Disrobing of Christ painter 1579 / Most-nominated woman ever in Grammys / Famed deli seen in Woody Allen's Manhattan / Green Hornet's masked driver / Dramatic ending to performance
Thursday, March 30, 2017
Constructor: Lewis Rothlein
Relative difficulty: Medium
- BALSA(MIC) (19A: *What may keep a model's weight down?)
- (MIC)RON (15A: *Onetime White House nickname)
- POLE(MIC) (11D: *Word after North or South)
- CO(MIC)AL (36D: *Shade of black)
- (MIC)KEY (51A: *Anthem writer)
- FOR(MIC)A (39D:*Discussion venues)
Frances Moore Lappé (born February 10, 1944) is the author of 18 books including the three-million copy, 1971 Diet for a Small Planet that The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History describes as “one of the most influential political tracts of the times." She is the co-founder of three national organizations that explore the roots of hunger, poverty and environmental crises, as well as solutions now emerging worldwide through what she calls Living Democracy. Her most recent books include EcoMind: Changing the Way We Think to Create the World We Want and World Hunger: 10 Myths.
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MIC DROP twit on the Verizon commercial so many times now that the whole concept of mic dropping feels as old as "phat" and "bling" to me already. The NYT is just ... belated. Here's a BEQ version of this theme from two years ago. And here's a David Kwong version from last year (from the best daily you're not doing, and possibly the best daily puzzle period, at the moment: the WSJ). This wasn't terrible fun to solve. I am not (at all) a big fan of randomly question-marked themers? I mean, if they're all "?"'d, great, but 19A: *What may keep a model's weight down? (BALSA(MIC)) was just awful, esp. as the first themer anyone's likely to encounter (in the NW). I was like "is this a fad diet? Is the vinegar making the model barf?" But then I saw the "balsa" in there and thought "pffft, I guess something's happening... I'll just keep going." Theme became obvious at POLE(MIC), and after that, there wasn't much more to do but slog through clues and enjoy/endure the fill (more the latter, though "GONE GIRL" was alright) (27D: 2014 psychological thriller based on a Gillian Flynn novel).
Do people know MBABANE? (1D: Capital of Swaziland). It's a world capital, so it's fair game, but I'll confess it was just a string of letters to me. Another string of letters (more familiar, far less pleasant) was OBLA, the kind of answer that makes me want to quit crosswords and take up, I don't know, whittling or something.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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