Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25,001 – Orlando

Posted by Uncle Yap on May 4th, 2010

Uncle Yap.

As usual, a very fair, amusing and not-too-hard offering from Orlando aka Cincinnus, a regular in the FT Saturday spot. A very good morning’s entertainment

ACROSS
1 BUCKBOARD Cha of BUCK (American dollar or ready) BOARD (go on) for a light horse-drawn vehicle consisting of a flexible board on four wheels, with a two-person seat.
6 BOSOM BOSS (gaffer) minus S + OM (Order of Merit decoration)
9 ROUND-SHOULDERED ROUND (series of calls) SHOULDERED (bore the burden)
10 NOTE dd
11 SLEEPIER SLEE (rev of EELS, fish) PIER (jetty)
14 MERCHANTS MERC (Mercedes car) HANTS (Hampshire, from Hantsharing, the original name)
15 INEPT Ins of NEP (rev of PEN) in IT (middle letters of cITy)
16 STEEP dd
18 PRIVATEER Cha of PRIVATE (soldier) ER (rev of RE, extreme letters of RudE)
20 MAVERICK Ins of AVER (state) in MICK Jagger of Rolling Stones fame
21 SCAM S (first letter of sound) CAM (mud) Thanks to Lanson, acrostic i.e. first letters of Sound Clear As Mud. It is also remarkable that Chambers has cam3 as pale bluish-grey clay or soft slate;
25 DIRECTOR GENERAL Cha of Direct (straight) OR (other ranks, men) General (blanket)
26 AGNES Ins of N (new) in AGES (times) Agnes of Rome (c. 291 – c.304) is a virgin–martyr, venerated as a saint in the Roman Catholic Church
27 SPECTATOR Ins of A (first letter of All) + T (time) in SPECTOR (Phil Spector, record producer, credited with popularizing the “girl groups” of the early 1960s and for creating the “wall of sound”)

DOWN
1 BARON Bar One (with a single exception) minus E
2 CHUNTER Cha of C (circa, about) HUNTER (horse)  to mutter; to grumble; to chatter unceasingly and meaninglessly.
3 BODY Ins of D (last letter of lanD) in BOY (lad)
4 ACHE A CHE (colleague of Castro) Ernesto “Che” Guevara (1928–1967), was an Argentine Marxist revolutionary, physician, author, intellectual, guerrilla leader, diplomat, military theorist, and major figure of the Cuban Revolution.
5 DOUGLAS FIR *(Flora is dug)
6 BUDGERIGAR Ins of RIGA (capital  and largest city of Latvia) in BUDGE (move) + R (right)
7 SARDINE *(a diner’s)
8 MODERATOR MODERN (up to date) minus N + ATOR (rev of ROTA, list)
12 SHIPWRECKS SHIP (send) WRECKS (sounds like REX, king)
13 INSPECTORS *(cops insert) What a lovely clue with COPS playing double duty so neatly and rank such an innocuous anagrind
14 MASS MEDIA Ins of MEDI (rev of IDEM, the same) in MASS (service) + A (area)
17 ENVIRON ENVY (sin) minus Y + IRON (golf club)
19 EXCERPT Ins of R (river) in EXCEPT (bar)
22 MILER rha
23 OGRE Cha of O (old) GR (Greek) E (English)
24 KNOT dd

Key to abbreviations
dd = double definition
dud = duplicate definition
tichy = tongue-in-cheek type
cd = cryptic definition
rev = reversed or reversal
ins = insertion
cha = charade
ha = hidden answer
*(fodder) = anagram

32 Responses to “Guardian 25,001 – Orlando”

  1. Lanson says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap & Orlando, I think 21a is the first letters of Sound Clear As Mud, for 17d I had envelop for a while, wondering what indicated the reversal of pole

  2. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Uncle Yap, but this was too tough for me.

    I threw in the towel with 6 to go but, now that I’ve read your blog, it was certainly fair enough even though I’d never heard of St AGNES. Orlando sure dug deep to find her and, being a virgin, I bet that she was no Marilyn Monroe.

    Has anyone got a photo?

  3. molonglo says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap. I bogged down for a while in the top left corner, thinking the 5d tree was a fig, and that it was exotic. The rest of it was enjoyable, and I had no trouble (neither did Keats) with St. Agnes.

  4. Ian says:

    Excellent blog Uncle Yap.

    This was a fine effort by Orlando with a variety of exceedingly well contrived clues, not least the anagrind revelaing ‘Inspectors’.

    One small spanner in the works for me was a lazily inserted Envelop into 17dn without checking the surface properly.

    Not the easiest to solve but very satisfying, esp. the refs. to Phil Spector, Che and Jagger.

    40′

  5. Richard says:

    Thanks for the early blog, Uncle Yap.

    Some nice touches, I thought. Sadly I’ve never heard of a buckboard, and I’ve never come across OR = other ranks = men. 12 and 14 were perhaps a little too contrived with their use of Latin.

  6. rrc says:

    Enjoyed this but needed the blog to understand a number of the answers

  7. Dave Ellison says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap, but I can’t agree this was easy; I found it one of the tougher Orlando’s, but as you say, quite fair and enjoyable.

    Bryan #2: you say you hadn’t heard of St Agnes. On April 20th Pasquale used her as part of his theme. Some one there commented: “I’d never heard of some of the stuff and, although I suspected St Agnes…” :)

    I also had ENVELOP as a distractor, along with BRIGADIER for 18a which delayed me until I realised the error of my ways. Got there in the end, 54′ in all (usually about 40′ for O. which is why I think it is harder than ususal)

  8. Stella Heath says:

    I found this quite doable. As a Catholic, I had no problem with St.Agnes, but had never heard of a moderator as a church leader, :).

    I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who plumped for ENVELOP without giving it too much thought. For 18a I started considering a reservist, but fortunately decided to wait till I had a few letters, with P and I appearing quickly to poit me in the right direction.

  9. Richard says:

    Stella @8

    Whenever I see the words Catholic and Moderator in the same sentence, it reminds me of a story told to me whilst on a tour of Edinburgh:-

    “If ever you see graffitti in Edinburgh which says “Down with the Pope”, you musn’t assume that the locals are anti-Catholic. It’s just quicker & easier to write than “Down with the General Moderator of the Episcopal Church of Scotland”!”

  10. tupu says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap. Easier at times to get the answers than to see why in this generally entertaining puzzle. For some reason bore = shouldered eluded me the longest. I also kept thinking 21a. must begin with F until I got 19d. Re Richard (5)and 1a: my mind goes back to Bob Hope singing ‘My toes denounce the buckboard bounce and the cactus hurts my toes’ (Buttons and Bows)!

  11. liz says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap. Some nice surfaces here, I thought, and quite a few smiles. I didn’t see all the wordplay as I was solving, so thanks for the explanations.

  12. tupu says:

    Re (10) Sorry: should be ‘my bones denounce’!

  13. John says:

    And Doris Day I believe, tupu.

  14. tupu says:

    Hi John (13). Jane Russell as I recall. But I fear we may get ‘dumped’ if we wander too far, nice as it is.

  15. Jack says:

    Hi John #13

    I think “Buttons and Bows” was featured in “The Paleface” – one ‘comedy’ western that didn’t star Doris Day; the song was sung by Bob Hope to Calamity Jane played by Jane Russell.

    Sorry to be pedantic!

  16. Kathryn's Dad says:

    You don’t half learn some stuff on this blog.

    I presume most of us will have come across St Agnes at Yuletide when tipsy aunts are belting out the following, half a tone flat:

    Sire, he lives a good league hence
    Underneath the mountain
    Right against the forest fence
    By St Agnes’ fou -oun – tain

    Enjoyable puzzle, btw.

  17. John H says:

    Yes, very good puzzle today…..

    …after yesterday’s rubbish.

  18. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Dave Ellison @7, your ability to recall my comments on an earlier puzzle is – well – embarrassing!

  19. nmsindy says:

    Enjoyable puzzle, fairly hard, favourite clues, SLEEPIER, STEEP, MAVERICK.

  20. Daniel Miller says:

    Highly entertaining today, and – maybe not so used to Orlando, a little harder. I was especially pleased with a number of challenging clues and the surface (is this the right expression) of many were excellent.

    Very impressed with Shipwrecks (12 down) – auditor king (wrecks) in particular, and enjoyed Maverick (aver in Mick) – made me smile.. and many more – 3 down Stiff for Body!!

    I could go on. Hope everyone else was challenged and entertained at the same time.

  21. muck says:

    Thanks Orlando & Uncle Yap
    I didn’t find it too easy but enjoyed it. Good puzzle!
    I was fooled at first by the obvious but wrong envelope at 17dn and lorasdu* fig at 5dn

  22. muck says:

    Sorry, what I had for 17dn was ENVELOP from env[y] + pole<

  23. Gerry says:

    Quite enjoyed it. The ‘Hants’ abbreviation for Hampshire has always puzzled me, though obviously not enough to look it up, and I was working on ‘….herts’ for a while.

  24. Brian Harris says:

    Good, solid, not too taxing, enjoyable stuff today. Definitely an improvement on yesterday’s special – which I found rather rather disappointing.

  25. John H says:

    Yesterday’s puzzle was awful, wasn’t it?

  26. IanN14 says:

    No, “John H”.
    Some of us enjoyed it.
    Thanks.

  27. Sil van den Hoek says:

    And others said, this was quite hard – with clues less accessible [whatever that means] than usual in an Orlando.
    We needed the excellent blog [thank you Uncle Yap] to find BUCKBOARD, and also for the explanation of 9ac as well as 18ac [which were just simple charades - and slightly disappointing].

    Fine surfaces as ever with this setter, especially in 27ac (SPECTATOR) – as one probably will know, Phil Spector spends his ‘time inside’ nowadays! [I'm quite sure Orlando used these words deliberately]

    We thought a bit of a novel homophone in 12d (‘rex’/'wrecks’).
    Splendidly hidden word in a natural environment in 22d’s MILER.

    Very clever crossword of a setter who’s normally somewhat lighter, but who shows once again that his way of clueing is immaculate.

    Clue of the Day: the fantastic INSPECTORS (13d).

  28. Vin says:

    Liked this one. It took me several hours, on and off, but I got there eventually without recourse to any aids. I got the grim Spector joke – very good. Just couldn’t explain the “shouldered” part of 9ac, though it seems blindingly obvious now! NW corner last to go in, held up by a carelessly entered MARK for 10ac. Once I’d realised it must be wrong I got CHUNTER and the whole corner fell into place. A very enjoyable crossword.
    P.S. muck @21, shurely you mean the famous Lourdas fig tree? :)

  29. Daniel Miller says:

    Hasn’t anyone heard of the Ould-ars Fig Tree?

  30. brr says:

    I have completed a few puzzles from Orlando (and Cincinnus in the FT), but this was a bit too hard for me. I may need a bit more Rufus practice.

  31. Chaz says:

    “John H”,
    I think you’re in a land of make-believe…

    Seriously though I found yesterday’s puzzle great fun; but it needed to be taken in context with the article on crosswords published the same day.

  32. Huw Powell says:

    I didn’t like the “unconnected” grid. Minor whine.

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