Monday, December 12, 2022

Monday, December 12, 2022, Anthony J. Caruso and Zhouqin Burnikel

Ms. Burnikel teams up today with Mr. Caruso for his first published NYT crossword. Congratulations on joining the ranks of the rich and famous! Well, maybe just famous. In certain circles.


Our theme today is revealed at 39A: Dog command ... or a hint to the starts of the answers to the four starred clues (GOFETCH). I like that the four theme answers hide the things a dog might fetch in ways that do not directly relate to a thing a dog might actually be able to carry in its mouth. Thus BALLOFFIRE and PAPERTRAIL. STICKTOIT is particularly figurative in this situation!

Bonus theme material can be found at 23D: Snoopy and Gromit, for two (BEAGLES) - two cartoon dogs who never in their lives would be caught dead fetching something. Also, perhaps 66A: R&B great Redding (OTIS) could have been clued to refer to the movie Milo & Otis...

It being a Monday, the clues do not skew tricksy. I still liked 41A: Org. for Penguins and Ducks (NHL), as well as 57A: Fliers that may consume thousands of insects in an hour (BATS).

Fun entries include KISMET and EMOPOP (I happen to really like Panic! at the Disco). It's a strong and smooth Monday that went by in 2:45.

- Colum


  1. Really nice puzzle. And I enjoy playing fetch with dogs because, for reasons that escape me, they really seem to love it! That clue on BATS blew me away...I had no idea!

  2. Well, typo-itis put me from Colum territory to 3:03. Sigh. Loved the theme. I am a huge dog lover. (Well, I also love small dogs.) Every dog in our neighbourhood - I am its favourite uncle. We had a dog but she died before her time, at the start of Covid. Still hoping to get another...

    1. So sorry to hear about your dog. We also lost one during COVID. Definitely a COVID related fatality because we were delayed from getting appropriate care by lack of access. Fortunately we have 2 new dogs now, and they're great!

    2. I'm sorry about your dogs, Philbo and Colum. We lost ours during the height of COVID. Miss him lots!