Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6779/Punk

Posted by John on July 8th, 2008


The usual tough but excellent puzzle from Punk. At one stage I thought I would never get going and would have to admit defeat, but eventually all was well.

1 COSTIVE – I can’t quite see how ‘Punk’s’ can lead to ‘I’ve'; I was looking for a word ending ‘my’
9 GARLIC PRESS – gallic press with r replacing the first l – very good clue
10 TOT – a palindrome
11 A(n)FIELD
12 SLYBOOTS – stoo(by)ls rev. – a few years ago this was a clue word in an Azed competition, but this clue wasn’t one of the prizewinners. I wonder how it would have done.
14 ET ON
17 LEMBIT OPIK – (Lib (D)em))* to (kip)rev. – an &lit. Cheeky Girl reference?
18 SovieTS A Russian – has a chestnutty feel to it
22 HAT RED – For a long time I was trying to think of a word containing ‘fez’
24 SKI(p)
25 SPOTTED DICK – 2 defs
26 DEANERY – (yearned)*
1 CO(GNAT)E – ref. Sebastian Coe
2 STRAIT OF MESSINA – (if son’s metatarsi)* – the toe of Italy I suppose, or is it some mythological reference?
3 I C 1 C L (spik)E – &lit.
4 EX PO – if work isn’t written down it’s written up
5 IDEALISTIC – I couldn’t understand this until I discovered that ‘idealistic’ is an anagram of ‘italicised’, so very clever clue, but on the edge I think
6 FASTBACK – fast rev.
7 NATIONAL SERVICE – I thought he was being a bit political until I realised that 8 (which I hadn’t at that stage got) was ‘artisan’ and it’s (violence artisan)*
17 LI(A1(lonelines)S)ED
19 REDSKIN – a Desiree potato has, as I discovered, a red skin
20 BAR DOT – I’m not sure this is a very established term in music – a question mark might have been kinder
23 STEP – pets rev.

9 Responses to “Independent 6779/Punk”

  1. Duggie says:

    20D: dare I suggest John may have missed the barely discernible full stop at the end of the clue – the ‘dot’ behind the ‘bar’?

  2. conradcork says:

    1 across. I don’t have a problem with Punk’s being I’ve. As in ‘I’ve got the world on a string'; punk’s got…

    And as well as ‘my’ you could have been looking for ‘mine’.

  3. John says:

    Duggie: yes, you’re quite right. So it’s a good clue. My apologies to Punk.

  4. nmsindy says:

    Or ‘me’ as in – Punk is added.

  5. Al Streatfield says:

    5dn: This clue seems to me extraordinarily unfocussed. OK, “an anagram of” is in italics, but surely the answer, if it is to correspond in any sense with the meaning of the clue, must be “ITALICISED” not “IDEALISTIC”. I still don’t think it would work even then because of the level of indirectness. In other words, you are not told what is to be anagrammatised (whether it is IDEALISTIC or ITALICISED)…

  6. Mick H says:

    An anagram of italicised, meaning romantic – seems clear to me, though it took a while. Loved GARLIC PRESS and ‘not written down’, but I’d never heard of a FASTBACK. Would watching Top Gear help?

  7. Harold the Barrel says:

    5dn: Times = stuffy, Rud(e)again* = confused, but Indy = broad church, so it’s perfectly feasible to expect and get a clue like this.

    Accurately described as ‘on the edge’, I think 5dn contains a very nice idea, and I for one was pleased to see it.

  8. Al Streatfield says:

    “I for one was pleased to see it”.

    Well, I wasn’t and don’t consider this view stuffy or confused.

    “Broad church”, as the Indy is, is fine. But since when has this meant including indirect anagrams? I can’t remember the last time I saw one in the Indy…

    “An anagram of(in italics) romantic?” implies to me that what is being anagrammed is “romantic” or, in this case, a synonym of “romantic” i.e. “idealistic”. Mick H. thinks that the clue is clear, although it took him a long time to solve it. If anything were to seem clear to me about it, it would be that it was pointing you towards an anagram of “idealistic”, i.e. “italicised”.

  9. nmsindy says:

    I’m not really sure about this, I’ll have to say. I’d noticed the italics in the clue and was pretty sure they had something to do with it. However, I could not make much sense of it at all when trying to solve the puzzle. Only when I’d a lot of crossing letters did I see that IDEALISTIC would fit and, of course, it means romantic. Quite a bit later then I saw it was an anagram of ‘italicised’ and understood. So it was really saying an anagram of (italicised) romantic. I think it’s just about OK if we are prepared to allow full stops, exclamation marks to be part of clues as I think we are that we could also use a device such as this. There is a slight extra touch of indirection though as ‘italicised’ is just one way of saying it, e.g. Al in his comment above ‘in italics’ above which in practice most people would use to describe it. I think most would work back from the answer as I did in the end.

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