Psychs NYT Crossword: How to Solve the Puzzle with a Twist

If you are a fan of crossword puzzles, you might have come across the Psychs NYT crossword clue. This clue appeared on the New York Times crossword puzzle on December 17, 2022, and it has a clever twist that might stump you. In this article, we will explain what the clue means, how to solve it, and what other clues you can find in the same puzzle.

What does Psychs mean?

The clue Psychs is a verb that means to prepare mentally or emotionally for something, especially by using a particular technique or strategy. For example, you might psych yourself up before a big presentation or a sports game. You can also psych someone out by making them nervous or doubtful.

How to solve the clue?

The answer to the Psychs clue is KEYSUP, which is a six-letter word that means to increase the intensity or excitement of something. For example, you might key up the music or the crowd before a show. The word is also a homophone of ketchup, which is a condiment that can be used to spice up a dish.

The clue is tricky because it uses parentheses to indicate that the answer is a word that sounds like another word. The parentheses also separate the word into two parts: KEY and SUP. The first part is a synonym of psych, and the second part is a common abbreviation of what’s up. So, the clue is essentially asking for a word that sounds like “psych what’s up”.

What other clues are in the puzzle?

The Psychs clue is part of the New York Times crossword puzzle for December 17, 2022, which has a theme of words that sound like other words. The four across answers with parentheses in the puzzle are:

  • (17A) Workers at the rear of some flat boats (POLE)ERS
  • (20A) Activity that involves shape shifting (MORPH)ING
  • (51A) Tally of samples at a geology competition (ROCK)COUNT
  • (64A) Thoroughly or how to read the four Across answers with parentheses in this puzzle (SOUND)LY

The parentheses indicate that the first part of the answer is a word that sounds like another word, and the second part is the actual word. For example, the answer to (17A) is POLERS, which sounds like pollers, and means workers who use poles to propel flat boats. The answer to (64A) is SOUNDLY, which sounds like sundae, and means thoroughly or completely.

The puzzle also has other clues that are related to the theme of sounds, such as:

  • (1A) Norah O’Donnell’s network (CBS)
  • (4A) One with many priors, maybe (JAILBIRD)
  • (16A) Spoiler alert! It’s bacteria (YOGURT)
  • (28A) Michelle of Everything Everywhere All at Once (YEOH)
  • (36A) Shrunken snack item (MINIATURE)
  • (39A) Not that shrink (PSYCHIATRIST)
  • (43A) Dried version of the almost ripe poblano (ANCHO)
  • (49A) Ah! (ISEE)
  • (54A) Salt and pepper or peanut butter and jelly (PAIRS)
  • (59A) Party game choice (TRUTH)
  • (60A) Pigment akin to ocher or umber (SIENNA)
  • (62A) Love of Charles Foster Kane in Citizen Kane (ROSEBUD)
  • (66A) Coveted cup (TROPHY)
  • (68A) TV dad on Black-ish (DRE)


The Psychs NYT crossword clue is a clever and challenging clue that requires you to think of a word that sounds like another word. The clue is part of a puzzle that has a theme of words that sound like other words, and it offers a fun and stimulating way to test your vocabulary and knowledge. If you enjoy crossword puzzles, you might want to check out the New York Times website for more puzzles and tips. You can also read the blog posts about crossword puzzles and the psychology behind them. Happy solving!