Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,210, Paul: Flabby bustards

Posted by michod on October 17th, 2007



1. F(L)AB BY. Liver’s heading is L, and times is BY, (as in 15 by 15) which took me a moment to spot.

4. MUSCAT. I feel conviced there are half a dozen other possible answers to this clue, like  Bordeaux. Port wine is called after the port of Porto, which is presumably called that because it’s a port, so it all starts to get a bit circular!

10. S(PACE CAD)ET. Nice answer.

11, 9. B(A NANA T)REE. BEER*. Another appearance of the controversial ‘perhaps’ as an anagrind.

12. ICE CREAM. Old chestnut flavoured homonym, as in ‘I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream’. 

13. B(OILED)EGG(ar).  Good wordplay, but surface slightly strained?

 17. DIANETICS. (INDICATES*). An invention of the scientologist founder.

21. DIC(T)ATES. Very clever bit of word-splitting – ‘in dicates’.

24. TOILE TSEAT (TASTE*). Eliot’s reversal another old fave. In the paper version this was down as (10), but should of course be (6,4)

25, 15: RO(AD KI)LL. Evocative definition.

27. JE(KY)LL(y). Not a Doctor of Literature, so much as a doctor in literature!


2. (l)AKELA(nds). I wasn’t one myself, but I gather this is some kind of top scout.

6. C(HAIR)LIFT. Ref actor Montgomery Clift, ‘locks’ being hair.

7. THE MALL. Sort of triple clue here, with a reference to shopping centres chucked in for good measure.

8. RACING TIPSTER. Brilliant anagram which I don’t remember seeing before, but I’d be very surprised if it hasn’t featured elsewhere. Just my crap memory? Anyone else?

16. S(KI P)OLE.

20. S(TAT)UE.

23,3. HORNY BUSTARD. (BORN THURSDAY*). Is there really such a creature? I thought the Great Bustard was bad enough, but this really sounds like a euphemism.


14 Responses to “Guardian 24,210, Paul: Flabby bustards”

  1. conradcork says:

    21 across. Don’t agree that it is clever word splitting. I’d say it verges on the unfair (Araucaria uses the device too) except for the fact that with certain setters any word in a clue beginning ‘in’ switches on the danger light immediately, making it a doddle to solve.

  2. linxit says:

    23,3 – I thought as much! There are 26 species of bustard on the Wikipedia page, but none of them are Horny. Paul often tries to slip one past the editor – looks like he got away with it again!

    I also Googled for it – this page was second behind an Australian sex chat forum.

    I thought 21ac was fine, given the juxtaposition with 17ac. 24 was hard because of the wrong enumeration (it was also (10) in the online version). 8d was a superb anagram – I’ve never seen it before either.

    2dn – AKELA is a woman in charge of a pack of cub scouts.

    25,15 – Evocative definition indeed – I laughed out loud when I saw it, and everyone in the office wanted me to share the joke!

  3. Michod says:

    Ooh, the cheeky bustard!
    I just googled too, and now my post here comes just above the sex chat site.
    Of course, we could always add it to Wikipedia. Or campaign for the Horny Bustard’s reintroduction to Salisbury Plain.

  4. Ron says:

    When did ‘accessing’ become a hidden clue indicator?

  5. bobdelob says:

    I think horny bustard is a mistake. I think Paul was thinking of hiney bustard.

  6. bobdelob says:

    sorry – honey bustard

  7. linxit says:

    There’s no such thing as a honey bustard either though, is there? Maybe you’re thinking of the Honey Buzzard, Bobdelob.

    I suspect Paul knew exactly what he was doing, and probably knows (now, at least) that the editor is no ornithologist!

  8. radchenko says:

    Got to be “horny bastard”.

  9. R&R says:

    No, there really is an African bird called a horny bustard – try “horny bustard” in Google (with the quotes) and you can even find a picture of it! (second site).

  10. Colin Blackburn says:

    The picture might well say it’s a Horny Bustard but no bird of that name appears on the world bird list. Of course the list only gives the bird’s standard name (and Latin name) so horny bustard might be a local term.

    Any Namibian birdwatchers reading this blog?

  11. jetdoc says:

    I note that this very site has achieved third place in a Google search for horny bustard. A dubious honour…

    I too was struck by the anagram at 8d, and could scarcely believe that it hasn’t appeared before.

  12. jetdoc says:

    Thinking more about this, maybe there should be a name for such an achievement — posting a blog and going straight to (near) the top of a Google search. Especially in such (not) salubrious company!

  13. Testy says:

    I didn’t see this but presume that the anagram fodder for 8d was STARTING PRICE and I suspect that it probably has been used before but it’s perhaps more likely that it was used the other way round (i.e. as a clue or starting price).

    It has been recorded on Anagram Genius since 1999.

  14. Sally says:

    Thanks, R&R, for pointing me in the direction of the horny bustard picture. It’s a magnificent bird, and certainly looks like it should be called a horny bustard, no matter what the ornithologists may say.

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