Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6717/Nestor

Posted by neildubya on May 2nd, 2008

neildubya.

One of the things that struck me when I was solving this entertaining puzzle is how heavily my solving “technique” (if that’s not too poncey) involves working off of definitions and checking letters, where there are any, and then dealing with the wordplay later (or sometimes not all if I’m not blogging a puzzle). I’m not suggesting that I do this for every clue but I do seem to do it a lot these days. I expect this is a Bad Thing though as it would increase the likelihood of making mistakes.

Across
7 (COUSIN A LOT)* – OSCULATION.
9 AJAX – “age axe”.
10 REWIND – not sure if this is right as I don’t understand the wordplay. 500 is D and the definition looks like “video feature” but that’s all I can see.
11 (IDOL)* in EVER
12 ST,BAT in DUH – I liked “it’s obvious” for DUH.
13 ELVISH – Elvis being the singer in the jumpsuit.
15 BULG[-e] in UNCLEAR,I[-nerti]A – UNCLE BULGARIA. One of the Wombles, famous for their recycling (“making good use of things/Folk leave behind” as I believe the theme tune went). I had a few letters filled in so I got this from the definition, which was lucky as I’ve just worked out the wordplay.
18 L in A BARN – Damon ALBARN, erstwhile lead singer of Blur, a popular beat combo who were very famous in the 90s. A bit obscure perhaps but the wordplay is about as straightforward as it gets so you could have a good guess at this one.
20 (TREK IN SA)* – this was a guess for me. The surface reading of the clue suggested a South African word/place so I figured that TRANS??? would be a good bet (I was probably thinking of words like Transvaal). And when the crossing E when in it was either going to be TRANSKEI and TRANSIEK and the latter just didn’t look right.
22 (BRA FLIES)* – FALSE RIB.
24 TAG,U,ON(reversed) – credit where credit’s due: Mrs Dubya got this one from the definition.
26 OVERSTAYER – “overt sayer” with the S and T switched around. “He should have gone before” is a difficult definition to spot.
 
Down
1 AS,PERUS(U)AL – minor liberty taken with the capital R in “reading” but “Reading University” must have been hard to resist for the setter.
2 QU,AINT
3 AN,DR in MAKE
4 KILN in EU (reversed) – yet another one where the definition came first, aided by some checking letters, and the wordplay followed.
6 J,A,PE – the last one in and I thought for a while I wasn’t going to get it.
8 (AXIS THIN BLUE E)* – INEXHAUSTIBLE.
14 SHAM CAFE (going up),ED
17 GLAS(NO)S,T
19/21 NAR(ROWS QUE)AK – another one that Mrs Dubya got, also from the definition. When working out the wordplay later I thought there was a mistake somewhere as I couldn’t account for the second A but it’s an abbreviation for ARE (a unit of land measurement).
23 alternate letters in “cAsH tErMs”

4 Responses to “Independent 6717/Nestor”

  1. nmsindy says:

    REWIND DREW IN with D moved

  2. beermagnet says:

    Can anyone explain 25A ZERO
    Unknown character central to story, faceless nobody (4)
    Given ?E?O, I was tempted to put in NEMO, but luckily opted for the given answer ZERO based on the “Unknown”=Z idea.

  3. nmsindy says:

    Z = unknown character central to story = HERO faceless = (H)ERO. Definition = nobody. That’s how I saw it, anyway.

  4. beermagnet says:

    Thanks NmsI it was the faceless (H)ERO I didn’t understand.

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