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This is not the puzzle I'd planned to post tonight! I'd intended to use tonight's puzzle for last week's warm-up diary. But as I was writing the puzzle out I realized several of the answers lent themselves to some great clues which were a bit more devious than I like to use for warm-up puzzles. (In general I try to limit the clues in the warm-up puzzles to definitions and synonyms and to save the sneaky stuff for these Sunday night puzzles.)

So I used the warm-up puzzle I'd intended to use in this week's warm-up for last week's warm-up and queued this one up to run in last week's Sunday Puzzle -- until I realized science was contributing a JulieCrostic for last week, so I bumped this puzzle to this week.

One bonus to this for me is that it let's me do a much shorter puzzle this week. (I'm very short on time. In fact, I probably won't be able to check in much during tonight's diary. But this puzzle is so short, you shouldn't need much input from me...)

Before we get to tonight's puzzles, here are a couple of quick notes on what's coming up:

SUNDAY PUZZLE: This will be the last new puzzle for the summer. From July 28th until sometime in September I'll be posting JulieClassics -- reprints of some of the late Julie Waters' earliest DK acrostics. If time permits I'll also include some of her other classic puzzles, such as Celebrity Disguises. I won't be around to provide help while the diaries are up, but the answers to each week's puzzles will be included the following week. So folks can either solve the puzzles in a communal party on Sunday night, as we usually do, or take up to a week to solve them individually.
SUNDAY PUZZLE WARM-UP:  SPW will continue to feature brand-new puzzles throughout the summer. Warm-Up puzzles are much easier  to create and type up, so I should have enough time to queue up at least a month's worth in advance before I take off for blueberries. The theme for these warm-up puzzles will be Musical Memories. Each week's diary will have a song title as the answer to the verticals; and the diaries will also include a YouTube rendition of the song used as the answer the previous week. Mental exercise and some great music, all in one convenient package!
And now, here's tonight's puzzle. This is a JulieCrostic. If you're new to Sunday Puzzle and don't understand yet how JulieCrostics work you can find complete instructions (along with introductory puzzles and examples of solved puzzles) in our companion series Sunday Puzzle Warm-Up.

As usual for Sunday nights the puzzle gremlins have:
   *  removed all the capitalization in the clues;
   *  bundled the clues in tidy little groups of 3, regardless of how many answers there actually are in the rows;
   * possibly tampered with the punctuation and word spacing in some of the clues.

 1. madder
 2. starts off, things go downhill; makes a change for the finish, and that also is a mistake
 3. type of person eligible for million dollar challenge

 4. beer
 5. soros' middle name
 6. the creeper's beginning

 7. earth
 8. come first, or dangerous visions could follow!
 9. oft-repeated answer

10. take off
11. adler's highly-regarded neighbor
12. ladled

13. since republicans often project their own failings onto others, this may be a good description of rush
14. interested in sex
15. tool (about 6" long and cylindrical, but pointed at the tip)

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