Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,661 – Paul

Posted by Uncle Yap on March 31st, 2009

Uncle Yap.

dd = double definition
cd = cryptic definition
rev = reversed or reversal
ins = insertion
cha = charade
ha = hidden answer
*(fodder) = anagram

The conventional approach to solving a clue is to unravel the word-play and the fodder to arrive at the answer. However, with Paul and certain other compilers, I find that some of the time, I have to get some feasible answers and see how the answer fit into the word-play … sort of a reverse solving.  And when you fully justify and rationalise the clue, you mutter to yourself “What a Tricky Dicky Paul is” … I certainly had very much fun today, being challenged, entertained and delighted by this maestro

1,2D NODDING DONKEY I never knew until today that this type of pump for pumping oil from land-based oil wells is so called.
5 BUMMALO Another new word for me for the Bambay duck. Change the F’s to M’s in BUFFALO (double sex change in a bovine :-)
9 TENSE 10’s (figures) E (last letter of deteriorate)
10 REDUCTION *(introduce)
11 FLEUR DE LIS F (fine) + *(slide rule)
12 BALM I never knew Texans pronounce bomb as balm
14 MAN IN THE MOON Ins if NINTH (ordinal) in MAE (West, the actress) + MOON (show one’s backside)
18 LOOSE JOINTED LOOS (ladies and gents) + ins of JOIN (accompany) T (first letter of triathletes) in EED (rev of River Dee)
21 GRID Rev of DIRGE (mournful tune) minus E
22 MILLSTREAM *(small timer)
25 INFLATION Ins of FLAT (even) in INION (back fo the head)
26 EXTRA EX (old) TRA (rev of ART, painting)
27 HERRING Cha of H (last letter of beach) ERRING (off course)
28 YASHMAK Ins of AS (like) & HM (Her Majesty or royal) in YAK (bovine)

1 NOTIFY Ins of TIF (rev of fit) in NOY ) rev of yon (that)
4 GORSE Ins of S (first letter of spine) in GORE (blood)
5 BADMINTON Cha of BAD (awful) MINT (lot of money) ON. At least there is one sport left where Malaysia is still respected as a world power from the time we won the first Thomas Cup in Preston in 1949
6 MACE dd
7 ANIMATOR A Nima Tor (rev of ROT, corrupt & Idi Amin, dictator and last King of Scotland)
8 OINTMENT *(mention) & T (first letter of treatment)
13 RELENTLESS This clue got me so tickled. Imagine a year of 365 days being shortened by the 40 days of Lent. My favourite clue of the lot.
15 IDOLISING Cha of “I do” (old promise said at wedding) + ins of IS in LING (Heather)
16 SLUGGISH Try as I did, I could not parse this clue … am I getting sluggish?
17 TO DIE FOR dd
19 RECTUM Sounds like “Wreck ’em” end of the alimentary canal
20 EMBARK EM (rev of me, the setter Paul) BARK (sound of setter, a dog) Very clever
23 LANKY L (line) YANK, moving Y to the back to form AMKY
24 SARI ha

27 Responses to “Guardian 24,661 – Paul”

  1. David says:

    Thanks again, Uncle Yap: Relentless was my favourite, too. I spent some time trying to work out what fraction of a year 325 days was before the penny dropped.

    16d: if a snail had no home (its shell), it would look like a slug!

  2. David says:

    Forgot say that I couldn’t parse NOTIFY, so thanks.
    I also loved RECTUM – typical Paul!

  3. Eileen says:

    Re the discussion yesterday, I don’t think we would have been too taxed if this one had been ‘anonymous’! Highly enjoyable – and going some way to make up for the absence of ‘ribaldry’ last week.

    I don’t think I’ve come across ‘inion’ before, which is surprising, since it gives so many insertion opportunities.

    I loved so much about this one – including the ‘face up’ definition of 14ac.

  4. Dawn says:

    I got about 75% of this done and then ran out of time before work. Thanks for explaining my gaps. I was sure the Texans were famous for their blazing sunsets so wasn’t getting anywhere with 1a, 2d. Having seen the answer I think I like it as much as relentless!

  5. Ian says:

    Nodding Donkey was indeed a bit of a googly. Like Derek, I couldn’t parse Notify, either, but it went in anyway? Rectum? Didn’t do ’em any bloody good…

  6. Monica M says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap,

    I couldn’t explain a few of these clues … when I got 1ac/2dn … I uncharitably thought it was a regerence to George W. (Uncle Yap … imagine him saying nuclear bomb, I think you’ll get something like … nuke-u-lar barm …)

  7. David says:

    (Ian, I’m David, not Derek! Don’t start that multi-identity-troll paranoia again!)

  8. Mick H says:

    Some of last clues I got were also among my favourites (NODDING DONKEY, RECTUM, EMBARK). When you’ve struggled for a while, it’s satisfying if the penny drops leaving an answer you can fully understand and appreciate.

  9. Tom Hutton says:

    I did it but it’s too fiddly for me. I put in 1dn and 14ac but had lost the will to live by then so never worked them out. Clever clues though. It’s funny how some clues are easy and some difficult for no particular reason. I got 14dn immediately but struggled with 28ac for ages yet 14dn is probably more obscure.

  10. PaulW says:

    El Nilo hidden in centre unches

  11. Chris Melluish says:

    18ac Why is LOOS ‘ladies and gents’?
    27ac Why is H ‘close to beach’?

  12. Monica M says:


    Loo’s … as in the toilets – Ladies and Gents
    Close … as in finish.

    Keep at it!!!!

  13. liz says:

    This was fun. Liked RELENTLESS and SLUGGISH especially. Didn’t get RECTUM, though I should have been on the alert with LOOS and MOON cropping up too!

    Thanks for the blog — enjoyed the puzzle even more in retrospect once I saw how some of the other clues worked.

  14. stiofain_x says:

    Another great Paul puzzle and, as Eileen said, nice to see a bit of smut back after last weeks choirboyish effort. When I first started this one I thought we were getting the same deal as yesterday with a usually difficult setter going for an easy one but it turned into a just slightly easier than usual Paul. Favourite clue 14ac and like Ian 19d reminded me of an old joke but it is too rude to repeat here.

  15. Geoff says:

    Very enjoyable, with triple helping of seaside postcard humour to make up for lack of it in the last puzzle.

    Got a bit stuck in the top left quadrant until I spotted NODDING DONKEY, and the rest fell out easily – although I couldn’t parse 1dn either.

    Bizarrely, the first entry I made was BUMMALO: I knew the word, so the clue was easy for me. The ‘bummalo’ is a small fish, which when cured and dried becomes the ‘Bombay (not Mumbai!) duck’.

    I’m sure I have seen ‘inion’ before, although it didn’t come to mind until I had the solution to 25ac – but as Eileen says, it is odd that it doesn’t crop up more often.

  16. Geoff says:

    BTW, it’s surprising that we don’t get more judicious rudeness from Brummie, since one of his other manifestations is as Cyclops in Private Eye.

  17. Paul B says:

    I was getting all excited about your blue name Geoff, but then nothing else happened. You’ve been ‘deleted’ apparently.

    Interesting point re Brummie, though I think Guardianists possibly hope for – but don’t always get – subtler indelicacies than some of those located in the Eye.

  18. Geoff says:

    I’m afraid I have no idea how my name came to be blue! Perhaps Chatmeister could shed some light…

  19. Ian says:

    David, sorry. I’m too lazy to scroll up even half an inch, it seems.

  20. Chatmeister says:

    Re comment #18. When leaving a reply there are three boxes, name and email (both required) and the option for adding a website URL. If if anything is entered in the website box the software automatically assigns it as a link from the name (even if it is not a valid URL, eg ‘deleted’ in this instance) and the name is displayed in blue, instead of black, to indicate the presence of a link.

  21. Brian Harris says:

    Good stuff today. One of those crosswords where nothing except a couple of easy ones came after 10 mins, then slowly starting cracking a few more. RECTUM was a great clue. 18ac was cleverly constructed too.

    Never heard of INION before, either. Surely, it’s a crossword setter’s dream word!

  22. Anon says:

    After 30 mins I only had 4d,10a,12a,16d,21a,24d & 27a. After an hour I had got no further. I should have got 22a and of course once you have more clues out the easier it is. Way out of my low league!
    Would anyone be able to get 14a without crossing letters given that ordinal could be any number and not just nine?

  23. Paul B says:

    I just go through them, using my fingers.

  24. Roger Murray says:

    Felt quite pleased to finish this with a couple of friends at work, thought there were some excellent clues. Enjoyed Relentless, proud enough to read the clue out to my long suffering wife when I got home,fully expecting to have the drum role and explain my answer. I’m afraid to say my thunder was stolen when Joanne answered ‘Relentless’ with barely a pause for thought, and she claims to be no good at cryptics (but is in possession of a fine logical mind!)

  25. Will says:

    Who usually has the drum role, Roger? Phil Collins? Gene Krupa?

  26. Helen Smith says:

    My enjoyment of crosswords has gone up so much having discovered this site, now that I can understand where the answers come from. Many thanks to all involved.

  27. Barnaby Page says:

    Some nice clues in this one, though we got stuck after convincing ourselves that 15d was LIONISING (LING + O + NISI, which could just about mean “promise” if you squint hard enough).

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