Mon. Dec. 17 NYT Crossword Hints

If you’ve come to this page directly and want to see the full puzzle blog with most recent posts up top, click here.  <– This is the page to bookmark if you want to come back for more hints in the future.  Google doesn’t index my blog as fast as I post, so bookmarking is a good way to get hints without accidentally getting direct answers.  I normally blog every puzzle on the night before it comes out in the newspaper.

Monday’s are where to start if you’re new to NY Times Crosswords.  This blog is here to make the puzzle more fun by giving you hints without giving away the answers.  NY Times puzzles often have some repetition through the week, so sometimes a Monday clue/answer combo will show up with more difficult cluing later in the week.

Monday’s always have themes.  That means that the longer answers (in this case 17-across, 40-across, 64-across, 11-down and 35-down can be broken into two parts, one part of which is similar for all of them.  So if you know where the Wright Bros. tested their airplane and what kind of tests are common in hospitals these days, then you’ll have a leg up figuring out which James Bond movie the puzzle’s referring to.

A few specific clue hints:

Trivial pursuit wedge fractions:  Well, it’s not a pizza and EIGHTHs is too long anyway.  (Remember the NYT always takes care to have the answer correspond to the clue in terms of things like plural vs. singular, verb vs. noun etc.)  So don’t go trying to squeeze eighths in there.

_____ club (singing group):  …or: a popular TV show about a singing club

Samuel on the Supreme Court:  Sammy da bull?

String quartet member:  not a violin, but close

Dolt’s response:  Not Homer Simpson’s catchword, but close

Follow behind: two words

Either side of a doorway:  What you need so it isn’t AJAR, another popular Monday puzzle word

151 in Old Rome:  Learn you Roman numerals, they come up all the time.  Remember (though it does not matter here), that putting a smaller unit to the left of a larger one means you subtract that number.  So if I = 1 and X = 10,, IX = 9.  Capisce?