johninterred (johninterred) wrote in times_xwd_times,
johninterred
johninterred
times_xwd_times

Times Cryptic Jumbo 1497 - 8th May - Down with Cruciverbalpachydermosceptiscism!

I greatly enjoyed this Jumbo which has lots of delightful quirky definitions, such as "Who cares?, Don't bet on it!, That settles it!" and the lovely "You'll get stick when it's finished" in the acrosses... and there are plenty more. So many ticks for clues that made me smile that I can't list them all, but favourites were 39A and the reverse cryptic at 44A. As usual I was held up by a handful of clues at the end, with my last four accounting for 8 of my 46 minutes. A couple of unknowns, as usual, too, including the river running through Berlin, the shell and the hard bits of the lughole. Lots of fun, and one I'd point cruciverbalpachydermosceptics (if I may permitted such a neologism, if only to outdo antidisestblishmentarianism.. and then extend it in the title) at to get them enthused. Thank-you witty and entertaining setter! Lovely job! How did you all get on with it?

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

Across
1 US agent coming over to take drugs and render harmless (6)
DEFUSE - FED (US agent) "coming over" -> DEF, USE (take drugs).
4 Gaunt, ill-mannered chap insists on hanging round colleges (10)
CADAVEROUS - CAD (ill-mannered chap) AVERS (insists) "around" O.U (Oxford University, colleges).
10 Provide a place for a plant (5)
HOSTA - HOST (provide a place for) A.
14 Media's run amok — who cares? (9)
NURSEMAID - (Media's run)* "amok". One who cares.
15 Amazed heavy vehicle moves noisily in front (13)
THUNDERSTRUCK - TRUCK (heavy vehicle) after THUNDERS (moves noisily) "in front".
16 Drama, musical one, that’s too short? Don't bet on it! (2-5)
NO-HOPER - NOH (Japanese drama) OPERa (musical one (drama)) "that's too short", and a cryptic hint of a definition.
17 Remove alcohol? That settles it! (7)
DECIDER -  If you remove something you DE- something, e.g. DE-ICE.... hence DE (remove) CIDER (alcohol).
18 Aspiring opener for Uruguay bowled out (5-2)
WOULD-BE - (U (opener for Uruguay) bowled)* "out". Do they play cricket in Uruguay? Yes they do! See here.
19 Spreading muck, perhaps, after heated exchange of views (5-13)
CROSS-FERTILISATION - FERTILISATION (spreading muck, perhaps) "after" CROSS (heated).
21 Room in pub — Turner's Arms? (4)
SNUG - Reverse of, "Turner's", GUNS (arms) -> SNUG.
24 Abdicate, leaving son to rule (5)
REIGN - REsIGN (abdicate) "leaving" the S (son).
26 Make show of appreciation and mouth “rubbish!” (8)
CLAPTRAP - CLAP (make show of appreciation) TRAP (mouth, as in "keep your trap shut").
27 Piano by ear is something that can be draining (8)
PLUGHOLE - P (piano) LUGHOLE (ear). I love it.
29 Dizzy blonde? (5-6)
LIGHT-HEADED - Lovely concise double definition.
30 Quantity of sugar, perhaps, thrown out of planes (11)
TEASPOONFUL - "thrown" (out of planes)*. Entertaining surface.
32 Depart from Heathrow, perhaps seizing moment for break (4,4,3)
TAKE TIME OFF - TAKE OFF (Depart from Heathrow, perhaps) "seizing" TIME (moment).
35 Red standing for reform, filled with dread (5-6)
ANGST-RIDDEN - (red standing)* "for reform".
37 Reserve money — you'll get stick when it's finished! (3,5)
ICE LOLLY - ICE (reserve)  LOLLY (money)... and another amusing cryptic hint.
39 "Read it and weep!", cries politician (3,5)
SOB STORY - And another! SOBS (cries) TORY (politician).
40 Long period of time, November (5)
YEARN - YEAR (period of time) N (November in the NATO phonetic alphabet).
43 Money paid for access ending in scandal? (4)
GATE - WaterGATE (scandal), just the last bit, "ending in". The money you pay to get in to see a football match.
44 No truce can result from this papal campaign (7-11)
COUNTER-REFORMATION - A reverse cryptic... (counter)* " reformation" -> NO TRUCE.
47 Gigantic mummy, a creature of the night (7)
MAMMOTH - MAM (mummy, mother in northern dialect) MOTH (creature of the night).
48 No learner, comprehends hard parts of Listener (7)
INCUDES - INClUDES (comprehends) without the L , "no learner". Plural of INCUS, "A small anvil-shaped bone in the middle ear, transmitting vibrations between the malleus and stapes". No I didn't know that, but guessed from the wordplay. "Comprehends" for "includes" seems a bit of a stretch, although "comprehensive" = "inclusive", so I suppose it's OK.
50 Number for one absorbed in Italian side (7)
INTEGER - E.G. (for example; for one) "absorbed in" INTER ((Milan); Italian (football) side). Can you tell I was once a LISP programmer?
51 When everyone's out, officers will take children's plaything (7,6)
GENERAL STRIKE - GENERALS (officers) TRIKE (children's plaything).
52 Under escort, old force surrounded by rocks listed rapidly (6,3)
REELED OFF - LED (under escort) O (old) F (force) "surrounded by" REEF (rocks).
53 Vigilant, one following a boat (5)
AWAKE - A WAKE (one following a boat).
54 Party ruins chips and beans? (4,6)
SIDE DISHES - SIDE (party) DISHES (ruins). The dictionary says: DISH (informal British) "Utterly destroy, confound, or defeat." No. I didn't know that.
55 Keep smothering old woman’s style (6)
FORMAT - FORT (keep) "smothering" MA (old woman).
Down
1 Row over caring disrupted meals-on-wheels service (6-3)
DINING-CAR - DIN (row) "over" (caring)* "disrupted". Another quirky definition.
2 Finishing outside podium places after switch, United failing to get ahead (11)
FORTHCOMING - COMING (finishing) FOuRTH (outside podium places) without the U, (United) "failing", "after switch" -> FORTHCOMING.
3 Dance moves picked up in parts of central Asia? (7)
STEPPES - Sounds like STEPS (dance moves) "picked up".
5 Plug stopped working, with no electric current attached (5)
ADDED - AD (plug), DiED (stopped working), without the I (with no electric current).
6 Spoke coherently while having a joint (11)
ARTICULATED - Double definition and a nice surface.
7 Horse is beat, with end of desert no closer (11)
EQUIDISTANT - EQUID (horse) IS, TAN (beat), "end of" deserT.
8 A doubter, awfully hard to persuade (8)
OBDURATE - (a doubter)* "awfully". Another smooth surface.
9 Blond politician on left's test of opinion (5,4)
STRAW POLL - STRAW (blond) POL. (politician) L (left).
10 Withhold Euro from abominable busker's collection? (6)
HATFUL - HATeFUL (abominable), "withold" the E (Euro). That would be a successful busker.
11 Making complaint — test inaccurate (8,3)
SOUNDING OFF - SOUNDING (test of depth) OFF (inaccurate).
12 A new venison supplier served up joint (5)
ANKLE - A N (new) ELK (venison supplier) "served up" -> KLE.
13 Wall before elite is something offering superficial protection (7,5)
BARRIER CREAM - BARRIER (wall) CREAM (elite).
20 Rent deduction producing show of emotion (8)
TEARDROP - TEAR (rent) DROP (deduction). Reduction for deduction would also work well (well I prefer it).
22 Zip-join coming up short? This could cause trouble (7)
GREMLIN - NIL (zip; zero) MERGe (join) "coming up", "short", i.e. without the E. And another quirky definition.
23 My ironing, not right — blasted disgrace! (8)
IGNOMINY - (My ironing)* without the R, "not right", "blasted".
25 People congregating around centre of bath taking a dip (8)
NATATION - NATION (people) "congregating around"  "centre of" bATh. I knew the French word but not that it is used in English.
28 Dismiss howl of wolf in the end (5,3)
LAUGH OFF - LAUGH (howl with laughter) OF wolF "in the end".
29 Turner's activity could be a Hollywood affair (7)
LATHING - L.A. (Los Angeles; where Holywood is) THING (affair). I'd not come across "lathe" as a verb.
31 Eccentric took Eurostar perhaps for continent, when young (5-7)
POTTY-TRAINED - POTTY (eccentric) TRAINED (went by train; took Eurostar perhaps). Lovely surface and definiton. Very funny.
33 I plan to make changes, feeling compelled to take stock? (11)
KLEPTOMANIA - (I plan to make)* "changes". And another quirky definition.
34 Sixties activist rose, perhaps, rebuked after infiltration by left (6,5)
FLOWER CHILD - FLOWER (rose, perhaps) CHID (rebuked) including,  "after infiltration by", L (left).
35 When beginning to speak to audience, you blush, acquiring confidence (11)
ASSUREDNESS - AS (when) "beginning to" Speak, U sounds like, "to audience" (you), REDNESS (blush - the noun). Well I think those are the right Ikean instructions.
36 Attractive feature of house? (7,4)
DRAWING ROOM - Cryptic Definition.
38 Kitty's heading north on vacation, adopting English ways to escape (9)
LOOPHOLES - POOL (Kitty) "heading north" -> LOOP, "on" HOLS (vacation) "adopting" E (English).
41 Like charity that's anti-exercise? (3-6)
NON-PROFIT - NON PRO FIT (anti-exercise). Ho ho.
42 South Asian character in fifties charged (8)
INDICTED - INDIC (South Asian) TED (character in the fifties). Ted aka Teddy Boy.
45 Redcoat's unconventional style (3,4)
ART DECO - (redcoat)* "unconventional".
46 Shell company with real investment expanded initially (6)
COWRIE - CO (company) W (with)  Real Investment Expanded "initially". A new word on me and my last one in.
47 Flower of Pompeii” publication supported by postgraduate (5)
MAGMA - MAG (publication), "supported by" M.A. (Master of Arts; graduate). Rather a cheeky definition!
49 One running through Berlin in binge (5)
SPREE - Double Definition. No. I didn't know the river.
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