A Perfect Score or Half of One – The New York Times

42D. Toy associated with France sounds like a gizmo you can play with, but thats not where this clue is going. The toy is a French POODLE.

Wendy: Everything that the crossword community says about Erik being generous, kind, patient and brilliant is all true. I would also say that the standards he sets for himself are an inspiration. What I learned from Erik while working on this themeless: how to use the Crossfire software properly, that pluralizing uncommon names isnt a great idea, that using words with un- or re- as prefixes can drag down a puzzle, and that only the most common abbreviations are acceptable.

The first seed entry that came to mind was GRETA THUNBERG because, well, shes Greta Thunberg! For me that is the highlight of the puzzle.

This is my first New York Times crossword. Without my great friend, the brilliant Martha Jones, with whom Ive written a number of puzzles, I would not have taken the plunge into constructing. Patrick Merrell, an amazing constructor, spent time teaching me and Martha the basics of construction. Laura Braunstein, Tracy Bennett, Rebecca Falcon, David Steinberg and Robyn Weintraub also helped, supported, taught and encouraged me. And, of course, Erik is, hands down, the best in the business with a heart to match.

Erik: Honored to be involved with Wendys New York Times debut, and looking forward to many more from her. I will steal generous, kind, patient and brilliant, because theyre all perfect adjectives to describe her. You can show her some love on Twitter.

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A Perfect Score or Half of One - The New York Times

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