Constructor: Joel Fagliano
Relative Difficulty: Easy
Word of the Day: SOCK
A sock is an item of clothing worn on the feet and often covering the ankle and some part of the calf. Some type of shoe or boot is typically worn over socks. In ancient times, socks were made from leather or matted animal hair. In the late 16th century, machine-knit socks were first produced. Until 1800 both hand knitting and machine knitting were used to produce socks, but after 1800, machine knitting became the predominant method. (Wikipedia).
One must appreciate the fact that the Wikipedia article for "SOCK" is missing citations. Playing it fast and loose over there with your sock research, eh Jimmy Whalen? (1A: Laundromat loss, perhaps)
Wait, I mean Jimmy Wales. That's the Wikipedia guy, right? Jimmy Walen's this guy:
I can pretty much just do a mic drop and be done after posting this, right?
Anyway this was a pleasant SOLVE (1D: Conquer, as a crossword). A decent amount of Scrabble-f$%&ing going on here for a Mini, with two (two!) K's, a V, and three C's! I'm bafflingly charmed by the symmetry between KITS and SCOT (4D: Baby foxes and 5D: Native of Glasgow, respectively). Are there foxes in Scotland? Yep, there are. So there's that. Also, isn't it cool how we have specific words for the younglings of so many different animals? Nice job, English! You're all right!
Not only do they have genuine, real life kits in Scotland, but it's my understanding that there is also actual CHALK (3D: Hopscotch player's need) in SOCHI (Russian city that hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics). I know, right? In fact, there was probably more after the olympics. (Don't they use chalk for athletics or something? #sports)
So yeah, this puzzle grid was a pretty (4D: Swell Place?) to spend a few minutes (OCEAN). Just don't forget your oxygen TENK (Six-mile-plus race, briefly).
Signed, Jonathan Gibson, old-timey diving bell of CrossWorld