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I would say this is pretty much a classic straightforward QC from Tracy today. Nothing too difficult, I think, with plenty of easy ones to give you some checkers. You may need, though, to remember a Greek god, an ancient coin, a retro household appliance, a Scottish novelist and a bit of Welsh geography.... or trust to the wordplay. We are treated to a good range of clue types and some lovely surface readings, not least the semi-&lit 16A, my COD, although 9D was a close second. I was clearly on the wavelength today as I raced through this in 3:43. Thanks Tracy!  How did you all get on?

Definitions underlined in bold italics, (Abc)* indicating anagram of Abc, deletions and [] other indicators.

7 Run, avoiding large snake (5)
ADDER - lADDER (run; as you might find in your tights or stockings - if you wear them) without [avoiding] the L (large)
8 Pair, however, returned washing machine (4-3)
TWIN-TUB - TWIN (pair) BUT (however) [returned] -> TUB. My mother used to have one of these in the 1960's. I've not seen one for years, but you can still get them.
10 Enrage church hemmed in by pubs close to centre (7)
INCENSE - C.E. (Church of England) inside [hemmed in by] INNS (pubs) with last letter of [close to] centrE.
11 Usual practice of a bishop wearing belt (5)
HABIT - A B (bishop) inside [wearing] HIT (belt, as in thump).
12 A new suggestion regarding appetiser (9)
ANTIPASTO - A N (new) TIP (suggestion) AS TO (regarding). As to this clue, it's a classic example of a "charade", building the answer a bit at a time.
14 Drink brought back for close friend (3)
PAL - LAP (drink like a dog does) reversed [brought back] -> PAL.
15 Idol shot, died (3)
GOD - GO (shot) D (died). I love concise clues. An economical 12 letter one here.
16 Aims often set out in this (9)
MANIFESTO - (Aims often)* [set out]. This is a semi&lit. where the whole clue is the definition and part of it the wordplay. Lovely example of the clue-type.
18 Gather popular judge retired (5)
INFER - IN (popular) REF (judge) reversed [retured] -> FER.
20 Eastern cause arousing intense feeling (7)
EMOTIVE - E (Eastern) MOTIVE (cause, as in reason for doing something).
22 Author Muriel has the French fizz (7)
SPARKLE - The author is Muriel SPARK. Add LE (the in french).
23 A flower sprang up (5)
AROSE - A ROSE (flower).
1 Profits from excellent wins (7,5)
CAPITAL GAINS - CAPITAL (excellent) GAINS (wins).
2 English coin of yesteryear, editor learned (8)
EDUCATED - E (English) DUCAT (coin of yesteryear) ED (editor). An example of the setter's trick of using a different meaning for the same word in the surface and the definition; the definition (learned) is the adjective not the past participle.
3 Working below Irish golf club (4)
IRON - ON (working) [below] IR (Irish).
4 Small lock of hair causing anxiety (6)
STRESS - S (Small) TRESS (lock of hair).
5 Fair cancelled immediately (5,3)
RIGHT OFF - RIGHT (fair) OFF (cancelled).
6 Objections over cigarette end (4)
STUB - BUTS (objections) [over] -> STUB.
9 Courage shown by batsman at the start, one removing cap? (6-6)
BOTTLE-OPENER - BOTTLE (courage) OPENER (batsman at the start). The obligatory cricket clue.. with the answer nothing to do with cricket. Unless you take beer in bottles into the stand. Which, with a test match with Australia in progress, reminds me of the old story. "They've decided to cut down on drunken behaviour at the SCG. From now on spectators are limited to bringing in 24 tinnies each". As this article says "In the 1974/75 Ashes series, a single Test match at the SCG produced 460,000 empty beer cans over five days. Since then, society has become more regulated and risk-averse, as have our cricket grounds. In the 1970s, patrons were subject to a limit of one slab per person that could be brought in.".. a slab being 24 stubbies, holding 9L of beer in total. Enough for an England cricket fan to drown their sorrows at losing The Ashes again? Sorry. I couldn't resist. After all, I did take over the blogging duties of the revered Lord Galspray (alleged originator of this fine tale)  a couple of years ago.
13 Under pressure, European married, penniless, in Welsh town (8)
PEMBROKEBROKE (penniless).[under] P (pressure) E (European) M (married).
14 Greek god mysteriously poisoned (8)
POSEIDON - [mysteriously] (poisoned)*
17 Annoyed no litres required (6)
NEEDED - Annoyed is NEEDlED. Lose [no] the L (litres)
19 Standard in decline (4)
FLAG - Double definition.
21 Said to come from Aurora Leigh (4)
ORAL - Hidden in  [to come from] AurORA Leigh.


( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 13th, 2019 12:47 am (UTC)
Came close to getting under 4' for the first time, but I was too hasty in flinging in EMOTION, which blocked 9d. Finally saw the error of my ways, and came in at 4:04. Which is a full 21" behind John's impressive time; a PB, John?
Sep. 13th, 2019 05:26 am (UTC)
It's not often I get below 4'. This is just about in my top 10 of speediest solves of 1100+ recorded times. My PB is 3:02 which may have been a bit of a flash in the pan.
Sep. 13th, 2019 01:05 am (UTC)
I had a hard time getting started....
...or I would have had a much better time, as I raced through once I got going. I biffed 'antipasto' with only the 'o', but then I had to parse it.

My times for the week show an interesting pattern: 4:55, 8:32, 17:15, 8:17, 7:23. I was hoping to reach symmetry in my solving chart for the week, but today I was a bit off.
Sep. 13th, 2019 05:13 am (UTC)
7 minutes for the third time this week. I've also had one 10 minute solve and one at 12 minutes - so only one target missed.

I hadn't thought of the top-loading TWIN-TUB in years until a couple of weeks ago I blogged a puzzle containing MANGLE defined as 'laundry appliance' and was reminded of the washing machine that preceded the TWIN-TUB and came with a mangle attached. I think they marketed it as a 'wringer'.
Sep. 13th, 2019 06:09 am (UTC)
When I came to Japan in 1978, I moved into a cold-water apartment whose previous tenant had left behind, along with a number of huge cockroaches, a twin-tub machine, where the 2d tub was a centrifuge. By winter, the agony of handling soaking, ice-cold clothes had me going to a laundromat.
Sep. 13th, 2019 10:49 am (UTC)
In my experience twin-tubs came with a set of over-sized wooden tongs for transferring the wet clothes from one tub to the other.
Sep. 13th, 2019 10:57 am (UTC)
My Mam had a pair of those tongs for exactly that purpose. My Dad used to sell washing machines, and we had a variety of customer's machines with intermittent faults so she could tell him what went wrong with them. We had the same arrangement with TVs. Needless to say, Mam was rather unhappy when something went wrong in the middle of a wash and the kitchen got flooded!! (Or indeed when a TV went off in the middle of Coronation Street)

Edited at 2019-09-13 10:58 am (UTC)
Sep. 13th, 2019 06:27 am (UTC)
For the second time this week I thought I was on for a PB but was inexplicably held up by LOI 1d (the CAPITAL part). Fortunately I quickly got to 'C' in my alphabet trawl and the penny dropped. Finished in 6.31.
Thanks for the blog
Sep. 13th, 2019 06:46 am (UTC)
Despite being at The Oval all day yesterday, 9d was my LOI. Like Kevin I had put EMOTION with some confidence for 20a, so I had to unravel that at the end. Even so I was home in 09:00 exactly which confirms comments above that this was easy for very experienced solvers. Others may find some of this classic QC tricky if they haven't seen certain devices before.
Great time from our blogger. Well done John.
Sep. 13th, 2019 06:52 am (UTC)
A smart-ish 5.25 from the Shanghai Borders





Edited at 2019-09-13 06:53 am (UTC)
Sep. 13th, 2019 07:05 am (UTC)
8.54 here but largely because of silly errors needing sorting to complete the solve including BUTS rather than STUB and making up BUBBLES at 22a by assuming the author who is never heard off was BUBBS! Of course that’s the disadvantage of solving on paper which I do - you keep seeing wrong letters if you’ve entered it wrong... All that aside was a nice end to the week and agree with 16ac for COD.

Sep. 13th, 2019 07:47 am (UTC)
Well Done Tracy
A beautifully well constructed puzzle this morning, and fun to do.
Sep. 13th, 2019 08:41 am (UTC)
I enjoyed this too - thanks setter and blogger. Tend to think of immediately being 'right away' but someone will tell me that right off is commonplace I'm sure :)
Sep. 13th, 2019 09:02 am (UTC)
I was slightly delayed by mis-remembering Muriel as SPARKES, so waited until NEEDED arrived to sort it out, at which point I understood the wordplay. Otherwise a very straightforward solve. I left EMOTIVE until I had the final checker as I wasn't happy with EMOTION. An enjoyable puzzle. 6:13. I could've submitted at just under 6 minutes, but chickened out and did a proof read which turned out to be unnecessary. Thanks Tracy and John.
Sep. 13th, 2019 09:35 am (UTC)
Coo-err missus, some RAPID times today! My 2.4 Kevins looking pretty shabby now, I think I have to clock this as an OK I Suppose Day despite being sub-10. I got totally stuck on the CAPITAL part of 1dn; sometimes my brain freezes without the first letter and the checkers weren't very helpful.

I've just been reading about TWIN TUBs and can hardly believe that life used to be so primitive. Thank you, Progress!

FOI GAINS, LOI CAPITAL, COD MANIFESTO (what a brilliant clue).

Thanks Tracy and John (chapeau for your time, John!).


Edited at 2019-09-13 09:36 am (UTC)
Sep. 13th, 2019 11:15 am (UTC)
Sorting through the CD's yesterday....
....in the box that currently runs alphabetically from Ten Years After to Paul Weller, I came upon the mysteriously titled "Onka's Big Moka" by Eastbourne band Toploader. I considered disposing of it, but in the end I kept it for "Dancing in the Moonlight". Funny how TWIN-TUB appeared the very next morning.

I absolutely cruised trough this tidy offering.

TIME 2:35
Sep. 13th, 2019 11:42 am (UTC)
Great puzzle, witty and accessible. Just wish ‘d solved online - surely deprived of a pb! LOI was RIGHT OFF. Fair but not something I’d ever say.
Sep. 13th, 2019 12:37 pm (UTC)
My usual technical dnf
Did quite well today. Did about half with no help, got letters for PEMBROKE, BOTTLE-OPENER, RIGHT OFF and maybe CAPITAL GAINS too. Spelt POSIEDON wrong at first and put in EMOTION for a bit until I realised it was wrong while checking letters. Then the rest fell into place in 34 minutes
Sep. 13th, 2019 02:47 pm (UTC)
Back in the 40s and 50s, we had a copper which we lit from below to do the washing. The clothes were then transferred with wooden tongs to the mangle and squeezed between two rollers by turning a handle on the sides to wring out the water. It was very hard work. SML
Sep. 13th, 2019 07:37 pm (UTC)
I remember my grandmother having a mangle and a pulley in the kitchen, where the clothes were raised towards the ceiling out of the way to dry. She had much higher ceilings than we do these days in her Glasgow tenement.
Sep. 13th, 2019 06:55 pm (UTC)
I thought I was on for my fastest time ever with just 19d and the first half of 1d left to complete and less than 10 minutes on the clock (my target is 20 minutes!). By 11 minutes I was left with just 1d, but my mind went blank. I think I intimidate myself with the thought of achieving a PB and my brain goes to jelly!! In the end I used a checker, so I have to admit to a DNF on a day when I should have been putting the 19ds out. Despite all that I loved this offering from Tracy. MM

FOI 7a
LOI the failed 1d
COD 16a though I liked 12a enormously
WOD 8a for all the memories already alluded to.

Sep. 13th, 2019 07:34 pm (UTC)
Bad luck. It doesn't happen to me often with the QC these days, but I get it on the 15x15 sometimes... getting stuck on the last 1 or 2 clues. It is frustrating, isn't it? Never mind. Your day of it all clicking will come!
Sep. 13th, 2019 07:54 pm (UTC)
Your encouragement is much appreciated and I also should have thanked you for the blog. I was particularly annoyed with myself today as, would you believe, I work in finance!! MM
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )

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