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Happy Thursday! Whether in Kenya or Vietnam, Mexico or Iran, I’ve always made it a point to visit spice markets. Spices tell you about more than cuisines — to me, they’re windows into different cultures. Join me today in a special spice-themed crossword, smile about some COVID-19 good news, commiserate with the Japanese about Tuesday’s Trump-Biden debate, meet soccer’s greatest female star (sorry Megan Rapinoe) and visit the world’s coolest caves. End with the answer to Wednesday’s quiz.
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South Africa had only just been readmitted to the Olympics in 1992 after the end of apartheid, and Elana Meyer, a white competitor, was running neck and neck with the Ethiopian Tulu in the women's 10,000-meter. Tulu broke away to become the first Black African woman to win an Olympic gold, and the two women held hands in a moving celebration. Watch her win here.
She's popularly known by this single name, and when she's on the field, she's the only player you need to watch. The Brazilian is widely considered the greatest female soccer star of all time, with a record 17 World Cup goals across five appearances. Lightning quick with her feet, she's been compared to Pelé — and the soccer legend himself agrees.
3. Junko Tabei
When the Japanese climber became the first woman to summit Mount Everest in 1975, she couldn't understand “why men make all this fuss about Everest. It's only a mountain." She would repeat that feat with the tallest peaks on all seven continents and has a mountain range on Pluto named after her. As a child, she was considered frail. She made sure she put that notion to rest.
Like Polgár, Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar has had to fight stereotypes.
Meet the Fighter
Today on The Carlos Watson Show, Omar — a lightning rod for liberals and conservatives alike — speaks about the surprising thing she was most nervous about before taking office.Subscribe to know when the episode goes live and get a chance to win an invitation to a Zoom taping with a celebrity guest!
Speaking of surprises, we all know about the controversy over Hillary Clinton’s emails days before the 2016 vote, but did you know about these other last-minute political moves from earlier decades?
By 1968, outgoing President Lyndon B. Johnson’s promise of an early end to the Vietnam War was attractive to weary Americans. Then, a day before a close election between Democrat Hubert Humphrey and Republican Richard Nixon, South Vietnam pulled out of peace talks. Nixon, it turned out, had leaned on them to do so, offering them a better deal if he came to power. Nixon won.
The Celts call it the “Cave of Melody” and it has inspired a Pink Floyd song. Located on the Scottish island of Staffa, its walls are made of hexagonal basalt columns that also create a pathway for visitors to walk deep into the cave.
It’s time to open that spice box I promised and guess these brilliant spices from around the world in our mini-crossword.
Surprising Spice Box
(1) A spice mix that sounds like a North African ethnic community. (7 letters)
(3) Famous for its bark, not its bite. Produced mostly in Indonesia and China. (8 letters)
(2) It shares a name with an iconic character of modern theater. (8 letters)