Rex Parker Does the NYT Crossword Puzzle: Auxiliary propositions in math / FRI 12-1-17 / Popular Italian brew / Nickname of B-36 bomber, ironically / Italian born fashion model who became a US citizen

Will Shortz Reveals How To Master The New York Times Crossword Puzzle
Will Shortz Reveals How To Master The New York Times Crossword Puzzle

Auxiliary propositions in math / FRI 12-1-17 / Popular Italian brew / Nickname of B-36 bomber, ironically / Italian born fashion model who became a US citizen in 2016

Friday, December 1, 2017

Constructor: Lily Silverstein
Relative difficulty: Easy (not for me, but apparently for everyone else)

Word of the Day: PERONI (44A: Popular Italian brew) —

Peroni Brewery is a brewing company, founded in Vigevano in Lombardy, Italy, in 1846. It has been based in Rome since 1864. The company’s main brand in Italy is Peroni (4.7 ABV), a pale lager sometimes known as Peroni Red in export markets. However, it is probably best known worldwide for its premium lager, Nastro Azzurro (5.2% ABV), which was the 13th best-selling beer in the United Kingdom in 2010. (wikipedia)

I loved the grid, but man I fell into terrible holes in both the NW and SE corners, and so this ran about 1.5x my average solving time. I log on to Twitter and everyone’s bragging about personal records, so … I’m gonna go with the crowd here. Sometimes when I wake-and-solve, cobwebs have not quite cleared out, so I’m often slower than I would be at 10pm; thus, the difficulty level needs some adjusting. I had a sincere “Well, I’m stuck forever” moment right here:

Whole center of puzzle was easy, though I still do not get 36A: Parts played on classic sitcoms? (GENDER ROLES). No idea. None. How are “classic sitcoms” related to GENDER ROLES any more than your local bagel shop is related to GENDER ROLES? Everyone. Plays. Gender. Roles. Just because you’re not Ward or June Cleaver, deep in your conventional gender rut, doesn’t mean you aren’t playing some kind of gender role. This clue needs to stop it.

But anyway, I blew through most of NE, center, and SW. But then I hit 46: Shortly and went with … IN A TRICE (sigh), which I was reluctant to put in because it’s so old-fashioned, but (sigh, sigh) … I Confirmed It With RIME (48D: Frozen dew). And that’s the end of that. Took forever digging out of that one. Also had EON for ERA, since it obviously fits the clue so much better (58A: Long stretch). An era is a *kind* of long stretch, defined by …. something. It’s not just “a lot of time.” So the clues just sucked in places, but the grid is really nice, so I’m gonna blame the editor for the clues (as you always should), and congratulate the constructor.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]

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