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Times Quick Cryptic No 1263 by Pedro

A few bits of slightly chewy parsing from Pedro this morning, together with a couple of foreign or adopted words / phrases, but nothing too taxing on the GK front.  I completed this, fully parsed in 16 minutes, one over my target.  How did you all do?

My only disappointment was with the clue for 16d, which barely fitted the description of ‘cryptic’, but there were plenty of other good clues and excellent surfaces to make up for that one lapse (IMHO).

I spotted a possible but improbable NINA in the 8th row, possibly referring to the English comedian Kenneth Horne, who died 50 years ago next month.  Put it together with the answer to 5d, and it could also be referring to his very popular BBC Radio series, 'Round the Horne', but I'm sure that's just a fancy

Whilst on the subject of tenuous connections, with Papa turning up yesterday, and Oscar today, the phonetic alphabet is certainly getting a workout.  Will we see Romeo or Juliet turning up tomorrow I wonder?


Thanks to Pedro for this, and let me be the last to say Happy New Year to you all.

Across
1  Newspaper articles about church gaining wealth after poverty (4-2-6)
RAGS-TO-RICHES – RAG (newspaper) followed by STORIES (articles) inside which (about) is CH{urch}. 
8  Lady’s first to participate in improving hair treatment (7)
CURLING – L{ady} (first gives first letter) inside (participating in) CURING (improving).
9 Bike was blue (5)
MOPED – Double definition, the first a small or lightweight motorcycle, the second meaning ‘was listless or depressed’ – was blue.
10 Ill-suited to sleep during unspecified item (5)
INAPT – NAP (to sleep) inside (during) IT (unspecified item)
11  End points in spell in capital of Italy (7)
TERMINI – TERM (spell, as in period of time) followed by IN (in) and (capital of) I{taly}.  Did you know that Terminus was the name of the Roman God of boundaries?
12 Visitor reckoned to be heard (5)
GUEST – Homophone – sounds like (to be heard) ‘guessed’ (reckoned)
14  Establish railway or factory (7)
FOUNDRY – FOUND (establish) and RY (railway).  A FOUNDRY is a factory or place where founding is carried out.
15  Nothing tender about explosion of mine?  Agreed (2,3,4)
OF ONE MIND – O (nothing) followed by FOND (tender) containing (around) an anagram (explosion) of [MINE].  To be ‘of one mind’ is to be in accord or agreement.
17  Fish from Arctic slipping line (3)
COD – CO{l}D – dropping (slipping) L{ine} from COLD (arctic).  Arctic as an adjective can mean extremely cold, as in ‘arctic conditions’ - how it felt here yesterday.
19  Disappointed, apparently seeking veterinary assistance (4,2,1,6)
SICK AS A PARROT – Cryptic definition.  To be as SICK AS A PARROT means, informally, to be extremely disappointed, whereas to be as sick as a dog means to vomit profusely and unrestrainedly.  I was sick as a parrot at Leicester City’s FA Cup tie result on Sunday as I was driving back from Edinburgh, but managed to stop short of being as sick as a dog!
21  Mesh not entirely heated (6)
GRILLE – GRILLE{d} (heated, not entirely – missing the last letter)
22  Out of practice, but reliable (just missing start) (5)
RUSTY – {t}RUSTY (just missing start)

Down
1 Mounting attraction in the nursery (7-5)
ROCKING-HORSE – Cryptic definition, with ‘mounting’ providing the key part of the clue.
Relevant European supporting specific European (7)
GERMANE – GERMAN (specific European) supported by E{uropean}.
Dickensian hero in plot development (5)
TWIST – Double definition, the first Oliver (Dickensian hero) and the second referring to a plot twist.
4  Clever to avoid book?  Correct (5)
RIGHT – {b}RIGHT (clever, avoiding B{ook})
Don’t stay out for visit (4,5)
COME ROUND – Another double definition, the first referring to the action of waking up or recovering consciousness from a faint or trance (don’t stay out) and the second the more recognisable synonym for a visit.  I suspect that some of our newbies may not see the DD.
6  Rewrite of scripted prose shows team spirit (6,2,5)
ESPRIT DE CORPS – Straightforward anagram (rewrite) of [SCRIPTED PROSE], except that we are looking for an adopted French term that may confuse some for a second or two.
Curious character upset party before I’d upset heartless Tory (6)
ODDITY – DO (party) reversed (upset) and followed by ID (I’d) reversed (upset) and T{or}Y (heartless).
13  Part of foot one fractured in the end (3-4)
TOE-NAIL – Anagram of (fractured) [ONE] inside TAIL (the end).
14 Ship’s destiny, to carry arrangement of sails (7)
FRIGATE – FATE (destiny) containing (to carry) RIG (arrangement of sails).
16  O for someone on the radio to get a Hollywood award (5)
OSCAR – OSCAR is the code word given to denote the letter O in the phonetic alphabet or in international radio communication (i.e. when spelling out letters on the radio).  I’m not sure that this even counts as a cryptic clue, unless it is a week double definition!
18 Song of amateur construction, inwardly dry (5)
DITTY – DIY (of amateur construction – Do It Yourself) containing (inwardly) TT (tee-total, or dry)
20  Song provided by duo without piano (3)
AIR – {p}AIR (duo without P{iano}) for our second consecutive clue with ‘song’ as the definition.

Comments

( 33 comments — Leave a comment )
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kevingregg
Jan. 10th, 2019 01:44 am (UTC)
Nothing to scare the proverbials, although I needed some checkers to come up with MOPED and OF ONE MIND. I didn't know the meaning of SICK AS A PARROT; it still seems like an odd simile. I hesitated to put in OSCAR, it seemed too obvious. 5:45.





jackkt
Jan. 10th, 2019 04:24 am (UTC)
Parrot
Your comment prompted me to look it up in Brewer's who advise that it came to prominence in the 1970s when it was regarded as the stock response of a footballer or team manager after losing a match. However it adds that a work by the Restoration playwright Aphra Behn in 1682 contained this line: Lord, madam you are as melancholy as a sick parrot.

On the puzzle: 8 minutes. No problems.

Edited at 2019-01-10 04:59 am (UTC)
john_dun
Jan. 10th, 2019 01:47 am (UTC)
HNY to you too Rotter. I started this one with INAPT and GUEST which then gave me our nursery steed, then TWISTed my way back to 3d before finding some ESPRIT DE CORPS, and soon found myself filling in my LOI, GRILLE at 7:31. An enjoyable puzzle. Thanks Pedro and Rotter.
vinyl1
Jan. 10th, 2019 04:54 am (UTC)
A mild workout....
....with no typos today - yesterday I had three, and after proofreading for thirty seconds. I started by biffing 'rags to riches', it really was a gimme, and went on from there. Time 8:15.

It is not so cold here in Connecticut, we even played golf today. We will be getting some proper winter weather shortly, however.
silverwaver
Jan. 10th, 2019 06:16 am (UTC)
A personal best
My first time under 20 minutes although I could not parse termini. Oscar was OK for me but the comment is a bit week Rotter?

Edited at 2019-01-10 06:24 am (UTC)
therotter
Jan. 10th, 2019 10:32 am (UTC)
RE: A personal best
We’ll done on the pb!
davidivad1
Jan. 10th, 2019 06:28 am (UTC)
Thursday
I was very slow to get going today;woke up too early.
FOI was 20d. Then I found this quite tricky. LOI was Grille. I too paused over Oscar. Nothing too hard in retrospect. I liked Germane.19:45.
David
mendesest
Jan. 10th, 2019 06:31 am (UTC)
I'm obviously out of sorts today, I found this to be the hardest puzzle in memory. Never parsed cod, ditty, inapt or of one mind and needed all the checkers for rocking horse, which was my last one in, more than 30 minutes after starting. Even then I'd managed to enter TOE NAUL, so didn't even get a full green grid as a slight consolation. I had hoped to come here and find others had struggled - oh dear.
flashman
Jan. 10th, 2019 07:47 am (UTC)
Slow 31 minutes. Last few were rags, twist, germane, and loi curling, I blame it on the cold, of the illness not arctic type.

Cod moped.
Thanks
ant45
Jan. 10th, 2019 08:59 am (UTC)
Neither easy nor slow for me, coming in at 22 mins. I thought at the start that it was going to be really hard as I couldn’t seem to answer any of the clues but once I got going with a few checkers the long clues dropped in and then it was a steady solve.
bripriuk
Jan. 10th, 2019 08:59 am (UTC)
I'm with Mendesest on this one - I found it the most difficult for weeks, with NO across answers first time through. I finally finished (somehow) in 45 minutes, with only Ditty unparsed. It may be one of those wavelength things as I can't blame it on a hangover today.
After five consecutive puzzles completed in well under my 30 minute target I was thinking of reducing it to 20, but now I think I'll wait and see!

Brian
theflorentine
Jan. 10th, 2019 09:15 am (UTC)
A game of two halves.....
I found this one interesting. I woke up early and had a look at it before I got up. Like some others I got no across clues at all, and I gave up after 6d and decided to go back to sleep.
Started again when I got on the bus with 7d, which I got immediately, and it was a steady solve after that. Finished by Piazzale Michelangiolo, so about 12 mins. I don't know how to explain this - perhaps I just was not awake enough, or perhaps I needed 7d to get me started. Anyway, for me at least, it turned from being the most difficult for a long time into something straightforward. Thanks to Pedro and Rotter.

Edited at 2019-01-10 09:16 am (UTC)
uncle_bulgaria
Jan. 10th, 2019 09:32 am (UTC)
25 mins for me, I definitely found it towards the harder end of the QC. Termini\Come Round\Of One Mind held me up somewhat and there were a couple in there that I hadn't parsed properly.

I agree with Rotter regarding Oscar but I enjoyed the rest - particularly Oddity which was my COD.

Thanks to both Pedro (for leaving me scratching my head) and Rotter (for explaining the couple that I didn't\couldn't parse).

Edited at 2019-01-10 09:32 am (UTC)
oldblighter
Jan. 10th, 2019 09:40 am (UTC)
Quite a roller coaster - from the easy clues spattered about the grid to some chewy ones. Not a smooth solve - frankly my progress was very jumpy. Slow middle and quick finish but 19.37 overall so still in the SCC. Answers like OSCAR, COME ROUND, and FRIGATE came to mind immediately but I played safe and just put in the checkers before taking the time to parse/understand them later. I liked DITTY but my COD is MOPED. Thanks Pedro and Rotter. John M.

Edited at 2019-01-10 09:50 am (UTC)
sonofjim
Jan. 10th, 2019 09:43 am (UTC)
10.34 continuing a decent week for me. Hesitate to identify a general improvement given previous collapses, though. Liked MOPED.
chrisw91
Jan. 10th, 2019 10:09 am (UTC)
Good work yet again (look out Kevin!) and better work than me today. I shared oldblighter's jumpy progress and ended up at 1 and a bit sonofjim's (10:58).
(no subject) - sonofjim - Jan. 10th, 2019 10:51 am (UTC) - Expand
plett11
Jan. 10th, 2019 10:28 am (UTC)
A slow start with only 2 across clues going in on the first pass. The downs proved easier, especially after 1a fell into place. I spent a couple of minutes staring at loi OF ONE MIND and failing miserably to come up with the parsing. Eventually pressed submit with my fingers crossed after 14.14. Whilst tender/fond might technically be synonyms of each other it feels like a bit of a stretch (to me anyway).
Thanks for the blog
gcook52
Jan. 10th, 2019 10:30 am (UTC)
Took me ages to get going but managed about 15 mins in the end. Re your problem with 16d - did you think that including 'Hollywood' was too generous?
therotter
Jan. 10th, 2019 11:19 am (UTC)
Hollywood certainly gives it away, but with both halves of the DD being so transparent, I just felt that it was too simple. Either side of the DD would be a reasonable clue in a Times Concise, and the only thing that makes this at all fit the description of a cryptic clue is that two perfectly workable clues are conjoined into a DD, one of the devices used in cryptics. In the early hours of this morning, it was facile enough to make me question my answer, and to write my comment. I did say ‘IMHO’, and alternate views are equally valid.
(no subject) - gcook52 - Jan. 10th, 2019 01:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
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