Constructor: Kelsey Dixon
Editor: Erik Agard
DEEP FRIED (18A: Like many state fair foods)
DETAIL ORIENTED (45A: Attentive to the small stuff)
DEAD TIRED (58A: Completely exhausted)
Theme synopsis: INDEED, each theme answer is IN the word DEED.
Things I learned:
- HYPERPOP (8D: Music genre for SOPHIE and 100 gecs) It has been said that the genre of music known as HYPERPOP was born on the Internet. The genre's name certainly was, as the term caught on after being used as the title of a Spotify playlist. Wikipedia describes HYPERPOP as being "characterized by a maximalist or exaggerated take on popular music." Here's an article from The Forty-Five that ranks "The 45 best HYPERPOP songs of all time," and yes, SOPHIE and 100 gecs are on the list.
Random thoughts and interesting things:
- RARE (16A: Like a Kareem Abdul-Jabbar rookie card) I like this clue. The example given immediately led me to the answer. You can buy a RARE Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (aka Lew Alcindor) rookie card on Ebay for just under $45,000.
- DEEP-FRIED (18A: Like many state fair foods) Another great clue that led me straight to the answer. DEEP-FRIED food is INDEED a staple of state fairs. The last time I was at the Iowa State Fair (quite a few years ago now), I tried DEEP-FRIED Oreos. Now I've tried them, and I don't feel the need to eat them again.
- YAPS (28A: Big noises from little dogs) and SIT (57D: Take a seat) This week I learned about the Havapoo, a breed of dog that is a Havanese and Poodle mix. Reader Barbara
Hodges sent me a photo of her Havapoo, Muffin. Barbara didn't mention whether or not Muffin YAPS, but she does SIT at their breakfast bar waiting for Barbara and her husband to finish eating and completing the USA Today Crossword puzzle so she can be invited onto their laps. Barbara says, "Sometimes she has to wait a little longer for us to consult Sally's blog about the answers for the previous day. Ha!" Welcome, Muffin, to the Pets of Sally's Take!
- RINA (42A: "Chosen Family" singer Sawayama) I just learned about RINA Sawayama a week ago. "Chosen Family" is a song from her debut album, Sawayama.
- DETAIL-ORIENTED (45A: Attentive to the small stuff) If this answer were a tweet, I would say, "Just @ me next time, Kelsey!" DETAIL-ORIENTED definitely describes me. Especially when planning a trip or an event, I delight in making sure all the beautiful, minute details are taken care of.
- ARENA (51A: Chicago's United Center, for one) The United Center is the home ARENA for NBA's Chicago Bulls and NHL's Chicago Blackhawks.
- MANATEES (54A: Animals also called sea cows) MANATEES, also known as sea cows, live in marshy coastal areas and rivers in the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, Amazon basin, and West Africa. MANATEES are large, slow-moving herbivores that are 8 to 13 feet in length, and weigh 440 to 1,300 pounds.
- DKNY (65A: Donna Karan's fashion house) Donna Karan founded her fashion house in 1984. She was inspired by her daughter to launch DKNY in 1989, as a younger, more affordable line alongside her mainline label, Donna Karan New York, which had debuted in 1985.
- E-BOY (2D: Aesthetic popularized on TikTok) The E-BOY look may include baggy clothes, neon-colored hair, nail polish, and decorative chains.
- KEHINDE (14D: Portrait painter Wiley) KEHINDE Wiley is known for his naturalistic paintings of Black people. He painted a portrait of President Barack Obama for the National Portrait Gallery.
- TONE TAG (39D: Online indicators of sarcasm, seriousness, etc.) A TONE TAG, or TONE indicator may be used on social media or in text messaging. For example, /s indicates sarcasm, while /srs indicates seriousness.
- SRI (34A: ___ Lanka) SRI Lanka is an island country in the Indian Ocean. It shares maritime borders with India and Maldives.
- SAUDI (61A: Jeddah resident) Jeddah is the second-largest city in SAUDI Arabia, following the capital, Riyadh. Perceived as the most liberal city in SAUDI Arabia, the city's motto is "Jeddah Ghair," meaning, "Jeddah is different."
- SOMALIA (4D: Horn of Africa country) As the clue informs us, SOMALIA is located in the Horn of Africa. It has coastline along the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden, and borders Ethiopia Djibouti, and Kenya. SOMALIA's coastline is the longest of the countries on Africa's mainland. The capital of SOMALIA is Mogadishu.
- TEMPE (27D: Arizona college town) TEMPE, Arizona is the home of Arizona State University, whose mascot is Sparky the Sun Devil.
I have previously written about INDEED being a word I use frequently, so I was delighted to open up this puzzle and see INDEED as the title. In addition to the answers I've already highlighted, I also liked FROSTY, FROZE, NOT ME, and STAND BY. Thank you, Kelsey, for this puzzle that was, INDEED, a great way to begin my Tuesday.