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May 2024 Contest - Gimmick Midi

鈼嗏梿By Sendhil Revuluri Published 2024-05-21T11:49:02.967Z

Constructor's Note
"A gimmick is a novel device or idea designed primarily to attract attention or increase appeal, often with little intrinsic value." I think this fits the bill. To figure out the unchecked square, take a good look at the grid! (By the way, I've gotten feedback from solvers so far that the center square is inscrutable, so a gentle hint do you notice anything about the diagonals and then a blatant reveal E.)
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Comments

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  • kurtalert 馃2:30聽路聽2024-05-21T14:35:55.691Z
    Hah, nicely done!
  • Sam 馃5:31聽路聽2024-05-21T14:56:30.832Z
    Fun solve! Are there multiple solutions for 23A/23D? You've got DINE, LINE, MINE, and PINE. Maybe I missed part of the gimmick.
    • Sendhil Revuluri constructor聽路聽2024-05-21T16:36:35.054Z
      That is an even better idea! (Normally I would say that this was just sloppy construction, but now I can use the gimmick as an excuse 馃槀)
      • woozy 17:03聽路聽2024-05-28T14:58:12.413Z
        I had fine with isn't a solution.
      • heron 5:22聽路聽2024-05-21T21:15:51.699Z
        was expecting O in the slot! i'm a bit confused why it's E--is it because it stands for "eye"?
        • heron 5:22聽路聽2024-05-21T21:16:16.579Z
          OH i just got it--really nice construction!!
          • Sendhil Revuluri constructor聽路聽2024-05-21T23:47:49.317Z
            Thank you! I was thinking about adding a hint to the Constructor Note, or else circles of the diagonals. Thoughts?
            • heron 5:22聽路聽2024-05-22T01:49:57.981Z
              i think marking the diagonals with circles would make it clearer
              • woozy 17:03聽路聽2024-05-28T15:01:06.237Z
                Definitely need a constructor note. I'm completely baffled.
            • riotblob 7:17聽路聽2024-05-22T12:53:08.709Z
              aha, I didn't spot the gimmick, and had FINE/FINES for 23A/23D, so got myself a bit stuck. clever construction! I agree that circling the diagonals would make it easier to work out (I had put an O)
              I'm not sure about 19D - I only know this as "WHILE away the hours", where the past tense versuon would be WHILED.
              • Sendhil Revuluri constructor聽路聽2024-05-22T15:50:10.206Z
                Thanks for solving and for the feedback! (I added some alternate solutions for the 23A/23D crossing per @strom's suggestion. I'll add some in the center square too. I don't think I can add circles now, unfortunately!)
              • woozy 17:03聽路聽2024-05-28T14:59:57.558Z
                Okay. I'm dense. I don't get the center square or the flashing alternate answers. What's going on?
                • Sendhil Revuluri constructor聽路聽2024-05-28T18:35:37.625Z
                  Totally valid! The initial solution for the center square was "E" 鈥斅燼nd was only a white square at all because of the "Gimmick" theme. The reason it was an "E" was because the seed of the grid was the diagonals of "E" in the whole grid. But several folks said that it wasn't clear (especially without those "E" squares being circled) so I added in some alternate solutions that seemed "natural" 鈥 again, mainly leaning into the "gimmick".
                1A
                Drive away
                1
                2
                3
                4
                5
                6
                7
                8
                9
                10
                11
                12
                13
                14
                15
                16
                17
                18
                19
                20
                21
                22
                23
                24
                25
                26
                27
                Across
                1. 1A
                  Drive away
                2. 6A
                  Quick, informal appraisal of legitimacy or correctness
                3. 10A
                  Collapses
                4. 11A
                  How sloppy kissers kiss
                5. 12A
                  Dubbed
                6. 14A
                  Hellenic H's
                7. 15A
                  Ascend
                8. 16A
                  Include discreetly in an email, for short
                9. 17A
                  Sound of disapproval
                10. 18A
                  Site with step-by-step guides
                11. 20A
                  Part to play
                12. 21A
                  Send, as payment
                13. 23A
                  Present tense of 23D
                14. 24A
                  Kin
                15. 26A
                  Unemotionality
                16. 27A
                  Discourage
                Down
                1. 1D
                  Film holders
                2. 2D
                  ____ May Clampett of "The Beverly Hillbillies"
                3. 3D
                  "Thx" counterpart
                4. 4D
                  British prep school
                5. 5D
                  Actor Burton of "Roots", "Reading Rainbow", and "Star Trek: TNG"
                6. 6D
                  Quick freehand drawers
                7. 7D
                  Elected sachem of the Wampanoag people known as King Philip (1638鈥1676)鈥 or a comet about a comet (?? I don't know, I guess you know this or you don't)
                8. 8D
                  Half steps, in music
                9. 9D
                  Styled like Mr. Clean or Kojak or Professor X or Dr. Evil or Gru or Lex Luthor (why are these characters all White men?)
                10. 11D
                  SI unit of magnetic flux equivalent to a volt-second (through Faraday's law of induction)
                11. 13D
                  Feints on the rink
                12. 19D
                  Pleasantly pass the hours, with "away"
                13. 20D
                  Joaquin's late brother commemorated in a song by Natalie Merchant
                14. 22D
                  Container weight allowance deducted on a scale
                15. 23D
                  Infinitive of 23A
                16. 25D
                  Explosive initials
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