Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,146 / Jason

Posted by Agentzero on August 4th, 2009

Agentzero.

I’m afraid some unsatisfying surfaces and some other nits detracted from the enjoyment of this puzzle for me.

Across
1 JACKET POTATO JACKET (cover) POT (pan) TO[p] (a lid, almost).
8 ENVELOP *(EVEN) before LOP (cut)
9 ANAGRAM A NAG (badger) RAM (sheep)
11 COLLIER COL (colonel, therefore officer) L (left) LIE (whopper) R (right).  A collier can refer to a ship that carries coal, as well as to a miner EDIT: The first part of the wordplay should be CO=commanding officer
12 DUNGEON DUN (old debt collector) *(GONE).  The definition is “imprison,” but Collins has “imprison” only as a verb and “dungeon” only as a noun; same with COED.  I did not have a chance to see if Chambers was different EDIT: Schuchi confirms that Chambers does give “dungeon” as a verb
13 AUNTS JAUNTS (little trips) minus J (Jack)
14 TITLE ROLE TITLE (Eg, Major) role (DUTY).  I think this was my least favourite clue; the surface makes no sense to me.
16 DINNER SET *(RESIDENT) around N (noon)
19 ELBOW EL (LE, “the French,” with a “twist” or reversed) BOW (bend)
21 SAWYERS SAW (noticed) + R (beginning to reply) in YES (affirmative)
23 ABUSIVE IVE (I have) after A BUS (coach)
24 DIOPTER OPT (pick) in *(DIRE).  The American spelling of dioptre, which is the measure of refractive power of a lens
25 ELASTIC *(LACIEST) Is there an anagram indicator? EDIT: Eileen points out that “pants” can mean nonsense and is therefore the anagram indicator
26 ENTREPRENEUR PR (pair) in ENTREE (course) + RUN reversed around E (European)
 
Down
1 JAVELIN JAVELINA (a small pig-like animal) minus A (“finally shot”)
2 CELSIUS I think the idea of the clue is that Celsius and cold are both abbreviated “C”
3 EUPHRATES *(HE TEARS UP)
4 PLAID PL (place) AID (support)
5 TRAINEE RAIN (bad weather) in TEE (start of course)
6 TORPEDO dd; a torpedo was a small explosive charge placed in the tracks that would detonate when a train passed over it, thereby alerting the engineer to danger ahead
7 MERCHANDISED *(CHEDDAR MINE’S)
10 MONKEY-WRENCH MON (Monday, start of week) KEY (star) WRENCH (turn)
15 TETE-A-TETE This seems like simply a straight definition to me
17 NEW MOON M (married) WE, all reversed, in NOON (midday)
18 ELECTOR E (European) LECTOR (person to read lesson)
19 EMULATE EMU (long-legged bird) LATE (coming after time)
20 BLISTER I liked this clue; a second-rate celeb would be a B-LISTER, i.e., someone who is not on the A list
22 SCRAP SC (scilicet, that is, “that is”) RAP (criticism)

6 Responses to “Financial Times 13,146 / Jason”

  1. shuchi says:

    Hi Agentzero

    12a: Chambers does have DUNGEON as “(vt) to confine in a dungeon”.

  2. Eileen says:

    Hi Agentzero

    In 25ac, the anagram indicator is ‘pants’ [nonsense, rubbish] making this an & lit. It made me laugh!

  3. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Agentzero
    You have too many Ls in the wordplay for 11a. The officer is simply CO.

  4. Andrew says:

    Thanks A0, especially for the explanation of 1dn – that is a terrible clue IMHO. 6d is pretty weak too. On the other hand I agree with Eileen in thinking 25ac is brilliant.

  5. Paul B says:

    15dn is, or probably ought to be seen as, a CD using two definitions (1) a sofa designed in an s-shape so that two people may sit more or less face to face, and (2) a private conversation. Unfortunately the marriage of the two presents a sentence that is very close indeed to definition (1), hence the apparent lack of crypticity.

  6. Agentzero says:

    Thanks, everyone. I’ve edited as appropriate above.

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