History was made right here at Madness today...I finished the New York Times puzzle twenty seconds faster than Orange.
April Fool! The truth is, Manny Nosowsky made me FOOL like a FEEL with this one.
The theme...and I didn't even see it coming...was revealed at 33A: Regret some stupidity...with a hint to this puzzle's theme (feel like a fool). The four theme answers are all in-the-language phrases, but FEEL is replaced with FOOL, and vice versa.
16A: Nitwit's swoon? (fool faint).
54A: Spring in the air? (April feel)...this is when I realized that the puzzle date was April 1.
8D: Vibes not being picked up by anyone? (nobody's feel).
23D: Doing credible work as a magician? (fooling okay).
I was moving along quite nicely...except for that damned southwest corner. For some reason that will never be clear, I knew 40D: Bad atmosphere (miasma). I also had 40A: Univ. where "Good Will Hunting" is set (MIT) and 59A: Analyze the composition of (assay)...but the rest of the corner was blank. It didn't help that I was misinterpreting the clue for 41A ["]...thinking it was a repetition of the previous clue. Wrong! The answer was inches...which is, of course, abbreviated that way. When I finally gave up on 56A: News groups (media) ending in an S, I was on my way.
I knew 5A: Four times a day, on an Rx (qid), but that didn't help me get 5D: Paper quantity (quire). It looked wrong, but 20A: New York tribe defeated by the Iroquois (Erie) pretty much sealed that one.
By far, the funniest clue in the puzzle...51A: Pre-remote channel changer (knob). I wonder how many out there have never seen such an animal. Other answers that will come more easily to those of us of a certain age include 25A: Kind of eyes (goo-goo), 10D: "Uncle" of early television (Miltie) and 26D: Verdon of "Damn Yankees" (Gwen).
I always love seeing Hawaii in the puzzle...31D: Hawaiian instrument, for short (uke) and 34D: Gifts at Honolulu Airport (leis).
The connected clues tonight...39D: Belly part (navel), tied in with 6D: Type of 39-Down (innie).
Leslie and Candy just arrived...hours later than they were due...so I'll wrap this up and go spend some quality time with them.
Here's the grid...
...and I'll see you tomorrow. No fooling!