Pip Kirby (pipkirby) wrote in times_xwd_times,
Pip Kirby

Times 27771 - Bally dancing

17a is not a place to be seen wearing green. It's Liam Neeson's home town; he was offered the freedom of the borough but the charming DUP blocked that and gave it to Ian Paisley instead. Anyway, I'd prefer to be in the Swedish university city at 10a, the fourth largest in the country. [enough politics - Ed]. This was a pleasant exercise in wordplay, sprinkled with a few interesting words; a fruit, a plant, a Greek monster, an instrument. I'm not sure I fully understand 26a, and I wasn't convinced about CO for the peace protester in 15d, but for me the rest was fine. How did you like it?

1 Ben follows drunk sailor, but not literally (2,2,5)
SO TO SPEAK - SOT (drunk) OS (ordinary seaman) PEAK (ben).
6 Blimp maybe one caught by wind condition (5)
COLIC - COL (Colonel Blimp?) I, C(aught).
9 Recalled letter by queen and one by king bearing fruit (7)
KUMQUAT - All reversed (recalled): TAU (letter) Q (queen) MU (letter) K (king).
10 Heightened pressure sadly set back Swedish university (7)
UPPSALA - UP (heightened) P (pressure) ALAS reversed (sadly, set back). Pleasant university city north of Stockholm.
11 Instrument’s one needed earlier during part of flight (5)
SITAR - STAIR being part of flight, move the I forward. Indian stringed instrument.
12 Sodium and potassium — deadly mixture — in plant (5,4)
NAKED LADY - NA (Na, sodium) K (potassium), (DEADLY)*. The Belladonna Lily plant.
13 Beds, for example, or large, heavy drawer (5)
SHIRE - double definition, a county or a shire horse.
14 Issue of spouse of Liberal visiting rebuked: should have rung earlier (9)
STEPCHILD - STEP (rung, before) CHID (rebuked) insert L.
17 Woman chasing my large dog back in Irish town (9)
BALLYMENA - MY L LAB = my large dog, reverse that and add ENA a woman. Town of 30,000 people in Northern Ireland.
18 Females opening have to cut mistakes (5)
MUFFS - MUS(T) = have to, cut; insert FF females.
19 Sort of water supply perhaps not encountered before near delta (9)
UNMETERED - UNMET (not encountered) ERE (before) D(elta).
22 Bound to be fired after penning note (5)
LIMIT - LIT (fired) has MI (note) inserted.
24 Possibly using medium of culture noire, short ITV broadcast (2,5)
IN VITRO - (NOIR ITV)*, where NOIRE loses its E (short).
25 Enrage local feeling with speech (7)
INCENSE - Sounds like (with speech) IN SENSE = feeling.
26 What keeps drawing animal home (5)
EARTH - double definition, one an animal home, and the Earth draws because of gravity? EDIT thanks to pootle73 being first to explain it, it's ART = drawing, inside EH = what?
27 Paintings have captured a horse race on island (9)
TAHITIANS - TITIANS (paintings by him) has A H(orse) inserted.
1 Lavish kisses somewhat revolting, they believe (5)
SIKHS - hidden reversed in LAVI(SH KIS)SES. "They believe" seems an odd definition for these people, lots of religious people believe in something.
2 Miler at it, for a change? (4,5)
3 A saver by nature, gentleman shortly arrives at bank (9)
4 European pays to listen to solicitor brood (3,4,5,3)
EAT ONES HEART OUT - E(uropean), ATONES (pays) HEAR (listen) TOUT (solicitor).
5 Punch with a couple of slices of bread? (7,8)
KNUCKLE SANDWICH - cryptic definition, slang for a punch in the mouth.
6 Prize presented to aforementioned boy with a bow (5)
CUPID - CUP (prize) ID (idem, the same as above, Latin).
7 Climber in a fix on the ascent (5)
LIANA -  A NAIL reversed up. One of those jungle creepers you might see Tarzan using.
8 Big Eddy’s cautious, beady eyes (listening to me) (9)
CHARYBDIS - CHARY (cautious), B D I'S (sounds like beady eyes). Charybdis in Greek legend was a monster who created a whirlpool in the Straits of Messina with another monster Scylla on the opposite side. A bit like being caught between a rock and a hard place, today.
13 Being considered in case daughter must tap into reserve energy (3,6)
SUB JUDICE - SUB (reserve) JUICE (energy) has D for daughter inserted.
15 Peace protester and politician allowed in bed together (9)
COMPLICIT - CO (conscientious objector? pacifist) MP, LICIT (allowed).
16 The latest thing? Fashionable aim of an eccentric (9)
INFOMANIA - IN (fashionable) (AIM OF AN)*.
20 One advancing with month remaining (5)
MOVER - M (month) OVER (remaining). Movers and shakers, perhaps.
21 Little one originally trained in technology can’t handle (5)
TITCH - Initial letters of T rained I n T echnology C an't H andle.
23 Lock head of state away after uprising (5)
TRESS - ASSERT (state) is reversed and then loses its head A.

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September 16 2020, 04:50:49 UTC 4 months ago Edited:  September 16 2020, 04:54:22 UTC

I was in obtuse mode today, eg taking undue time to fill in __U__ SANDWICH, thinking of Colonel Blimp but not of Col., thinking of CHARYBDIS but not getting big Eddy, thinking of SHIRE immediately but not of the horse, failing to see TITCH (POI!), etc. NHO BALLYMENA, of course. Never figured out TRESS. Like Pip, I had a MER at CO, and at the definition of SIKHS, and I interpreted EARTH as he did, with the same ? I do wish setters would stop using 'race' as in 27ac.
Mostly went straight in, until LOI shire needing an alphabet trawl. I like its tricky first definition.
Only one NHO, Naked Lady, though Belladonna known. Same ? at earth as others, 25 ac parsed as inn/sense homophone.
COD to time trial, just ahead of shire. Very pleasant puzzle.
I feel like I was fortunate to know all the words which might be considered obscurities - UPPSALA, CHARYBDIS, SUB JUDICE - the latter of which has appeared earlier this year I think. If I hadn’t known them I think I would have taken a lot longer.

EARTH is ART (drawing) in EH (What).
And I even thought of EH, but could do nothing with it. Thanks!

Re: 22:15


4 months ago

Really enjoyed it. EARTH, NAKED LADY and TAHITIANS are excellent but the mischievous MUFFS had me laughing out loud so has to be my COD.
Very mischievous.


September 16 2020, 06:20:45 UTC 4 months ago Edited:  September 16 2020, 06:23:15 UTC

I really screwed this one up at the end, needing aids for CHARYBDIS and to check UPPSALA (NHO or forgotten).

Additionally, and even worse, I missed the obvious wordplay leading to TITCH - glad I was not alone, Kevin - and eventually biffed TITLE (handle). Then at 26ac out of desperation I put EYRIE, but at least there I'm still not entirely sure why the answer is EARTH.

You're also not alone with TITLE, and EYRIE (animal home); I was on the verge of submitting like that, but decided to take another look.
At 3dn SQUIRRELY was a word from Letterkenny! My LOI.

Pip your opener should be 17a.

FOI 2dn TREAD MILL - until TIME TRIAL popped up! So my true FOI was UPPSALA.

COD 27ac TAHAITIANS who were a race until the word was 'skunked' by Kevin & Co; so now we are supposed use ethnic group - but that would have screwed up the clue, would it not!?

WOD CHARYBDIS with their obols, as per Goldfinger.

5dn Knuckle Sandwich I believe originated in The Bowery, NY.

TAHITIANS aren't an ethnic group either, they're just people who live in Tahiti. I think that's Kevin's point.

Re: Ethnicity


4 months ago

Re: Ethnicity


4 months ago

Tahitian race


4 months ago


September 16 2020, 06:45:35 UTC 4 months ago Edited:  September 16 2020, 06:46:59 UTC

A smattering of things I'd not heard of here took me to 49 minutes. A few went in unparsed, to boot, including 23d TRESS and, more sadly, 8d CHARYBDIS, because the B-D-Is bit was fun once it was pointed out.

I've not heard the word 16d INFOMANIA but the definition's certainly familiar. I believe the cool kids call it "doomscrolling" these days. Anyway, I'd best go check Twitter...
Crashed and burned in the NW corner by misspelling CUMQUAT, biffing SECTS and pretending to ignore the lack of justification in wordplay. However the rest was lots of fun; got all the obscurities but had to come here to understand the excellent EARTH and TRESS. Thanks Pip, Pootle and clever setter.

Will Bale come to Spurs? We certainly need something after the dismal opening game. A front three of Bale, Kane and Son would be quite something.
I didn’t know you were a fellow Spurs fan. That’s you, me and Zabadak. I expect there are more who don’t like to admit it.

I’d be surprised if the Bale move happens but we need something to change. We’ve fallen so far since reaching the CL final :(
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven Tress,
Or softly lightens o’er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express,
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

Lovely. 25 mins pre-brekker (which will be a Fat Rascal, hoorah).
Thanks setter and Pip.
16'15", got KUMQUAT and spent a while failing to parse it. Did parse EARTH. COMPLICIT LOI as fixated on cot for bed.


Thanks Pip and setter.
14:50. I thought this was consistently chewy: never easy but I didn't get stuck at any point. Very enjoyable.
I did get a bit muddled with 15dn where I was convinced it would be something in COT.
16:13 but I failed to parse a couple until afterwards. LOI SHIRE. Mostly I liked EARTH.
I found that very enjoyable. My only query was on the parsing of Kumquat which Pip has now answered.
I appreciate the point about using 'race' to describe TAHITIANS but once I had decided the definition was at the end and not the beginning of the clue, it went in relatively easily. However in the early stages I did wonder if 'race on island' might mean the IOM TT races, especially as I had the second T as a checking letter.
I also have no problem with CO as 'Peace Protester'.
My landlady has NAKED LADIES in her garden next door so no problem there.
As for CHARYBDIS, my old school song mentions the perils of the "Bab-el-Mandeb Straits". They were a metaphor for the corridor outside the old headmaster's study where errant pupils waited for six-of-the-best from the Head.
Too many really good clues to pick one COD but I did like EARTH and SITAR.
Thanks, Pip!
There's also a mention of Charybdis in the Police song "Wrapped around your finger"

I shall now go back to hanging my head in shame.

They gave us a planet and I failed to parse it properly.

O me miserum

Re: 45m 08s


4 months ago

I wanted the "race on island" to be T.T. and 2 Ts threw me. Good puzzle, nice stuff.
The phone rang as I pressed 'play' so quickly pressed back and it seemed not to start the clock. Good to know. Reasonable time, reasonable crossword.

COD: CHARYBDIS for Big Eddy.

Yesterday's answer: the real Lady Macbeth has various spellings, e.g Gruoch.

Today's question: if something wasn't made of earth, air, water or fire, what adjective was used to describe it? (14)
Model in sequins late with back of outfit repaired (14)
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