Log in

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Solving time: 64:25, albeit amidst distractions

Another excellent puzzle from Dean. Plenty to titter about for the schoolboys amongst us in BUM, BALLS, PUSSY, and a few others as well, but they're all used perfectly innocently, of course.

Lots of excellent surfaces, as you would expect, so lots of candidates for COD. I'll pick 12 for its clever cluing without resorting to one big anagram, but keeping a good surface reading at the same time.

cd = cryptic def., dd = double def., rev = reversal, homophones are written in quotes, anagrams as (--)*, and removals like this

1REFORM = REM (Rock band) about FOR (supporting)
4EBORACUM = E + BORA (wind) + CUM (and also)
10GAUGUIN = GAUGe + U (superior) + IN (trendy)
12NOTWITHSTANDING = NO TWIT (clever) + AND (too) in (NIGHTS)*
15CIGAR = CAR (wheels) about I (one) + G (thousand, i.e. Grand)
16BUMPY = BUM (tramp) + PitY (PITY without IT)
17INSOMNIAC = IN (home) + (I'M ON)* in SAC (bladder)
22O + PINION (wing)
23SCEPTIC = C in SEPTIC (pussy, i.e. full of pus)
24MONETARY = MONET + A + RY (line) - 'of LSD' is the definition, referring to old British money Pounds (L), Shillings (S) & Pence (D)
25FARROW = Film + ARROW (director) - Mia is the actress
1REGINAL = GIN (tipple) in REAL
2FOURTH DIMENSION = (FUNNIER MOOD THIS)* - so 'I'm comic in' is all acting as the anagrind. 'Time' is the defintion.
3ROUT IN ELY - Ely is a see (a bishopric), so this is a see defeat
5BARITONES = BARBITONE'S without the second B, although 'no use for' to me implies the removal of ALL Bs.
6RUB IN = RUIN (failure) about B (middle management)
7CASTING DIRECTOR = C + ACTOR about STING (fiddle) + DIRE (grave)
9INCH - hidden
14MOISTENER = IOM (Man, Isle of) rev + STEER about N
15COMMON ERA = COMMA (,) about ONER (remarkable person)
16BEDROOM = ED (Balls, Shadow Chancellor) in BROOM
18CASH COW - cd - lowing is the sound that cows make, so cows are lowers
20A-LIST - hidden
21R + AS + H - 'Flood' is the definition, in the sense of 'a sudden increase in numbers of'


( 22 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 9th, 2014 10:57 am (UTC)
Top class effort, a candidate for the "xword of the year so far" award.. how far the ST crosswords have come, over the last couple of years!
Feb. 9th, 2014 11:11 am (UTC)
Another puzzle spoiled for me by a double obscurity. I didn't know the wind or the old name for York so 4ac was impenetrable.
How is B "middle management"?
Feb. 9th, 2014 12:06 pm (UTC)
Curiously, that was my first in, and I was thinking what an obvious literal, how could it be so easy?

I live in Novum Eboracum, after all.
Feb. 9th, 2014 12:08 pm (UTC)
I can certainly see that it's easier if you know it!
Feb. 9th, 2014 11:12 am (UTC)
Agreed far better than Dean's previous offering and back to his usual high standard

I'm not clear why B is middle management at 6D
Feb. 9th, 2014 11:33 am (UTC)
51 minutes, so not too bad for a Sunday, and no aids other than to explain a couple of things after the event.

Collins has B as a person of middle management grade in administration or words to that effect.
Feb. 9th, 2014 01:10 pm (UTC)
Thanks Jack - new one on me! Is A senior management and C junior management as well?
Feb. 9th, 2014 11:33 am (UTC)
A fun puzzle, though Mr Mayer seems to be getting easier (though no less enjoyable) for me as Tim Moorey and Jeff Pearce get harder. I lived in York for 3 years but that didn't stop me putting an I instead of an A in EBORACUM. Looking through the archives, Topical Tim mentioned a while back that several VW models are named after winds, including the Bora.

COD to 12A
Feb. 9th, 2014 12:50 pm (UTC)
29 minutes but with a very careless SKEPTIC. Definitely been in the Americas too long. In my defence, I didn’t parse the clue properly because my first glance at it gave rise to an alarming misreading from which I never fully recovered.

I remember Eboracum from:
- the Ebor race meeting at York, despite having zero interest in horse racing. I just like listening to Cornelius Lysaght.
- a fanciful but appealing notion that it’s the source of ‘Ee bah gum’, which I’m sure all Yorkshiremen use regularly.

A1 puzzle.
Feb. 9th, 2014 01:28 pm (UTC)
Any puzzle that has 'eaten by pussy' in it is a sure-fire winner in my book. I really don't understand K's objection to 4: E for 'East' is a gimme, 'bora' has to be the best known katabatic wind named after a minor Greek god, and 'cum' - well, if that's not the clearest cross-reference to 23a you could possibly wish for, then my name's John Holmes.

Oh, 85 minutes for me....
Feb. 9th, 2014 02:38 pm (UTC)
I confess I am beginning to wonder if all these potentially dodgy words are purely coincidental. Dean is a bass player, after all..
Feb. 9th, 2014 03:00 pm (UTC)
Intrigued, I looked up bass guitar in the urban dictionary and found an interesting entry.
Feb. 9th, 2014 04:31 pm (UTC)
The urban dictionary is one of those websites I dare not visit. You innocently click on a link, and then end up have to be lifted out of your seat, an hour later, rigid and eyes like saucers... best not to go there
Feb. 9th, 2014 05:57 pm (UTC)
I enjoyed this one, unlike today's. Fourth Dimension popped up a couple of days later.
Feb. 9th, 2014 06:41 pm (UTC)
B is one of the advertisers categories that define the target audience of an ad. A, B, C1, C2 etc
Feb. 9th, 2014 07:56 pm (UTC)
Are Dean's puzzles getting a bit easier, or am I getting better at solving them? Anyway, 45 minutes is a good time for me on a Dean Mayer crossword. I hesitated at the B for "middle management" and at the G for "thousand". But otherwise a great puzzle with lots of humorous misdirection. Ann
Feb. 10th, 2014 10:21 am (UTC)
Hello Ann. G for thousand used to be very common. If you see an old gangster movie with Edward G Robinson and Jimmy Cagney they're always talking about "50 Gs" and so on
Feb. 10th, 2014 01:55 am (UTC)
No idea how long this took me, but by God I made it. I had the same reaction to 4ac as Vinyl. On the other hand, I'd never heard of Barbitone or Rem (REM?), or the Doncaster Rovers--in fact, I was looking for Lancaster Something for the longest time. Finally, this morning at breakfast, twigged to 'eaten by pussy'; that has to be the COM at least, although 12ac was no slouch, and I really liked 14d and 15d as well. Wonderful stuff.
Feb. 10th, 2014 10:56 am (UTC)
Yes, Kevin, the band is R.E.M. - Biggest hit was Losing My Religion.
Feb. 10th, 2014 06:26 pm (UTC)
Yes, a great compiler if you don't mind him barely knowing English. In what sense can 'arrow' mean 'director'?
Feb. 13th, 2014 10:08 am (UTC)
Re: 4575
In standard English, it can't (and although I didn't ask him when discussing this puzzle, I'm confident that Dean knows this). But in cryptic crosswords, "flower" is allowed to mean "something that flows" and therefore any river. If that's allowed, why shouldn't "director" indicate "something that directs", such as an arrow, which is often used on signs to direct people?

Peter Biddlecombe, Sunday Times Crossword Editor

Edited at 2014-02-13 10:08 am (UTC)
Mar. 5th, 2014 12:03 am (UTC)
25a No need for arrow
We took "primarily" to relate in some way to parentage - Mia's father was film director John Farrow.
( 22 comments — Leave a comment )

Latest Month

March 2017

Syndicated Times puzzles

Free online editions of UK dictionaries

Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Tiffany Chow