Posted by beermagnet on May 21st, 2009
Lots of interesting history and other information discovered when I researched the answers that I had to check afterwards. I don’t normally note solving times, but I happened to notice the owl on the non-cuckoo clock hooting the hour as I sat down to start this puzzle, and after 1 Across and a few subsequent clues fell quickly and easily I thought I’d make a note. So I can report this took me exactly 30 mins, which is about 30 times quicker than last week’s Tyrus. So thanks to Eimi for the relief of a relatively easy offering for my first Indy Prize blog – I hope to thank him personally tonight at the Edgar Wallace and see a lot of you folks there too.
I see Eimi also inaugurated the #1 Prize Jumbo General Knowledge Crossword annexing the whole of the inside back page. This has a decent prize and there was some interesting GK to be discovered via that crossword too, but I far, far preferred this cryptic.
|1||TRANSPORT SHIPS (RIP PANTS SHORTS)* AInd: badly. Off to a cracking start when I saw this anagram quickly providing lots of juicy first letters|
|9||BIRCHING CD Referring to the punishment latterly inflicted on the Isle of Man. In the clue:
Man’s inhumanity to man? (8)
Inhumanity refers to the fact that it was a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that birching was inhumane and degrading that eventually led to its abolition. The clue nicely hides the placename’s capital letter by putting it at the start. This really fooled me, and this was my last answer. Even after deciding on birching from the few possibilities it was some time before the connection between this and “Man” dawned.
|10||LINEN L[ost] IN EN (space) where L for Lost is from the W/D/L Won/Drawn/Lost column headings for league table. Not the first thing I think of frankly:
Material from Lost in Space (5)
|11||HULA HOOP HUL[l] A (POOH)< HULL is the port that is “left unfinished”; POOH is “one Edward Bear”|
|13||TOLD Homophone “Tolled”|
|15||THRIFT TH[e] (article mostly) RIFT (split)|
|16||PROGRESS P.R. OGRESS Lynne Franks is reputed to be the inspiration behind the character Edina in Absolutely Fabulous having founded a P.R. company when she was 21, and from an “any publicity is good” perspective she probably won’t mind this description as long as we plug her website.|
|18||FREE DROP FRED (Couples) ROPE (boundary marker) with the E from the end “moved in”. A Free Drop is a golf term which is a relief in that no penalty is incurred – someone who knows the game might like to correct that definition which I gleaned from the few seconds I had reading an online golf blog before I fell asleep. Another “hidden” name capitalisation achieved by getting it in at the start of the clue, and the kind of name that doubles as an interesting verb leading to a surface reading of near Private Eye quality.|
|20||A-SIDES ASIDES as in lines spoken to the audience that other characters on stage unbelievably cannot hear.|
|21||KYAT Hidden in smoKY ATmosphere. This is the currency of Burma|
|23||POPPADOM Homophone “Popper” (Amyl nitrate capsule), then (MOD)<|
|25||OASIS O (love), AS IS (actually) This was a lovely clue:
Group seen in Love Actually? (5)
Have I seen something similar recently?
|26||THIRD MAN DD|
|28||BEEF STROGANOFF BEEFS (complaints), (ORGAN)* AInd: transplant, inside TOFF|
|3||NIC NIC[k] More cricket (I had to check this)|
|4||PHILANTHROPISTS (PARIS HILTON)* AInd: torn, inside PH (pub) and T[own] S[quare]|
|5||REGROUP O (ring) inside (PURGER)< One of the harder clues:
Pride possibly upset about ring getting to organise again (7)
I initially thought the wordplay must be an anagram of PRIDE and O and something else, but the answer had to be REGROUP from the def. and all the crossing letters, so where did “purger” come from?
From Col. Thomas Pride
It’s great to be led to an interesting piece of history like this.
|6||SELF-PROPAGATING (PAIR OF EGGPLANTS)* AInd: somehow|
|7||INNIT INUIT swap U for N I don’t think I’m a snob about slang but I absolutely loathe this verbal tic|
|8||SUNGLASSES SUNG LASSES Eleanor Rigby and Lovely Rita are both sung lasses (boom, boom)|
|12||URINE I (one) inside [b]URN[s] supported by [beasti]E|
|14||CHERRY BOMB CRY (shout) about HER (girl’s) BOMB (large sum of money) as in “it cost a bomb”|
|17||RHINO (I HORN)* AInd: unusually shaped, &lit. That anagram and fodder is a bit of a classic|
|19||POP STAR POP (champagne) STAR (supernova) Yes, I did think of Carol Ann Duffy at first before this pop star|
|22||TASTE S[ex] inside TATE (gallery)|
|24||GAFF F[ilter] inside (FAG)< (cigarette)|
|27||DEN Ref. “Dirty Den” Dennis Watts, decades of misery ago from the early days of Eastenders|