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Times 27484 - a solver in training

Time taken: 11:01. Relieved that this was correct as there is one answer that went in completely from wordplay, and I'm going to have to figure out how the definition plays in to things as I write it up (a quick check of Chambers does not help - it is 25 across).

I'm rather taken with this one - the surfaces are brilliant, there's some good puns and tricky wordplay, so my sort of puzzle. Hope you did well!

Away we go...

1 Stone seat from which one has furthest to rise? (4,6)
6 Means of dispatching members (4)
ARMS - double definition
9 Bed salesmen assuming new functions (10)
COTANGENTS - COT(bed), AGENTS(salesmen) containing N(new)
10 Disturb fairies, by the sound of it (4)
FAZE - Sounds like FAYS (or FAES if you are in the American South) for fairies
12 Record held by green worker, a better service provider (4,10)
TURF ACCOUNTANT -  ACCOUNT(record) inside TURF(green) and a worker ANT
14 Classical region's key citizen volunteers once, going west (6)
ATTICA - A(musical key), CIT(citizen), TA(volunteers) all reversed
15 Potentially dangerous mineral like prime salt (8)
ASBESTOS - AS(like), BEST(prime), OS(Ordinary Seaman, salt)
17 Our opponents adopting main rule of Olympians? (8)
THEARCHY - our opponents are THEY, insert ARCH(main)
19 Standard of Federation partially raised in tribute (6)
DOFFED - hidden inside standarD OF FEDeration
22 Reminder of past content expected in Good Friday sermon? (5-9)
CROSS-REFERENCE - double definition, the second one partly cryptic
24 Sentiment for those who perished on Scott's last journey (4)
TRIP - RIP(sentiment for those who perished) after the last letter in ScotT
25 Local office bar, one entered on a points system? (6,4)
BRANCH LINE - BRANCH(local office), LINE(bar). OK - I got this from wordplay and shows how little I know about trains, points are the switches that allow trains to move from one track to another. Don't tell anyone I'm the grandson of the stationmaster of Rockbank railway station.
26 Action man's love captured by Communist in Revolution (4)
DOER - O(love) inside RED(communist) reversed
27 "Gutsy" batting twice bagging international a half-century (10)
INTESTINAL - IN and IN (batting twice) containing TEST(international match), then A, L(50, half-century)

1 Naughty drivers close to boundary (4)
RACY - the drivers are RAC, then the last letter in boundarY
2 Queen possibly needing case for garment she's unlikely to wear (7)
CATSUIT - CAT(queen, possibly), and SUIT(legal case)
3 Supporter's complaint, on introduction of northern player (12)
BENEFACTRESS - BEEF(complaint) containing N(northern), then ACTRESS(player)
4 Extreme parts in twelfth edition come from such a source (6)
THENCE - the outside letters in TweftH EditioN ComE
5 Where to store stuff you formerly dumped in river (8)
OUTHOUSE - THOU(you, formerly) inside the river OUSE. Not the function I usually think of for this word, but it means any external building
7 Register liable to change again (7)
READAPT - READ(register), APT(liable)
8 Dismissed SA team lamented getting involved (5,5)
SWEPT ASIDE - SA SIDE(team) containing WEPT(lamented)
11 Baby bonnet, apparently, in secret storage space (5,4,3)
UNDER ONES HAT - love this clue - a baby bonnet could be an UNDER ONE'S HAT
13 Academist given extra time to work ground (10)
MASTICATED - anagram of ACADEMIST and T(time)
16 Fine fencing placed originally on a French pasture (5-3)
SHEEP-RUN - SHEER(fine) containing the first letter of Placed, then UN(a in French)
18 Gut-wrenching reason for going online? (7)
EMOTIVE - the reason for going online could be an E-MOTIVE
20 No one stands up to support particular sect (7)
FACTION - NO, I(one) all reversed after FACT(particlar)
21 Heartless orphan presented by the author as "spoilsport" (6)
MEANIE - remove the middle letter from orphan ANNIE, then put ME(the author) on top
23 Rock and roll dance north of the border (4)
REEL - double definition


( 42 comments — Leave a comment )
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Oct. 17th, 2019 02:26 am (UTC)
Technical DNF here as I used aids for 3 clues, two of which involving things I'd never heard of, namely SHEEP-RUN (which Collins advises is an Australian term) and 'fays' meaning 'fairies'. I should have got READAPT though.

The clue to UNDER ONE'S HAT on its own would have been worth the price of admission.

Edited at 2019-10-17 06:20 am (UTC)
Oct. 17th, 2019 04:17 am (UTC)
I did finish, in 55 minutes...
...but I had to think long and hard about 25, believe 'local office' to be the definition, before I saw how the clue worked.

I can never remember if the fays are fey, or vice-versa, but fortunately they both sound like 'faze'.

You certainly have my vote for "under one's hat".
Oct. 17th, 2019 01:07 pm (UTC)
Re: I did finish, in 55 minutes...
Unfortunately, fays also sound like FASE, which was my guess at the spelling of a word I only partially knew (on the model of phase, I suppose).
Oct. 17th, 2019 05:46 am (UTC)
Very enjoyable puzzle. I was thinking US AND THEM for 17ac, my LOI, so it took a while for THEY to emerge.

I also just caught up on the amazing neutrino analysis carried out by starstruck_au - excellent
Oct. 17th, 2019 08:31 am (UTC)
Thanks, aphis. As we noted yesterday, it highlights just how remarkable your normal times are - along with the other fast solvers. You guys are in a class of your own.
(no subject) - vinyl1 - Oct. 17th, 2019 04:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - aphis99 - Oct. 17th, 2019 08:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
Oct. 17th, 2019 06:46 am (UTC)
I did asbestos as I could...
Found this tough. Finally dredged up THEARCHY remembering 'they' from bridge scoring, and FAZE after alphabet trawl. I note that only three others have posted by 7.42 UK time.

CODs to READAPT, for which I needed all the checkers, and MEANIE, on which I spent ages trying to fit 'on'

27'25”, Thanks gl and setter.
Oct. 17th, 2019 06:51 am (UTC)
Somewhat fazed
As per Mr. Aphis (I reckon you'll shortly be 100. Telegram etc! Marvellous!) a very enjoyable puzzle.

I had one wrong. At 10ac I confidently expected a 'wayke' to be a Danish fairy. WAKE it weren't, FAZE it was.


LOI 23dn REEL. I at first thought this might be a reference to the wee village of Jive just outside Kelso.
I bet the Bolton Wanderer has been there.

COD 13dn MASTICATED - the anagram completely failed to register as I took MA to be the Academist. 18 dn EMOTIVE took silver.

WOD ATTICA as it reminded me of Ian Fleming's contribution to the gossip columns of the mid-fifties.
I have them all.

This took me two half-hour sessions, and later 3.439 nano-seconds using the new improved 'Super-Neutrino' method.(So fast it wasn't able to be recorded!)
Suck on that Trevor Cooke & Co!

Edited at 2019-10-17 06:55 am (UTC)
Oct. 17th, 2019 11:33 am (UTC)

Aphis99 was born in the sixties. My namesake (the former Australian PM) would be over 150 by now

Oct. 17th, 2019 07:24 am (UTC)
Twenty-and-eight the Fazes of the moon...
28 mins.
Lovely puzzle but needed a mammoth alphabet trawl for (LOI) Faze.
Mostly I liked: Trip, Cross reference, Intestinal and COD to the baby bonnet.
Thanks setter and G.
Oct. 17th, 2019 08:09 am (UTC)
Bottom in rock
32 minutes, badly held up by LOI FAZE, a 26 by 26 alphabet trawl only producing an answer of FAZE on the third run. I never did properly learn to jive, H, but I could do simultaneous equations. That didn’t work quite as well in pulling the girls. With that track record, I liked COTANGENTS of course, but I enjoyed most the two long ones of TURF ACCOUNTANT and COD CROSS-REFERENCE. Earlier years of Thomas the Tank Engine and then trainspotting were helpful on BRANCH LINE. Enjoyable until the last bit. Thank you George and setter.
Oct. 17th, 2019 08:17 am (UTC)
Beaten in my hour by SHEEP RUN and THEARCHY. Just couldn't find them. I enjoyed a lot along the road to my failure, especially E-MOTIVE, the baby bonnet and CROSS-REFERENCE. As with others, very much held up by FAZE; I knew both "fay" and "fae", but in both cases only used as plurals themselves, with no need to stick an "s" on the end...
Oct. 17th, 2019 09:00 am (UTC)
High class puzzle with some brilliant definitions. Loved the points system but hats off to the baby bonnet. Thank you setter and well blogged George
Oct. 17th, 2019 09:34 am (UTC)
A steady solve again in near enough 27 minutes, with a liking for the CROSS-REFERENCE and of course the baby bonnet.
READAPT with its underwhelming and biff proof collection of letters was my last in.
Just saying: TA was once again a "volunteers once".
Decent time, George, and helpful blog.
Oct. 17th, 2019 01:20 pm (UTC)
TA duly noted!
Oct. 17th, 2019 09:44 am (UTC)
Happy to finish in under 45 mins - I must have been helped by the “sheep-run” reference and managing to get FAZE quite quickly. And, like others, I really enjoyed the baby bonnet when the penny dropped.
Oct. 17th, 2019 09:45 am (UTC)
25 minutes
THEARCHY was my LOI. Many chuckles along the way - the bookies, the hat, the cross reference and BRANCH LINE.
Oct. 17th, 2019 09:45 am (UTC)
I always thought that....
....entering a song entitled ROCK BOTTOM for the Eurovision in 1977 was tempting fate, but Lynsey de Paul and Mike Moran actually came second with it.

My take on 25A is that bar = line as in heraldry. A train certainly needs to utilise a points system to access a branch line.

I held myself up due to stubbornly refusing to accept that "academist" was anything other than RA, and only spotting that it was an anagram quite late in the day.

After 14 minutes I came to a halt in the NE corner, and had to alpha-trawl FAZE. Even then I needed a further alpha-trawl on my LOI.

COD INTESTINAL (although CATSUIT made me smile)
Oct. 17th, 2019 10:14 am (UTC)
I remembered Morgan Le Fay from the King Arthur stories - she was the sorceress who got Merlin in a tizzy. I thought I recalled BRANCH LINE from the Flanders & Swann nostalgic Slow Train but having checked the lyrics I see it's actually a "goods siding". Yes, very good time George. 22.05
Oct. 17th, 2019 11:11 am (UTC)
Slow Train
I'm so pleased you mentioned the F&S song, Olivia, as it's one of my very favourites of their lesser known pieces. I had already sought it out on YouTube this morning where there's more than one version, but this is the best as it shows actual photos of most of the stations mentioned in the lyric: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTFcN8RsJbs

Enough to bring a nostalgic tear to the eye!

My local branch line station was Stanmore Village which was built in the style of a country chapel: http://www.stanmoretouristboard.org.uk/the-harrow-and-stanmore-railway/the-stanmore-branch-line.html

Re: Slow Train - oliviarhinebeck - Oct. 17th, 2019 11:39 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Slow Train - jerrywh - Oct. 17th, 2019 02:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Slow Train - dorsetjimbo - Oct. 17th, 2019 02:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Slow Train - (Anonymous) - Oct. 17th, 2019 06:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - penfold_61 - Oct. 17th, 2019 12:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - oliviarhinebeck - Oct. 17th, 2019 12:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - penfold_61 - Oct. 17th, 2019 12:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jerrywh - Oct. 17th, 2019 02:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
Oct. 17th, 2019 10:47 am (UTC)
48:24 I was slow on the uptake with lots of this but it was definitely a top notch puzzle. I was desperately trying to crowbar RA into my solution for 13dn for far too long, brilliant misdirection. DNK 16dn so that required a bit of working out. Also wanted the they in 17ac to be a them for ages. Great stuff!
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