September 19th, 2021

  • glheard

Mephisto 3185 - Tim Moorey

Greetings barred-grid fans

I thought this one was a notch up in difficulty from the usual Tim Moorey puzzles, and I had a bunch of scribble around my grid, though only a few question marks. There's some tricky wordplay, particularly in letter substitutions.

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

Away we go...

1 Official in struggle for small plant (7)
TREFOIL - REF(official) inside TOIL(struggle)
7 Ace bowler perhaps brought back for South African flier (4)
TAHA - A(ace) and HAT(bowler, perhaps) all reversed
10 Railway special involving diversion for some (9)
FUNICULAR - PARTICULAR(special) with FUN(diversion) replacing PART(some). A term emblazoned in my mind after multple viewings of The Grand Budapest Hotel
11 One month to get a measure of Sky (4)
OCTA - OCT(October, one month), A
13 Rowing movement ending in hullabaloo and absolute fury (6)
OARAGE - last letter in hullabaloO, A(absolute), RAGE(fury)
14 Eagle seen in ground briefly on a swamp (7)
LERNEAN - ERNE(eagle) inside LAND(ground) missing the last letter
16 Scottish lover long forgotten by Indian head (4)
MAIK - remove L(long) from MALIK(head of a village in India)
18 Girl, 50 gets entry for a year (5)
ANNAL - ANNA(girl) and L(50)
19 Will’s share is a large draw (9)
21 Boiler has to be put out? Extinguisher needed (9)
24 Hour with a German poet (5)
HEINE - H(hour) and EINE(a, in German)
25 Bird in shed is a blackbird (4)
MERL - MERLIN(bird) minus IN
27 What would be misplaced as Germany, east coast? Worms (7)
CESTODA - anagram of D(Germany), E, COAST
29 Handle ordered from Athens (6)
SNEATH - anagram of ATHENS
30 Magistrate has space for writing device (4)
J-PEN - JP(Justice of the Peace, magistrate), then EN(space)
31 Cheers much reduced parking in the end (9)
TOODLE-PIP - OODLES(much) missing the last letter and P(parking) inside TIP(the end)
32 Beginning short of energy once (4)
ONST - ONSET(beginning) minus E(energy)
33 Inferior leader of orchestra getting duet’s lower part (7)
SECONDO - SECOND(inferior) and the first letter of Orchestra
1 Loony mate ignoring tips at work — he’s associated with many a vice (7)
TOOLMAN - anagram of LOONy and MATe
2 Run one, or two if start’s recalled (4)
RACE - odd clue, as I think there are two wordplays - R(run), ACE(one) and BRACE(two) missing the first letter
3 Weaver from Portuguese resort cheated, nothing less (9)
ESTRILDID - the resort is ESTORIL, remove the O(nothing), then DID(cheated)
4 Thoroughly upset stuff in contest? (6)
OUTEAT - OUT(thoroughly), EAT(upset)
5 Heraldic beasts painted in cellulose, not for all to see (10)
LIONCELLES - anagram of IN,CELLULOSE minus U(for all to see)
6 Having no direction, senior nurses caught sadly short (6)
SCALAR - SR(senior) containing C(caught) and ALAS(sadly) missing the last letter. No direction mathematically
7 Expression heard for body of soldiers years ago (4)
TURM - sounds like TERM(expression)
8 Have teg finally, thanks to a shepherd’s club (8)
HAG-TAPER - HA(have), the last letter of teG, TA(thanks), next to PER(a)
9 One old coin associated with a quarter (5)
AREAL -  A(one), REAL(old coin)
12 Minor motoring brushes can lead to combustible cases (10)
CARTOUCHES - minor motoring touches would be CAR TOUCHES
15 Party member overseeing golf tournament made public (9, three words)
IN THE OPEN - IN(party member) over THE OPEN(golf tournament)
17 Wilde’s bachelor, large libertine with no end of invention (8)
ALGERNON - anagram of LARGE, then NO and the last letter of inventioN - Algy from The Importance of Being Earnest
20 Lorna Doone novel one’s left in US city (7)
ORLANDO - anagram of LORNA,DOONE minus ONE
22 German vehicle project (6)
BEETLE - double definition
23 Like ancient Greek music, sparkling stuff fills one part of concert (6)
IASTIC - ASTI(sparkling stuff) inside I(one) and the first letter of Concert
24 Must stop eating nuts when short of money (5, two words)
HAS TO - HO(direction to stop) containing MAST(nuts) missing M(money)
26 With weak acting, Director’s beginning to try black lead (4)
WADT - W(weak), A(acting), D(director) and the first letter of Try
28 Duncan’s end: heartlessly cut up (4)
DEID - DICED(cut) missing the middle letter, reversed.

Sunday Times 4972 by David McLean

13:07. I have left it very late to blog this, so I'd better just get on with it. I thought this was a lovely puzzle. Not hard, but I struggled for perhaps five minutes over 25ac before realising it was an &Lit.

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

1 He daren’t put out a party girl
ADHERENT - (HE DARENT)*. A political party, of course. Good use of unconscious sexual stereotypes in the service of misdirection!
5 Cut close to nose’s hard to endure
9 Resort opening following strikes
10 Touch of worry with second son
12 Are papers with Rolling Stone?
14 Bloody excellent in an unusual way
15 Trend suave criminal exploits
17 The divestment game?
19 I’m told one might long for a port
ACRE - sounds like ‘acher’.
22 Deepest affections for A&R?
HEART OF HEARTS - because the middle letters (hearts) of ‘hearts’ are…
24 Twin reviews news chief praised
LAUDED - reversal of DUAL, ED.
25 Singer in company, soprano ultimately?
CASTRATO - CAST(RAT), sopranO. Brilliant.
26 Rather attractive
27 Choppers seen out in middle of night?
DENTURES - CD, and a rather obvious one.
1 One indicating informer is a plant
ARROWGRASS - ARROW (one indicating), GRASS. We had a rat singing just a couple of clues ago, now we have a GRASS doing the same thing.
2 Troll drawing in young lady’s a beast
HAMSTER - HA(MS)TER. ‘Troll’ here being the variety that is unpleasant on social media rather than the kind that hides under bridges waiting to be fooled by billy-goats. I’m not sure about MS: I thought the whole idea of the term was to avoid disclosing information about age and/or marital status.
3 Way in which Fury raised concern
4 Basic facts? Fresh buns don’t last!
6 Thin spies probing European pal
7 Say I use blindfolds?
EYEWEAR - homophone of ‘I’, WEAR.
8 Don't start contract for lack of labour
11 Perhaps some Brownie in child’s play (1,5,2,4)
A PIECE OF CAKE - this is almost a double definition, but the first part is ambiguous so I’m calling it wordplay.
13 Slurs like folk drinking drop of IPA
ASPERSIONS - AS, PERS(Ipa)ONS. I love an IPA. I’ve been spending a fair amount of time in Cornwall recently and Proper Job is one of my favourite beers.
16 Dad upset mum? That’s obvious!
APPARENT - reversal of PA, PARENT. Statement of fact much of the time…
18 Move as rivers overwhelm English hotel
REHOUSE - R (E, H), OUSE. The rivers here are one abbreviation and one actual river, which appears very frequently in crosswords for obvious reasons.
20 My voice enthrals southern pirate
CORSAIR - COR (my), S, AIR. Give voice to = give public expression to = give air to. A bit oblique but kosher I think.
21 Get lost in rhythm with no boundaries
BEAT IT - BEAT (rhythm), wITh.
23 Make-up friends brought around
SLAP - reversal of PALS.