming prefix); CROP (24D. Jockey’s whip); EARS (68A. They pop on planes); IDEO (14A. Prefix with -gram or -graph);
NDAK (71A. State whose tallest bldg. has only 19 floors), but with the tallest man-made structure, THIS, until THIS; 5A. Fire OPAL; RIMS (10D. Basketball hoops); SAAB (70A. Car company that originated as an airplane manufacturer); SENT (41D. Radioed, e.g.); SRTA (59D. Mex. miss); SUEZ (19D. 1956-57 crisis site); TIDE (38A. Mariner’s datum); WANE (49D. Ebb); WELD (42A. Tuesday in Hollywood); ZAHN (1A. Newswoman Paula).
Three-letter -- the setting SON (30A. George W., to George H. W.), heads to the exit along with ADV (2D. Purely or simply: Abbr.), AMT, ARA, COB, DAD-blamed, EEL, FUR, KER-plunk, LAW, NRA, ODE, PAR and PAW, finishing up with TAP and ZAP! and ZIT -- and just for Christmas --
TSK (65A. “’Tis a pity”).
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