Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Puzzle by Ken Stern, edited by Will Shortz

It’s Hallowe’en!

TRICKORTREAT (33D Something said while holding a bag) and HATTRICK (44A Hockey feat);

TRICKSOFTHETRADE (20A Professional secrets) and PRETREATMENTS (4D Stain looseners on washday);

STPATRICK (11D Mid-March honoree) and RETREATS (27A Off-site meetings, maybe);

JEANEKIRKPATRICK (53A U.N. ambassador under Reagan) and PEACETREATIES (39D War enders);

CARDTRICK (49D Entertainment from a magician) and ENTREATY (65A Balance sheet listing) --

-- are entries with two-word squares giving up TRICK or TREAT one way or another!

The New York Times is doing a bang-up job of Halloween and it‘s adjuncts, with

yesterday’s Ghost puzzle (yesterday was Ghost Day, a sort of Hallowe'en-e'en) and on Sunday, the Acrostic was on the topic of All Saint‘s Day, which is November 1st -- the major reason that Halloween exists. An excellent trio of crossword puzzles -- but wait, All Soul‘s Day is November 2nd! Will Will will us a fourth on the 1st or the 2nd? No matter, this puzzle and the previous two are treasures! Thank you!

Tricks: STPAT and RETS (they almost work without the “trick” or “treat”); XAXES (17A Some horizontal lines); OPED (21D Like some columns); QUEENED (28A Promoted, as a pawn); HOAXES (45A Some urban legends) crossed with JINXED (34D Having bad luck, say); CARDTRICK, this wanted to be “MAGIC”; WKRP (6A Johnny Fever’s workplace, in 1970s- ‘80s TV) and MSRP (10A Amt. at a car dealership).

Treats: OPAL (19A Birthstone of someone born on Halloween); MUUMUU (24D Hawaiian dress) and OAHU (63A Honolulu’s home), who can forget a trip to Hawaii? ; DEION (48D Two-sport Sanders), a cool name; WOLFED (6D Gobbled up, with “down”), they‘ll be out tonight!; “Choosy moms choose JIF” (34A); “…ANDA bottle of rum” (55D); RAW (41D Uncooked) and RARE (41A Red in the middle); and last but not least, Red SOX (3D) with Ride the PINE (sit out a baseball game)(39A) -- am I wrong, or does that bring up an image of a World Series celebration interrupted by an A-Rod report?!

Other things in the trick or treat OLIO (15A Mixed bag): Acrosses: 1. Big stingers, 14. Ancient marketplace; 16. Siouan tribe; 18. Carries; 23A Muslim holy man; 26A Amanda of “The Whole Nine Yards” ; 30. Took to court; 32. Went bad; 37. Ham it up; 38. SODA pop; 40. Heros; 42. Large, at Starbucks; 43. Elec. Day, e.g.; 46. Aussie’s neighbor; 47. Like some old stores; 48. Early seventh-century year; 50. Wander; 52. Whirlpool; 58. Shows; 57. Entr’ ACTE; 58. Certain flower girl; 62. Focal point; 64. Reese of “touched by an Angel”; 66. Swill; and 67. Balance sheeting listing.

Nothing too SATIRICAL (38D Like
The Onion) that would be an IQTEST (23D Hurdle for Mensa membership) in the downs: 1. Candle material; 2. Turkish title; 5. Lip; 7. Movie for which Jane Fonda won an Oscar; 8. Starboard (nice when the entry and the clue are the same length, e.g., RIGHTSIDE); 9. You might strike one (POSE, again!); 10. Docked; 12. Map lines; 13. New York Cosmos star; 22. Fig or fir (nice clue for a dull entry!); 25. Organism needing oxygen (Hmmm…); 29. Born (you know it's NEE); 31. Can. Neighbor (Doh!); 35. Mean (oops, another trick clue!); 36. Spunky (another same-length entry, FEISTY); 42. Designer Diane VON Furstenberg; 44. Honey site; 45. Rope material; 46. “Sexual Behavior in the Human Male” author; 47. Begin, as a hobby; 51. Brand name in lawn care; 53. Chimpanzee researcher Goodall; 54. “Get Smart” org.; 59. Choices for Chicago commuters; 60. Cavs, on a scoreboard; and 61 Nag (at), yes, EAT!

A wonderful puzzle for Halloween!
Trick or Treat!!!