vinyl1 (vinyl1) wrote in times_xwd_times,

Times 27067 - The avenue of penitence..67

Time: 39 Minutes
Music: Fleetwood Mac, Then Play On

I found this puzzle a bit more difficult than one might expect, but maybe that's just me.   I had particular trouble with 'to the life', which doesn't seem to be clued with the exactness I would expect.   On the other hand, there were some truly fine clues in the toreador's whirl and the object added to gallery, so I would say there is much to admire here.

The blog is a little late because I spent the day watching the US Open, and then could not resist going out and hitting a few shots on the holes adjoining my condo.    Congratulations to Brooks Koepka, and condolences to Tommy Fleetwood, who I really thought might win.

1 Calm after retreating journalist went off (10)
6 Some time, so to speak, for you and me (4)
OURS - Sounds like HOURS.   If you reversed the clue and put HOUR, the crossing letters will set you right
10 Defector in pursuit of spy, one going underground in Africa (4,3)
MOLE RAT - MOLE + RAT, in entirely different senses, making the actual animal a double agent.
11 Singular protection for pugilist in love (7)
SMITTEN - S + MITTEN, where the pugilist is more often said to be wearing boxing GLOVES.
12 Feline in revamped Disney corporation (9)
SYNDICATE - CAT inside anagram of DISNEY.
13 Here the Spanish may meet Dad carrying short loaf (5)
PLAZA - P(LAZ[e])A,   The urge to see 'the Spanish' and put EL must be resisted here.
14 Restrictive level (5)
TYING - Double definition, the second not exactly fitting, but close enough.
15 Precisely where the reader may resort for memoirs? (2,3,4)
TO THE LIFE - Double definition, one factitious.
17 Elder priest shunning current hosts by turning about (9)
PRESBYTER - PR[i]S(BY)T + RE backwards.
20 Fraudster making journey back in regret (5)
ROGUE - R(GO backwads)UE
21 Supposed repository of lost car, with black interior (5)
LIMBO - LIM(B)O.   With a glancing allusion to the comic folk meme that lost objects end up in Limbo, found in mock-heroic poetry of the 16th and 17th century.
23 Closeness of Jane and Cecily in distress, Neil having left (9)
ADJACENCY - Anagram of JANE AND CECILY - NEIL, a rather awkward cryptic technique, in my opinion.
25 Object added to gallery a very timely gift (7)
GODSEND - GODS + END, where GODS refers to a seating area in the theatre so remote from the stage that it is closer to heaven.
26 Tweet greeting bishop in competition (7)
27 Charge for using ring on regular basis (4)
TOLL - double definition, very well put-together.
28 Boy participating in gym to improve as an individual (10)
PERSONALLY - PE R(SON)ALLY, a clever cryptic, but most solvers will just biff the obvious answerr.
1 Marches taking up a number of days (5)
DEMOS - SOME D upside-down.
2 Plant borders of Chinese territory in East (9)
3 Union negotiator (8-6)
MARRIAGE-BROKER -Cryptic definition, an easy one.
4 Keep going past contrary sailor in old hat (7)
OUTLAST - OU(SALT upside-down)T
5 Most relaxed English afternoon break, last to start (7)
EASIEST - E + SIESTA with the last letter moved to the front.
7 Extremist detected in unlawful trading (5)
ULTRA - hidden in [unlawf]UL TRA[ding]
8 Asian gets a breath of air in Kent, perhaps (9)
SINHALESE - S(INHALES)E, where it helps if you are familiar with the two main ethnic groups in Sri Lanka.
9 Division represented by lowly Republican in caucus (6,8)
14 Fantastic escape after vessel overturned (3,6)
TOP FLIGHT - POT upside-down + FLIGHT
16 College ultimately cuts organised learning across the board (2,7)
IN GENERAL - anagram of [colleg]E + LEARNING.
18 Toreador whirls, primarily to confuse bull (7)
TWADDLE - T[oreador} W[hirls] + ADDLE, which will certainly confuse the solvers who try to make an anagram of some part of TOREADOR
19 Those excluded from court amid random jeers (7)
REJECTS - CT in anagram of JEERS.
22 Olympian dreams of this mess, it's said (5)
MEDAL - Sounds like MEDDLE, probably as a verb.
24 Tail of husky walking on air, commonly barking (5)
YAPPY - [husk}Y + 'APPY.
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