Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6865/Nimrod – The Joy of …

Posted by beermagnet on October 16th, 2008


Nimrod. Brilliant.
With an interesting grid that I don’t remember seeing much before which helps the solver by providing a goodly number of first letters.
This solve went very well kicking off with 1 Across and two of the three other 15 letter lights.
There are a few where I can’t understand the wordplay or some reference so help gratefully received, espec. 10A, 25A, 4D and 22D (and others)

1 PULL THE OTHER ONE (THE NORTH POLE E U L)* Unsure about validity of abbreviating Lecturer to L on its own
9 IDLE DD Ref. Eric of that ilk
10 PIANISSIMO Don’t understand. P[resident] ? Is OMISSINAI or OMISNAI or similar a “place of High Command” – Good job I learnt the piano as a nipper.
P (OM IS SINAI) reversed
11 GRUB STREET Excellent clue (BURST)* inside GREET Ref. the nickname for Fleet Street (spitting distance from where I’m sitting 😉 )
12 TOLD DD-ish thing: Told as in “all told” for counting, and as in relating a story though for that the clue would need related rather than relating so I think the “out?” is modifying the tense.(?)
13 TOM DICK AND HARRY Standard shorthand names for a set of ordinary blokes. “Tom Dick” is cockney slang for sick and worry=harry
16 LOW-SPIRITEDNESS I needed virtually all the crossing letters for this one though I could see it was LOW-something from the start. I was clearly trying to over-think the clue which looks more like a straight def. than a CD to me, I presume it’s a play on words referring to depression in the meteorological sense. (There’s likely more to it.)
There certainly is:
It is an anagram of WILTS and DEPRESSION
This goes to show how a nice &Lit anagram can be really hard if you don’t spot the anagram
23 ZOLA [GORGON]ZOLA I presume he’s a football manager – someone will be along in a minute to tell me of which team.
West Ham United
24 FLASH FLOOD FLASH Light and Flood Lights thus twice as light, and the result of a heavy (cats and dogs) downpour
25 DOLLAR SIGN I don’t get this def. “It’s over 4″ (GALLONS DIR[ectors])*
Doh! The $ character is above the 4 on a standard typewriter keyboard 
26 TIME “Thyme”
27 FOOT-POUND-SECOND This has come up before (I won’t say recently ’cause I’ll probably find I’m recalling something from over a year ago). Good old imperial unit from Foot=pay, some money=pound, back=second as in supporting.
2 UNDERGO (URGED ON)* Nice new anagrind, Hatters, I didn’t doubt that it indicates an anagram but I note the “?” in case the purists moan about a noun used in this way.
3 LIE-ABED This gave me momentry trouble with 9A as I put in LAY-ABED first off ABE in LIED More slang, pit is bed
4 HEPATIC livery but wordplay escapes me -probably (H[orse] EAT PIC)* with EAT from hungry but where’s the anagrind?
Hungry horse in photo at livery(7)
H[orse]E,P(AT)IC Not an anagram.  The Horse is hungry because it’s empty!
5 ORAL EXAMINATION Alex Comfort of 1970s “Joy of Sex” fame makes an appearance. ALEX AM IN inside ORATION (actually I’m not sure how the IN gets in there)
Aha – it was Idi AMIN who dictated
I got stuck on using the “in” in the clue in the answer and thought Dr Comfort was saying “I am Alex” or something.
6 HOISTED (SITE)* inside HOD
7 ROSETTA (TOASTER)* Worth going to the British Museum to see the Rosetta Stone alone.
14 MEW MEW[s] My kids have been found watching a cartoon called Mew-Mew Power – very strange stuff.
17 OLOROSO [d]OLOROSO That sherry that is a crossword favourite.
19 INFERNO INFER,NO I noted this as my favourite in the crossword as it made me laugh out loud:
Hell? Guess not (7)
20 ECHINUS CHIN feature in E[ast] US. I had to google this to find out what kind of sea creature it was – a spiny sea urchin (any relation to Echidna, spiny anteater? No).
21 NILOTIC NIL love, OTIC “of a listener” Describes people from the Nile River regions – another word that popped up not that long ago in the Guardian Xword, but I had to strain my brain to spot it
22 SHOWMAN Another I need help with. Is it SHOW[BOAT] + [BOAT]MAN with BOAT twice missing?
Apparently so

17 Responses to “Independent 6865/Nimrod – The Joy of …”

  1. C G Rishikesh says:

    4d I think it’s he,p(at)ic.

  2. Mort says:

    Gianfranco Zola is currently the manager of West Ham united.

  3. Jenny says:

    25, it’s above 4 on the keyboard.

  4. Uncle Yap says:

    BeerMagnet, I am so sorry our postings crossed. Never mind, the more the merrier. BTW, how do you know the term “alamak” which is a very Malaysian term?

  5. beermagnet says:

    4D Ah! The Horse is hungry/empty thus we get the HE from H[ors]E. Thanks CG.

    25A “$” Dollar-sign above 4 That’s a “Doh!”

    Uncle Y: “Alamak” is what you said in your first comment in the other thread – I guessed it was roughly equivalent to, and more suitable than my actual reaction which, as Blackadder would say rhymed with “O clucking bell”.

  6. nmsindy says:

    PIANISSIMO P (OM IS SINAI)reversed !!

  7. nmsindy says:


  8. Testy says:

    16A is an anagram of WILTS and DEPRESSION

    I thought 12 was a bit vague (either that or I don’t get it).

    I think you’re right about the SHOWMAN.

    I guess I must also be one of those purists you mention because I wasn’t keen on Hatters as an anagram indicator. Not because it’s a noun but because I just don’t understand how it works. Why is it capitalised? Is it supposed to be referring to the Mad Hatter or hatters in general? In which case is the anagrind actually “like Hatters”? Are we missing an apostrophe (i.e. should it be “like Hatter’s”)? The word order seems a bit wrong to me as I would have expected it to anagram the preceding words….

    INFERNO was brilliant though

  9. Geoff Moss says:

    There is no ‘Mad Hatter’ in ‘Alice …..’, only ‘the Hatter’ who was described to Alice as being mad.

    There is however the common phrase ‘mad as a hatter’ so ‘like hatters’ becomes ‘mad’ which is the anagram indicator.

  10. Geoff Moss says:

    16a ‘to tell’ is ‘to count (votes)’

    ‘relations out’ could be read as ‘relation’s out’ (perhaps the missing apostrophe is a typo?) and if a statement is out it has already been told.

  11. Geoff Moss says:

    16a On second thoughts, perhaps there is no need for the apostrophe. According to Chambers relation = statement and ‘statements (that are) out’ have been told.

  12. beermagnet says:

    All you folks have wrapped up all the queries I had. Thanks everybody, I love you all!

  13. Allan_C says:

    ‘Mad as a hatter’ comes from the use of mercury in one of the processes of hat-making. Hatters were thus exposed to mercury vapour which is toxic; it’s effects brought on madness.
    I don’t have any problem with ‘hatter/s’ as an anagram indicator, but I found this a tough puzzle, with too many answers got from checking letters but which I didn’t understand. Finally defeated by foot-pound-second. Now if the clue had been ‘System (not international)…’ – but that might have been too easy!

  14. Allan_C says:

    Oops! “it’s” should be “its”

  15. John H says:

    “like Hatters” is indeed = mad = anagind. Nobody blogged Io on Wednesday in FT, maybe this Indy might have been easier…

  16. Geoff Moss says:

    John H

    The Wednesday FT by IO was blogged!

  17. neildubya says:

    We certainly did:

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