Hard puzzle today! I think I had more trouble with this one than I did with yesterday's New York Times. With the long phrases and the tough cluing … this one was a real workout. There sure was an awful lot of exclaiming going on in this grid!
- 1A: "Get going!" ("SNAP TO IT!").
- 27A: "Oh, sure!" ("I BET!").
- 2D: "No way!" ("NAH!").
- 47D: "That's not good!" ("UH-OH!").
Many things I didn't know in this puzzle:
- 9A: Bantam (PETITE). No idea.
- 15A: Consort of Gustav I (KATARINA). Inferable through crosses.
- 43A: Gasteyer of "SNL" (ANA). People still watch this show?
- 56A: Explosive solvent, as it was formerly called (TOLUOL). If you say so.
- 59A: Versatile auxiliary wind-catcher (STAY SAIL). Had the SAIL part, but can't say that I'm well-versed in my nautical terms.
- 4D: "Star Trek" character __ Chekov (PAVEL). Or my Star Trek characters.
- 22D: "The Spirit" comics writer Will (EISNER). Rex probably knew this one.
- 51D: Tambo Colorado builder (INCA). I'm embarrassed to say I have no idea what "Tambo Colorado" means.
- 24A: Contraction of a sort (TIC). I couldn't get away from wanting a word that's a contraction of the words "of a sort." I was so drawn to that idea that I couldn't think of any other meaning of "contraction" for quite some time.
- 36A: Reservation opening (ON SECOND THOUGHT). I thought this was going to be something like "table for two." But it's a different kind of reservation.
- 44A: Main call (AHOY). I guess I do know some of my nautical terms though because I caught on to "main" right away.
- 50A: Big fan (FIEND). Hmm. I don't think I know anybody like that.
- 58A: Funny bit (SHTICK). Tried SKETCH first.
- 12D: You usually can't walk to one (ISLE). Unless you're, ya know, Jesus.
- 25D: Convince using flattery (SMOOTH TALK). Wanted SWEET TALK but couldn't make it fit.
- 28D: Swing time? (BIG BAND ERA).
Crosswordese 101 Round-up:
- 40A: Before, before (ERST).
- 18D: Utah County city (OREM).
- 30D: Bright swimmers (TETRAS).
- 35D: Aurora's counterpart (EOS).
- 49D: Small tool case (ÉTUI).
Everything Else — 16A: Like many barber shops (UNISEX); 17A: "Beats me" ("I HAVEN'T GOT A CLUE"); 20A: Speed (ROCKET); 21A: Wins approval (SELLS); 23A: Fellow (GENT); 25A: Botanical opening (STOMA); 31A: Italian classic (O SOLE MIO); 34A: Many a Middle Easterner (SEMITE); 38A: Arrives at (GETS TO); 39A: Vaulter's target (CROSSBAR); 41A: Cast (THREW); 45A: Points at dinner (TINES); 47A: In the habit of (USED TO); 52A: "And afterward?" ("WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?"); 57A: Some tiny rods and spheres (BACTERIA); 1D: Word with run or jump (SKI); 3D: Regardless of the consequences (AT ALL COSTS); 5D: Poem with the line "Who intimately lives with rain" (TREES); 6D: Pen emission (OINK); 7D: Stats for QBs (INTS.); 8D: Touching game (TAG); 9D: Fake it (PUT ON A SHOW); 10D: Pass (ENACT); 11D: Little sucker (TICK); 13D: Ger. (TEUT.); 14D: Computer filename ending (EXE); 21D: Moe, for one (STOOGE); 23D: Emotionally therapeutic episode (GOOD CRY); 27D: "God's Other Son" radio host (IMUS); 29D: Flammable gas (ETHANE); 32D: "O, swear not by ... the fickle moon ... __ that thy love prove likewise variable": "Romeo and Juliet" (LEST); 33D: Outside: Pref. (ECT-); 37D: Three abroad (TRE); 42D: Shooter's target (HOOP); 44D: Literally, "for this" (AD HOC); 45D: Petulant (TESTY); 48D: Old man of the sea (SALT); 50D: Great achievement (FEAT); 52D: Mg. and kg. (WTS.); 53D: "Frontline" airer (PBS); 54D: Noon indicator (XII).