brnchn (brnchn) wrote in times_xwd_times,
brnchn
brnchn
times_xwd_times

Times Cryptic No 27498 - Saturday, 02 November 2019. Why is it so?

If you were on song, you might have got through this quickly. For me, it was more like ‘slow but steady’. I finished confident of the answers but with lots of questions to look up. Why is a 25ac sensitive? What is a 23ac? Who is 17dn? And more.

I had no obvious clue of the day, but 15ac set the mood of the moment. Thanks to the setter for a very enjoyable puzzle.

Clues are blue, with definitions underlined. (ABC*) means ‘anagram of ABC’. Deletions are in [square brackets]. The blog is in Times New Roman font, as part of an ongoing, gentle campaign to urge the club site to use a font in which it is easier to tell one’s stem from one’s stern.

Across
1 Arrived shortly, turning up with son for college (6)
CAMPUS – CAM[e]. PU=UP ‘turning’, S[on].

5 Brilliance of girl shown endlessly in competition (8)
RADIANCE – DIAN[a] in RACE.

9 Partial metaphor is misplaced in a maxim (8)
APHORISM – hidden answer.

10 Casually play with pasta (6)
NOODLE – double definition. ‘Noodling’ is apparently casual improvisation in jazz.

11 Trendy food shop has to supply food, mostly tasteless (10)
INDELICATE – IN, DELI, CATE[r].

13 Top cover for American district gangster (4)
HOOD – triple definition. Actually, a triple abbreviation: HOOD short for hoodie, HOOD short for neighbourhood, HOOD short for hoodlum!

14 Obese, eating seconds, and not running (4)
FAST – S in FAT. The answer is one of those cute words with exactly opposite meanings: moving fast, or tied fast.

15 What rail services need accompanying words and music? (10)
SOUNDTRACK – a light-hearted double definition. You wouldn't want your train running on an unsound track!

18 Broken arrester in device holding something back (10)
RESTRAINER – (ARRESTER IN*), ‘broken’.

20 Cat and comb ultimately makes catacomb? (4)
TOMB – TOM, [com]B.

21 Deep sea fish, black when small (4)
BASS – B[lack], AS, S[mall].

23 Surveyor’s instrument — they cart me about (10)
TACHYMETER – (THEY CART ME*), ‘around’. Apparently, it’s a surveying device that uses rangefinder technology.

25 Am keeping notes about sensitive plant (6)
MIMOSA – AM ‘keeping’ SO and MI, all backwards (‘about’). Apparently mimosa leaves may respond to touch.

26 Very poor walkway state getting turned round (8)
PATHETIC – PATH, CITE ‘turned around’.

28 Briefly immerse pot for small plant (8)
DUCKWEED – DUCK, WEED. Tempting to think WEE=small, but no, I think WEED=pot, and duckweed is just a small plant!

29 Good, I am allowed a cocktail (6)
GIMLET – G[ood], I’M, LET.


Down
2 Await developments in a leaf attachment (9)
APPENDAGE – PEND in A PAGE.

3 School research task needs to stand out (7)
PROJECT – double definition.

4 Mountain runner regularly visited Sikkim (3)
SKI – odd letters of SiKkIm.

5 Dance of millions in Cuba — right for clubs (5)
RUMBA – M for millions in CUBA with C for clubs replaced by R for right.

6 Race to put on vital headgear (6,5)
DONKEY DERBY – DON, KEY, DERBY.

7 One further person yet to be named (7)
ANOTHER – um, *another* double definition.

8 Transparent sheet left over instrument (5)
CELLO – CEL (short for celluloid, I discover), L[eft], O[ver].

12 Show a case for taking fast before one took food (11)
INSTANTIATE – INSTANT, I, ATE.

16 Uniform used on Royal Navy vessel (3)
URN – U[niform], R.N.

17 Caught rewritten line by me in play (9)
CYMBELINE – C[aught], (LINE BY ME*), ‘rewritten’. Cymbeline was a king of early Britain, in a Shakespeare play. Lucky I looked that up! Did anyone else guess French, female?

19 What stands up like this out of hot footwear? (7)
TUSSOCK – T[h]US (like this), SOCK.

20 Member in the House that is born in Chelsea, perhaps (3,4)
TIE BEAM – I.E. (that is), B (born) in TEAM.

22 Parting device for stamping coins in gold (5)
ADIEU – DIE in AU.

24 Young archer finished in police department (5)
CUPID – UP in C.I.D.

27 Wicket perhaps overturned endlessly in game (3)
TAG – GAT[e], ‘overturned’.

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