Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor 69 – Progressive Consumption by Schadenfreude

Posted by duncanshiell on May 2nd, 2008


Solvers were told that nine answers represented a song sequence, in clue order, but with a different and much happier ending.  The preamble also stated that the first answer, representing the eventual target, was to be entered normally.

My initial reaction on reading the title was to say to myself that ‘There was an old woman who swallowed a fly”, but I couldn’t find reference to nine distinct insects/animals in any version of the rhyme, so I thought for a little while that my initial reaction was wrong, but eventually it was proven to be right.  I have to admit that the goat was new to me – in my childhood I seem to remember it was the cow that swallowed the dog.

As I solved the clues, it became readily apparent which of the them related to entries that were different from the answers.  I think it was the .GOA.A. and the B.O.AY that I had got to in 9 and 10 down that finally caused the penny to drop. At that point the location of BIRD, CAT and DOG became fairly obvious  and the whole thing then dropped into place fairly rapidly.  She swallowed the spider to catch the fly; the bird to catch the spider etc.  It is always the generic ‘CAT’, ‘DOG’, ‘GOAT’ etc that is caught by a word associated with the catcher.  The associated word may be a specific example of the catcher, e.g. epeira (spider) or tehr (goat), or it may  be something that requires more lateral thinking, e.g. pluto (dog)

If I had analysed the preamble more thoroughly on first read through I might have realised sooner that the FLY made two appearances, once in its normal form as TZETSE and once caught by a spider.

The eight ‘treated’ entries were clued to generate the catcher alone  - e.g. 21 across SESPIDERALARK is a clue for SEA LARK only

I am left unsure exactly why the ending is much happier.  Clearly there is no reference to the old woman being dead and, of course, that must be a cause of happiness, but I can’t help thinking that she still can’t be that thrilled whilst being stuffed with fly, spider, cat, bird, dog, goat, cow and horse.  I was left wondering whether there was another word to be highlighted in the grid signifying great happiness or joy,  or living happily ever after, but I can’t find anything obvious; nor was there any instruction to look for such a word.

No. Solution Caught Entry Components of Solution
1 TZETSE   TZETSE T (‘The’: North England) + Z (zone) + EST (anagram [up] of SET) + E (East) = TZETSE (a variant spelling of the fly [African genus] that causes sleeping sickness)
5 EWE-LAMB   EWE-LAMB (MALE [stag]  + WE) reversed (turned) + B (black) = EWE-LAMB (sheep)
11 EPEIRA FLY EFLYPEIRA Anagram (batting)of  SEE PAIR without (to avoid) S (second) = EPEIRA  (spinner [of webs] -a spider of the genus Epeira)
12 APACHE APACHE APACE (quickly) containing (overcomes) H (Henry) = APACHE (a lawless ruffian or hooligan)
13 IGLOO IGLOO I (one) + G (initial letter of ‘going’) + LOO (lavatory) = IGLOO (a hollow in the snow)
14 PEPO PEPO PEP (life) + O (of) = PEPO (type of fruit found in the melon and cucumber family)
15 TENON SAW TENON SAW Anagram (at sea) of WANTS ONE = TENON SAW (a cutting tool)
16 OPSONIN OPSONIN O (of) + P (prince) + SON (native) + IN (Indiana is the Hoosier State – see also = OPSONIN (constituent of blood serum)
17 GUTTA GUTTA GUT (extract what is essential) + TAN (most of TAN [brown]) = GUTTA (a small round colour-spot)
20 TERM DAY TERM DAY Anagram (is volatile) of  MY TRADE = TERM DAY (a day fixed for some purpose, e.g. paying the rent)
21 SEA LARK SPIDER SESPIDERALARK SEAL (settle) + ARK (floating vessel) = SEA LARK (any of various shore birds, including the rock pipit)
24 TOM BIRD TBIRDOM TO (as far as) + M (motorway) = TOM (tramp; both tom and tramp are definitions for prostitute. A tom, of course, is also a male cat)
28 AUNES AUNES A + UNES (French [indefinite] articles) = AUNES (one aune is an old French measure of approximately 47 inches, so any more than one is at least 94 inches)
29 ETONIAN ETONIAN (AI  [excellent] + NOTE [mark]) all reversed  (returned) + N (new) = ETONIAN (public schoolboy)
30 PLUTO CAT PLUCATTO PL (LP (Lord Provost, formerly chief magistrate of major Scottish cities)  reversed (retired) + UTO (anagram [sorted] of OUT) = PLUTO (Underworld,  and also a Disney cartoon dog)
32 TOFT TOFT TO (near) + FT (fort) = TOFT (hillock)
33 PITON   PITON PIT (mine) + ON (supported by) = PITON (stanchion)
34 TSOTSI   TSOTSI (IS + TOST [obsolete definition of agitated]) all reversed (knocked back) = TSOTSI (young hooligan)
35 ANORETICS   ANORETICS Anagram (can supply) of TORIES CAN = ANORETICS ( a substance causing lack of appetite)
36 TEHR DOG TEHDOGR TEH (anagram [wandering)]of THE) + R (run) = TEHR (a beardless hymalayan wild goat)
37 SNO-CAT   SNO-CAT NO (certainly not) contained within (covered by) SCAT = SNO-CAT (a tracked vehicle for use on snow)
No. Solution Caught Entry Components of Solution
1 TEAPOYS   TEAPOYS Anagram (working with) of SAY and TOP and E (European) = TEAPOYS (tea caddies)
2 ELAPSES   ELAPSES E (initial letter of exam) + LAPSES (fails in duty) = ELAPSES (passings, i.e. more than one passing)
3 TYCOON   TYCOON YT (obsolete version of that) reversed (turned up) + COON (thief) = TYCOON (a commercial baron)
4 SPHENOIDS   SPHENOIDS Anagram (cooking with) of P (penny) and DOES and SHIN = SPHENOIDS (one of a set of bones at the base of the skull)
5 EIDENT   EIDENT EIDER (duck, almost) + NT (no trumps) = EIDENT (diligent [Scottish])
6 WRINGERS   WRINGERS W (won) + RINGERS (imposters, [American usage]) = WRINGERS (laundry appliances)
7 LIGNUM   LIGNUM LIGNUM (two meanings, 1. wood and 2. a wiry shrub in Australia [reference Perth])
8 AWLS   AWLS A (Australian) + W (woman) + LS (characters 1 and 3 of LOST, i.e., regular odd characters) = AWLS (tools)
9 MART GOAT MGOATART BART (baronet) with M (money) replacing B (black) = MART (market, but also a cow, fattened, killed and salted for winter use)
10 BAY COW BCOWAY BY (in reserve) containing A (chief, or first letter of Apache) = BAY (a bay platform is one where the line ends in a station that also has continuing lines. Thematically, a reddish brown or chestnut horse)
17 GRAN HORSE GRAHORSEN GRAN (2 definitions – 1. great and 2. old lady/an old woman who swallowed ………)
18 NEBULISE   NEBULISE Anagram (variegated) of BLUE RINSE without the R (not right) = NEBULISE (to reduce to spray as an atomiser does)
19 ADOPTING   ADOPTING ADO (trouble) + P (parking) + TIN (can) + G (leading letter of grief) = ADOPTING (taking)
22 ABIOTIC   ABIOTIC A + BIO (movie) + T (tense) + IC = ABIOTIC (absence of life)
23 KANTIST   KANTIST KT (knight) containing (entertaining) ANTI (opposed to) and S (society) = KANTIST (a disciple of Immanuel Kant, Philosopher)
24 TAPPIT   TAPPIT TIT (bird) containing (circles) APP (apparently) = TAPPIT (crested)
25 RECORD   RECORD RE (reversal of ER [the Queen]) + C (100) + OR (before) + D (duke) = RECORD (celebrate)
26 METEOR   METEOR MET (encountered) + E (European) + OR (other ranks [soldiers]) = METEOR (rare atmospheric phenomenon)
27 IN TOTO   IN TOTO IN + O (love) containing (having) TOT (young child)  = IN TOTO (totally)
31 UTAH   UTAH Anagram (eccentric) of AUTHOR without (out of) OR (Oregon, American State) = UTAH (another American State)

One Response to “Inquisitor 69 – Progressive Consumption by Schadenfreude”

  1. HolyGhost says:

    Seems like one that was a bit more fun for the setter than for the solver …

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