Posted by smiffy on December 10th, 2009
A little bit of everything in here, including an admirable “path less travelled” at 7D, and a Daliesque departure at 22A.
1 TACKLE – (elk + cat)<. Somewhat surprisingly, I cannot recall encountering this combo before.
4 SCARIEST – caries in St.
9 LENIN – Len + in.
10 PYROMANIA – PY (IVR for Paraguay) + Romania. Nice surface too.
11 VIVALDI – Viv + Aldi. Re: Sir Isaac Vivian Alexander, of the willow-wielding Antiguan Richards.
12 EXAMINE – Amin in Exe. I’ve just recently watched the Film The Last King of Scotland, so was probably fortunate in reflexively thinking of Idi Amin, in response to the word “dictator”.
13 SARK – s[-h]ark. Unfortunately, shark is derived from the “basking” species, rather than the sharkish Barclay brothers, who are making the island their personal fiefdom.
14 CASSETTE – set in caste.
17 LISTENER – (set)* in liner.
19 SAGA – sag + a.
22 COLOGNE – an oblique pun, alluding to (log in cone). This one didn’t really tickle my fancy, as the resultant surface was just too surreal to justify the charade.
24 PICCOLO – homophone of “pick a low”. If you insist…
25 ROTAVATOR – palindromic soil-churner.
26 CRATE – double def’n, with “banger” as in Cash for Bangers.
27 YEOMANRY – (mean or)* in Y+Y.
28 CARESS – cares + s[-quirrel].
1 TELEVISE – Levis in tee.
2 CANAVERAL – aver in canal. This clue is also a literal definition of Cape Cod, so until I had checking letters other than the initial letter C, I was barking up the wrong tree for a while.
3 LONELY – (no + [pa]l)< + Ely. Semi &lit.
5 CARPET SWEEPER – carpets(vb) + weeper.
6 REMNANT – (man)* in rent.
7 ENNUI – (viENna + daNUbe + draIned). Probably the most inventive treatment of this old chestnut I’ve ever encountered.
8 TEA SET – tease + T(udor).
10 PRIVATE SECTOR – privates + (etc)* + or. “Confidential” = privates (pl) seems a little rum, but I suppose it avoids smuttier options.
15 ELABORATE – labor in E + ate.
16 BARONESS – bar + one’s + S. I’m not sure if the Attorney General (aka Baroness Scotland) would be too obscure a reference here. Otherwise we could have the stereotypical clue “Like Scotland, say, saving one’s shilling”.
18 SEGOVIA – SE + go +via
20 SCURVY – s + curvy.
21 ACACIA – A/c (x2) + I + a.
23 LOTTO – L + Otto