# "It's left of zero" -- star?

Today’s crossword at USA Today had this title clue and answer, which I managed to get by getting all the other letters in words I felt sure of. But this clue/answer has me stumped.

Under what conditions will “star” be “left of zero”?

If the typewriter keyboard is meant, mine has 9 or ( between the two.
If the phone keypad is meant, mine has the # between, and the * is to the right.

What am I missing?

On my phone keypad at work, the three bottom keys are (from left to right) *, 0, #. I believe this is the old Bell standard. Yours isn’t?

On the phone here at work, star is in the bottom left position and the pound sign on the bottom right.

Look again at your phone keypad. Unless it’s a really non-standard model, the bottom row should be

*** 0 #**

Thus, the star is to the left of the zero.

Is the answer “QWERTY”? (Though you’re right, the 9 is between them).

Thanks for the help, gang. I do indeed have a funky telephone in my view, and didn’t bother to go check the more up-to-date units in the house.

The rectangular array on the cordless ones are as you say: * 0 #

The funky phone I was looking at is meant to emulate the old rotary dial things. Its display runs counter-clockwise with the 1 at the 3:00 position, 4 at 12:00, 7 at 9:00, 0 at 6:00, # at 5:00, and * at 4:00.

As for the QWERTY being a possible answer, the answer was “star.” I wouldn’t have guessed it from the clue, but got it by filling in the other letters in words I knew (or figured out).

Thanks again. Mystery solved.

Some of them clues is bitches.
Today’s was “Cook book” (four letters)

COMA

And the logic to the answer:

Decades ago a trashy SciFi book named “Coma” was written by Robin Cook