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Quick Cryptic Number 75 by Mara

Off to a quick start in the NW corner, but found the rest a bit more of a struggle. There was one piece of vocabulary that was unfamiliar to me (13dn), but I was relieved to find the plant quickly, as they are usually a bit more obscure. Easier than recent Friday puzzles - a steady half an hour solve.

I may not be able to reply to comments until later this afternoon, so please read the comments for errors and omissions.

Across
1 ORANGERY - RANGER (park keeper) inside (cutting) OnlY (borders) is where fruit is cultivated.
5 LAND - double definition. Catch a fish and alight like a bird.
8 ROSEBUSH - this plant is an anagram (indicated by unusual) of SHRUB SO with E (point of the compass).
9 FOOT - double definition. A part of the body, and the base or bottom.
11 STAGNATION - STAG (sort of party) + NATION (people) in state of inertia.
14 ESCAPE - double definition. A key (on a computer keyboard) and to get out.
15 TALENT - almost all is AL, surrounded by (wrapped in) TENT (canvass) for gift.
17 DUNDERHEAD - anagram of HAD ENDURED (indicated by drunk) for a fool that was lurking in the back of my mind from somewhere, probably a crossword.
20 EPIC - great is PIC (photo) on mantlepiecE
21 BACKHAND - BACK (second, support) + HAND (worker) gives shot on court. I was thrown for several minutes by the many possible interpretations of the fodder. I felt sure the answer would include S, MO, ANT, or CT. Alas, no.
22 TINY - minute is TIN (can) and last letter of eternitY.
23 REINVENT - REIN (rein in, check) with VENT (hole) for design again.

Down
1 OGRE - you can find this giant in monstER GOliath written up.
2 APSE - APE surrounds (fences off) S (southern) for a part of the church.
3 GOBSTOPPER - double definition. A gag, which stops your gob(?), and a sweet.
4 RESIGN - to stand down or sign-up again (RE-SIGN).
6 AGONISED - after reorganising (rioting) SAN DIEGO, get suffered greatly.
7 DETONATE - ETON (our favourite school) in DATE (the day) for set off.
10 BANANA SKIN - my LOI, though it is simpler than I made it. The definition, which is longer than the wordplay, is possible cause of downfall. BANANAS (crazy) and KIN (family).
12 DEAD HEAT - DEAD (late, England’s chances), and HEAT (qualifying round, what England is feeling), for closest possible result (what England would have considered a victory yesterday).
13 SCANSION - guessed from the wordplay and confirmed with my live-in English teacher. First letter of Sonnets, before SI (is written up) inside CANON (law) for poetical analysis.
16 PHRASE - anagram of SHERPA (indicated by composed) for a few words.
18 GAME - a second hidden answer. Some of biG AMErican for match.
19 EDIT - something affected by the moon is TIDE, which if written up (rising) is change.

Comments

( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
kevingregg
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:02 am (UTC)
Rather a meaty quickie, I thought; aside from LAND, I don't think I got an across clue on the first pass. Fortunately for me, GOBSTOPPER showed up somewhere recently (in the US, they're called jawbreakers). Got SCANSION from the definition and a couple of checkers. Like William, I followed all the misleading hints in BACKHAND; I think this was my COD. 8:25.
rubeculaw
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:14 am (UTC)
I got none of the across clues on first read but the first 4 down clues went straight in. Enjoyable 30 minute solve.

The escape key part of 14 ac escaped me and major penny drop moment when I finally parsed TINY. Last one in EPIC. BANANA SKIN was my favourite.
jackkt
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:23 am (UTC)
My solving times suggest that all of Mara's 5 contributions to date have been of above average difficulty for a Quickie. Last time out (#63) I took 25 minutes (my worst ever other than the special circumstances of #1) but today I was finished in 15. BANANA SKIN keeps coming up in the various puzzles I solve and always delays me until the checkers force me to the solution.
nick_the_novice
Jun. 20th, 2014 09:22 am (UTC)
Pretty tricky stuff as far as I was concerned, probably my longest solve ever for a Quickie. But (as usual) with the benefit of hindsight, none of it seems outrageously difficult. That said, SCANSION was a stretch for me (more familiar with SCANNING which went in until I got TINY and had to reconsider).

And ashamed to admit I could not parse ESCAPE, notwithstanding I work in the IT industry (always just think of it as Esc!)

COD BANANA SKIN, closely followed by BACKHAND which I thought was cunningly designed to mislead.

Thanks to William for very clear blog and to Mara for challenging puzzle.

Edited at 2014-06-20 09:24 am (UTC)
munk1puzl
Jun. 20th, 2014 10:55 am (UTC)
24 mins which makes me ecstatically happy and is a very welcome break from my rising tide of A-Level scripts - don't ask!

Very entertaining puzzle, Mara and a lovely clear blog, thanks William. I knew SCANSION from O-Level Latin - taken & passed in 1966 - where has the time flown?

My LOI was DUNDERHEAD and COD RESIGN - very relevant as I resigned an oompa-loompa job a month ago.

Once I finish my first paragraph reference I'll be searching - anyone fancy employing a one-legged 63 year old with some brain cells and a dislike of petty rules & regs????
martinp1
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:24 am (UTC)
What's an oomph-loompa job, M?
I too, did O-Level Latin in the 60s but I don't remember SCANSION. What I do remember is 'De Bello Gallico' being divided into 'tres partes' and the legionnaires forever girding their loins.
nick_the_novice
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:33 am (UTC)
Re. Oompa Loompa
Possibly a bit of Hobson Jobson? But who knows...

Edited at 2014-06-20 11:34 am (UTC)
rubeculaw
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:34 am (UTC)
Latin O level in the early 70's for me with Caesar invariably going to winter quarters.
munk1puzl
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:49 am (UTC)
Essentially one where using one's initiative was anathema, despite endless tedious exhortations from the top brass across the pond to practice 'efficacy'.

The rules and regs were paramount and applied vigorously and narrowly by line managers of limited vision and intellect.

They wanted employees to take an oompa-loompa (Charlie & the chocolate factory) approach meaning perfect compliance at all times.

I comply very well so long as what I'm complying with makes logical sense.. Ho Hum!
martinp1
Jun. 20th, 2014 12:14 pm (UTC)
Ah, Roald Dahl. Sadly lacking from my reading list.
martinp1
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:21 am (UTC)
A very entertaining and, for me, challenging puzzle but came unstuck when I entered HOOF and (for some reason) DEFINITE. I liked EPIC, TINY and REINVENT. Interestingly (for me) I nearly entered BACKHAND i.s.o. MILKMAID in the big Cryptic yesterday. Yes, thanks for a good blog, William. 19mins in toto.
Andy Borrows
Jun. 20th, 2014 01:19 pm (UTC)
6 mins. I had a similar experience to some of you and thought I was going to be in for a much longer solve after my first read-through of the across clues, during which only TALENT and REINVENT were entered. However, I got a few of the down clues as soon as I read them and was able to use the checkers to crack the acrosses. FOOT was my LOI and I dallied with "boot" for a while, thinking that "body" may have been referring to a car body. Thankfully I saw the more obvious answer in time.
colonialboy
Jun. 21st, 2014 05:22 pm (UTC)
Where does one find these Quickies?
Seeing as there's no regular Saturday puzzle today (rats) I thought I'd pursue these
but don't know where to find them.

docbee6
Jun. 22nd, 2014 01:21 pm (UTC)
DNF. Again.
Got snarled up in the SE corner and DNF. I fear the heat has addled my brain. When I look up answers in the blog nowadays I can understand why they're right which is in itself a definite improvement.
Enjoy the sunshine everyone...
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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