Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6980/Bannsider (Prize puzzle 28-02-09)

Posted by neildubya on March 6th, 2009


Probably the toughest puzzle I’ve attempted in a while, which explains my dismal performance: two answers missing and a whole load more that I filled in but can’t explain. Great puzzle though, as always from Bannsider.

1 TEE< in SWISH – SWEETISH. I was baffled as to how “Tony” could mean SWISH, until I looked up the former in the COED, where it gives “tony” as an informal N. American term meaning “fashionable among wealthy or stylish people”. SWISH can mean smart or stylish.
6 COW,PAT – fits with the amusing definition – “deposit from Jersey, perhaps” – but how does “Cash” = PAT?
9 STUD,IO – I/O is a computing term meaning input [reading] and output [writing].
10 LEE in (PERMS)* – REM SLEEP. “Spike that’s directed” is a reference to Spike Lee, the film director.
11 TRAFFIC CALMING – “trade” is TRAFFIC and a composer is someone who composes or calms, so CALMING is their “work”.
16 ??E? – couldn’t get this. Full clue is “A number of Romans in organisation coming before administrator”. [Edit: EXEC – see comments for explanation]
17 IDLY? – possibly fits with “and so rest” as a definition but I can’t see the wordplay: “Knock off quickly – and so rest?”
18 DISNEYLAND – Excellent clue: “Reportedly keeps flying to Scottish” is “dis nae land”(!) and the def is “US or French resort”.
19 WHAT ST(H,EDAM)AGE – another excellent clue.
22 C(H)IVVIES – and another. “Does Harry” is the deceptive definition.
24 ANG(L)ER – I liked “apprentice kerb-crawler” L (Learner driver) – makes a change from “student” or somesuch.
25 CROSBY – definitely a town in Merseyside and Cr is an abbreviation for Councillor but I don’t know how you get OSBY from “overreacts badly when bodies default”.
26 SNIPE,N,IN< – NINEPINS. “Snipe” are wading birds apparently.
2 WA,TERME(A)D,O,W – tough one to parse but got there in the end.
3 hidden in “NeedlewomEN DO Floor” – END OF, as in “No you can’t go out to play, end of story”. “That’s flat” is a similar expression I think.
4 (CONFIDE I I)* – ICONIFIED. “Small screen pictures” is a reference to computers icons.
5 (USE THESE CHROME)*,N – HERE COMES THE SUN. The Beatles song from “Abbey Road” and written by George Harrison.
7 W?L? I ???L – couldn’t get this one either: “Defiant words from western chap beset by troubles”. [Edit: WILL I HELL, see comments for explanation]
8 AXE – the def could be “fell” but I can’t see the wordplay. Full clue: “Fell runner going from Dorset to Devon”.
12 GRETNA GREEN – GRETNA is the “football team until recently” (I think they went into administration last year and had to resign from the Scottish Football League).
14 FLY HA(L)VES – “on the ball” is FLY (which can mean cunning or smart).
15 DEEP-DRAWN – I think “cast in a particular way” is the definition, with the wordplay coming from “[-o]NWARD [-s]PEED” (all going up).
20 SPIRY – again, not sure about this but it’s all I could think of that fits: “Maybe like church steeple’s cross”. [Edit: as some commenters have pointed out, this is SPIKY and a double def]
21 MUG UP – “mug up” as wordplay would be GUM or sap.
23 HER – fits with the definition of “girl’s” but again, I can’t work out the wordplay: “Girl’s rear touching horse”.

21 Responses to “Independent 6980/Bannsider (Prize puzzle 28-02-09)”

  1. beermagnet says:

    Thanks Neil I’ve been eagerly awaiting this blog
    Today I remembered to keep my attempt at this crossword in my bag.
    6A Pat Cash is a famous tennis Player
    16A EXEC X is the number of Romans, and EEC is the org. that preceded the EU
    The full clue was: A number of Romans in organisation coming before EU administrator
    17A [rap]IDLY
    25A The OSBY of CROSBY comes from the outer letters of O[verreact]S B[adl]Y , i.e. their bodies and defaulting
    7D WILL I HELL !! I normally say “Will I Hell as like” to mean “No thank you very much” if for instance someone offers me a flavourless lager
    W[estern], HE inside ILL twice
    8D I thought the river was Ax without an E as in Axminster but don’t understand why it is “fell”
    20D I have SPIKY as a Double Def.
    23D I put in HER too but don’t fully understand.

  2. Paul B says:

    Pat Cash, tennis player.

  3. Eileen says:

    Hi Neil

    I didn’t do this puzzle but Pat Cash was an Australian tennis player [Wimbledon champion 1987] and the river Axe runs through Dorset and Devon.

    23dn: I think, rear = reverse RE [touching] + H [heroin = ‘horse’]

  4. Paul B says:

    rap/ IDLY

  5. Paul B says:

    O verreact S B adl Y

  6. Paul B says:

    Reversal RE/ H. Horse is heroin.

  7. Fletch says:

    I also put spiky. Tough and imaginative clueing, this was Bannsider at his best. Loved the Disneyland clue.

  8. neildubya says:

    SPIKY it is. Thanks everyone for the explanations.

  9. Ali says:

    Very tough (didn’t finish it, though never do with Bannsider), but some lovely clues with trademark tricksy definitions.

    Am being picky as I didn’t solve the clue, but isn’t Disneyland only the US version? The French one is Eurodisney, no?!

  10. neildubya says:

    It used to be Eurodisney but then it was “rebranded” to become Disneyland Paris. I think the idea was to create a better association in people’s minds with the US version.

  11. eimi says:

    From Wikipedia:

    Disneyland Resort Paris and its assets have been subject to a number of name changes, initially an effort to overcome the negative publicity that followed the inception of Euro Disney.
    Michael Eisner noted, “As Americans, the word ‘Euro’ is believed to mean glamorous or exciting. For Europeans it turned out to be a term they associated with business, currency, and commerce. Renaming the park ‘Disneyland Paris’ was a way of identifying it with one of the most romantic and exciting cities in the world.”

    It was the clue that made me laugh.

  12. Al Streatfield says:

    DISNEYLAND is not a homophone of DISNAE LAND. DISNAY LAND is, in my opinion.

  13. Ali says:

    Cheers Eimi/Neil. Can’t argue with that one then. Score one (more!) for Bannsider.

  14. Allan_C says:

    Al (#8)
    “DISNEYLAND is not a homophone of DISNAE LAND” I agree with you and think there’s a misunderstanding of Scots pronunciation here. The Scots form of ‘gay’ is spelt ‘gey’ but people think it’s still pronounced ‘gay’ as in English. So by analogy they pronounce ‘Disney’ as ‘Disnay’
    In fact, according to Chambers, ‘gey’ is pronounced more like ‘gee’ (with a hard g) just as it would be in English, to rhyme with ‘key’ and of course ‘Disney’
    But it was a good clue for all that!

  15. Allan_C says:

    I meant #12, not #8

  16. Allan_C says:

    And I couldn’t work out the definition part for 3dn. I’ve never come across “end of” on its own, only in “end of story”. Even though ‘floor’ was there to provide the ‘f’ I began to wonder about floor coverings and if “end of” was trade jargon – end of roll &c, not that made any sense either.

  17. Al Streatfield says:

    Allan C:

    Rather than a “good clue” shurely “a nice idea, but should have been abandoned on the drawing-board”…

  18. Bannsider says:

    Fair points Allan C and Al S: homophone clues are often desperately contentious and I apologise at the liberties taken with phonetic nuances. Then again, I wonder: are the stretches of imagination required to see “Dis nae land” = “Disney land” any greater than those of many other cryptic devices.
    And hands up who has not chuckled at the joke (many variations of whgich I’m sure exist):
    “Q – What’s the difference between Donald Duck and Walt Disney?
    A – Donald Duck has a beak and Walt Disney …”

  19. Paul B says:

    In defence of the Bann Man, I should say I *have* come across ‘end of’ on its own. Understandably, not everyone can be bothered to say ‘story’ as well as.

    Usual brilliance – great puzzle.

  20. eimi says:

    It’s wot chavs say, innit? End of!

  21. nmsindy says:

    This was extremely tough but I got there in the end. Favourite clue TRAFFIC CALMING.

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