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Times 27403 - Back to the Ormond Hotel!

Time: 75 minutes
Music: Art Farmer, Foolish Memories

As you can imagine, I was not exactly on the wavelength here.   In fact, when I finished, I was surprised I had only taken 75 minutes - it had seemed like I struggled forever.   In this sort of puzzle, if you can't any crossing letters, you'll have  a hard time biffing the answers and then working out the convoluted cryptics.   That's my excuse, anyway.

One interesting point about this puzzle is that it is anchored, at 1 down and 25 down, with clues that play on a word which is actually two entirely differently words with separate etymologies and meanings: 'host' and 'boss'.  With 'host', the Latin 'hostis' leads to the word that means an army or large group, while Middle French 'hospites' supplies the word that means an innkeeper or a TV personality.   Similary, the 'boss' who gives orders at work comes from the Middle Dutch 'baes', while the stud at the center of the shield comes from Middle English 'boce'.    As is typical in languages, the commoner word tends to take over in ordinary speech.

1 Piece of evidence vital, barrister reviewed case (8)
ABLATIVE - backwards hidden in [evidenc]E VITAL BA[rrister]
5 Briefly observe man in hat (6)
CLOCHE - CLOC[k] + HE.   My LOI, despite the running jokes from Ulysses..
10 Force contained, one calmer? (9)
METHADONE - MET + HAD + ONE, where Met refers to the police force, not the weathermen, or the opera house, or the museum.
11 Bombardment, after withdrawal of artillery, lighter perhaps? (5)
BARGE - BAR[ra]GE, where you need to consider the possible meanings of 'lighter'.
12 Long throw has opener dismissed (4)
ITCH - [p]ITCH.   Pitching is more common than bowling in the US, so a write-in for me.
13 Undertake urban regeneration programme? Fraudulent practice (9)
15 Packing case shortly, soldier heading for old South American city (10)
VALPARAISO - VAL(PARA)IS[e] + O.   I had a hard time parsing  this and then didn't think it was correct, because Valparaiso is in Indiana, right?   I supposed there must be others, and besides the three in the US there seem to be four or five in South America.
17 Party hit (4)
BASH - Double defintion.
19 Between two rivers, what was that German region? (4)
RUHR - R(UH?)R. 
20 Marvel when one starts to hit problems in retirement, and soldiers on (10)
PHENOMENON - ONE + H[it] P[roblems} backwards + MEN ON.   Since this is just the passive participle of φαίνω, 'appear',  the sense of something unusual or spectacular was a later addition.
22 Container, and bags for pets (9)
CANOODLES - CAN + OODLES, with a surprise synonym for 'bags'.
24 Curious leader in parliamentary seat (4)
RUMP - RUM + P[arliamentary].   No extra points if you immediately think of the Long Parliament.
26 Boarding towards rear of ship, look up (5)
ALOFT - A(LO)FT, where you must lift and separte 'look up'.
27 Soothing heart of fellow, time one loosened bandages (9)
EMOLLIENT - anagram of TIME ONE around [fe]LL[ow]. 
28 Hat fitter making an adjustment (6)
TITFER - Anagram of FITTER, some CRS for you.
29 Within plant, circuits failed again (8)
1 Host, daft going topless (4)
2 Don't take the washing in, have some fun! (3,2,3,4,3)
LET IT ALL HANG OUT - double definition, one jocular.
3 Having abandoned parking, chap later travelling on the tube? (8)
TRACHEAL - anagram of CHA[p] LATER.
4 Rev’s sound study, maybe, in support of vicar at first (5)
VROOM - V[icar] + ROOM.
6 African in old party, rather upstanding (6)
LIBYAN - LIB + NAY upside-down.   I wanted to put 'Nubian' but it didn't parse.   IS the Liberal Party really obsolete?
7 Figures, perhaps, in red book (8,7)
CARDINAL NUMBERS - CARDINAL + NUMBERS, as in the book of the Bible.
8 All, for example, hairline fractures? (10)
9 Poet: meddlesome man finally getting up after mid-morning? (8)
TENNYSON - TEN  + NOSY + [ma]N pside-down.
14 Country squire originally wearing creamy-white jacket? (5,5)
16 Rise in winners for Greek hero (8)
ACHILLES - AC(HILL)ES.   Yes, I wasted a lot of time with 'tor'.
18 Requirement for the wet blanket (8)
UMBRELLA - double defintion, as in an umbrella policy.
21 Spirit one's necked (6)
BOTTLE - double definition, scarcely cryptic.
23 Music centre: last of records on it (5)
SCORE - [record]S + CORE.
25 Boss is a virile chap (4)
STUD - double definition.


( 39 comments — Leave a comment )
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Jul. 15th, 2019 02:38 am (UTC)
In the UK the Liberal Party became the Liberal Democratic Party in the late 1980s.
Jul. 15th, 2019 03:03 am (UTC)
A Monday time, though it didn't feel like a Monday puzzle. (Well, 17ac and 25d were QC-ish clues.) I biffed VALPARAISO from the O (the main one is in Chile, V; one would expect an Indiana city with a Spanish name to have been named after one in a Spanish-speaking country). Then the A at 16 let me tentatively biff ACHILLES, which I only parsed post-solve. Liked RELAPSED and EVERYTHING.
Jul. 15th, 2019 03:25 am (UTC)
As our esteemed blogger points out this is CRS (Cockney Rhyming Slang) for hat, from tit-for-tat. I think CRS would be a reasonable addition to The Glossary. Jerry?

I found this quite hard (wavelength as per Lord Vinyl) and was near 90 minutes when I finally finished up in the stiff breezes of the NE.

LOI being 5ac CLOCHE!


COD 18dn UMBRELLA (Chamberlain's nickname in Germany)


I am unsure about 13ac MENDACITY; it is hardly considered fraudulent in certain quarters.

Edited at 2019-07-15 03:26 am (UTC)
Jul. 15th, 2019 05:11 am (UTC)
12:59, although the crossword club doesn’t want me to submit for some reason.
A bit tricky in parts, I thought. I had vaguely heard of the city but I had to construct it carefully. Nothing else caused major problems but there weren’t that many easily-biffable answers.
Jul. 15th, 2019 05:48 am (UTC)
Off to a flying start in the NW corner but soon slowed to a crawl and had several long breaks with nothing going in at all. Not helped by writing ACHILLES at 18dn instead of 16dn. Finsihed eventually in exactly 1 hour with VALPARAISO as my only unknown but constructed from wordplay with some confidence.

Further to my earlier comment about the Liberal Party, I forgot to reiterate my aversion to the use of 'old' or some other word to indicate that a long-established name has changed, and even more so when it has happened comparatively recently.

Edited at 2019-07-15 05:49 am (UTC)
Jul. 15th, 2019 06:08 am (UTC)
Around 17 minutes but … if I admit to misspelling Tennyson, will they take away my Eng.Lit. degree?

Some quite chewy things in here. COD to ACHILLES (might have been a timely clue if new star Tsitsipas hadn’t bombed out of Wimbledon early on)
Jul. 15th, 2019 06:56 am (UTC)
24 minutes
Enjoyed this. TRACHEAL, EVERYTHING, METHADONE, PHENOMENON, IVORY COAST etc.all beautifully clued. Thanks all.
Jul. 15th, 2019 07:01 am (UTC)
Emollient common old working chap, as anyone here can see...
30 mins with yoghurt, granola, blueberry compote, etc.
Mostly I liked: hairline=very thin, and the long clues (but worth it), Phenomenon and COD to Barge.
Thanks setter and Vinyl.
Jul. 15th, 2019 07:39 am (UTC)
Squeaking home after extra time
On my longer wavelength today at 27.21 with PHENOMENON and EVERYTHING resisting to the end, partly because, with no idea what "hairline" was doing in the clue I tentatively inserted EVERYWHERE. I didn't get round to parsing the other one, being too concerned with a rather high typo count as I checked the grid.
I never gave it a thought before, but I assume VALPARAISO means paradise valley, which is a nice name for anywhere, but for me a South American city of uncertain location. Chile, apparently.
ARMY, inevitably after yesterday, clued with barmy. I have enormous sympathy for the Kiwis, with the host nation apparently interpreting the rules as it went along to wrest the win from their deserving hands. Maybe one day England will win a World Cup without going into extra time: it's really hard on the nerves.
Jul. 15th, 2019 07:59 am (UTC)
Bleary eyed after staying up till the early hours to watch simultaneously the cricket World Cup final and the Wimbledon final. It will be a long time before such dramatic and skilful fare is served up again on a double bill.
Jul. 15th, 2019 08:21 am (UTC)
Once I had IVORY COAST and LET IT ALL HANG OUT, VALPARAISO was a write in(using wordplay for the spelling) as a friend often sings a song in which most of the lyrics consist of the word VALPARAISO. LIBYAN and then CLOCHE were my last 2 in, preceded by EVERYTHING, which I parsed just before hitting submit after a typo check. Nice puzzle. 27:08. Thanks setter and Vinyl.
Jul. 15th, 2019 08:21 am (UTC)
Into the valley of death strode Ben Stokes.
Someone up there, God or Devil, is a cricket fan. No human mind or random chain of events could have created that. Apologies to all Kiwis who will think it was Beelzebub at the wheel. I was surprised to go through this puzzle in 24 minutes, as it seemed quite hard. LOI was BOTTLE after I saw why it was the ALOFT I'd been itching to put in. My specialist South American country for O level Geography in 1961 was Chile, chosen because you can draw the sketch map with a ruler, and the only VALPARAISO I know is there. COD to TENNYSON. Williamson to the right of him, Guptill to the left of him, Boult in front of him, His but to do and win. Thank you V and setter.
Mike Harper
Jul. 15th, 2019 08:43 am (UTC)
65 mins
Thought I was simply off the pace posting 65 mins this morning (normally around 40 mins on Mondays), so mildly relieved to see it wasn't just me.

The only real unknown was VALPARAISO but it seemed like a reasonable guess. Surprised mainly that it took so long to spot UMBRELLA...
Jul. 15th, 2019 09:13 am (UTC)
Bowtie for 21dn... Thought it might be some kind of djinn. I kind of knew it was wrong, but hey ho. Spirit=bottle is a little bit of a stretch, I would say (mainly cos I didn't see it). Thanks, v.
Jul. 15th, 2019 09:18 am (UTC)
I think it's just a case of 'he's got a lot of bottle'.
Jul. 15th, 2019 10:07 am (UTC)
24 minutes, jogged along. Stunning sports day yesterday - as if the country was hit by a meteor. Which reminds me (as it touches on meteoric impacts) - can highly recommend the new Lovelock book 'Novacene'. Subtitled 'The Coming Age of Hyperintelligence' it forecasts we'll be to what he calls cyborgs as plants are to us. So what crosswprds will they construct, eh, let alone solve in zero time?
Jul. 15th, 2019 11:51 am (UTC)
They still won't beat Magoo - or Verlaine, the way he's going.
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