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Hello, Operator

· By Mwoychick · Published 4 months ago

Meta Prompt: You'll need to recall the Three Rs to solve the puzzle. The meta answer is a three-word phrase.
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Leaderboard (updated hourly)

  • Capn Rick solved at 1:39 on 6/26/2022
  • Abide solved at 12:18 on 8/8/2022
  • wendy walker solved at 13:03 on 8/8/2022
  • Cindy Weatherman solved at 13:17 on 8/8/2022
  • Meg solved at 13:21 on 8/8/2022
  • FrankieHeck solved at 13:25 on 8/8/2022
  • Darth solved at 13:27 on 8/8/2022
  • Hector solved at 13:37 on 8/8/2022
  • rjy solved at 14:00 on 8/8/2022
  • lbray53 solved at 14:11 on 8/8/2022
  • boharr solved at 14:56 on 8/8/2022
  • I K Snamhcok solved at 15:04 on 8/8/2022
  • KayW solved at 15:51 on 8/8/2022
  • woozy solved at 17:17 on 8/8/2022
  • dplass solved at 17:27 on 8/8/2022
  • Laura M solved at 17:34 on 8/8/2022
  • Bbaack solved at 18:42 on 8/8/2022
  • oldjudge solved at 20:06 on 8/8/2022
  • whimsy solved at 21:08 on 8/8/2022
  • Gutman solved at 21:36 on 8/8/2022
  • BarbaraK solved at 0:55 on 8/9/2022
  • ChemBrewer solved at 2:19 on 8/9/2022
  • Schmeel solved at 3:56 on 8/9/2022
  • Wendy S HeadinHome solved at 4:44 on 8/9/2022
  • DrTom solved at 13:16 on 8/9/2022
  • LisaT solved at 13:35 on 8/9/2022
  • ship4u solved at 16:37 on 8/9/2022
  • Johnny Luau solved at 17:52 on 8/9/2022
  • Ergcat solved at 18:41 on 8/9/2022
  • Carolyn solved at 19:38 on 8/9/2022
  • edestlin solved at 0:26 on 8/10/2022
  • Mikey G solved at 2:51 on 8/10/2022
  • Joe solved at 15:59 on 8/10/2022
  • JHSeeman solved at 17:55 on 8/10/2022
  • minimuggle solved at 19:44 on 8/10/2022
  • hoover solved at 20:23 on 8/10/2022
  • ajk solved at 22:30 on 8/10/2022
  • BrennerTJ solved at 22:45 on 8/10/2022
  • Teamdoubletow solved at 0:21 on 8/11/2022
  • markhr solved at 0:53 on 8/11/2022
  • CPJohnson solved at 1:17 on 8/11/2022
  • Cindy Heisler solved at 1:44 on 8/11/2022
  • Dow Jones solved at 6:13 on 8/11/2022
  • dot solved at 7:15 on 8/11/2022
  • DIS solved at 18:44 on 8/11/2022
  • david solved at 18:50 on 8/11/2022
  • michaelm solved at 13:57 on 8/12/2022
  • OGuyDave solved at 17:59 on 8/13/2022
  • Darrell solved at 1:00 on 8/18/2022
  • Qmark solved at 18:54 on 9/7/2022
  • Philip Chow solved at 16:27 on 10/18/2022

Comments

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  • Abide 5s · 4 months ago
    Loved it!
    • Darth 🤓15:23 · 4 months ago
      Nice one, Mark! Funny that this followed Mike's contest puzzle with the same theme. =)
      • Abide 5s · 4 months ago
        Except this one was solvable!
        • Ergcat 25:27 · 4 months ago
          exactly!
          • Mikey G 4:39 · 4 months ago
            Bahahahaha.
            • dot 🤓13:58 · 4 months ago
              Thank god! The math makes sense!
          • Meg 3s · 4 months ago
            Very nice!!
            • I K Snamhcok 1s · 4 months ago
              Mark, this is a thing of beauty! Very nice puzzle-making!
              • boharr 3s · 4 months ago
                Clever. Thank you.
                • woozy 13:59 · 4 months ago
                  Great!
                  Took me forever to get the second step but once I did....
                  Great!
                  • Laura M 🤓8:14 · 4 months ago
                    Nice construction!
                    • dplass 6:23 · 4 months ago
                      Apropos of last weeks' WSJ! Except I really liked yours! TFTP
                      • dot 🤓13:58 · 4 months ago
                        Yeah me too!
                      • Hector 🤓7:58 · 4 months ago
                        Bravo!
                        • Bbaack 12:40 · 4 months ago
                          That was a lot of fun! Thanks for the clever puzzle!
                          • Gutman 2s · 4 months ago
                            It all adds up to me
                            • whimsy 🤓11:17 · 4 months ago
                              I'd say this one WAS great shakes!
                              • Schmeel 9:45 · 4 months ago
                                Good puzzle!
                                • Wendy S HeadinHome 🤓6:17 · 4 months ago
                                  Loved this puzzle even though math gives me hives!
                                  • DrTom 5s · 4 months ago
                                    Superb effort, I wish I had seen the way forward without all the help I needed, but what a nice mechanism!
                                    • ship4u 🤓2:37 · 4 months ago
                                      Excellent puzzle, Mark! Cynthia solved it very quickly, before I even got started!
                                      • Johnny Luau 2s · 4 months ago
                                        Great puzzle from a fellow Boisean!
                                        • Ergcat 25:27 · 4 months ago
                                          Nice one, Mark! Clever gridwork! At first I guessed "O the Maath" because I took 49d "slash" to mean subtract or take down (like at a store sale when they 'slash' prices). So I got an extra "a" at space 42. I thought it was dramatic but plausible. Had to visualize the "slash" symbol and say duh, he wants us to divide not substract! Hahaha.
                                          • Carolyn 3s · 4 months ago
                                            The light finally went on. Got lost for a bit. Very nice!
                                            • Mikey G 4:39 · 4 months ago
                                              Simply genius. One of my fave MMMs of the year - of course, my profession might have something to do with that! But, seriously, what a great puzzle!!
                                              • Joe 🤓5:20 · 4 months ago
                                                Really liked this! Saw the dreaded numbers in parentheses and panicked. But it came together really smoothly.
                                                • hoover 3s · 4 months ago
                                                  RRRRGGGGGHHHH... I knew what I needed to do; I just couldn't find the first operand. Then I looked at my notes where I had stuff like: 9A
                                                  9A TIMESLondon paper (3)
                                                  TIMES
                                                  9A TIMESLondon paper (3)
                                                  3 M ... 14A
                                                  14A PLUSOne ___, Chinese handset maker (1)
                                                  PLUS
                                                  14A PLUSOne ___, Chinese handset maker (1)
                                                  1 P ... 26A
                                                  26A LESS"Make do" amount (4)
                                                  LESS
                                                  26A LESS"Make do" amount (4)
                                                  4 S ... And realized it was staring me in the face.
                                                  • Teamdoubletow 4s · 4 months ago
                                                    Really enjoyed this one! Very clever use of numbers.
                                                    • Cindy Heisler 6s · 4 months ago
                                                      I was doing it correctly, but didn't realize it until I followed through. Very nice!
                                                      • Dow Jones 3s · 4 months ago
                                                        Like everyone else said, this was an excellent puzzle. Thank you, Mark.
                                                        • michaelm 🤓11:41 · 4 months ago
                                                          Brilliant and Fun! Thank you very much, Mark
                                                          1ARainbow flag letters
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                                                          Across
                                                          1. 1A
                                                            Rainbow flag letters
                                                          2. 5A
                                                            Anti-DWI org.
                                                          3. 9A
                                                            London paper (3)
                                                          4. 14A
                                                            One ___, Chinese handset maker (1)
                                                          5. 15A
                                                            Other: Sp.
                                                          6. 16A
                                                            At ___ (with consequences)
                                                          7. 17A
                                                            They're off-limits
                                                          8. 19A
                                                            "Steppenwolf" author
                                                          9. 20A
                                                            Cinch ___ (Hefty garbage bag brand)
                                                          10. 21A
                                                            Shipshape
                                                          11. 22A
                                                            "___ Plain Sight"
                                                          12. 23A
                                                            Jim Croce hit
                                                          13. 26A
                                                            "Make do" amount (4)
                                                          14. 27A
                                                            Quaker State city
                                                          15. 28A
                                                            Dinner course in Dresden
                                                          16. 30A
                                                            Aimee or Thomas
                                                          17. 32A
                                                            At the drop of ___
                                                          18. 36A
                                                            French article
                                                          19. 37A
                                                            Sling mud
                                                          20. 40A
                                                            Botanist Gray
                                                          21. 41A
                                                            Pianist Hess
                                                          22. 43A
                                                            Neither Dems. or Reps: Abbr.
                                                          23. 44A
                                                            Make sense (3)
                                                          24. 46A
                                                            Hwys.
                                                          25. 48A
                                                            "___ first you don't succeed..."
                                                          26. 49A
                                                            Sade hit
                                                          27. 54A
                                                            "Think nothing of it"
                                                          28. 55A
                                                            Oliver's request (4)
                                                          29. 56A
                                                            QVC alternative
                                                          30. 58A
                                                            Trendy diet
                                                          31. 59A
                                                            Abase
                                                          32. 61A
                                                            Narnia lion
                                                          33. 62A
                                                            Marcia's "Desperate Housewives" role
                                                          34. 63A
                                                            Done (3)
                                                          35. 64A
                                                            Gets rid of
                                                          36. 65A
                                                            "The Wizard ___"
                                                          37. 66A
                                                            Feudal toiler
                                                          Down
                                                          1. 1D
                                                            Hosp. workers
                                                          2. 2D
                                                            Rub it in
                                                          3. 3D
                                                            Raid, Black Flag, or Hot Shot
                                                          4. 4D
                                                            Chinese menu general
                                                          5. 5D
                                                            Commercial cat
                                                          6. 6D
                                                            Had leftovers, perhaps
                                                          7. 7D
                                                            Obama eschewed it
                                                          8. 8D
                                                            Windows predecessor
                                                          9. 9D
                                                            Gauguin's island home
                                                          10. 10D
                                                            Summer drink
                                                          11. 11D
                                                            German wine region
                                                          12. 12D
                                                            Nail polish brand
                                                          13. 13D
                                                            British gun
                                                          14. 18D
                                                            Blasts from the past
                                                          15. 22D
                                                            "Stormy Weather" singer
                                                          16. 24D
                                                            ___ culpa
                                                          17. 25D
                                                            Shows flexibility
                                                          18. 28D
                                                            Dim ___ (2)
                                                          19. 29D
                                                            Whichever
                                                          20. 30D
                                                            Parson's home
                                                          21. 31D
                                                            "Go on..." (9)
                                                          22. 33D
                                                            Absolutely needed it
                                                          23. 34D
                                                            Sun Devils' sch.
                                                          24. 35D
                                                            Keg attachment
                                                          25. 38D
                                                            Deceive
                                                          26. 39D
                                                            Nadal of tennis
                                                          27. 42D
                                                            "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern _______" (Stoppard play)
                                                          28. 45D
                                                            Brylcreem dose
                                                          29. 47D
                                                            View from Jackson Hole
                                                          30. 48D
                                                            What Merle Haggard's Mama might say
                                                          31. 49D
                                                            GNR guitarist (7)
                                                          32. 50D
                                                            Pixar title robot
                                                          33. 51D
                                                            Blue toon
                                                          34. 52D
                                                            "My Cousin Vinny" Oscar winner
                                                          35. 53D
                                                            Blender maker
                                                          36. 54D
                                                            Transcript figs.
                                                          37. 57D
                                                            Soft ball
                                                          38. 59D
                                                            "Curb Your Enthusiasm" network
                                                          39. 60D
                                                            What Apple phones run on
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