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

Times 27,413: Word-Blindness

I thought this was a thoroughly superior crossword, with sublimely economical clues almost every one of which manages in a tiny space to do something fresh and witty. I enjoyed every moment of it up until hitting the submit button at the 7.5 minute mark, only to freeze as I saw the dreaded pink square. Oh right, MYOPIC not MYOPIA. Given that the first two words of the clue loosely suggest a synonym for MYOPIA, and the next four words also suggest MYOPIA (what's the matter with [a short sighted] viewer), I definitely think that having MYOPIA on the brain for this one might be a venial sin. Of course "such a viewer" no longer quite makes sense unless the answer is MYOPIC but I'd rather clues didn't have to be read carefully through several times just to make sure you've understood the fine print... really gets in the way of one's speed-solving, what!

Still Magoo, being named after one of the all-time great myopics, will probably have enjoyed it. And I did love a whole raft of other clues: 9ac, 27ac, 6dn and 17dn being some standouts, so many thanks to the setter for all the fun while it lasted. Was anyone else short-sighted enough to fall at the 22ac hurdle? Please tell me I'm not alone!

ACROSS
1 Mad, sad and moody in World's End (8)
DOOMSDAY - (SAD + MOODY*) ["mad"]

9 In time, soon over obsessive self-love (8)
EGOMANIA - reverse all of: IN A MO [soon] in AGE [time]

10 Dracula might attack this French wine, after swallowing tablet (4)
VEIN - VIN [French wine], after "swallowing" E [tablet]

11 Run round barrier pursuing terribly aged author (5,7)
EDGAR WALLACE - RACE [run] round WALL [barrier], after (AGED*) ["terribly"].
Had to construct this unknown name from the cryptic, but it seems like a fair clue... given that he penned the script for a movie everyone's heard of, King Kong!

13 Died having suffered flaying back in seaport (6)
ODESSA - "Flay" {p}ASSED O{n} [died], then reverse it

14 Housemaid reflected light that's elevated (8)
ENNOBLED - reversed BONNE [housemaid] + L.E.D. [light]

15 Commended as pressure increased (7)
PRAISED - P RAISED [pressure | increased]

16 Fish unlikely to be sole? (7)
GROUPER - a cryptic definition for this presumably gregarious fish

20 Nothing 7 keeps in desert is waterproof (8)
RAINCOAT - RAT [desert] keeps INCA [7d] keeps O [nothing]

22 Sigh, cryptically, what’s the matter with such a viewer? (6)
MYOPIC - If SIGH is "short sight", then it is the thing that is the matter with a MYOPIC viewer. I wish this had clued "short sight" rather than a word that needs to be convolutedly derived from a cryptic depiction of short sight :P

23 Settled on region for sporting fixture (7-5)
QUARTER-FINAL - FINAL [settled] on QUARTER [region]

25 Single possible locality evacuated (4)
ONLY - ON [possible] + L{ocalit}Y

26 Barker requires excellent wine and beer (8)
AIREDALE - A1 RED + ALE [excellent | wine + beer]

27 Speech from fool in production of Lear (8)
NONSENSE - double def, Lear being Edward Lear, purveyor of nonsense verse.

DOWN
2 Flower in Germany choking slender shrub (8)
OLEANDER - ODER [flower (as in river) in Germany] "choking" LEAN [slender]

3 Change bowler is highly successful performer (5-7)
MONEY-SPINNER - MONEY can be pocket "change", a bowler can be a "spinner".

4 Shame of French importing rotten cigars (8)
DISGRACE - DE [of French] "importing" (CIGARS*) ["rotten"]

5 New queen after twelve months or longer (7)
YEARNER - N ER [new | queen] after YEAR [12 months]. One who longs.

6 Department advocating matricide? (6)
DOMAIN - as in an injunction to "DO MA IN".

7 Content of metal container is ancient tongue (4)
INCA - indirect hidden in {t}IN CA{n}

8 Perfume and bible wrapped by mortgagee (8)
LAVENDER - A.V. [bible] "wrapped" by LENDER [mortgagee]

12 Unpaid work one shouldn't hate doing? (6,2,4)
LABOUR OF LOVE - cryptic definition. Love is the very opposite of hate after all.

15 Water found in some pesticide (8)
PARAQUAT - AQUA [water] found in PART [some]

17 European or Asian controlled borders? (8)
ROMANIAN - OMANI [Asian] "bordered" by RAN [controlled]

18 Letters in stone found in English buildings (8)
EPISTLES - ST [stone] found in E PILES [English | buildings]

19 Make firm series of points to clinch argument (7)
STIFFEN - S E N [series of (three) points] to "clinch" TIFF [argument]

21 As some streets, old and modern, indeed (3-3)
ONE-WAY - O + NEW AY [old + modern | indeed]

24 Tailless amphibian beneath a large bush? (4)
AFRO - FRO{g} ["tailless" amphibian] beneath A
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