July 26th, 2020

Mephisto 3125 - Tim Moorey

It's your weekly dose of barred-grid, this time with Tim Moorey and a puzzle that I found pretty straightforward - usually Tim throws in a few cultural references that are not in my wheelhouse, but I only needed to look a few things up along the way here.

I hope everyone is staying safe and sane! I went for a walk through my town this afternoon and was appalled to find crowds of people, few wearing masks, and one large religious gathering I gave a wide berth to. My mask read "it's way too peopley outside".

In Mephisto puzzles, definitions the most direct of which is underlined, can be confirmed in Chambers, so I will focus on the wordplay here.

Away we go...

1 Branch longs for some bags (8)
BRITCHES - BR(branch), ITCHES(longs for)
7 English novelist has me taken aback in places (4)
AIMS - the novelist is Kinglsey AMIS, move the I(me) back oops - see comments, it is MI(musical note ME) reversed
11 Covered with sunken lines, work in Danube port (6)
RUGOSE - GO(work) inside RUSE(Bulgarian port on the Danube)
12 Indigenous Americans having change of heart, right? (5)
INNIT - the indigenous Americans are INUIT, change the middle letter
13 Nothing in regatta worked showing evidence of malaise at Oxford (8)
AEGROTAT - O(nothing) inside an anagram of REGATTA. I expect to see a few equivlants of these as we are scheduled to start classes in two weeks.
15 Rule divides public on essential point for planner (10)
STRATEGIST - R(rule) inside STATE(public) and then GIST(essential point)
16 Crime cases taken by police officer half lost (5)
CAPER - CA(cases) then the second half of COPPER(police officer)
19 Shy over flipping Greek coin once (4)
OBOL - LOB(shy) and O(over) all reversed
20 Like a hooker, Patricia grabs Pam roughly! (8)
TRAMPISH - TRISH(Patricia) containing an anagram of PAM
21 Two girls needed to carry one vessel (8)
GALLIASS - the two girls are GAL and LASS, insert I(one)
23 Pay one old bill with nothing discounted (4)
ANTE - A(one), then NOTE(old bill) missing the O(nothing)
25 Accepted number till as before almost out of date (5)
ANEAR - A(accepted), N(number), EAR(till)
27 Spades cut out of flexible present and former sheet metal (10, two words)
TERNE PLATE - remove S(spades) from an anagram of PRESENT, then LATE(former)
30 Mammal swimming awhile in great lake tailed (8, two words)
SEI WHALE - anagram of AWHILE in SEA(great lake) missing the last letter
31 Some find missing beginner tried hard (5)
TROVE - remove the first letter from STROVE(tried hard)
32 Slides and photographs spoken of (6)
CHUTES - sounds like SHOOTS(photographs)
33 Old drudge extremely stupid about taking day off (4)
ESNE - DENSE(extremely stupid) reversed, mising D(day)
34 State again: rests are out! (8)
1 What’s close to bust? Eastern bank in Aberdeen (4)
BRAE - the BRA is close to the bust, then E(eastern)
2 Pity about keeping bit of distance in Cuban dance (5)
RUEDA - RUE(pity) and A(about) containing the first letter of Distance
3 Pasta and rich cake before returning home sick (10)
TORTELLINI - TORTE(rich cake), then IN(home), ILL(sick) all reversed
4 Look into Jock’s hot, top-class paramours (8)
HETAIRAI - AIR(look) inside HET(hot), AI(first class)
5 Arrival time heading to taxi rank in Paris (4)
ETAT - ETA(arrival time) then the first letter in Taxi
6 Views reported in destinations for surfers (5)
SITES - sounds like SIGHTS(views)
8 On the threshold military intelligence chaps under control (8, two words)
IN LIMINE - MI(militarry intelligence), inside IN LINE
9 Member lives with relative, lady of the house (6)
MISSIS - M(member), IS(lives) and SIS(relative)
10 Sewer that could make you sit and retch! (8)
STITCHER - anagram of SIT and RETCH
14 Plant, one occupying a space like this (10)
AGAPANTHUS - A(one) inside A GAP(space), THUS(like this)
16 Deliberate gait wrongly shown in French side (8)
COGITATE - anagram of GAIT inside COTE(French side)
17 Mean chicken cut up on Scottish golf course (8)
POLTROON - LOP(cut) reversed, then TROON(Scottish golf course)
18 Herb, one Catholic overlooking a magnificent church (8)
BASILICA - BASIL(serb), I, C(Catholic), on A
22 Foreign rulers and queen in same ground (6)
AMEERS - ER(queen) in an anagram of SAME
24 Gale leaving tons in river (5)
WESER - the gale is a WESTER, remove T for the German river
26 More talented story-teller needing introduction (5)
ABLER - FABLER(story-teller) missing the first letter
28 A term in France for old man (4)
PERE - PER(a), then the last letter in francE
29 Hard for female in party command that’s old-fashioned (4)
HEST - FEST(party) with H(hard) replacing F(female)

Sunday Times 4912 by David McLean - advance, police cars!

11:57. Nothing too difficult in this one. The unknown coins at 26ac looked very unlikely, even with such crystal-clear wordplay, but more or less everything else was familiar to me.

So without further ado…

Definitions are underlined, anagrams indicated like (TIHS)*, anagram indicators are in italics.

1 Supporting charges in attack
FORWARDS - FOR (pro, supporting), WARDS (charges, as in wards of court). Football players, presumably.
5 Endangered animals face ruin without end
PANDAS - PAN (face), DASh.
9 After explosion, note ears ring long and loud
10 You could go for a walk on this plain
COMMON - DD. I do go for a walk on one of these several times a week. In fact I often go for a walk on two of them because Barnes and Putney commons are next to one another and in fact I don’t really know where the boundary is.
12 Game's tasty without starter on bit of rocket
RUMMY - Rocket, yUMMY.
13 Ship that’s passed cape makes major turn
HEADLINER - HEAD (cape), LINER (ship). Cunning definition. There was a rogue question mark in the online version of this clue.
14 Somehow nice and confined behind closed doors
18 Criminal a hero rebukes?
HOUSEBREAKER - (A HERO REBUKES)*. I would classify this as an &Lit since the whole thing is wordplay, and you can also consider it all to be the definition, even if everything apart from the word ‘criminal’ is unnecessary.
21 Homesick cast and I long to have parts elsewhere!
NOSTALGIC - (CAST I LONG)*. I think of nostalgia as a longing for the past rather than home but this meaning is there in Collins.
23 Duck at the source of river’s finally quacked
DOUSE - quackeD, OUSE.
24 Get a picture of one escort cuddling English leader
IDEATE - I, D(English)ATE.
25 Flipping chaos involved in island build
ASSEMBLE - reversal of ELB(MESS)A.
26 Divide up grand to be given back in old coins
GERAHS - reversal of SHARE, G. I confess I looked this up before submitting but it’s definitely what I would have put in under competition conditions so I’m giving it to myself.
27 Explain hint of sedition in Tory faithful

1 Coat men put over head to endure storm
FURORE - FUR, OR, Endure.
2 One thinking up final part of scene for Carry On
RESUME - reversal of MUSER, scenE.
3 Getting out of hand, can anyone bother?
4 Bottle of juice
DUTCH COURAGE - a cryptic definition: bottle is courage of course and juice is apparently a word for alcoholic drink.
6 Island everyone goes round first, not last
7 Party sweet stuffed with bits of aniseed and nuts on top
DOMINANT - DO, MIN(Aniseed, Nuts)T
8 Soldiers stationed at front by access points?
11 City abroad Corsican fans trashed
15 Daughter cut down on study at uni without fear
DREADLESS - D, READ (study at uni), LESS (cut down).
16 Conservative that's suspended is turning red, perhaps
17 Upset doctor kidnaps posh pilot … fake news?
BUM STEER - reversal of MB (doctor) containing U (posh), STEER (pilot).
19 Boozer after a half of Dunkel and port
20 Hard to endure split, having touch of enmity
22 A tickly sensation that starts hurting
AITCH - A, ITCH. Because H is the first letter of 'hurting'.
  • vinyl1

Times 27727 - " I saw yin o' the travelin' folk, along the open road....

Time: 31 minutes
Music: None, another outdoor solve

I found this one rather tough for a Monday.   There are some uncommon words and allusions that not everyone will know, meaning solvers may have to make a leap of faith and put in the most likely answer even if they're not sure why. 

I normally use rather allusive blog titles, but tonight I'll give you the link:
This is a fairly recent song, but there's quite a bit of Scots dialect in the lyrics.

1 Phlegmatic type almost shut in thus (5)
STOIC - S(TO)IC, where the door is to.
4 Live at end of lake with beadle — a worker, possibly (9)
BUMBLEBEE - BUMBLE + BE + [lak]E.   Bumble was a beadle Oliver Twist - if you don't know this, you'll have to biff.
9 Infamous old port protected by other people? (9)
10 Woman’s contribution finally accepted by Times (5)
AGNES - AG([onctributio]N)ES, today's random woman. 
11 Surprisingly their purser’s accepting a fund manager’s position (13)
14 Genuine old Spanish coin (4)
REAL - Double definition, where the coin is pretty widely known.
15 Marine creature reportedly saw a taxi crossing river (6,4)
SPIDER CRAB - sounds like SPIED A + C(R)AB - if you are non-rhotic.
18 Degrading form of feuding overwhelming one in Scotland (10)
UNEDIFYING - Anagram of FEUDING around YIN. 
19 New Zealander’s answer you and I heard (4)
KIWI - sounds like KEY + sounds like WE.   A key would be a little booklet that has the answers. 
21 Key army corps almost crazy about hotel’s liqueur (5,2,6)
CREME DE MENTHE - C + REME + DEMENT(H)E[d].   Most solvers will probably biff here.
24 Work trapeze artistes are ill-advised to have (5)
NONET - NO NET, haha.
25 Hint from small Scouse singer inspiring in tango (9)
SCINTILLA - S C(IN T)ILLA.   Cilla Black, that is.
27 One who guides bullocks to west of island (9)
STEERSMAN - STREERS + MAN, the Isle of Man, that is. 
28 Manage to catch son in wood (5)
1 Hospital doctor originally operating in Sumatra (10)
SANATORIUM - anagram of O[perating] IN SUMATRA.   Many solvers will automatically go with hospital = san, but it's the whole thing today.
2 Choose to put up around centre of Newport (3)
OPT - O([new]P[ort})T
3 Reddish church at top of hill (6)
4 Considerable criticism gathering round extreme parts of Henry’s life (9)
5 Cheeseparer, one initially swimming in sea off Nice (5)
MISER - M(I + S[wimming])ER. 
6 Tough left restaurant, having consumed hot starter (8)
7 Good French painter capturing old man, an emperor’s supporter (11)
8 Not entirely secure as top bridge-player (4)
EAST - [secur]E AS T[op]. 
12 Church body upset over spirit audibly fading away (11)
EVANESCENCE - NAVE upside-down + sounds like ESSENCE.
13 Remove monastic devotee adopting revised rite (10)
16 Bloomer made by teacher going round a new food shop (9)
DANDELION - D(A N DELI)ON, one that most solvers will biff.
17 Woman priest, one giving orders? (8)
DIRECTOR - DI + RECTOR, another random women.
20 Eg Welsh commander-in-chief welcoming English officer (6)
22 Racecourse record thus misrepresented at first (5)
EPSOM - EP + SO + M[isrepresented]. 
23 Responsibility — and where ours lies (4)
ONUS - ON US, a chestnut.
26 Drink Scandinavian nomad left unfinished (3)
LAP - LAP[p].