Hindu festival of colors / THU 11-19-15 / 1946 creation originally intended to calculate ballistics tables / Pair on ketch / sibs sigs maybe / Zine distributors / Mario Puzo sequel / 2003 Lopez/Affleck flop / Christian Grey's specialty / Language akin to Tahitian
Thursday, November 19, 2015
Constructor: Andrew Zhou
Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging
- KATHIE LEE GIF(FORD) (20A: *TV celebrity who has owned both a clothing line and a wine brand)
- SOLAR P(LEXUS) (27A: *Never center in the abdomen that's strongly affected by a punch)
- "HELP ME R(HONDA)" (30A: *1965 #1 Beach Boys hit)
- BELON(G TO) (37A: *Have membership in)
- STRING T(RIO) (42A: *Classical ensemble)
- ANNO DO(MINI) (44A: *In the year of our Lord)
Holi (pronunciation: //; Sanskrit: होली Holī) is a spring festival, also known as the festival of colours or the festival of love. It is an ancient Hindu religious festival which has become popular with non-Hindus in many parts of South Asia, as well as people of other communities outside Asia. // It is primarily observed in India, Nepal, and other regions of the world with significant populations of Hindus or people of Indian origin. In recent years the festival has spread to parts of Europe and North America as a spring celebration of love, frolic, and colours.
• • •
EELED? What?" But that was a different kind of consternation. Concept is intriguing, but the execution just felt off because of the two models mixed in with all the makes. Also, all theme answers are weirdly crammed toward center of the grid, with all themers (except the revealer) appearing between the 5th and 10th row, inclusive. This isn't a flaw, exactly, but it seems like maybe a different grid design could've allowed some breathing room. Oddly, some of the cruddiest fill in the grid appears down where the theme pressures *aren't* that tight. ECARD alongside NOYES? ETES / ENTS / ASSES? ILE crossing HOLI? Probably should've been cleaner down there.
KATHIE LEE GIF(FORD) was tough for me, as the spelling of KATHIE is odd and I just ... don't think about her at all any more. I was thinking maybe Kathy Ireland or Katherine Heigl or something at first. I see now that the "wine" part of the clue was supposed to tip me off, but ... it didn't. Also not registering: EMILIO Barzini (24D: ___ Barzini, 'The Godfather" don). That could've been any Italian name. Is that character famous? Verdict: no. Here's how I know. Start googling EMILIO and check out the predictive searches. Here, allow me:
It's not til you get to [emilio barz...] that google offers up the right one. That's bananas. The only EMILIO I recognize on that entire list (above) is Estevez. EMILIO Aguinaldo was a Filipino revolutionary and first president of the Philippines. EMILIO Bonifacio is a utility infielder, most recently with the Chicago White Sox. EMILIO Barbarigo is a character in the Assassin's Creed video game universe. Thus concludes today's EMILIO lesson. I liked the (tough) clue on TOPIARY (5D: Clip art?). There wasn't much else I really Liked. I did learn the word [Sigmatism] (LISP), and I like knowing it, but I'm promptly going to forget it. I know me—I just will.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
P.S. Hey, check out the minor media coverage of that terrible, stupid clue on MEN yesterday. Both Jezebel and Mashable went after it (as did many, many solvers on Twitter). I have no expectation that the NYT is listening or cares, but I'm happy anytime these issues make it into the wider press.
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