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Times 27400 - you may remember this

Time taken: 13:01 but with one silly typo at 15 down keeping me from the leaderboard. From looking at the early finishers, this is on the difficult side, nobody is under 10 minutes. Odd puzzle this, with some cryptic definitions and some words that were obscure to me.

I am getting to this fairly late and I have a meeting that is going to eat up my morning, so I hope I have everything sorted, but you may want to check the comments first, in case I have made a characteristic typo or misinterpretation, as I will not be able to correct anything until the late afternoon.

The first definition in each clue is underlined

Away we go...

1 Polish local back on the game (3,2)
RUB UP - PUB(local) reversed after RU(Rugby Union, the game)
4 Start making an impression having landed work on ship (2,2,5)
GO TO PRESS - GOT(landed), OP(work) RE(on), SS(steamship) - crafty definition
9 Motorists about to leave home finally choose somewhere in France (9)
AQUITAINE -  the motorists are the AA(Automobile Association) surrounding QUIT(to leave), then IN(home), and the last letter of choosE
10 Brute rounds on pretentious toff (5)
YAHOO - the two rounds are O and O, put them after YAH(an affected upper-class person). Had to work out the wordplay for the blog, this went in from definition
11 Cutting insignificant church visits (6)
PUNCHY - PUNY(insignificant) containing CH(church)
12 Parasite from horse burrowing into poor titmice (4-4)
ITCH-MITE -  H(horse) inside an anagram of TITMICE
14 Song bird relies on following it around (2,4,4,2)
AS TIME GOES BY - TIME(bird) and GOES BY(relies on) after SA(sex appeal, it) reversed
17 Put the lid on canopy over engine that’s growing hot (6,6)
SCOTCH BONNET - SCOTCH(put the lid on), BONNET(canopy over a car engine) - the definition refers to a hot pepper
20 Raucous Indian in school yard (8)
SCREECHY -  CREE(Indian) inside SCH(school), Y(yard)
21 An inspired suggestion? (6)
BREATH - cryptic double definition, since a breath could be inspired(inhaled)
23 Nothing put forward in musketeer’s pledges (5)
OATHS -  move the O(nothing) to the front in the musketeer ATHOS
24 Leading in platoon, prepared for further advance (3-2,4)
TOP-UP LOAN - UP(leading) inside an anagram of PLATOON - got this one from the wordplay, haven't heard of the phrase
25 Given handle, stir, with pole, a lot of water (9)
NICKNAMED - NICK(jail, stir) then N(north pole), A, MED(lot of water)
26 Scene of action initially settled on years before (5)
YPRES - first letter of Settled after Y(years), PRE(before)

1 Show over, gather before Conference (8)
REAPPEAR -  REAP(gather) then a conference PEAR - definition refers to showing up again
2 English girl’s last but one composition for jazz interval (4,4)
BLUE NOTE - an anagram(composition) of E(English), the last letter in girL, BUT, ONE
3 Get satirists performing curse (3,3,7,2)
PUT THE MOCKERS ON - curse is the direct definition (certainly in cricket), the rest is that if you get the satarists performing you might PUT THE MOCKERS ON
4 Carriage entrance is for picking up only (4)
GAIT - a homophone of GATE(entrance) - the homophone is indicated by "picking up only"
5 Parts of China party? (10)
TWENTIETHS - cryptic definition, based on china being a traditional gift for a TWENTIETH anniversary
6 Happy choirboys ultimately leading fabulous, special sort of life (15)
PSYCHOBIOGRAPHY - anagram of HAPPY,CHOIRBOYS and the last letter of leadinG - another one I had to work out from wordplay, knowing the BIOGRAPHY part was most likely
7 Race Elizabeth and Nicholas are holding together (6)
ETHNIC - hidden inside elizabETH and NICholas
8 Son, having drawn on pot, gets fired (6)
STOKED - S(son) and TOKED(smoked marijuana)
13 A number one turn, time and time again (1,3,6)
I GOT RHYTHM - I(one), GO(turn), T(time), RHYTHM(time). 1930 Gershwin tune (written a year before the song at 14 across)
15 Popular pro (2,6)
IN FAVOUR - double definition, which I somehow managed to enter as IN FAVORR
16 Artwork from film projecting feature on grammar school (8)
ETCHINGS - ET(film), CHIN(projecting feature), GS(grammar school)
18 No pained reactions arise after a fainting (6)
ASWOON - NO, OWS(pained reactions) following A
19 Judge a pain in the neck mostly about immigrant’s case (6)
CRITIC - remove the last letter from CRICK(pain in the neck) and insert the outer letters in ImmigranT
22 The cheapest promotion for this tablet? (4)
IPAD - the cheapest promotion may be a 1P AD


( 52 comments — Leave a comment )
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Jul. 11th, 2019 03:56 am (UTC)
I did enjoy the puzzle....
....despite taking 77 minutes to complete it. I was convinced 6 down was going to be some obscure phylum and was quite surprised when I put the letters together. I just biffed my LOI, 'twentieths', having no idea what was going on there.

This is high-quality construction, where you put the parts together and then discover what the literal must be.
Jul. 11th, 2019 04:12 am (UTC)
Vinyl took the words right out of my mouth…
TWENTIETH also my LOI, and only because it was the only word that fit! But a very pleasurable outing.
Jul. 11th, 2019 05:47 am (UTC)
Quite a few unknowns (SCOTCH BONNET, PSYCHOBIOGRAPHY, BLUE NOTE), but at least they were each composed of constituents I knew. Like most everyone else, I chucked in TWENTIETHS because it fitted the ‘parts’ part - after a fine recent run, I would have been as sick as an Indian who’d paid a fortune for his World Final ticket when he saw they were only playing New Zealand in the semis if this had been wrong.

Edited at 2019-07-11 05:50 am (UTC)
Jul. 11th, 2019 11:36 am (UTC)
RE: 39’
It’s bizarre to be watching England v Australia at Edgbaston, U, and the ground is full of Indians. They must be cursing SA for beating Australia and knocking them off top spot.
Jul. 11th, 2019 06:02 am (UTC)
I have no solving time but it was more than an hour and actually I used aids on my LOI STOKED, so it was a technical DNF anyway.

Unknowns were YAH as a type of person, ITCH-MITE, PSYCHOBIOGRAPHY. Wasn't sure of GS for 'Grammar School' but it's in Chambers.

Looked twice at BLUE NOTE defined as an 'interval' because a note on its own isn't an interval, but of course in order to be 'blue' it has to be considered in relation to the notes around it, within a scale or the established key of a piece, so it's absolutley fine.

I enjoyed the song references and in particular I GOT RYTHM which featured in the Gershwin show GIRL CRAZY. I put up a link to play it in my blog only yesterday but if anybody opened it they didn't comment.

The interrupted hidden word device at 7dn may be a first.

Pleased to get TWENTIETHS and guessed correctly its association with China.

Edited at 2019-07-11 06:05 am (UTC)
Jul. 11th, 2019 06:25 am (UTC)
I went through an identical thought process on BLUE NOTE. The most common example is a minor third played over a major chord, very common in blues.
(no subject) - vinyl1 - Jul. 11th, 2019 12:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jackkt - Jul. 11th, 2019 02:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 11th, 2019 06:14 am (UTC)
Happy with my lot
16:51 … I loved this. Creative, witty, just the right side of baffling. Who could ask for anything more?
Jul. 11th, 2019 06:20 am (UTC)
Re: Happy with my lot
'Creative, witty, just the right side of baffling!Who could ask for anything more?'
Yours truly
Jul. 11th, 2019 06:15 am (UTC)
at 5dn was my second one in as last November 'Her Indoors III' and I went to Kyoto to buy a piece of chinaware to celebrate our 20th Wedding Anniversary. We chose a yellow and black pumpkin by Yayoi Kusama, 'spotted' in a lovely gallery dedicated to the old girl. Great noshi too!

FOI 1ac RUB UP the wrong way!



WOD 6dn PSYCHOBIOGRAPHY (Just re-read A Confederacy of Dunces)

Time 37 minutes

Edited at 2019-07-11 06:23 am (UTC)
Jul. 11th, 2019 06:27 am (UTC)
12:04. Nice puzzle, with a mixture of the fairly biffable and the significantly more tricky. I had no idea about TWENTIETH.
Jul. 11th, 2019 07:14 am (UTC)
So Itch-mite as well rain until September...
45 mins then gave up on 5dn - pre-brekker.
After the trickiness of itch-mite, aswoon, blue note, I worried that 5dn would require knowledge of Chinese provinces so gave up. This was lucky as it requires knowledge of customary anniversary gifts, about which I know even less.
Mostly I liked: Aquitaine and COD to Put the mockers on.
Thanks setter and G.
Jul. 11th, 2019 07:59 am (UTC)
The Mockers
My dear Myrtilus - a phrase much used by Mr. Anthony A. St. Hancock. I have come up with a new breakfast cocktail as I ran out of tonic water - The Hancock.

Take a generous amount of Gilbey's, Gordon's, Hendrick's, Bombay Saphire - what you will; add 1 heaped teaspoon of one's favourite marmalade; top up with ice and soda water (tonic water does not work!) Shake vigorously; add a slice of the appropriate citrus or whatever is to hand.

Re: The Mockers - myrtilus000 - Jul. 11th, 2019 09:00 am (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 11th, 2019 07:25 am (UTC)
21 minutes
Fun puzzle on which I really needed to concentrate. May I be the TWENTIETH to admit that I had no idea why. I think I will give it COD.
Jul. 11th, 2019 07:31 am (UTC)
Top class stuff, despite the usual distressing lack of science.
Didn't we have scotch bonnets just the other day?
Jul. 11th, 2019 08:17 am (UTC)
Scotch bonnet
Yes, I thought so too. Turns out it was in the last but one Jumbo, now out of embargo but not yet blogged.
Jul. 11th, 2019 07:53 am (UTC)
The fundamental things apply...
...when solving clues like 14a. 31 minutes with LOI ETCHINGS. Nobody's ever wanted to come up and see mine. I was unsure between twentieths and thirtieths before Eleanor of Aquitaine, played of course by Katharine Hepburn, came to the rescue. I suppose China would come before Silver. Thirty-second, which we celebrated last week, is Lapis Lazuli according to Mrs BW, although I'm not sure she wasn't trying it on. COD to YPRES for its construction. Excellent puzzle. Thank you George and setter.
Jul. 11th, 2019 07:53 am (UTC)
Comment to 'Times 27400 - you may remember this' by glheard in times_xwd_times
Jul. 11th, 2019 08:22 am (UTC)
I came up short on TWENTIETHS. When I just had this one left I did an alphabet trawl and concluded the second letter had to be R or H; I'm not sure why I disregarded W. Given that the definition seemed to be 'Parts' I then got hung up on the fact I could fit THEATRE in at the start, despite the fact I was unlikely to come up with something to fit THEATRE_H_. Must stop going up blind alleys!
Jul. 11th, 2019 08:28 am (UTC)
Me old dutch
TWENTIETHS was the only word that fitted: most of us only manage one china anniversary, so for me the plural didn't occur and it was so, so long ago. Well (and possibly, to judge by comments) uniquely sussed, George.
25 minutes saw me through this with 20ths last in, and I GOT RHYTHM taking quite a bit of the rest of the time. Neither song was obviously a song despite one of them being clued with the word song. Just the right level of misleading.
Isn't iPad product placement, or is it now in the dictionaries?
Jul. 11th, 2019 09:01 am (UTC)
iPad® is in Chambers, and I see they've also given an entry to Android® for fairness. I have heard people use "iPad" as a generic term for a tablet computer of any origin, but nothing like as often as "hoover" or even "kleenex"...
Re: iPad - z8b8d8k - Jul. 12th, 2019 07:49 am (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 11th, 2019 08:48 am (UTC)
I approached this puzzle with trepidation, having seen Vinyl's comment on the QC blog, but was pleasantly surprised to get off to a flying start in the NW which didn't slow to the usual crawl until I was left with 5d and 8d. I dragged TOKED from the depths before too long, but it was a good while longer before an alphabet trawl produced TWENTIETHS. I could see "parts," but it was another minute or so before I spotted the wedding anniversary. I was rather pleased to spot it though. Another minute checking for typos revealed none and also revealed the parsing for NICKNAME, where I hadn't originally equated nick with stir. An enjoyable puzzle. 28:31. Thanks setter and George.
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