ulaca (ulaca) wrote in times_xwd_times,

Times 26131 – Me, I’m blaming the set-up

Similar to Verlaine on this one, with one wrong. I may have taken a little longer, though, with half of my 47 minutes being taken up by a very tricky NW corner.

Now to discover which of this excellent set rolled off the centre of the fairway and into the gravelly bunker…


1. RUNABOUT – what a top-class clue to tee off with, requiring precision and positively discouraging the biffers; ‘light car’ is the slightly odd literal (ODO has 'small car or light aircraft'), derived from AB (‘sailor’) in (fielded by) RUN OUT (‘dismiss’). [see Galspray below for an alternative parsing]
5. SCREAM – SCRAM around E; the literal is nounal, as in ‘Monty’s a right laugh’ / ‘Aye, he’s a scream’.
9. COMPENDIA – ‘summaries’: Collins has the required sense, ‘a concise but comprehensive summary of a larger work’; O[ld] + MP (‘member’) + END (‘last’ – again Collins is helpful: ‘the last section or part; (as modifier) ⇒ the end office’) in CIA.
11. HOOTS – ‘impatient cry’: typically of a Scotch person or a stage Scot; SHOOT with the S moved to the end.
13. SUBSOIL – SUBS (‘sub-editors’) + OIL.[amended - thanks to anon]
15. NEXT TO NOTHING – give this a good biff and you’ll reach the short par 4 12th in 1; N + EX + anagram* of NOT TONIGHT.
16. PRONOUNCEMENT - another biff will get you to the short par 4 16th; E MEN in PRONOUN (‘what may be their’) + CT.
20. GNOCCHI – last letter of [reachin]G + COCHIN*.
21. FREEBIE – a reversal of E[uropean] + BEER in IF.
23. ADIEU – U[niversity] with A DIE (‘pass’); the word that triggered one of the all-time great lyrics: ‘adieu, adieu, to yieu and yieu and yieu’.
24. GUILTLESS – I[rish] + L (‘lad originally’) in GUTLESS (‘chicken’).
25. SIMPER – simply SIMP[l]ER . Very nice.
26. ADJACENT – A + DJ (‘club employee’) + CENT.


1. RECITE – as we turn for home, the tee-shot is arguably more demanding than the first on the outward 9; the literal is ‘deliver’ and the cunning wordplay takes the form of a pesky substitution, requiring the second C of RECCE (to ‘case’ the joint) to be changed to IT. Projected to play the hardest hole on the course today.
2. NAMUR – I had my Poulter moment here, driving out of bounds and endangering the guard on the freight train chugging by, putting ‘Numar’, even though I parsed it correctly, because I just can’t think upside down; yes, it’s a city, county and province in Wallonia and R[ugby] U[nion] MAN reversed. An excellent clue of its type, i.e. where those like me who don’t know the answer can get it via clear wordplay. Maybe…sometimes.
3. BEESWAX – BAX (the English composer Arnold) around EESW (different quarters); literal ‘polish’.
4. UNDERSTANDING – I drove straight into the fescue grass typing ‘over-’ in confidently. The literal is ‘perception’ and the wordplay is worthy of the worst 70s’ British sitcom.
6. COHABIT – ‘live in sin’; first letters of C[onfusing] O[ne’s] H[usband] + A BIT.
7. ECONOMIST – I took out the driver and wellied this down 18; we get John Maynard from SIMON (‘simple chap’ of nursery rhyme fame) reversed in E COT (which can mean a shelter for livestock or indeed for humans, as in modern ‘cottage’).
8. MISALIGN – ‘dress badly?’ is the literal, with dress in its sense of soldiers coming into line; IS (‘one’s) in MALIGN.
10. ABSENCE OF MIND – I’m not sure I’ve ever some across the opposite of ‘presence of mind’; anyway, it’s M in BOND’S FIANCEE*.
14. NEOLOGISM – I was thinking numismatically, but I guess we were mint to; ON LIMOGES* for a word coinage.
15. SPYGLASS – I can imagine Basil Brush delivering this line: SPY LASS around G[oldfinger].
17. OCCLUDE – not a word I use every day, but I imagine the Romans used it quite a bit; OC (‘Officer Commanding’) followed by LUD (‘law lord’, who has come off the bench quite a lot recently) in CE (‘church’).
18. ELECTRA – ‘complex woman’; LATER* around EC.
19. BEDSIT – ‘pad’; BEDS (abbreviation for Bedfordshire) + IT (‘exactly what’s needed’, as in ‘Jordan Spieth has really got it’).
22. BREVE – ‘long note’; two semi-breves, in fact, not unnaturally. Not used in musical notation much these days, but if you want to see how it is represented, check this out. The wordplay is B[achelor] + REV + [wrot]E.
  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
← Ctrl ← Alt
Ctrl → Alt →
← Ctrl ← Alt
Ctrl → Alt →