I'm kicking it old school today by posting my time and FWOE'nouncement. Since I've stopped trying to race through puzzles when I do the review, I've FWOED a lot less often. I wonder if there's a lesson to be learned there? I'll have to think about that. Another reason I included my time was because I like the look of it, even though I don't like the size of it. Some of the ACREAGE was due to hunting the FWOE, which I spent a lot of time on, without success. In the end, I had to refer to the solution. Turns out "Lecture series focused on 'ideas worth spreading" is TEDX. I had TEDs, an answer that made me say to myself when I entered it, "we're calling those 'Teds' now, are we?" Well, I guess we aren't. I'm not really sure where the X comes in. Is it shorthand for the word Talks? If it is, that's kind of cool. If it's something else, I'm sure one of our dear readers will enlighten me. As you will have realized by now, I also didn't know the corresponding Down "British pharma giant, informally" (GLAXO). I don't even know what it's called formally. I STEERSCLEAR of big pharma whenever possible.
And speaking of STEERSCLEAR, that's one of three theme answers related to "2021 in the Chinese zodiac" or YEAROFTHEOX. The other two are BULLMARKET ("Good time on Wall Street") and CATTLECALL ("Open audition, informally"), the latter as description is, as Auntie Mame would say, vivid. :) I am learning Chinese and I actually know the character for this year's zodiac animal group (牛) that refers more generally to cows, bulls, or neutered types from the bovine family. 欢呼!
Chinese oxcart, 5th–6th centuries
I liked "Gossip fodder" (TEA), "Styled after" (ALA) and thought MAST for "Naval post" was ACUTE one. Both BASTE and its clue "Wallop" are fun. I also liked DESERT for "Hot spot. FIRESIDECHAT is nice fill, as are ELOQUENT and ENIGMAS. I feel like I should have known REDSTONE ("Energy source in Minecraft") because my niece was such a big fan, but I needed a lot of crosses for that one.