Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6699/Nestor

Posted by neildubya on April 11th, 2008


Tough-in-places but enjoyable-all-over puzzle from Nestor. Still not sure about 19a and 4d though.

1 P in ELM,AXED,ABATES – SET A BAD EXAMPLE. Cleverly constructed clue although the wordplay completely passed me by until I started to write up this post.
9 (NUDE SCEN[-e],OR)* – UNCENSORED. The answer came to mind fairly quickly but it was a while before I saw exactly how the clue worked.
11 WOOFER – double def. In electronics, a WOOFER is a speaker designed to produce low-frequency sounds, as opposed to a tweeter.
12 LOLL in [-d]ICEY – luckily I resisted the temptation to fill in “ice cream” from the definition and worry about the wordplay later.
13 initial letters of “Holiness After Journeying Islamically”
15 hidden revsersed in “AltipLANO I TARRIed” – cleverly done but the strange wording pretty much gave the game away, to this solver at least.
17 CO in TRITE,USE – the definition here is pretty long – “nimble fingered women watching execution” – and refers to the women who sat around guillotines knitting during the Reign of Terror in France.
19 REED – the director must be Carol REED (who directed The Third Man, amongst others) but I don’t get how the rest of the clue works: “Sequence Blair uses twice when backing..” [edit: This is wrong, as Paul B indirectly points out below. It’s actually (Nic) ROEG].
20 HER in USING – deceptive wording here in the form of “Exploiting cases of”, with “cases” as a containment indicator.
24 K,I[-ll]WI[-ll] – for a short word I thought this was very tough. “Someone like Hillary” is the definition – a reference to Sir Edmund – but the Barack (Obama) reference does alot to mislead.
3 (I GO SCOT FREE AND I)* – AGE OF DISCRETION. A new phrase to me so this was a guess based on the remaining anagram fodder once I’d decided that the phrase began with AGE OF. In Canon law, it’s the age at which children become capable of moral responsibility.
4 ABSURDIST – I can’t explain the wordplay for this one. Full clue: “For me, life’s meaningless, a billion and 15 lives chiefly trivial”. The answer at 15 is IRRATIONAL, which could be ABSURD, followed by IS (“lives”), T[rivial]. But if that’s the case, what does “a billion” indicate? A B seems logical but we already have that.
7 PHOTOJOURNALISM – a cryptic def I guess but not all that cryptic, unless I’m missing something?
8 EX, TAIL (going up) in FOE
16 WENT in TIE,TH – nothing to do with the answer at 7d, just that it happens to be the TWENTIETH clue in the puzzle. [edit: Didn’t explain this properly – I meant that 7d is the TWENTIETH clue]
23 C,REEL – &lit to finish off. A CREEL is a wicker basket used for carrying fish or trapping lobsters.

4 Responses to “Independent 6699/Nestor”

  1. Mick H says:

    I didn’t get the wordplay for 4dn at the time, but I knew SURD was a mathematical term. Looking it up now, I see it is an irrational number!

  2. nmsindy says:

    TWENTIETH I think there is more to this – it’s not the twentieth clue in my paper. And there’s also a 7 in the clue. Did not get the director one – looking at reference books, there’s also a director ROEG. Thanks for KIWI, which I did not get – now if it had been K?W?… rather than ?I?I.

  3. neildubya says:

    16d – sorry, didn’t explain that properly. I meant that 7d is the twentieth clue.

  4. Paul B says:

    SURD and ABSURD seem rather akin (same root – n.b. that’s not necessarily an etymologist’s pun) but that’s what it is.

    Eric BLAIR is George Orwell, and we can see ROEG reversed twice in that moniker. A bit subtle, but a good spot by the parrot.

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