Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24178/Rufus – Rufus?

Posted by ilancaron on September 10th, 2007


Imagine my confusion when I saw a puzzle by Rufus (almost) without a cryptic definition. Mirroring Araucaria’s recent non-cross-referenced puzzle.


5 RE,STRICT – the other meaning of RE this time.
9 MASERATI – (steam, air)* — credible surface and nice definition: “classic form of transport”.
10 A,TT,END – a couple of problems here: “Wait on non-drinker, whose after a tip”, where “whose” is presumably a Graudianism for “who’s”. Not sure how TT for “non-drinker” is supposed to precede END (for “tip”) or be inside A,END.
11 EXPRESS=”say” TRAIN=”attendants” – nice non-homophonic clue.
13 SHED – easy double definition &lit
18 NETS – my last clue – two meanings, one cricket-related unsurprisingly. Like baseball players, cricket batsmen must hit practice balls into NETS?
20 POLLING BOOTH – all right, so there is one cryptic definition: not obvious, since you’re likely to think about fording a river at first.
23 RIMINI – clever clue: take “pRIMe mINIster” and remove tempers* and you get an Italian resort (famous for being where my parents spent their honeymoon and I suspect where I was… well, you know…).
26 DA(KO)TA – DAKOTA is a WWII-era transport plane.


4 TRAMPS – two meanings
5 RAISE THE SUBJECT – two meanings: where the first I suppose is a way to define the action of being knighted.
6 SWANSONG – “lay” is song here – can’t decide if this a cryptic definition or a double definition: “A bird’s last lay”.
19 BOLTED – two meanings: one of my last clues, probably because of the antonymical meanings.
21 LO(I)RE – it’s where I spent my French vacances.
22 SLOT – ref. SLOT machines.

9 Responses to “Guardian 24178/Rufus – Rufus?”

  1. Rufus says:

    Re ATTEND. Original clue was “Wait on a non-drinker and get tip” giving A-TT-END, but a suggestion that it might be improved by making it: “Wait on non-drinker, who’s after a tip” was gratefully received. This works as: non-drinker=TT, after a= after A, a tip=END giving A-TT-END. Don’t know at what stage the misspelling of “whose” occurred!

  2. Paul B says:

    I think your original better for the sense, i.e. waiters (and not non-drinkers) get tips.

  3. ilancaron says:

    Yes I see how it should have worked now — I agree with PaulB — the original rendition has a better surface.

  4. fgbp says:

    With the greatest respect to Rufus, the revised clue is better IMHO. “and get” in the original seems to jar. Surface readings are very important, but sometimes the desire for a good surface can lead to the inclusion of “padding” which makes the cryptic reading more obscure. I think the replacement would be better without the “who’s” (more padding, this time adding nothing to the surface).
    I used to think Azed’s clues were often unsatisfactory because the surface reading often seemed bizarre to me. But Azed never compromises the cryptic reading of his clues for the sake of surface, and there’s a lot to be said for that.

  5. Ciaran McNulty says:

    My print copy has 10A as “Wait on nondrinker, who’s after a tip”, so presumably it was changed at some point.

    Personally I had no problem with nondrinker= A TT and ‘after a’ = ‘is completed by’

  6. Paul B says:

    Fgbp wins the day I think – deleting ‘who’s’ solves the sense problem nicely.

  7. muck says:

    Another good Rufus. 20ac was nicely misleading – I had ******* BEACH until I looked here. 10ac was fine for me.

  8. Fletch says:

    Is there a blog coming for last week’s Prize Taupi?

  9. struggler says:

    Speaking as a representative of Rufus’s target constituency, I would like to record my satisfaction at completing this one and my sole reason for visiting this website today (namely that I failed to deconstruct the clueing behind 23 across, despite completiong it correctly!).

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