The verse appears at 23-, 48-, 78- and 106-Across.
Santa's had an easy season
lying in his big recliner.
If you ask him for a reason,
every toy is made in China.
Most of it came together fairly easily, but there were snippets that just wouldn't give. I was missing much of the northwest corner, so the S*N*** became St. Nick...causing havoc with the downs. Then the aha moment...when 1A: Literary slips became errata, and 1D: Once, old-style became erst...and everything opened up in that corner. I must say that I was shocked by 20A: Joint (reefer)...is this a first for the New York Times?
Also escaping me until the bitter end...14A: Grade school administration, maybe (IQ test) and 22A: Fashion's Bartley (Luella). With the last four letters in place, I wanted her to be Estella. I can't say that I think much of her fashion sense, though...this was one of the better-looking styles I found.
Several Christmas-related clues/answers, including 55A: __ the mistletoe (under), 58A: Nicholas and others: Abbr. (Sts.), 77A: Christmas __ (pie), 112A: Fruitcake and plum pudding, e.g. (edibles), 114A: Source of "we three kings" (Orient), 2D: Where the bag of gifts is stowed on a sleigh (rear), 3D: Auberjonois of "The Christmas Star" (Rene), 8D: Home of Christmas Lake Village: Abbr. (Ind)...well, sort of Christmas-related, 13D: Word repeated in "Now __ away! __ away!...!" (dash), 36D: Straps in a sleigh (reins), 37D: Number of lords a-leaping (ten), 47D: Christmas __ (tree), 62D: Like the Christmas story, often (retold), 64D: Christmas cookie ingredient (pecan), and 108D: Word left off the end of the clue at 13-Down (all).
The strangest-looking answer in the grid...bar none...is 15D: Line former (queuer). I was sure I had something wrong, even when I figured out what they were getting at. It just looks so wrong.
There were some unknowns that I had only because of the crosses. In addition to Luella:
99A: Decorative gateway in Japan (torii). Oh, I guess I've seen dozens of them...just didn't know them by name. Here's a seasonal depiction.
101A: Classic role played by Gerard Depardieu in "The Man in the Iron Mask" (Porthos). I think I saw the movie, but I don't remember much about it...including that he was in it.
6D: Fictional detective Lupin (Arsene). Never heard of him.
49D: Garfield's assassin (Guiteau). I only know the names of assassins in my lifetime. Sadly, there have been too many.
53D: French-named city on Galveston Bay (LaPorte).
Answers I liked include 21A: Former Acura model (Integra)...good guess on my part, 26A: Locks (tresses), 34A: "Being and Nothingness" writer (Sartre), 56A: Audibly (aloud), 57A: Expirate, with "for" (atone), 59A: Ticks off (ires)...that's its third appearance in the last couple of weeks, so I might as well like it, 61A: Intrinsically (per se)...anyone else try to read it as perse?, 69A: "What to do? What to do?" feeling (panic), 76A: Implied (tacit), 86A: Porters (redcaps), 90A: Unemotional type, slangily (iceman)...until that appeared a few months ago, I hadn't heard the expression, 93A: "Little Miss Sunshine" co-star ((Arkin)...who won a well-deserved Oscar for Best Supporting Actor, and 111A: Jack of "The Apartment" (Lemmon)...one of my all-time favorites.
Best clues...30A: Way overdue to take off? (obese), 115A: Puts a new bottom on (resoles), 10D: Of fast times? (Lenten), 40D: Made a long story short? (edited), 42D: Difficult period (teens), 51D: Initiation rite (Baptism), 63D: What snow shovels may produce (paths), 70D: It's a wrap (Saran), 88D: Big pickle? (crisis) and 89D: Out-elbowed? (akimbo).
I've taken all the advice I was given about resting and taking care of myself. I didn't leave the house all day...spent time wrapping gifts, making cookies (yeah, I'm definitely feeling better), doing the puzzle...just chillin' with the family.
Here's the grid...
...and I'll see you tomorrow.