As you know, our Saturday puzzles are typically themeless. I don't think the 15s in this grid are coherent enough to be a theme, but they are certainly related and they are definitely cool:
- 17A: "I'll do it" ("LET ME HANDLE THIS").
- 38A: Words of disbelief (YOU'RE NOT SERIOUS).
- 58A: Words after thanks (I APPRECIATE THAT).
- 45A: Telepathy term (PSI). Okay, I thought this was P.S.I. and couldn't figure out what it might stand for. Turns out it's the Greek letter PSI and is simply a term from parapsychology. From a quick skim of the Wikipedia page, it seems the term can mean several different things, but they're all related. That's about as much interest as I can muster for this clue/answer.
- 8D: Biblical grazers (KINE). An archaic plural for cow.
- 60D: Some corp. officers (TRS). Can't figure this one out from first few pages of Google results. Anyone?
- 20A: WWII soldier in Africa (DESERT RAT). When PuzzleHusband and I lived in New Mexico, we used desertrats as a username on most thing. I do love the desert. Had never heard the term in relation to soldiers though (but I guess it makes sense).
- 21A: Application datum (SEX). Thought this might just as well be "SSN" or "age" so had to wait for the crosses (which didn't come particularly quickly).
- 24A: Chem class abbr. (AT. WT.). Atomic Weight. We've talked about it in CW101.
- 27A: Gave (out) (METED). Here's another one where it could just as easily have been "doled," so I'm looking at the crosses again.
- 31A: Half a laugh (HEH). I tried "hee" here first, but it worked itself out pretty easily. I actually use just the one HEH quite often. But that's really more of a snicker than a laugh.
- 40A: Hall of Fame Vikings lineman Carl (ELLER). He happened to be an active player around the time I used to pay attention to football, so I was thankful for the gimme.
- 61A: Early MTV staple (VIDEO). Remember way back in the old days when MTV played VIDEOs?
- 1D: Longest note? (SOL). This clue refers to solfège — you know: do, re, mi, etc. All of the notes in solfège are two letters long, except for SOL, which makes it the "longest note." Ouch.
- 10D: Howard (STERN). Just kidding. The clue isn't really "Howard," it's "Hard," but it could've been "Howard"!
- 12D: Actor who was born a Leo, as it happens (LAHR). Very tricky (and interesting!) clue on Bert LAHR, who played the Cowardly Lion in "The Wizard of Oz." Get it? Lion? … Leo?
- 37D: Crash and burn (HIT BOTTOM). You all know the definition of hitting bottom, right? It's when your world is falling apart faster than you can lower your standards.
- 45D: Pepper picker (PIPER). Tried "Peter" first.
- 48D: Caroline, to Bobby (NIECE). Kennedys.
- 54D: H.S. reasoning exam, formerly (SAT I). I think maybe there used to be two parts to the SAT. Yep, SAT I (reasoning) and SAT II (writing). But now it's just one big honkin' test.
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Everything Else — 1A: "Banded" arid-area reptile (SAND SNAKE); 10A: Hitting sound (SPLAT); 15A: Body fat compound (OLEIC ACID); 16A: Bait (TEASE); 19A: Joan of "The Last Emperor" (CHEN); 23A: At least one (ANY); 34A: Film with a lot of reports (SHOOT 'EM UP); 36A: Coast (SHORE); 41A: Acted (TOOK STEPS); 42A: Former British Poet Laureate Hughes (TED); 43A: Fogg's creator (VERNE); 44A: Computer unit (BYTE); 47A: Cone lead-in (SNO-); 49A: Healthful desserts (FRUIT CUPS); 55A: "Let's call __ evening" (IT AN); 62A: Fashionable partygoer? (LATE COMER); 63A: Poet's superlative (ENORM); 64A: 1986 Blake Edwards comedy flop (aptly named, as it turned out) (A FINE MESS); 2D: Smart one? (ALEC); 3D: 2010 FIFA World Cup finalist (NETH.); 4D: See 49-Down (DIME STORE); 5D: View (SCENE); 6D: "Forget it" ("NAH"); 7D: USMA part: Abbr. (ACAD.); 11D: Narrow (PETTY); 13D: Large land mass (ASIA); 14D: Check (TEST); 18D: Chair, say (LEAD); 22D: Cyclops and Beast, e.g. (X-MEN); 24D: So far (AS YET); 25D: Oar fulcrum (THOLE); 26D: If only (WOULD); 28D: Hardly be stoical (EMOTE); 29D: Oxford employee (TUTOR); 30D: Printing pioneer (EPSON); 31D: Rot (HOOEY); 32D: Blow (ERUPT); 33D: "Demian" author (HESSE); 35D: Dutch painter Gerard __ Borch (TER); 36D: H.S. VIPs (SRS.); 39D: Gets by, with "out" (EKES); 43D: Annual resolution target (VICE); 46D: Lindsey's predecessor in the Senate (STROM); 49D: With "and" and 59-Down, 4-Down (FIVE); 50D: Noah's concern (RAIN); 51D: Style with pins (UPDO); 52D: 2010 College World Series runner-up (UCLA); 53D: "La Vie en Rose" singer (PIAF); 56D: "Alas!" ("AH ME!"); 57D: Nairn negatives (NAES); 59D: See 49-Down (TEN).