Cityish Alt-ish Fortyish (verlaine) wrote in times_xwd_times,
Cityish Alt-ish Fortyish
verlaine
times_xwd_times

Times 25,884: With These Clues, You're Really Spoiling Us

A fun puzzle this morning, not too difficult - I was able to fill in quite a lot of the top left corner more or less immediately (2D pulling off the impressive feat of being self-describing) - but not without some chewier clues to deal with thereafter. Easy to get into, harder to get out of, just the way I like them. I didn't time myself properly but I think I was somewhere in the 15-20 minute range, so I'm not going to be surprised when the rest of you prodigies report some sub-10-minute scores.

As stated I hit the ground running, so FOI was probably 1A. LOI was 10A - the shortest words can be the hardest, if there isn't too much to work with on the surface! My COD is probably 20A because I appreciated the "Gang of Four" device, not to mention the fact that that's the name of a superb post-punk group from the 70s/80s, making this crossword exceptionally relevant to my interests...

Across
1 STEM - support: S [second] + {i}TEM [article, "ignoring first"]
4 AMBASSADOR - minister: ADOR{e} [worship "shortened"] after B [bishop] in AMASS [collect]
9 GUINEA FOWL - a bird: GUINEA ["out-of-date bread", ie old currency] + F{eeding} + OWL [other bird]
10 QUIT - give up: QUIT{e} [every bit, "nearly"]
11 ADAGIO - slow movement: A GI [a soldier] in ADO [trouble]
12 MINISTRY - government department: MINIS [small cars] + TRY [tax]
14 USER - junkie: US{h}ER ["heartless" conduct]
15 SUBJECTION - bondage: SUBJECT [participant] + I ON [number one, ie NO I, "rejected"]
17 DISEMBARKS - lands: (MISSED*) ["at sea"] around BARK [bay]
20 MOST - the majority: {parliamen}T SOM{etimes} ["gang of four", ie four letters, "backing"]
21 TEMPTING - attractive: {sco}T ["finally"] "stops" TEMPING [working as locum]
23 LUSTRE - merit, distinction: (RESULT*) ["different"]
24 RANK - triple def [utter / highly offensive / order]
25 APOLOGETIC - sorry: POLO [explorer] in AG + ETIC [middle of {par}AG{uay} + call = CITE "back"]
26 HIT THE SPOT - was just right: punny "potential slogan for acne treatment"
27 TIER - bank: double def with person joining, ie one who ties

Down
2 TOUT DE SUITE - "immediately from abroad": TOUT [solicitor] + SUIT [case] in DEE{d} [action "almost"]
3 MENAGERIE - collection of beasts: M [male] + NAG [horse] in EERIE [sinister]
4 AT A LOSS - stumped: A TOSS ["what the uncaring don't give"] when A L [a learner] "comes in"
5 BLOOMSBURY GROUP - [G.E.] Moore's followers: GROUP [collect] after BLOOMS [flowers] + BURY [put in ground]
6 SILENCE - put a stop to: double def with "what's prayed before toast", as in "pray silence!"
7 DOUBT - question: D OUT [daughter, wrong] about B [bachelor]
8 RATTY - cross: RAY [beam] "spanning" T T [two junctions]
13 ROOM SERVICE - "good hotel will offer it": (CRIME OVER SO*) "appalling"
16 TIME SHEET - worker's schedule: HE in (ESTIMATE - A*) "false" "regardless of A"
18 BRIGADE - contingent: BRIGAND - N ["nameless" outlaw] + E [European]
19 SOLD OUT - exhausted: SOLD{iers} [troops "not half"] + OUT [exposed]
21 TORCH - burn: TOR [rubbish = ROT "written about"] + CH [church]
22 MANET - Impressionist: MEANT [was determined] "to put down" E [English]
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