Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24096/Auster

Posted by neildubya on June 6th, 2007

neildubya.

This wasn’t too tricky but there were a few answers that I don’t fully understand – explanations/corrections welcome.

Across
1 RAIN in B(offin)S
4 (SOME BEDS)* – deceptive surface reading.
9 OPT in ADS – OK, minor rant coming up. The wordplay for the clue is “Make a choice without the commercials”, which, to my mind at least, would give us ADS in OPT. Obviously, we are supposed to read it as [Make a choice] and without it put [the commercials]. I just think this is lazy clueing; surely something like “Make a choice during the commercials” would give a similar sense to the surface reading and would be cryptically more sound? It probably goes without saying that I think I’ve only seen this construction allowed in the Guardian. Rant over.
10 HISTORIC – the answer to 22D is ITCH, which is the anagram fodder, along with OR IS.
11 IT BEATS THE BAND? – is this right? It’s not a phrase I’ve heard of before and it does contain two words that are also in the definition (“it tops the lot!”) so I’m not sure.
13 SURE in (ARREST)*
21 BEAT GENERATION – I filled this in without completely getting the wordplay but it turns out that “whale” is US slang meaning to beat or thrash someone. The BEAT GENERATION was this lot .
23 IS in NUANCE
25 (RAGS)*, AS,SO
Down
1 A in BEN – very simple wordplay.
2 APOSTLE – I think this is right but I don’t understand the “made on a spoon” stuff.
3 NO, (STA(r)LET)
7 SURF,ACE – I really liked this one. The surface reading (ho ho) is good and “the finish” is deceptive as a definition.
12 TURTLENECKS – I know a TURTLENECK is a jumper but I don’t get the soup reference. Any offers?
17 V in (CLAIRE)* – “to see” doesn’t seem to be doing much in the wordplay…?
19 UTOPIAN – “More” is Sir Thomas, author of “Utopia”.

2 Responses to “Guardian 24096/Auster”

  1. says:

    I guess 2 down is a reference to apostle spoons – ‘spoons with figures of apostles on handles’ in my COD.
    Turtle soup is quite well known – presumably turtle necks would be in it?

  2. says:

    12dn: Mock turtle soup is an imitation of turtle soup, using a calf’s head instead of turtle. Where does the neck come in (apart from being in the jumper)?

    11ac: ‘beat the band’ is in Chambers

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