May 11, 2016 — Wednesday Crossword — NYTimes No. 0406
Wasn’t it just six days ago I had so much trouble with “I Love Paris”? Today it was again in the crossword puzzle, at almost the exact same position, 11D: ILOVEPARIS (Song lyric before “in the winter when it drizzles” and “in the summer when it sizzles”). I love continuity.
Started in the NW and almost immediately began making mistakes. I got 1A: BATS (“Sonar”-equipped flyers); 14A: EURO (Latvian capital); 2D: AUTO (Ford or Lincoln); and 3D: TREE (Part of a canopy). Little did I know I was wrong on 1D: BEST (Outduel, e.g.) — I said “beat” — nor how that wrong answer would haunt me to the very last square of the puzzle.
I also got wrong 4D: SOPRANO (One who may finish on a high note), I said “soloist,” which I pretty quickly realized was wrong when I saw 20A: TOERING (Piece of low-end jewelry?), but the correct answer to 4D came to me very late.
All of which terribly slowed me down in understanding today’s puzzle theme and the long horizontal answers. The very last thing I answered in the grid was the fifteen-lettered 17A: STEPHENKINGBOOK (What is “It”?). I had like seven letters wrong when I started noodling on it, and that was a tremendous handicap.
The theme was “it.” 17A (already discussed) and 59A: PERSONALPRONOUN (What is it?) were both long. There also was a split themed answer at 31A/43A: DOYOUNEED/SOMETHING (“What is it?”). Pretty cute, actually.
Loved the mention of Raymond Burr at 26A: IRONSIDE (Old TV title role…). He was a big influence in my youth, and a significant draw for me to the legal profession.
Not a huge fan of the sitcom, but I actually learned something (which I love) in answering 24A: SEINFELD (Sitcom whose four main characters are convicted of a crime in the final episode). I missed that one.
I finally had to circle back to the North, where I then also missed the tense on 9D: SANKIN (Hit home), and misanswered “sink in.” Which mistake made more difficult 15A: PAULA (Creamer of the LPGA). I was saved on that clue, and also my final long crosser (Mr. King), when I eventually resolved 7D: YUK (Guffaw).