Never knowingly undersolved.

Private Eye/Cyclops 417 – Percentage, percentage, percentage

Posted by beermagnet on May 24th, 2010


I was knocking off these clues without too much trouble but did think more than once that they were quite convoluted.  It took 20 Min – only about ½ pint – drinking slowly – I’d already had a couple while failing to finish that Saturday’s Indy.  So that’s obviously a good warm up routine.  I got off to a flying start with the long answer 14/17/21 where I thought of it from the definition and enumeration, then wordplay confirmed.  But what’s with all the %age clues? 20% here 40% there 66% of the other, all using essentially the same wordplay method.  Am I missing a theme?

3 SLIMEBALLS (MILES)* AInd: swinging, BALLS (testicles)
10 GODDAMNED (GNONE ADDED – E)* AInd: Deranged. Def: What Sarah Palin says instead of “awful”
12 CHEDDAR (DEC HARD)* AInd: Stormy
13 TIDDLES DDL (500 500 50) inside TIES (guys – as in ropes) Def. Pussy – tiddles is the archetypical name for a cat
14/17/21 THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN THE PEOPLE (tabloid) HAVE (has to own) (SOP)* AInd: disgraceful; KEN (Clarke)
19/1 BULLSHIT BULL’S HIT (Archer’s struck Gold)
Penultimate answer entered – and the one that delayed me most. I was misled into thinking Gold = AU or OR, and, of course, was thinking of our Jeff as the Archer. Reminds me of Clive Anderson’s line to him: ‘Is there no beginning to your talents?’
20 TUMBLE-DRY TUMBLE (A posh shag) DRY (boozeless) Is “tumble” particularly posh?
22 PLAYFUL PLAY (Luvvie’s thing) FUL[l] (stuffed almost)
24 ACROBAT AC (Bill) (O BRA)* AInd: possibly. T[emperature]
26 KRILL [todge]R inside KILL (top)
27 NEGOTIATE (TOE-EATING)* AInd: kinky. Def. Pull off. Not sure about this definition, “pull off” implies success, whereas negotiations may fail
1 SAGACITY SAGA CITY (super large holiday resort for oldies) ha ha
2 INDIE IN (accepted) DIE (decline) Def. Newspaper’s familiar. Last in. Couldn’t see this at all till the initial crossing I appeared then it was obvious.
4 LONER ONE (Brenda self-referentially) inside L R (political extremes)
5 MIDSTREAM (TRIMS MADE)* AInd: Creative. Creative anagrind indeed.
7 LONG-LIVED L[abour] [gord]ON (66% down) G[ood] LIVE (to be) D[ead] Def: Enduring. Bitty wordplay
8 STRESS S[emen] (20% of) TRESS (hair)
9 HARD SELL H[ours] (ED BALLS R – B)* AInd: snapped. More convoluted clueing
15 EDUCATION CD Ref Blair’s memorable priority list “Education, education, education”
16 PETULANCE (ULNA C)* AInd: dislocated, inside PETE (Doherty)
17 HILARITY IT (sex) inside HIL[l]ARY
18 EYE TO EYE T[ime] O (love) inside EYE EYE (this organ cloned)
23 FELON FE (Iron) L[ady] ON (having taken the stage)
24 AEGIS A (one) EG (say) [pen]IS (40%) Def. Protection. The shield used by Zeus
25 BRAWL BROWN AWL (boring thing) OWN (have) removed (to quit).

Conductor: Is there anything you would like the orchestra to play?
George Bernard Shaw: Dominoes.

6 Responses to “Private Eye/Cyclops 417 – Percentage, percentage, percentage”

  1. sidey says:

    I’ve always thought the %age thing was a [not very good] device to shoehorn a word into a clue. Bit lacklustre.

  2. Craig Jones says:

    There must have been something else going on with the %, not that I can see it.

  3. Jack Aubrey says:

    27a Brief word for the defence. Negotiate as in “negotiate a tricky bend” sits ok with “pull off”.

  4. Barbara says:

    re: 1dn. Sagacity
    I don’t get the joke here as indicated by beermagnets’s “ha ha.”
    Please let me in on it.
    The definition is clear, but not the word play: super large holiday resort for oldies?

  5. beermagnet says:

    Barbara, Saga is (at least, they would like to think) a well known company specialising in holidays for the over 50s, while a city is a lot bigger than, for instance, a (holiday) village.

  6. Barbara says:

    Thanks, Beermagnet. I’m not sure if any of us here in the US knows about ‘Saga’ as a vacation package company.

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