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

Times 27,071: The True North Strong And Free!

An excellent crossword, I thought, which packed a lot of brilliance into some very concise clues, and also seemed in places to be celebrating a large country I'm quite fond of, perhaps a week or two early, but who's counting? I started out of the gates fast on the right-hand side of the grid, but got bogged down on the left, partly due to entering BRIER semi-confidently for 1dn (a bier is a type of counter for laying coffins on, right?) and so didn't quite make it home inside of the 10 minute mark, hitting stop on my stopwatch at 10m20.

Plenty of Clue of the Day contenders today: I was most tickled by 24dn in the actual process of solving, but with the added wisdom that subsequent full parsing confers I think that 1ac with its sublime use of "scrapping" is a splendid clue. I might have to award the laurels today to 16dn as it took me so long (as a sportsball imbecile) to realise that "golfing handicap" could possibly be divisible. Well played, setter, well played: definitely a crossword quite a few strokes under par, unless that's an insult, in which case the opposite. Gosh I really don't understand how sports work... now can anyone explain to me the difference between rugby union and rugby league?

1 Reason for scrapping cue balls: one’s defective (5,5)
CASUS BELLI - (CUE BALLS I*) ["defective"].

6 Guinness maybe cold after beer (4)
ALEC - C after ALE [cold; beer]

10 Home bird, ultimately reserved, and kind with it (2-5)
IN-CROWD - IN CROW [home | bird] + {reserve}D. The kind of people who are "with it".

11 Reaction to bad weather maybe in the country (7)
BAHRAIN - Punctuate differently to get "bah, rain!"

12 Not altogether calm when speaking at dinner? (9)
PIECEMEAL - homophone of PEACE [calm "when speaking"] at MEAL [dinner?]

13 Admitted being drunk, losing head (5)
OWNED - {d}OWNED [drunk, "losing head"]

14 Girl, see, with ball that’s burst (5)
SALVO - SAL V with O [girl; see; ball]

15 What’s swiped from fashionable club? (5,4)
SMART CARD - a synonym for fashionable, plus something that could be a club, if it's not a diamond, heart or spade.

17 Adult who changes with time? If only! (5,4)
WOULD THAT - (ADULT WHO + T*) ["...changes with..."]

20 You reflected about business graduate’s place in recess (5)
EMBAY - YE "reflected about" MBA [you; business graduate]

21 Backing out of tortuous final passage (5)
OUTRO - hidden, reversed, in {t}ORTUO{us}

23 Kept company in order, after fraud (9)
CONSORTED - SORTED, after CON [in order; fraud]

25 Greek character’s caught insulting old PM (7)
TRUDEAU - TAU's caught RUDE [Greek character; insulting]. Hands up if you went through your mental list of British PMs at any point...

26 Irish in the end slack, not everyone trying (7)
IRKSOME - IR [Irish] + {slac}K + SOME [not everyone]

27 What to put on archbishop's back (4)
ROBE - EBOR [Archbishop (of York)] reversed

28 Entrances on ships yet to be constructed (10)
HYPNOTISES - (ON SHIPS YET*) ["to be constructed"]

1 Pipe runs inside counter (5)
CHIRP - R inside CHIP [runs; counter]

2 Gracious of Nancy and Charlie scattering reusable bags (5,4)
SACRE BLEU - C [Charlie] that (REUSABLE*) ["scattering"] "bags". "Gracious of Nancy" has to be parsed as "how they say 'Gracious!" in (the French town of) Nancy".

3 Fully alert, one distant cry caught in the back, briefly (5-4,5)
STONE-COLD SOBER - ONE COLD SOB [one | distant | cry] "caught in" STER{n} [the back, "briefly"]

4 Unbroken object? Not so (7)
ENDLESS - END LESS [object | not so (much)]

5 One in bed with a bit of ear and back trouble (7)
LOBELIA - LOBE [a bit of ear] + AIL reversed ["back" trouble]

7 Master driving pupil to achieve (5)
LEARN - L EARN [driving pupil | to achieve]

8 Preserve double bill always for date of national importance (6,3)
CANADA DAY - CAN [preserve] + AD AD ["double" bill] + AY [always]

9 Cast work to carry out punishing act? (5,3,4,2)
THROW THE BOOK AT - with a more literal-minded definition also provided

14 Tooth specialist attended surgery, perhaps (3,6)
SAW DOCTOR - double def the past tense of "see a doctor". I only think of Saw Doctors as a band really, but that's only because I've never had to get a saw fixed..

16 Exploit golfing handicap (9)
ALBATROSS - making sure to separate this clue in the right place, which I didn't for the longest time, it's a very clever double def: an albatross is either an exploit while golfing (coming in three under par for a hole) or a handicap ("an albatross around your neck")

18 Husband freezing, drinking some tea, maybe needing glass of water? (7)
HICCUPY - H ICY, drinking CUP [husband; freezing; some tea]. Drinking a glass of water quickly is one of those things they suggest you try to cure a bout of the hiccoughs.

19 What can bring butterflies: no net is used (7)
TENSION - (NO NET IS*) ["used"]. Metaphorical butterflies in the stomach, of course.

22 Page that’s next to index (5)
THUMB - double def, as in "thumb through a book", plus the digit that's next to your index finger.

24 Busy collecting something on plate that drinker’s left? (5)
DREGS - a lot to unpack here. Busy = police officer = detective sergeant = DS, "collecting" REG = registration number = something on (a licence) plate. And dregs are the remains of a drink, so that which a drinker has left behind.
  • 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 →