Fifteensquared

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Guardian 24031/Brendan – elephantine planes

Posted by ilancaron on March 22nd, 2007

ilancaron.

Not an easy puzzle for me. Started off well and cracked the theme pretty quickly – but held up for a long time by the NE corner (got the PIGEON/pidgin homophone inverted). I liked the various meanings of PLANE sprinkled around. The central cross reads CARRY-ON LUGGAGE and PAIR OF TRUNKS. If I was a fortune-teller, I would predict a long trip is in the cards for Brendan. Hopefully, not in a MICROLIGHT or in a caravan of camels.

Across

9 ORIGIN – the X and Y axes in graphs “cut” each other at the ORIGIN.
11 E,MISS,ARIES – ARIES is our sign of the Zodiac.
12 PLANES – our first PLANE: a tool and a thing that grows that has a trunk (19D): nice shift of “growing” from gerund to adjective.
14 OVERLONG – I quickly realized this was OVER something due to the cricket (“deliveries”) reference but didn’t think of LONG for a long tedious time. I’m not completely convinced that “by implication” is needed – is this just a way to indicate that OVERLONG is a cryptic way to define “too many deliveries”?
15 C(‘ARRY)-ON – [H]ARRY’s our Cockney bloke and to CARRY-ON means to make a fuss.
17 LUG,GAGE – Needed to decide between LUGGAGE and BAGGAGE. 4D resolved that for me. Turns out that LUG is a fruit box (between 28 and 40 pounds for those who care).
22 JET SET – got this immediately once I had JUMBOS without knowing 3 or 12 – in fact I worked those out from this answer.
23 M[ass],OLYBDENUM – (men doubly)* – not the most familiar of elements but obvious anagram.
26 S,MO,OTHER – tough clue for some reason: another meaning of plane. Two seconds: S and MO[ment].

Down

2 SAID – rev(Dias) as in Bartholemeu (Portuguese navigator).
3 FLY,ER’S – FLY is Brit for “shrewd”. Edward Rex is our monarch this time (and FLYERS is alt. spelling of fliers referred to by 22A).
4 ROU=”rue”,SSEU=”so” – hard but fair and clever clue. Indeed Jean-Jacques ROUSSEAU was a French philosopher (incidentally in my last Guardian blog for Paul it was Henri ROUSSEAU who cropped up).
5 MICRO,LIGHT – Goodness, MICROcomputers are a thing of the past by now, no?
6 PIGEON=”pidgin” – Smooth surface. Homer the pigeon not Simpson nor that Greek guy. I had this inverted at first which was the reason I was so stuck (on 11A for instance).
8,19 PAIR OF TRUNKS – another clever clue: 22D is JUMBOS who, when elephants, have TRUNKS.
16 O(PEN, DO,O)R – Nice to see Oregon in a puzzle (where my parents live now). “Welcoming” is the containment indicator in the sense of embracing I suppose.
18 GUERNSEY – It’s an island but I don’t see the word play. ”Cast off when finished working on this island”. Offers?
22 J,UMBOS – with J?M??? I was sure of JUMBOS but I had to check that UMBOS are large projecting bosses on shields. Our final kind of plane.
24 WATT=”what” – a homophone (that doesn’t work in Scotland apparently) that was in Tuesday’s Times as well. Quite well hidden.

3 Responses to “Guardian 24031/Brendan – elephantine planes”

  1. says:

    18D A guernsey is a knitted sweater (just like a jersey – and for that matter, Fair Isle and Aran). For future reference, there are Guernsey and Alderney breeds of cattle, to go with Jersey.

  2. says:

    I happen to know that Brendan recently flew from America to Europe, but not by microlight.

  3. says:

    I’ve always thought it odd that ‘jersey’ and ‘guernsey (or ‘gansey’ as it is sometimes spelt) are named after the islands from which come breeds of… cattle!

    I wonder what happened to Jersey or Guernsey sheep – are their fleece so inferior to the wool(??) from their bovine rivals?

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