Mexican-style fast food chain —SUNDAY, Aug 2 2009— Semiterrestrial organism / Group formed at CCNY in 1910 / Roof of World natives / C&W singer Wooley

Sunday, August 2, 2009


Constructor: Patrick Berry


Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging

THEME: "Group Formation" — four FRATERNITIES (108A: Four groups found in this puzzle) are located throughout the grid, with their GREEK LETTERS (23A: Contents of four answers found in this puzzle) entered into squares rebus-style (i.e. the whole greek letter, spelled out (or drawn in, if you like), goes into a single square).

[NOTE: applet won't let me write five-letter words in a single square, so some of the GREEK LETTERS are represented below by only their first letters]



Word of the Day: M.I.R.V. [M(ultiple) I(ndependently-targeted) R(eentry) V(ehicles).] (36A: Weapon with many warheads) — n.

  1. An offensive ballistic missile system having warheads aimed at independent targets that can be launched by a single booster rocket.
  2. One of these warheads.
-----

I have this strange feeling that people are going to be divided on this one. I really liked it, but I can people getting frustrated as hell with the GREEK LETTERS, mainly because 99% of the world (maybe more) is not going to be able to get any of the FRATERNITIES except through crosses. This means those GREEK LETTERS are essentially unchecked, i.e. you've got one shot at them — the cross. If you don't know the cross, or can't make something non-nonsensical out of the cross, you're screwed. You're also semi-screwed if you don't have a pretty thorough knowledge of the Greek Alphabet. Most people out there are probably something like me: you know all the GREEK LETTERS, but after Epsilon, you don't know them in order any more. PSI? I know it's out there, maybe near the end. OMEGA's at the end, I know that. Everything else ... well, let's just say I'm glad I do crosswords regularly, as I've seen nearly ever GREEK LETTER as an answer at some time or another.

The FRATERNITIES (and their crosses):

  • 34A: Group formed at C.C.N.Y. in 1910 [Tau][Delta][Phi]
  • 14D: Social reformer Margaret Fuller, to Buckminster Fuller (grea TAU nt) — where I first discovered the theme. Knew it had to be AUNT and so started looked at what letters could be rebused. Saw TAU and put it in. Noticed the cross was a college organization, and knew what I was in for. Didn't think it would be such a struggle.
  • 35D: Mexican-style fast food chain (DELTA co) — this is brutal. DEL TACO is very regional, isn't it? I haven't seen once since I left California (never saw one in southern Michigan or central NY or ... really anywhere since I left CA). Only way I got it was by running through the Greek alphabet (thankfully, DELTA is in the one part of the Greek alphabet I can actually run through).
  • 26D: Meryl Streep title role (So PHI e) — as in "SOPHIE's Choice"

  • 39D: Group formed at Miami University in 1839 [Beta][Theta][Pi]
  • 37A: Roof of the World natives (Ti BETA ns) — another toughie wherein I was rescued by knowing the first five letters of the Greek alphabet in order.
  • 47A: Accepting bribes (on THETA ke)
  • 50A: 1971 album dedicated to Buddy Holly ("American PI e")

  • 79D: Group formed at Trinity College in 1895 [Alpha][Chi][Rho]
  • 78A: Co-organizer of the Montgomery bus boycott, 1955 (R ALPHA bernathy)
  • 87A: Bavaria and others, once (du CHI es)
  • 91A: Engine attachment (ai RHO se)

  • 93A: Group formed at Howard University in 1911 [Omega][Psi][Phi]
  • 90D: Match played at the local arena (h OMEGA me) — this and TIBETANS are probably my favorite of the rebus answers.
  • 85D: Product with a circular red, white and blue logo (Pe PSI) — seemed like a near-gimme to me, but wife couldn't figure it out easily, so maybe it will trip some people.
  • 86D: Semiterrestrial organism (am PHI bian) — clue threw me for a loop. I went looking for an organism that lived sometimes on earth, sometimes in outer space. I was probably influenced in my thinking by nearby ROMULAN (58D: Pointy-eared "Star Trek" character).

The puzzle is odd both because of the theme answers that are virtually ungettable without the crosses, and because of the small amount of real estate the theme squares take up — just 36 squares! That's below the minimum for weekday puzzles. This opens the grid way up and allows for some really playful and interesting non-theme fill. Probably a bit more popculturey than some people might like, but I'm not some people. Loved the vintage rock and roll of "THE RIVER" (4D: 1980 double album by Springsteen) and Roger DALTREY (87D: The Who's lead singer).



Lots of entertaining TV/movie clues today, with the aforementioned ROMULAN, as well as MO MONEY (64A: 1992 Damon Wayans comedy), EMMA (31D: Novel on which "Clueless" is based), AMNESIAC (106A: Jason Bourne, in the Bourne series), LONI (13D: Actress Anderson), and TONTO (115A: Jay Silverheels role). What's most impressive to me, though, are the long Downs that cascade down this puzzle. The kooky-sounding BAILIWICKS (69D: Areas of expertise) and RIPPLIEST (29D: Most corrugated) offset by the more common but no less lovely YOUR HONOR (61D: Term for a judge) and ASKS AROUND (12D: Gets several views). The whole puzzle is expertly and smoothly filled throughout. But it's Patrick Berry at work here, so no big surprise.

Bullets:

  • 31A: Fictional Plaza Hotel resident (Eloise) — I remember "ELOISE" from my childhood. The illustrations were wonderful, especially the ones with the giant cutaways of the building where you could see the paths she took running around the hotel. I also remember that her nanny had a huge rear end (can't find a decent pic, but see p. 19 if you've got the book; nice profile view). Kind of like Mrs. Pigglewiggle (another literary figure from my childhood ... what is it with my childhood and big-assed fictional women? I'll ask my mom when she gets back from Iceland).
  • 45A: Given an eyeful, you might say (maced) — that's just a great clue.
  • 67A: Womanizers, slangily (tom cats) — Mmm, "slangily." Feels like this word's been in hiding for a while.
  • 72A: Subjects of pneumography (lungs) — it's "know your Greek" day today at the puzzle.
  • 114A: Retro headgear (fedora) — I was looking for some kind of beanie with a propeller on it. I never see anyone wearing a FEDORA (except on the covers of my old paperbacks), so I don't think of them as "retro."
  • 6D: C&W singer Wooley (Sheb) — yikes. Unknown, despite a vague feeling I've seen him before.



  • 16D: Skin So Soft seller (Avon) — wanted ALMAY or OLAY.
  • 18D: Asian bovines (yaks) — wow, Asian? Really? I guess so. Never stopped to think about it.
  • 64D: Nyasaland, nowadays (Malawi) — long, thin, landlocked country in SE Africa on the western side of Lake ... MALAWI.
  • 67D: New Journalism pioneer Gay (Talese) — keep meaning to read him, but bookstore keeps meaning not to stock anything he's ever written. Someday: the library.
  • 80D: Wisconsin home of Lawrence University (Appleton) — also the home town of Cousin Larry on "Perfect Strangers." I think.
  • 96D: Dean's 1960s singing partner (Jan) — here's some more rock-and-roll for you.
  • 100D: Red's pal in "The Shawshank Redemption" (Andy) — and some more movie trivia.

And now, the Puzzle Tweets of the Week (crossword chatter culled from Twitter ... actually, a few of these are left over from last week):

  • linajk I could totally do the crossword without his help. But I don't want him to know that...
  • avi_dan Except for David Brooks and the crossword puzzle the NYT is completely irrelevant. What a useless bore!
  • BHBADDEST serial killers like jigsaw hella think shit out you gotta know crosswords word search be able to understand pictures to damn much work
  • doctorshaw 14 bucks to get wireless for 24 hrs on vacation solely to DL the week's #crossword collection. Not able to do gaffney on the iPhone = sucks! ["gaffney" = Matt Gaffney's Weekly Crossword Contest]
  • kevin_nealon: Very proud of myself...just completed my first NY Times crossword puzzle! Now all the squares are black.
  • ecdahl watching the Corpse Bride, doing the BUST crossword, and eating PB & J. i love saturdays! [that one's for Deb Amlen]
  • JulieGomoll Doing my first vowel-less crossword puzzle. ts btch [Get Frank Longo's allegedly excellent "Vowelless Crosswords" here]

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]

127 comments:

smev 8:59 AM  

The restaurant chain is CHIcos.

John 9:03 AM  

Hated it!

Funny, Del Taco was the first theme answer I got and Pepsi was the last to fall.

I'm surprised they ran this one, as the Greek letter squares may as well be uncrossed. That' a huge problem for me and makes for some fun isolated word games but it ain't a crossword.

marilynjeanking 9:04 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
JannieB 9:05 AM  

@smev - Mine too! No reason to doubt it.

I also wanted my missile to be a MIRD - The Rider sounding totally Springsteenesque to me.

Other than that, it was a fun, crunchy Sunday. I knew early on that we had a rebus (American PIe and On the Take) tipped me off, but it was several minutes into the solve until I figured out what the rebus was - I hopscotched all over filling in stuff, then got to Fraternities and the light bulb came on. Can't say that I know any of the those houses - they must be on northern campuses.

Lots of really good fill - bailiwick, your honor, and of course, 96D - two shouts in as many days. Wow!

HudsonHawk 9:06 AM  

Loved it! Great puzzle, and just a really impressive feat of construction. Not crazy about RIPPLIEST, though.

I finished with one wrong Greek letter. When I saw the clue for 35D, I immediately thought of Chili's. Oops, not enough letters, but I left the CHI in there, and CHICO sounded OK. I've heard of DEL TACO, but it didn't come to me yesterday when I was solving. Other than that, a clean and reasonably quick solve.

I started in the South and had __ME for 90D and thought GAME was a really lame answer for the clue "Match played at the local arena". The rebus should have come to me then, but it took SOPHIE to clue me in. I momentarily wanted DEVIL.

Brendan Emmett Quigley 9:08 AM  

RALPH ABERNATHY just would not fall. And I too had CHICO versus DEL TACO. So it seemed slightly unfair to guess at what seemed to be "correct" Greek letters. But it was definitely one of those puzzles that as I was solving it I went: wished I thought of this one. And whenever I think that it's usually a winner. So A+ for concept, B for execution of said theme, maybe B+/A- for the fill.

jae in Ipswich 9:09 AM  

I really liked this one too. Caught the theme with AMERICANPIE and found it pretty easy going except for DIVINing the theme squares. Fun puzzle!

OhioGeek 9:11 AM  

Excellent Sunday puzzle. Love it when you are sure of an answer, it doesn't fit, you move on, same thing happens again, etc. Finally it sinks in - for me it was RALPH ABERNATHY. I got the FRATERNITIES answer from the crosses and had the aha moment w/ALPHA. Whew! Certainly cleared things up elsewhere. I confess to one Google, to get the B in SHEB. Wouldn't have figured out FREEBEE without it.

Visiting NYC for the second time in my life - love it here! Last visit was 5 years ago when my community choir was selected to join several other choirs across the country and sing in Carnegie Hall. John Rutter conducting us in Magnificat - a HUGE honor! This week PuzzleHubby and I are eating our way through the city to celebrate out 20th wedding anniversary. Feels awesome to do the NYT in NYC. Spanish Harlem awaits us this afternoon. Have a great Sunday everyone!

Leon 9:12 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leon 9:13 AM  

Thanks Mr. Berry.

Mr. Spock fit in 58 down,
Puzzling DELTA
It's all GREEK to me.

Orange 9:28 AM  

I will add one more grade to Brendan's on-target listing of grades: F for the regional Mexican food chain entry that is Del Taco, but could plausibly be The Taco or Chico. I had T for theta and the applet accepted it! Had no idea it wasn't correct until a commenter told me.

Thirty-nine states have 0 or 1 Del Taco restaurant and...Tau Delta Phi has zero name recognition for me. This square's a definite blot on the puzzle.

Anonymous 9:34 AM  

Loved this one!

Went down smooth, like oleo.

(Del Taco is far superior to the ubiquitous Taco Bel... )

edith b 9:42 AM  

I remember the Sheb Wooley "People Eater" song from my childhood. I giggled then and I am giggling now. Sheb Woooley played a cook on a TV show when this song was popular Rawhide or Wagon Train. I don't remember which.

This one taxed my wordplay skills. I didn't know any of the fraternities - and I don't think I am supposed to anyway - but, boy, what a tour de force. So how come I hated it.

I suspected a rebus at ON(THETA)KE but it took me a while to confirm it which I did at TI(BETA)NS.

like Rex, I was in love with ELOISE. Lots of good memories actually redeemed this puzzle for me.

Travis 9:52 AM  

I get 84 theme squares, what are you counting as theme squares?

Ulrich 9:58 AM  

I also felt--positively--challenged, and since I didn't know the food chain and had discovered that letters can be repeated, I put down The Taco--Del Taco never occurred to me, and since I'm a pencil-and-paper person, I left it happily at that. As Rex observed, crosses alone may not do it if there are several plausible letters that could go in.

But it all was offset by, for example, finding OMEGA buried in home game and ALPHA in Ralph Abernathy.

Speaking of Duchies: I remember pre-republic Bavaria as a kingdom. There was King Ludwig I, sugar daddy to femme fatale Lola Montez (not from Spain, but from county SLIGO and buried in Brooklyn), and "mad" King Ludwig II, of Neuschwanstein and Disneyland fame. So, I checked and found out that indeed, Bavaria was for most its history (ca. 550 to the 17th century) a duchy (or several of them); it was then upgraded to an electorate and became a kingdom only in 1806. I know you all wanted to learn this...

BTW the only (constitutional) (Grand) Duchy surviving in Europe is Luxembourg.

Crosscan 10:02 AM  

Well, I got all the English squares right. Strangely, I'm not up on my American fraternities, and without crossing help, those squares fail the definition of a crossword puzzle.

Put me with the nays.

Anonymous 10:14 AM  

I cruised through this puzzle in something like 30 minutes (quite fast for me) and was, therefore, surprised at the "Medium-Challenging" rating - when I got mauled on the last one Rex called "Easy."

Perhaps the key for me - knowing nothing about frats, I jotted out as much of the greek alphabet as I could remember (recalling ancient math and physics constants) in the margin and blew through the rebus ones pretty quick.

Wonder how long this puzzle took to construct...

Hobbyist 10:17 AM  

I know that you can clarify butter but how do you remove solids from oleo?
Maybe one of the food experts or chemists can clarify?

jae in Ipswich 10:20 AM  

Did it strike anyone else as odd the PHI was used twice while no other Greek letter was repeated?

Blue Stater 10:31 AM  

Put me in the "hated it" column. No, the "*really* hated it" column. It's inexcusable for an exercise that is supposedly a crossword puzzle to have letters that in effect don't cross (as Rex points out), particularly when these letters are themselves rebuses. Again, fine for Games magazine; that's what their readers expect. But not here.

retired_chemist 10:35 AM  

Interesting, Mr. Berry. I have a love-hate relationship with this puzzle. It is a tour de force, but the fraternities/sororities are practically arbitrary to a non-Greek, and many are unfamiliar to lots of Greeks also. As Rex said, and others (most cogently Crosscan) reinforced, it isn’t a crossword if it can’t be checked in both directions.

In solving I developed an (ultimately incorrect) algorithm: The Greek letters could be either the Roman or the Greek in the same square, as needed, if the Greek character was written like the Roman. I got this from filling in HOME @ 90D and R ABERNATHY @ 78A. Each is a correct answer. Made the O = omicron in the cross, Omicron Zeta something could be somehow related to Howard U., so 85D was PEZ. OK, after all was done, Googling revealed that the PEZ logo isn’t red, white, and blue, but who knew? Had to go feed the dogs, so I rushed and didn’t ponder. And thus finished with several errors

Had (Theta)CO like Ulrich et al. instead of (Delta)CO @ 35D. Del Taco is buried somewhere deep in my memory, probably from roadside signage, but I have never eaten at one.

@ Hobbyist – I had GHEE for OLEO for a long time and used OLEO reluctantly for the reason you mention: I do not see it as having been, or ever being, clarified. We need foodie…..

PuzzleGirl 10:36 AM  

Yes, DEL TACO is totally unfair but I still loved it. Puzzling out the rebus squares gave me several forehead slapping moments: TIBETANS (!), HOME GAME (!!), RALPH ABERNATHY (!!!). Bravo, PB1.

Anonymous 10:38 AM  

Asked far too much of the solvers knowledge of a very narrow area. I got the theme right away, but A) could not fit all that crap into one tiny square, and B) don't know the Greek alphabet, save a few popular letters. FEH!

fikink 10:38 AM  

My hand is up for CHICOs and I never, until today, noticed that BETA is in the middle of Tibetan. Cool.

@Ulrich, thank you for your history lessons! I appreciate them even more since confusing the Hohenzollerns with the Hapsburgs - ;)

@Blue Stater, I take your point about the Games magazine nature of this one.


@Hobbyist, R_C: I join you in your OLEO clarifying search.


I want a YAK.

alanrichard 10:39 AM  

I tried doing this one online but I couldn't put in the Greek letters or enough regular letters for the Greek letters. Is there a way of putting in Greek letters???

Anonymous 10:46 AM  

I say Del Taco is indeed fair. I live in Canada, but I have heard of it. Great puzzle, Mr. Berry!

Anonymous 10:48 AM  

alanrichard: Use edit, insert, multiple letters.

Alex 10:51 AM  

When the NYT crossword puzzle goes with regional chains it seems to usually go with a regional that includes New York. So once it was clear that it wasn't Taco Bell or Chipotle I figured it was something I had never heard of.

So was stuck with deciding between CHIco or E-TAco (why not in this day and age). Never considered DELTAco and I'm in their territory and stop at the Santa Nella store almost every time I have to drive to LA.

While it wasn't hard to get, I'd argue that FREEBEE isn't a variant. It's just wrong. Regardless of whatever dictionary support is produced.

chefbea 10:53 AM  

When I started the puzzle I thought "boy an easy sunday puzzle" Got everything that had nothing to do with fraternities. Then I hit the wall. I can recite the entire greek alphabet (learned it way back when) but I know nothing about fraternities - except for ZBT = zeta beta tau.

So all in all I hated the puzzle!!!

pednsg 10:59 AM  

I was pretty sure that Rex was going to rate this as easy (though I thought it was at least medium), and was really hoping he would love it (at least as much as I did), so I was smiling as I read through his most excellent write-up!
I live within a mile or so of a DEL TACO, yet the DELTA was the last square filled in last night. I was not in a fraternity, do not know the entire alphabet, and had just about every letter in there at one time. There are a bunch of Z'Tejas restaurants in Arizona (as well as CA, UT, WA, and Texas), and I figured that there must be a ZeTaco! I'd eat there. After Google confirmed the distinct absence of such a chain, I figured that CHICO must be right, but it didn't sound good without the plural, and I knew that there is a women's clothing chain by that name. Then, I realized that ETACO sounded like a place with great carne asada, but after staring at this answer for about ten minutes, I thought not, and I didn't think anyone would name a chain THETACO, though I scratched this answer in for a while as well. Finally, in a very delayed aha moment, DELTA hit me like a ton of tostadas, and left me with a big ole smile!

@aje - I did think it odd that phi was repeated, but given the terrific construction, and the lack of another letter that fit, I eventually felt OK with it.

Like Rex, I loved the clue for MACED - big, teary smile! I also loved the clue for TRADEINS - that one took a while.
REX - you could easily be in the top 10 in the world if you were able to purge all memory of Perfect Strangers from your brain! How in the world did you know that Cousin Larry was from APPLETON??!!

hereinfranklin 11:06 AM  

Put me in the loved it camp. Last clue for me was aiRHOse...that one just would not fall. American Pie was the first tip that something was up and Sopie was where the lightbulb came on. Great way to spend a half hour.

Meg 11:08 AM  

I loved this puzzle and knew when I entered Chico that it was wrong. Wouldn't it be Chico's?

I've heard of clarified butter, but according to Wiki, oleo starts with clarified vegetable oil. Thank God for these puzzles. So many important things to learn!!

johnpag 11:17 AM  

I've never heard of "Del Taco", had "Chico" in there, which I've never heard of either.

Norm 11:46 AM  
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Norm 11:48 AM  

Monaco is always referred to as a "principality" rather than a "princedom" but I guess it's fair to refer to that sort of nation-state generally as the latter. I hadn't got the theme at that point, but I was very close (since 14D just had to be a rebus), and it slowed me down since I was looking for a way to fit the extra letters into 40A. When I caught onto the theme, I went "oh cr**!" and expected to hate the puzzle, but wound up loving it -- even I did have to keep going, "gamma, kappa, zeta, damn, what else is there?" The many "a ha" moments made up for the struggle. Great puzzle!

jeff in chicago 11:58 AM  

no

retired_chemist 12:04 PM  

Noticed that one of the experts also missed one of the themed Greek letters: THE TACO for DEL TACO. Now I don't feel so bad. See:

http://crosswordfiend.blogspot.com/

Stan 12:16 PM  

Speaking of 'Hated it...' (which I didn't):

Damon Wayan's father was my landlord for a while in Jersey City, NJ. Suddenly recalled that at one time "In Living Color," "The Simpsons," and "Married With Children" (starring @capplegate) were all controversial new shows on Fox. Has to be one of the most creative periods in American TV history.

Denise 12:20 PM  

I know my Greek, but only know the names of a few fraternities. I had to google a couple of frats to get the crosses I didn't know.

Still, I think it is a clever and interesting puzzle.

The vowel-less puzzle book is GREAT!

Danny 12:20 PM  

Didn't finish it, didn't care to.

There's way too many fraternities, which means even if you know a bunch, that's not going to help you infer the Greek letters at all. My Dad was in Tau Epsilon Phi, but EpsilonCo (or CA or CE, since Porto could have been Porte/Porta easily) ain't a Mexican Chain.

This was a Maleska puzzle. Greek letters as a whole are not common knowledge any more, and using them as the theme is just willful obscurity.

Shamik 12:24 PM  

Odd reaction here. I resented the puzzle as I was going along for the usual reasons of having to get the theme with just crosses. Reading the comments here, I'm liking it more. It's a matter of resenting "what is." Saw that this was a rebus, just didn't want it to be.

@JannieB: Thought THERIDER was Springsteenesque as well, so there was my error.

Otherwise finished in 22 minutes making it a medium time for me on a Sunday.

DELTACO is here in Arizona, so it was a gimme and it's a chain, but the clue doesn't say national food chain. Splitting hairs, but you can have a chain of 3 restaurants within one state and it's still a chain. Just not a very "fair" crossword puzzle clue.

Was very excited to cross DRUID with DROID until DROID turned out to be WORLD.

Noam D. Elkies 12:42 PM  

Ouch. Yes, it is impressively constructed (and yes, we should count every entry containing a rebus square towards the theme, not just 12+12+4*3; and yes, I wish φ didn't appear twice, but at least he resorted to a two-letter letter only once, for 50A:AMERICANπE). And it's a felicitous discovery that 23A:GREEKLETTERS and 108A:FRATERNITIES have matching lengths. But yes, it's not fair to the solvers, at least the vast majority who have no reason to know, care, or learn about which strings of three Greek letters happen to be which frats. (Of course clues like "Group formed at CCNY in 1910" are useless to those outside the "Greek" subculture.) It's even worse when one of these letters (in 35D:δCO) has several plausible alternatives. I happened to guess correctly, or perhaps had some vague recollection of 34A:TΔΦ. But this is even worse than NATICK, for which we can at least rely on our sense of the language to exclude alternatives like NATSCK; to the uninitiated [sic], any three Greek letters seem as plausible as any others.

I didn't even find the two frats I have heard of: Phi Beta Kappa and Gotta Kegga Beera ;-)

I did previously see the nice 37:TIβN and 90D:Hωme (and also 85D:PEψ); that didn't help me as much as it should have, because I misremembered the "Roof of the World" as Nepal instead of Tibet. 78A:RαBERNATHY was new to me.

Aside of the theme (and other things already noted here), there's a nice Oriental-restaurant minitheme in the NW corner (1A:MOUTH, 1D:MSG, 19A:SUSHI); appropriate near-stacking of 61D:YOURHONOR with 69D:BAILIWICK; nice out-of-the-box clue for 103A:EMPANEL (also 70A:TRADEINS and 105D:PRAY); another vote for "ghee" against Pantheonic 75A:OLEO; no problem with 29D:RIPPLIEST (though I first tried RUMPLIEST); and rather Baroque clues for 95D:RUFFS and 117A:UNES.

νδε

Blanche 12:43 PM  

Clever puzzle, but not a lot of fun to solve, and what's the point if it isn't fun? So I join the "hate-its."

bill from fl 12:52 PM  

Add me to the list who wrote CHICO. Never heard of DeltaCO--sounds like an aerospace supplier. I guess it wouldn't be so annoying if these weren't such obscure fraternities. I grew up on the same block as an SAE house on a street that's essentially fraternity row, and I've never heard of these. That's what makes the rebus worse than a Natick. (I liked RalphaBERNATHY, though.)

Orange 12:56 PM  

@Blue Stater: I'm not sure you've actually looked at a Games magazine in years. There are way more rebus crosswords in the NYT than in Games. If it's standard crosswords without gimmicks you're looking for, you might pick up a copy of Games!

Jamie 1:21 PM  

Decidedly un-modern puzzle today. To build an entire puzzle around frat names is so 30-years-ago, and I work at a university! This struck me as *good old boy* puzzle-what we've come to expect from the NYT Puzzle Dept. these days

JC66 1:27 PM  

I know the Greek alphabet from high school (don't ask) but have very limited knowledge of college fraternities, so the challenge for me was figuring out which Greek letter to enter in each rebus square. Some, like americanPI, tiBETAns and soPHIe came easily. Others, like rALPHAbernathy, greTAUnt and duCHIes took more thought. Still others, like aiRHOse and pePSI took even longer.

And lastly, never heard of ZETAco, but that was my final answer.

Loved it!!!

poc 1:32 PM  

I object to the inclusion of random triplets of Greek letters as answers in a puzzle. Yes, I said *random*.

Rex, you're right about people being divided. I for example am divided between dislike and detestation for the theme, though the non-theme answers were actually pretty good on the whole.

Ruth 1:40 PM  

I thought of the clues about the various fraternities as "Olafs"--they could just say "group" because the wheres and the whens were never going to help. That said, I liked this a lot--tons of fun to find the Greek letters, especially those split between words in a phrase. Ralph A.--cool!

There was a DelTaco in Rochester, New York for a little while but it didn't do well and went out of business. Also used to see them in St. Louis. Even knowing this, it took me going alpha, beta, gamma. . .to find it. Very impressed by NDE and the actual Greek letters in his post!

Elaine2 1:43 PM  

Hi -- I know Greek, but not fraternities, so found myself running through the Greek alphabet at each square to see what might make sense in the cross. Didn't enjoy it so much.

ALSO -- usually in a rebus, the crosses use the letter combinations equivalently, which was NOT true here -- for instance, in one direction we had "tau," the Greek letter, and in the other the letters from "greaT AUnt." So you didn't really have "Greek letters" in the puzzle, you had English letter combinations representing Greek letters. Feh

I didn't hate it, but it was NOT one of my favorites!

Meg 1:53 PM  

I just joined this blog. I've been posting on the NYT Wordplay blog. Perhaps this question is naive or even stupid, but why are there so many more posts and posters on Rex's site?

Anonymous 1:55 PM  

I'm ambivalent about this one.

Got the fraternities early on &
didn't sink in even tho I wanted to
put On the Take in & then the 60-watter went on.

Re Mexican' only one I have heard of is Chilli's.

I have never clarified oleo!
Rhea

Norm 1:55 PM  

Because Rex is snarky and witty and fun to read == and most of his readers as well?

Norm 1:56 PM  

Uh, that was a response to Meg

PlantieBea 2:02 PM  

I realized what was going on with American Pie. My husband was a Beta, but that's the only frat I can remember all three letters of. I had to get the rest of the frats by USing brute FORCE. Otherwise this was an easy/medium Sunday for me.

That said, I did have an error: I'm a member of the CHICO restaurant club. I actually had ChiChiS in the slot until I got PRINCEDOM in the cross. Never heard of DEL TACO. Like Retired_Chemist, I stuck with GHEE for the clarified butter for way too long. The PSI in Pepsi was my last square filled.

My father took me to The Plaza when I was a little girl and gave me a copy of the Eloise book. Loved that memory!

Thanks Patrick Berry.

chefbea 2:08 PM  

@Meg cuz its a fun blog and we all get along so well...
well most of the time.
Glad you have joined us. What will you bring to the pot luck dinner?

Ruth 2:19 PM  

I had "Four Years" for "Term for a judge" for a minute, even though I instantly knew it Made No Sense.

Meg: a hazard of participating this blog is that people have a tendency to start to Write Like Rex. It's very contagious. You've been warned.

Meg 2:32 PM  

Well I did notice the language here is much more colorful, and nobody corrects punctuation mistakes. Nice.

Chefbea: Since I'm from Florida, I'll bring Key lime pie and maybe some gator nuggets (taste just like chicken).

Lili 2:36 PM  

Tough but interesting. I got the theme on 26 down -- "Meryl Streep title role" -- and then just made a list of all the Greek letters, reaching way back in the history of my language studies to do it. (I encounter Latin frequently in my field; Greek very rarely these days.) This meant repeatedly running through the list to find one that would work in each square that required one, and for some reason "air hose" wasn't making sense to me for a while.

It would have been more impressive if none of the Greek letters had been repeated, but perhaps that's asking too much. I did think "hOME GAme" was terrific.

Glitch 2:38 PM  

Ate once at a Chico's, but that "'s" bothered me as much as their food, delta never came.

Really wanted to make a cogent comment on today's puzzle, but found it a bit like cod liver oil
(i.e. Probably had some [learning] benefits, but didn't like it).

Agree with most of the comments above, except that "hate" is such a strong word.

.../Glitch

Anonymous 3:06 PM  

A puzzle like this one turns a magical Sunday morning in very rainy NY into a grumpy, bad day. WTF??? What a miserable, secretive rat's nest. I need a Bloody Mary.

Aleman 3:08 PM  

Forget about Bloodies,I've been drinking Retsina all day.

joho 3:21 PM  

I would have liked the puzzle better if I didn't have a mistake with CHICO. @PlantieBea ... I had CHICHIs, too, at first. That's probably why I was so sure CHICO was correct, oh, and, of course, because DELTACO doesn't exist in my WORLD.

I still liked it because I'm always a sucker for a rebus: love them!

@Meg -- is a gater nugget what I think it is?

Meg 3:27 PM  

@joho: Yes it's a chewy chunk of gator meat, deep fat fried. If you're at the State Fair, you can follow it up with a deep fat fried Twinkie or Snickers bar.

chefbea 3:39 PM  

@joho and meg thought maybe was like Rocky mountain oysters!!!

Paul 3:41 PM  

weird solve for me- I found most of the clues on the easy side, and some-ribbiest!- made me smile. The rebus tripped me up- as usual. I don't know why it takes me so long to consider rebus solutions.

I'm Just Sayin' 4:44 PM  

Liked it.
I had no knowledge of frat groupings but didn't need it as my random remembrance of Greek letters carried the day.
Rex, a quibble: the fedora is hot these days with the hipsters, esp. women. Check pap. photos of the celebutantes and you will find the lid of choice is the fedora. So, yes, retro.

chefwen 4:45 PM  

@chefbea - I'll bring the SUSHI
@shamik - I'm impressed, can't even read the clues in 22 minutes
@noam b elkies - gotta kegga beera, funny! Ha Ha!!
@meg - cuz he's the best.

Throw me into the loved it camp. Took me the better part of last night to complete, but complete it I did.

treedweller 4:48 PM  

I'm wondering if the PTB decided to compensate for the no-cross-checking aspect of this one by allowing anything in the greek squares. Like @Alex, I tried e-taco (I knew it was wrong, but meant to revisit later and forgot). My solution was accepted. I actually had a Del Taco in my hometown, but it never occurred to me (didn't eat there much). BTW, if anyone figures out how to send me tacos electronically, I'll gladly pay for them (with e-pesos?).

Add me to the crowd on ghee, Mr Spock, and Pez. Couldn't understand why just OZPhi got to use a couple of single letters (never got HOMEGAME--just thought it was "HOME", which also rankled). So I am guilty of not thinking things through, but the puzzle is guilty of expecting us to know something that only matters to the tiny percentage of us that are directly affected (i.e., fraternities). As one who doesn't even know as much of the greek alphabet as Rex, I felt doubly unqualified and doubly annoyed by the theme squares. I liked the rest pretty well. I will even confess to enjoying ALPHA. Overall, [shrug].

retired_chemist 5:04 PM  

I'm trying to figure out Greek letters in this blog - symbol font will work I believe. Thus the answers are: ΤΔΦ; ΒΘΠ;ΑΧΡ;ΩΨΦ or,maybe, gibberish if symbol doesn't work.

Any British mathematicians who do not like this puzzle can say Φ/U to PB1.

So far Across Lite is symbol-resistant.; does anyone know if there is a way to put Greek letters in Across Lite?

retired_chemist 5:07 PM  

Hmmm - Φ/U is pronounced: "Fie upon you." On reviewing I see an insultingly gross alternative I certainly did not intend.

still_learnin 5:16 PM  

Was the puzzle fair? No.

Did I like it? Yes. A lot of "aha" moments more than made up for my lack of knowledge about all things Greek.

I missed a couple of greek letters -- including the infamous DELTA CO -- but still enjoyed fight. Maybe I set my goals too low?

klandis 5:22 PM  

On Perfect Strangers, Cousin Larry's last name is Appleton. Was he actually from Appleton too?

joho 5:24 PM  

@chefbea ... I was thinking what you were thinking. Much nastier than fried bits of gator meat!

Deb 5:43 PM  

I'd never heard of DEL TACO before this, and was left thinking it was a regional chain.

Got RALPH ABERNATHY, but for some reason HOME GAME took me a while (Damn, you, sports references!)

The best thing I learned from this puzzle is how to insert rebus answers into the applet via my Mac! :)

Clark 5:57 PM  

We did the puzzle 10 pm on our Balcony overlooking the Jungfrau. Semi-puzzle partner kept trying to convince us that there was a strange light behind the Silberhorn (a beautiful pure white mini-peak on the Jungfrau). Sure enough, the moon emerged. Hate it when he is right.

We loved the puzzle. Don't know from fraternities, but we got everything right, except, we ate at Chicos.

Blue Stater 6:02 PM  

@Orange: You're right, of course. I haven't looked at Games Magazine more than once or twice in my life. So they have a paucity of rebus, curveball, and just plain crazy puzzles, eh? Maybe they need a new editor. Better yet, maybe they need an editor with some experience with the institution, who'll give them lots of this kind of junk. I can dream, can't I? >8-}

My larger point was, also of course, that canine morning repasts like today's Do Not Belong in The New York Times.

I also, speaking of assaulting deceased equines, wish to rise once again to defend the memory of Eugene Maleska, who would never, never ever, let a puzzle like this find its way into the paper. I miss him more with each passing year.

fergus 6:18 PM  

In the really liked it camp. Made you think; yielded rewards.

Finishing off in the NW was my only disappointment -- since I had never read 23A Clue, and so it felt superfluous. But that's my problem, not the marvelous puzzle's.

fergus 6:50 PM  

Also, I'm not sure I comprehend the issue about crossings with rebus squares, and why they aren't checked. Expertise solicited.

That E-TACO comment still has me chuckling. That was a better guess than THE TACO or CHICO if you've never driven through LA, where they now have celebrated Korean Tacos, btw.

Norm 6:54 PM  

@ Blue Stater "canine morning repasts" means "????" Your critiques/insults are less meaningful if people can't follow them. At least, this people could not fathom what you meant. Perhaps it was a Maleska-era clue?

Norm 6:59 PM  

@Fergus: I think the issue is that no one (save maybe the chair of some national organization of fraternities, if such a thing exists) could have known the names of the four groups. Generally, you ought to have a shot at answering any clue if you (a) have the knowledge, or (b) can suss the theme -- and shouldn't have to rely on the crosses. This one was a stretch. That's my take on the issue.

PurpleGuy 7:08 PM  

Put me in the disliked it side.
Can recite the Greek alphabet backwards and forwards. Belonged to a fraternity in college.
Thought their use here was unfair.

@chefbea- I belong to ZBT !

I'm glad we're still on for the potluck dinner.
@meg- great choices ! Should go well with our local Rocky Mountain Oysters,or our Arizona rattlesnake !

Lurene 7:22 PM  

Maybe I read too fast, but I still don't understand # 23 across: Contents of four. Four?

chefbea 7:22 PM  

waiting for Andrea to chime in for ZBT

fergus 7:24 PM  

Thanks, Norm for that response. I thought that it was sufficient to know that there would GREEK LETTERS that must fill the squares. The obscurity of the references made it clear to me that PB couldn't possibly have thought that anyone would know these, which I sure didn't.

I wonder if there is any further common denominator among these fraternal groups? We mostly mocked the Greeks in my college days, yet living among them (in a hippie commune above frat row) brought a strange anthropological curiosity and association to some scientific variables.

XMAN 7:24 PM  

While I understand all the gripes, I gotta say this was a blast! Got DELTACOS just from going through the Geek alphabet and taking the first answer that made sense. Regarding the cluing of 117a, I believe the correct spelling is quelques'unes. ACME, comment?

George NYC 7:41 PM  

I lost interest in this one as soon as I figured out the theme was fraternities. There are few things in the world that I care less about than college fraternities.

Norm 7:42 PM  

@Lurene: I believe it was "Contents of four answers found in the grid" or something like that -- thus, "greek letters" (the fraternities).

foodie 7:45 PM  

I did this on line last night, solved it without cheating and admired it a great deal. But in the morning, I got the dead tree version. Sometimes I like to redo the puzzle and see if I can speed through it (still suck at the speed thing even after it's been solved!). Anyhow, I really could not face doing it again today. Too much work...

Like a great first date and no interest in a second one. What do you call that? I've been out of the dating business for a long while.

Rex,like Andrea, I love the "Puzzle Tweets of the Week". The most hilarious: kevin-nealon. Belly LOL!

@Xman, since acme sometimes does not come on Sundays, I thought I'd take a stab at your question. You're right re quelques-unes. But no apostrophe is needed, as it indicates that something has been removed. But nothing is removed in the case of the plural. So, the singular is quelqu'un/quelqu'une with the apostrophe indicating the missing e. For the plural, one restores the e, adds the s, so no apostrophe.

Interestingly, if you google quelqu'unes in the plural you do get a sizable number of hits in French, so it must be a common variant/error.

Anne 7:49 PM  

Did I enjoy it? Nooooo.

Did I think it was fresh, clever, and interesting? A definite yes.

I know nothing about fraternities and this was an opportunity to actually think about them so for that reason alone I liked it.

I got my first glimmer of what was up when I saw Ralph Abernathy, which I knew had to be correct. It was not until quite a bit later that the light actually came on.

JC66 7:50 PM  

@chefbea said...
waiting for Andrea to chime in for ZBT

WHY?

XMAN 8:01 PM  

Hey, foodie! Thanks. At least I got it half-right, having been out of college French for some years.

Stan 8:04 PM  

Still like this one, but understand that there were really two puzzles: one crossword (which of course involves 'crosses'), and one "fill in the blank with a Greek letter" word game. I wouldn't want to see it every week, but the combo worked for me.

@PurpleGuy. @Meg, @chef[s], et al.: We could bring lobster and some steamers. Need white wine recommendation for seafood (unoaked?). Gator bits and rattlesnake sound just fine -- Rocky Mountain Oysters, not so much...

chefbea 8:24 PM  

@jc66 ZBT is a jewish fraternity. Figured Andrea would know about it like I do

JC66 8:35 PM  

@chefbea

I knew what you meant (I'm Jewish, too). But I still resent the racial profiling.

BTW, I find it curious that, considering the popularity of this blog, that we don't hear more from the constructors. I'd be interested to know what Patrick Berry thinks of today's comments.

PurpleGuy 8:49 PM  

@Stan- Mike the Wino had some good recommendations here a few days ago. I'm a big fan of steamers. Growing up on Long Island,NY they were a treat !

Deb 8:54 PM  

Oh, and thanks for the BUST-y shout out, Rex! Nice to know at least one person's doing the puzzle ;)

Blue Stater 9:21 PM  

@Norm: "canine morning repast" = "dog's breakfast," a phrase used by our English cousins to denote a mess. Probably over the top. Probably too Maleska-y. I'm critical of the puzzles, but I don't mean to be insulting; I try to stick to the puzzles and the editing of the puzzles. If that over-clever rant came across otherwise, sorry about that. It was a *very* frustrating Sunday.

foodie 9:24 PM  

@Xman, actually, most impressive! Something flickered in my mind when I saw the clue, but I let it pass. As soon as you said, I thought, of course!

Made me think that I need a trip to Paris, to get my French back (among other pretexts : )

Anonymous 9:41 PM  

has anybody else ever heard of XXs (ChiChi's) as a mexican food restaurant? Please say yes so I don't feel so dense...loved the puzzle, but needed to print out a copy of the greek alphabet to fill in...

Anonymous 10:07 PM  

After finishing what I thought was a correct puzzle answer, I went into serious Google action ...

First up: "Chico's Mexican." There is a three-restaurant chain in North Carolina.

Next up: "Patrick Berry North Carolina." There is a Patrick Berry who lives in North Carolina.

I don't know if it's the same Mr. Berry (and hope no one now feels compelled to call the guy), but there is one who lives in that state.

So as far as I'm concerned ... Chico and Del Taco both work (even though there might well be multiple Patrick Berrys in every state).

I'm now craving tamales.

retired_chemist 10:22 PM  

Chi-Chi's Mexican Restaurant was but, in the US anyway, is no more. A casualty of a 2003 Hepatitis A outbreak in one of its stores.

fergus 10:47 PM  

PB appears to have been able to separate crossword aestheticians from from their previous inclinations. Now that is a subtle accomplishment.

In closing, sometimes there may may be much controversy over silly things, but compared to most Sunday puzzles, this one brought out more emphatic declarations of things that matter a wee bit more.

fergus 10:59 PM  

There was a question earlier about why Rexland had so many more denizens that the NYT site. The answer is plain -- that there is a genuine generation of some conversation, and it's not simply amongst the grizzled old folks at the bar.

There's also a pass given to pedantry or foolish error, both of which I've demonstrated in full form.

michael 11:01 PM  

I appreciate the cleverness of this creation, but have to agree with those who understandably have a less than encyclopediac knowledge of fraternity names. For the most part, these could be figured out by going through Greek letters (which I don't know well but seem clearly fair game for a puzzle), but then there was the infamous del taco, tau delta phi crossing.

Can't say that I hated it, but there is a reason why I didn't completely get this Sunday puzzle completely right. And I've been around universities (and for better or worse in the vicinity of fraternities) since I was 17.

I still haven't gotten over listening to Louie, Louie played over and over loudly late at night from the the nearby fraternity when I was at college. (That'll pin down my age fairly closely)

treedweller 11:11 PM  

@michael
I'm not sure your age is revealed. My distant impression of frats is that "Louie, Louie" will be a hit at frat parties forever. Maybe that says more about me than frats.

Noam D. Elkies 11:20 PM  

@retired_chemist: Greek letters can be encoded directly in HTML, e.g. Φ is "Φ" (and the ampersand was printed as such because I wrote "&" — & here too).

NDE

retired_chemist 11:46 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
XMAN 12:01 AM  

@fergus: Hear! Hear!

Foodie: You have won my heart...

foodie 12:48 AM  

@Xman, aawe...

The magic of French!

SeniorStan 10:40 AM  

I have finally joined the real-time puzzle world, although still a day late finishing this puzzle. Chalk it up to zippo knowledge of the Greek alphabet and/or fraternities. Other than trying to make the inserts work, I thought the rest of the puzzle was quite doable (once I gave up on DRSPOCK). In disclosure mode: googled greek alphabet.
Looking forward to next Saturday. I'll get the allegedly killer puzzle. In my paper I always got an old (archive?), very easy crossword which I could never find on this blog. Now on to Monday.
Right now, it's rather exciting to leave six-weeks-behind ... behind.

Anonymous 12:33 PM  

When will speed solvers come up with believable lies about their solving times?

Aviatrix 8:38 PM  

I finally paid for the crossword subscription so I can do puzzles the same day as everyone else.

Count me as a "loved this one," despite the fact that Rex is right: I've never heard of any of the fraternities. Once I worked out that none of the organizations was going to be something world famous, I wrote out the Greek alphabet (by its Latin alphabet names) and then just ran through it looking to fill in the gaps in each fraternity crossing entry. It's true that Del Taco is a pretty obscure restaurant, but it was a safe bet it would be something "taco" and fortunately I found DELTACO to be a perfect fit before I got to THETACO. Amusing that they both mean exactly the same thing. And I loved AIRHOSE.

According to the Magmic app I played the crossword through, I was the fourth person to finish it, too. I guess all the good solvers had other things to do at that moment, because I took well over an hour.

Anonymous 7:44 PM  

I loved, loved, loved this puzzle! Fun to go through the Greek alphabet in my head, fun once I got the theme which took awhile, even after knowing Tibetans had to be the right answer and just wouldn't fit without cramming letters into one square.

The third "love" is warranted by the fact that this is the neatest Sunday puzzle I've done. I work in pen and sometimes the overwritings render the square into a black mass of gibberish. Not this time! All correct the first time. I'm so proud of myself and suddenly find that I love Patrick Berry. :)

Anonymous 7:44 PM  

I loved, loved, loved this puzzle! Fun to go through the Greek alphabet in my head, fun once I got the theme which took awhile, even after knowing Tibetans had to be the right answer and just wouldn't fit without cramming letters into one square.

The third "love" is warranted by the fact that this is the neatest Sunday puzzle I've done. I work in pen and sometimes the overwritings render the square into a black mass of gibberish. Not this time! All correct the first time. I'm so proud of myself and suddenly find that I love Patrick Berry. :)

Anonymous 7:44 PM  

I loved, loved, loved this puzzle! Fun to go through the Greek alphabet in my head, fun once I got the theme which took awhile, even after knowing Tibetans had to be the right answer and just wouldn't fit without cramming letters into one square.

The third "love" is warranted by the fact that this is the neatest Sunday puzzle I've done. I work in pen and sometimes the overwritings render the square into a black mass of gibberish. Not this time! All correct the first time. I'm so proud of myself and suddenly find that I love Patrick Berry. :)

Anonymous 7:44 PM  

I loved, loved, loved this puzzle! Fun to go through the Greek alphabet in my head, fun once I got the theme which took awhile, even after knowing Tibetans had to be the right answer and just wouldn't fit without cramming letters into one square.

The third "love" is warranted by the fact that this is the neatest Sunday puzzle I've done. I work in pen and sometimes the overwritings render the square into a black mass of gibberish. Not this time! All correct the first time. I'm so proud of myself and suddenly find that I love Patrick Berry. :)

Anonymous 7:44 PM  

I loved, loved, loved this puzzle! Fun to go through the Greek alphabet in my head, fun once I got the theme which took awhile, even after knowing Tibetans had to be the right answer and just wouldn't fit without cramming letters into one square.

The third "love" is warranted by the fact that this is the neatest Sunday puzzle I've done. I work in pen and sometimes the overwritings render the square into a black mass of gibberish. Not this time! All correct the first time. I'm so proud of myself and suddenly find that I love Patrick Berry. :)

Joe in Montreal 3:09 PM  

I don't get OUR as the answer to First word in many church names.

I've tried to pay for a subscription but 'some users have problems with VISA so please try another credit card' at which point I thought '(deleted by author)'.

Crosscan 3:11 PM  

@Joe - Think OUR Lady of Grace or in Montreal, Notre Dame de Grace.

Joe in Montreal 3:31 PM  

Crosscan, thanks. I had considered that and don't think it is correct (as 'many'), especially in English, but if that is what the author meant, so be it.

Anonymous 6:16 PM  

This was one of my favorite puzzles of all time, even if not a crossword in the truest sense of the word. I was anti-Greek in college but enjoyed the theme answers immensely.

The only square I didn't fill in was the "chi" in duchies. That one completely stumped me. Never heard of Ralph Abernathy, but the last name sounded familiar, and by then I was on to the Greek letter theme.

I also had "Chico" for the Mexican restaurant, but I knew it couldn't be right without an "s" at the end. Del Taco would have never occurred to me in a million years. Don't think I've heard of it, though the sign Rex posted looks eerily familiar.

Re: "freebee," the variant could have been avoided by substituting "French filmmaker" for "British art museum" in the intersecting clue (7D.) MIRV really bothered me, but overall I was smitten with this puzzle. Loved the Amy Sedaris shout-out, too.

Bravo, Mr. Berry!

PIX 10:10 AM  

I refused to look at the correct answers until I finished the puzzle. Well, it's Saturday, so I finally surrended and checked out Rex's site, just to find the answer was Deltaco. I have never heard of that restaurant. Very disappointing. But...totally enjoyed the rest of the puzzle. The Greek Alphabet is more or less known to those of us that deal with the sciences (or math), so we had an advantage with this puzzle. Nothing wrong with that.

Terri 9:53 AM  

Thank you. I was about to lose my mind this morning.

Palm Springs Pete 11:34 AM  

For all of you complaining about Del Taco, now you know how us left-coasters feel when there is an abundance of NYC or east coast fill, ala LIE, RPI, etc.

Del Taco has excellent fish tacos, by the way!

Fun puzzle today. Thank you Mr. Berry.

Keep up the good work, Rex!

Anonymous 9:00 PM  

He snuck in an extra Greek letter at 110D -- 'eta'.

George NYC 9:10 PM  

Dude, it /is/ The New York Times puzzle.

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