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

Times 27,221: He Who Laughs Last

Apologies for the delay - I found myself locked out of my account for the first hour of my workday and have finally got in just now. Without further ado:

This was a pleasantly unfussy puzzle (none of the parsings are particularly complex, I think) which nevertheless managed to be reasonably chewy, I guess due to shrewd vocabulary choices on the part of the setter? I personally managed to make a rod for my own back by confidently entering 13dn as CACCHINATE, by false analogy to the Gracchi possibly, making the bottom right corner almost impossible as I spent agonising minutes trying to work out how the wordplay of 22ac could possibly lead to HIPPOPHILE. When I finally checked over my work and the penny finally dropped, I can safely say I haven't felt so silly since I belligerently asserted that it was definitely spelt "millenium" in a spelling test for a secretarial temping agency some 20 years ago.

Anyway, better later than never. Thanks setter!

ACROSS
1 Doctor nearly retiring during great plague (8)
EPIDEMIC - MEDI{c} [doctor "nearly"] reversed inside EPIC [great]

9 Crime of America's neighbour probed by police (8)
HOMICIDE - HOMIE [America's neighbour] "probed" by CID [police]

10 Screen star's taken stimulant (8)
SUNSHADE - SUN'S HAD E [star's | taken | stimulant]

11 Instrument untouched by a learner (8)
VIRGINAL - VIRGIN [untouched] by A L [a | learner]

12 Cynical society promising to depose leader (10)
SUSPICIOUS - S [society] + {a}USPICIOUS [promising "to depose leader"]

14 Pie crust somewhat greyish (4)
ECRU - hidden in {pi}E CRU{st}

15 Misdeed from person selling hot stuff (7)
OFFENCE - OF FENCE [from | person selling hot (= stolen) stuff]

17 Inquire about graceless, stuffy behaviour (7)
PRUDERY - PRY [inquire] "about" RUDE [graceless]

21 Insouciant Cockney's dangerous (4)
AIRY - 'AIRY ["Cockney's (= unaspirated)" dangerous]

22 Indecently intimate around cowboy, perhaps (10)
IMPROPERLY - IMPLY [intimate] "around" ROPER [cowboy, perhaps]

23 Servant who could be Eritrean (8)
RETAINER - (ERITREAN*) ["could be..."]

25 Right conman losing diamonds one returns in court (8)
RECEIVER - R [right] + {d}ECEIVER [conman "losing (D for) diamonds"]. As in the returner of serve in a tennis court.

26 Blade twirls at intervals in fight (8)
STILETTO - T{w}I{r}L{s} in SET-TO [fight]

27 Roguish card player's collected funds for campaign (3, 5)
WAR CHEST - ARCH [roguish] that WEST [card player] has "collected"

DOWN
2 Seasonal food that's excellent and poor (4, 4)
PLUM DUFF - PLUM [excellent] and DUFF [poor]

3 Good behaviour missing in pupil (8)
DISCIPLE - DISCIPL{in}E [good behaviour, "missing IN"]

4 Returning actor's seized with kissing sound (4)
MWAH - reversed HAM [actor] has "seized" W [with]

5 The Old Vic performing something woolly (7)
CHEVIOT - (THE O VIC*) ["performing"]

6 Shanghai almost needs a port manager (10)
IMPRESARIO - IMPRES{s} [shanghai "almost"] needs A RIO [a | port]

7 Small boat touring lake's top (8)
PINNACLE - PINNACE [small boat] "touring" L [lake]

8 Abroad, I will surmount a terrible resentment (8)
JEALOUSY - JE [abroad, I] will surmount A LOUSY [a | terrible]

13 Dancing the can-can, I laugh loudly (10)
CACHINNATE - (THE CAN CAN I*) ["dancing"]

15 Wrongful arrest claimed by large speaker (8)
ORATRESS - (ARREST*) ["wrongful"] "claimed" by OS [large]

16 Wood collected for treatment (5, 3)
FIRST AID - FIR STAID [wood | collected]

18 Food with lots of calories for singer (8)
DIETRICH - DIET RICH [food | with lots of calories]

19 Anarchic sellers tailored stocking for everyone (8)
RULELESS - (SELLERS*) ["tailored"] "stocking" U [for everyone]

20 Bird to fight twice (7)
SPARROW - SPAR ROW [to fight, to fight]

24 Damage statuette with no head (4)
SCAR - {o}SCAR [statuette "with no head"]
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