Handsome hombres / SAT 11-21-15 / Luxuries not necessities per Cher / Dramatist Thomas who was contemporary of Shakespeare / Glamis Shakespearean epithet / First US college to divest from apartheid South Africa / People visited by Captain Cook 1769 / Biblical character who lived 912 years
Saturday, November 21, 2015
Constructor: Natan Last
Relative difficulty: Easy
THEME: general awesomeness
Word of the Day: THE NOTORIOUS B.I.G. (5D: "Mo Money Mo Problems" rapper) —
Christopher George Latore Wallace (May 21, 1972 – March 9, 1997), better known by his stage names The Notorious B.I.G, Biggie, or Biggie Smalls, was an American rapper. Wallace is consistently ranked as one of the greatest rappers ever and one of the most influential rappers of all time. // Wallace was raised in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. When he released his debut album Ready to Die in 1994, he became a central figure in the East Coast hip hop scene and increased New York's visibility in the genre at a time when West Coast hip hop was dominant in the mainstream. The following year, Wallace led his childhood friends to chart success through his protégé group, Junior M.A.F.I.A. While recording his second album, Wallace was heavily involved in the growing East Coast–West Coast hip hop feud. On March 9, 1997, Wallace was killed by an unknown assailant in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles. His double-disc set Life After Death, released 16 days later, rose to No. 1 on the U.S. album charts and was certified Diamond in 2000, one of the few hip hop albums to receive this certification. Wallace was noted for his "loose, easy flow", dark semi-autobiographical lyrics and storytelling abilities. Two more albums have been released since his death. He has certified sales of 17 million units in the United States. (wikipedia)
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K. Cameron Collins' gem was just last week, so ... I haven't had this much fun in a week. Before *that*, who knows how long. I wish (as I wished last week) that the puzzle had been harder; I was 2+ minutes faster than yesterday, and that's including taking the time to stop and get screenshots mid-solve. As I was solving, I couldn't believe how much great stuff he was managing to cram in here. I stopped at THE NOTORIOUS B.I.G. to take a screenshot, little knowing that the rest of that stack (pillar?) of 15s was going to fill out so beautifully. I was still oohing at Biggie when bam, HATERS GONNA HATE! That is a sick one-two punch. And then AMERICAN APPAREL, which is also young-skewing, and also timely, in that they filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy just last month.
[HATERS GONNA HATE]
OK, ESNE is never good, but the puzzle totally knows that and is winking at you like "come on, you know you're gonna forgive this" (9D: A slave to crosswords?). And I did. And do.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
P.S. MEN! (58A: "Luxuries," not "necessities," per Cher)
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