February 17, 2021


Constructor: Zhouqin Burnikel

Editors: Erik Agard & Amanda Rafkin

Theme Answers:
FALLING STARS (20A: Meteor shower sights)
FALSE STATEMENTS (39A: Untrue assertions)
FALAFEL STAND (58A: Spot to grab a Middle Eastern sandwich)

Theme synopsis: The first word of each theme answer begins with FA-, and the second word begins with ST-. Put together, the two words of each theme answer have a FAST START.

Things I learned:
  • ABBI (5A: "The Lego Ninjago Movie" actress Jacobson) Released in 2017, The Lego Ninjago Movie is based on the animated TV series Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu, and on the Lego Ninjago toy line introduced in 2011. ABBI Jacobson voices Nya, the strong silver Ninja of Water. I learned about ABBI Jacobson from the January 6, 2021 puzzle, but The Lego Ninjago Movie was new to me. 
  • RAP (52A: Kash Doll genre) Kash Doll's RAP singles include "For Everybody," and "Ice Me Out." She has also collaborated with other RAP artists, including Iggy Azalea and K. Michelle.
  • LIM (32D: 3.1 Phillip ___ (fashion label)) 3.1 Phillip LIM is a fashion label co-founded by Phillip LIM and Wen Zhou. As part of a science and design incubator program, Phillip LIM has partnered with scientist Charlotte McCurdy to develop a dress made out of algae sequins
Random thoughts and interesting things:
  • AUTO (14A: Prefix for "correct") Ah, the mixed blessing of AUTOcorrect. It has saved me from many an error, and yet when I recently tried to type the name of Kash Doll, it insisted that I really meant "Ash." 
  • RED SKY (23A: Sunrise sight) RED SKY in the morning, sailor's warning. RED SKY at night, sailor's delight. There's some truth in this weather lore
  • FRED (45A: Black Panther Hampton) FRED Hampton was chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther party, and the founder of the Rainbow Coalition, a multicultural political movement founded in Chicago in 1969.
  • CIGAR (11D: "Close, but no ___") I previously wrote about the interesting origin of the phrase, "Close, but no CIGAR."
  • GOD (22D: Shiva or Vishnu) Shiva and Vishnu are principal deities of Hinduism. The TrimÅ«rti is a triad of deities: Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver, and Shiva the destroyer.
  • KNOCK (37D: Word repeated before "Who's there?") Do you have a favorite KNOCK KNOCK joke? Here's mine: 
Who's there?
Interrupting cow.

Geography review:
  • ASIAN (16A: Bangladeshi or Bhutanese) Bangladesh and Bhutan are countries in South Asia. They are separated from each other by the Siliguri Corridor, a narrow stretch of land that is part of the country of India. The capital of Bangladesh is Dhaka. The capital of Bhutan is Thimphu.
  • SAO PAULO (40D: Biggest city in South America) In addition to being the largest city in South America, SAO PAULO, Brazil is the largest Portuguese-speaking city in the world.
  • FASO (58D: Burkina ___) Burkina FASO is a country in West Africa. Burkina FASO is landlocked, and is bordered by Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo, Ghana, and the Ivory Coast. The capital of Burkina FASO is Ouagadougou.
Yesterday's puzzle gave us a HEAD START, and today we have a FAST START. That's fun! I liked that the theme was of a different type than yesterday's puzzle. I liked the entries AS IT WERE and SET FOR LIFE. This puzzle was an enjoyable way to start my Wednesday.


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