As soon as I printed out the grid, I knew I would love this puzzle...but I underestimated how crazy it would make me.
Joe Krozel revealed his pack of lies (the black squares in the grid provided a hint) at 56A: Number of clues in this puzzle that contain factual inaccuracies (ten).
It took me some time to figure out the tenth inaccuracy. I was surprised to get the two sports-related lies.
14A: Chemical element with the symbol Fe (neon). I know very few of them, but iron is one of them...so that was my first answer.
19A: Former pharmaceutical giant (GTE). I'm not a very good liar, I guess. I had GAF for this one.
24A: Father of Jacob (Esau).
57A: Dwarf planet larger than Pluto (Eris). [UPDATE: Oops! This one wasn't a lie! Thanks to KarmaSartre for pointing that out. The tenth lie was at 1A: France's __ von Bismarck (Otto). If I'd blogged about that answer, I probably would have paid more attention to the clue and realized that von Bismarck isn't a French name!]
8D: Golf great Andre (Agassi). I thought it was quite odd that his name would fit with the letters I already had in place. I really hadn't caught on to the lying bit...having somehow missed the clue at 56-Across.
9D: Standard office-closing time (nine a.m.). Of course, I had five p.m., until none of the crosses would work.
28D: It's more than 90 degrees (acute angle).
47D: Tennis champ Ernie (Els).
49D: Currency of China (yen).
50D: Summer hrs. in N.Y.C. (EST).
I can't even imagine how difficult this one would be to construct. I just loved the long vertical answers spanning the right side of the grid:
11D: One who exhibits pack mentality? (cigarette smoker).
12D: Who quipped "God tells me how the music should sound, but you stand in the way" (Arturo Toscanini).
13D: Job seeker's fashion advice (dress for success).
Other favorites include 18A: Terrible one? (enfant), 26A: Spot (catch a glimpse of), 36A: Crane, e.g. (erector)...I had origami, 39A: Possible name for the first decade of the century (oughts)...the last answer to fall, 42A: Former Romanian leader Ion __ (Iliescu)...[I just saw the LIES in his name], 44A: Nickname on the Houston Rockets starting in 2004 (T-Mac)...for all I knew, that was a lie, 45A: Kind of dog (seeing eye), 52A: Road access regulaators (toll gates), 54A: Always bouncing back (resilient), 5D: Silverstein who wrote and illustrated "The Giving Tree" (Shel)...a favorite, 27D: Bolt (high-tail it), 29D: "Nope, still not right" (guess again) and 30D: Writing that's hard to read (secret code).
Some of the three-letter answers had me stumped...among them 34D: Park of E.E.C.: Abbr. (Eur.). I had read it as E.E.O.C. so had Emp...which caused all kinds of problems in that area.
The entire time I was solving this, I kept thinking about "lies, damn lies and statistics." If you're not familiar with that, you can read about it here.
That's it for tonight. Here's the grid...
...and I'll see you tomorrow.