October 4, 2022


Constructor: Brooke Husic

Editors: Anna Gundlach & Erik Agard

Theme Answers:
MERMAID HAIR (17A: Tress style named for a mythical creature)
CREW NECK (29A: Simple T-shirt style)
PLOT TWIST (43A: Story surprise)
QUARTER ZIP (58A: Fleece jacket style)

Theme synopsis: The ENDING word of each theme answer is a type of TIE. We have a HAIR TIE, a NECKTIE, a TWIST TIE, and a ZIP TIE.

And now a word from our constructor:
Brooke: happy to be on sally's blog two days in a row! i really like the long down "bonus" answers i was able to include with this grid. hope you enjoyed the solve!

Things I learned:
  • PATOIS (25A: Jamaican ___ (creole language)) Jamaican PATOIS is spoken primarily in Jamaica and among Jamaicans that have left the island and are living elsewhere. It is an English-based language, and exists mainly as a spoken language.
  • PUMP FAKE (4D: Pretend shot in basketball) Also known as a shot FAKE, a PUMP FAKE is used in basketball to fool one's opponents.
  • BARBIECORE (10D: Pink aesthetic inspired by a doll) BARBIECORE is an aesthetic that was inspired by the trailer for the upcoming BARBIE movie. The movie is scheduled to be released next year.
  • EZRA (54D: "Star Wars: Rebels" protagonist Bridger) EZRA Bridger, voice by Taylor Gray, is a character in the animated TV series, Star Wars: Rebels. The animated series is set a decade after the events of Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.
Random thoughts and interesting things:
  • MERMAID HAIR (17A: Tress style named for a mythical creature) MERMAID HAIR is characterized by long, wavy hair dyed in two or more vivid or pastel colors. 
  • SPIKY (31A: Like horned melons) Horned melons are also known as spiked melons, African horned cucumbers, or (my personal favorite) cuke-a-sauruses. The SPIKY fruits are members of the cucumber and melon family. They have orange skin and green flesh.
  • HERO (33A: Rama, in the Ramayana) I have previously written about the Rãmãyana, an epic of ancient India. 
  • MINT (53A: Chutni nahna herb) Chutni nahna, also known as MINT chutney, is a condiment made of yogurt, garlic, chillies, and, of course, MINT.
  • HAMS (1D: Glazed seitan creations) Seitan is made by washing wheat flour dough with water to remove the starch granules. It is sometimes used as a meat alternative, perhaps to make glazed HAMS.
  • ELI (8D: "The Book of ___" (2010 film)) Denzel Washington plays the title character in The Book of ELI, a movie set in a post-apocalyptic world, 30 years after a nuclear holocaust.
  • NPR (9D: Alt.Latino broadcaster) Alt.Latino is an NPR Music podcast. The program is hosted by Felix Contreras, and features Latin Alternative music, as well as interviews with Latino musicians, actors, and film makers. 
  • VIDEO PHONE (28D: Beyonce song with the lyric "if you want me, you can watch me") "VIDEO PHONE" is a 2008 song from Beyoncé, off of her album, I Am...Sasha Fierce. A remixed version of "VIDEO PHONE" was released in 2009, and featured Lady Gaga.
  • SNAP (31D: Bit of body percussion in Teyana Taylor & Kehlani's "Morning") This is a fun clue for SNAP. Solvers who aren't familiar with Teyana Taylor & Kehlani's 2019 song, "Morning," can still be successful because of the "body percussion" part of the clue.

    Geography review:

    • IOWA (36D: Meskwaki Nation's state) Meskwaki Nation is the name for the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi located in IOWA. The Meskwaki Nation is located in Tama County in central IOWA (just northwest of where I live).
    Which theme answer is my favorite today? Of course, it's a four-way TIE! (Did you see that PLOT TWIST coming?) In addition to the theme, there are a lot of other great answers: TWO POINTERS, MEAL PREP, TEENSY, and CLUB SCENE, as well as those I've already highlighted. Thank you, Brooke, for this puzzle that was a fabulous way to start my Tuesday.
    Many thanks to Brooke, Shannon, and Matthew for guest blogging the last few days! And one more thing: You still have a few days to send me your answer to the first ever Sally's Take Contest. See the September 30 write up for details of this meta-blog puzzle. If you need a hint to get you started, feel free to message me and I'll be happy to nudge you in the right direction. Good luck!