Wednesday, January 18, 2023, Jason Reich & Katie Hale

27. Downpour, or when parsed another way, what can be found in this puzzle's sets of circles: FALLING RAIN / FALLIN' GRAIN

The circled letters spell four different grains, SPELT, RYE, WHEAT, and RICE. Whole grains A-Z. Because they're all downs, they're FALLING.

We've seen Katie Hale's puzzles before, but this appears to be Jason Reich's debut at the corner. We hope we hear from one or both of you.


1. Droops: SAGS.

5. Future yearling: FOAL. A yearling is a male or female horse, between one and two years of age.

9. Lengthy test answer: ESSAY.

14. Furrow maker: PLOW. Not BROW.

15. Off course: AWRY.

16. __ lazuli: LAPIS. Intense blue, semi-precious stone. Considered the alternative birthstone for the month of September, together with Sapphires.

17. To whom Rick says, "The Germans wore gray. You wore blue": ILSA. Casablanca.

18. Commits an email faux pas: REPLIES ALL. I once had a (female) boss who accidentally "replied all" with some comments about the sender that should not have been public. I was so glad it wasn't me. Also know a woman who accidentally sent a picture of herself flipping off her cheating spouse ... to everyone on her contact list. The pitfalls of technology are many.

20. Wannabe: COPYCAT.

22. Inscribe: ETCH.

23. Lamb nurser: EWE.

24. Unaccounted for, for short: AWOL. Away without leave.

26. Prop for Gandalf: STAFF. All FIVE Of Gandalf's Staffs (& When They Appear).

29. Reader's Digest co-founder Wallace: LILA.

31. Stink: ODOR.

33. Battery size: AAA. Unless I'm missing something, this couldn't be anything else, since AAA is the only battery size that has three letters (with no numbers). List of battery sizes.

35. Space bar neighbor, on a PC: ALT KEY. The space bar has many neighbors, because of its width. On a Mac, it's labeled  "option."

37. Crowdsourced source, briefly: WIKI.

38. Sass: LIP.

39. Tempter of Odysseus: SIREN. Sirens in The Odyssey were alluring creatures who sang beautiful songs that could drive a man mad just by hearing them. The sirens were one of the first ordeals Odysseus and his crew had to pass through so they could continue on their journey home to Ithaca.

40. Unit of resistance: OHM.

41. Matches a bet: CALLS. Poker.

43. Post-op area: ICU. Intensive Care Unit in a hospital.

44. Challenge: DARE. So many activities turned into a challenge now, like a decluttering challenge. Everything has to be a contest. Remember when cooking shows were just people cooking regular food? Like Julia Child's The French Chef, Jeff Smith's The Frugal Gourmet, and  Graham Kerr's The Galloping Gourmet. I would sit in front of PBS on Saturdays, pre-internet, with a pad of paper to write down the recipes.

46. Undoing: DEMISE.

47. Didn't need to be let out: FIT. Ohhhh ... as in altering clothing. I was thinking dog. Cats of course always need to be let in or out, wherever they're not.

48. "Mamma Mia!" pop group: ABBA.

49. Rider's strap: REIN. Horse rider.

50. Actress Birch: THORA. First I remember paying attention to her was in 1995's Now and Then. On the left below. Melanie Griffith played her adult counterpart.

52. Greenish blue: TEAL.

54. Gimlet liquor: GIN.

57. Classic PC game: MYST.

59. Words of apology: I'M SORRY. My son and I have been watching Curb Your Enthusiasm from first season to current. We're up to season 9 now. Larry David apologizes in virtually every single episode. Warning: language.

61. Salisbury Plain megaliths: STONEHENGE. This is what the Salisbury Plain looked like before Stonehenge.

65. Michigan, for one: LAKE.

66. Justice Sotomayor: SONIA. “There are uses to adversity, and they don’t reveal themselves until tested. Whether it’s serious illness, financial hardship, or the simple constraint of parents who speak limited English, difficulty can tap unexpected strengths.”

67. Adderall target, briefly: ADHD.

68. Plan from a nutritionist: DIET.

69. Lack of musical talent: NO EAR.

70. "Roar" singer Perry: KATY.

71. Stops: ENDS.


1. Rub component: SPICE.

2. Greenlight: ALLOW.

3. Undeniably accurate statement: GOSPEL TRUTH.

4. Convince: SWAY.

5. Like a dreamy look: FARAWAY. Faraway vs. far away.

6. Have because of: OWE TO

7. Dadaism pioneer Jean: ARP. Jean (Hans) Arp.

8. Crocodile in Bernard Waber children's books: LYLE.

9. Fish that shock prey: ELECTRIC EELS.

10. Beyoncé's "I Am... ___ Fierce": SASHA. 6 facts you might not know about Beyoncé's 'I am... Sasha Fierce'

11. Place for some "me time": SPA.

12. Feel off: AIL.

13. DKNY rival: YSL. Fashion houses. Donna Karan New York and Yves Saint Laurent.

19. Generous response to 59-Across: IT'S OK.

21. January 1 to December 31: CALENDAR YEAR.

25. Like sous vide cooking: LOW HEAT. What is Sous Vide?

28. Stops working: FAILS.

30. Barinholtz of "The Mindy Project": IKE.

32. Not so bright: DIM.

34. Semicircular church area: APSE.

35. "Dream on": AS IF.

36. Permitted by law: LICIT.

40. Poetic sphere: ORB.

42. French pal: AMI.

45. Embarrass: ABASH. Only see this word in crosswords and books.

46. Hybrid genre: DRAMEDY. Drama+comedy.

51. Labor __ vincit: Oklahoma motto: OMNIA. Latin phrase meaning "Work conquers all."

53. Small cube?: EIGHT. A cube number is the result when a number has been multiplied by itself twice. The symbol for cubed is ³. 8 is a cube number because it’s 2 x 2 x 2 (2 multiplied by itself twice); this is also written as (“two cubed”). The first ten cube numbers are 1, 8, 27, 64, 125, 216, 343, 512, 729 and 1000.

55. Got to: IRKED. Verb - annoyed.

56. Russian refusals: NYETS.

58. Hardwood used for pricey salad bowls: TEAK. What is teak wood and why is it so great?

60. Shoppe adjective: OLDE.

61. Oft-redacted ID: SSN. Social Security number.

62. In addition: TOO.

63. Number of players needed to play solitaire: ONE.

64. Secret-protecting doc: NDA. Non-disclosure agreement.