Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25,043 – Pasquale

Posted by Uncle Yap on June 22nd, 2010

Uncle Yap.

Solving this puzzle was pretty routine and amusing, given that The Don is always scrupulously fair. However, writing a blog and explaining each and every wordplay is another thing and took me ages. Even then, a few items escaped me.

1 CY PRES The tree CYPRESS minus the last letter – the principle of applying the money donated to a charity, etc to some object as near as possible to the one specified by the donor or testator, when that itself is impracticable
4 SPURIOUS Cha of SPUR (incentive) IOUS (promises of money from I Owe You’s)
9 SCOTCH dd which I will drink to
10 MENSWEAR Allusion to the swearing troopers; duds is slang for clothes
11 STRAIGHT AS A DIE *(Garish tat’s) + DIE (sounds like Di, short for Diana, a female)
13 PART-OWNERS Ins of TOWN (community) in PARERS (people paring or making cuts)
14 ADEN W. H. AUDEN (1907-1973), Anglo-American poet minus U (superior)
16 NAFF Rev of F (female) FAN (supporter)
18 PEACE CORPS Try as I did, I could not parse this
21 CASTEL GANDOLFO *(As to Golden Calf) a small Italian  town or comune  in Lazio  that occupies a height overlooking Lake Albano about 30 km south-east of Rome, on the Alban Hills. It is best known as the summer residence of the Pope, hence religious retreat
23 INNER EAR Tichy way to say EAR is inside PEARL
24 STINKO Rev of OK (all right) NITS (fools)
25 GATEPOST *(Get to spa)
26 BENDER A mixer is a BLENDER minus L (litre)

1 COSH Ins of OS (outsize or huge) in CH (Switzerland from L Confederatio Helvetica; International Vehicle Registration).
2 PROCTER Sounds like PROCTOR (university officer) from Procter & Gamble, consumer products multinational with many household brands such as Oral-B, Gillette, Duracel & Pampers
3 ESCHATON *(One chats) end of the world, end of all time, climax of history (Urban Dictionary on-line as Chambers does not stock this word)
5 PUERTO RICAN Another answer where all I can see is CAN (vessel)
6 RESIST Ins of IS in REST (inactivity)
7 OVERDID Cha of O (old) VERDI (composer) D (died)
8 SERGEANTS Cha of SERGE (material) ANTS (workers)
12 GUNTER GRASS GUN (piece, US slang) + ins of ERG (SI unit of energy) & R (run) in TASS ( Telegraph Agency of the Soviet Union, TASS is the transliteration of the Russian abbreviation for it) Günter Wilhelm Grass (born 16 October 1927) is a Nobel Prize-winning German author and playwright.
13 PANICKING PA (personal assistant in office) NICKING (whipping)
15 ACCOUTRE *(Cor a cute) provide with military equipment
17 FISHNET FISH (catch in sea) NET (secure). Area off Ireland?
19 REFINED Another tichy clue ; punished (fined) a second time (again, indicated by RE)
20 TEAR UP dd
22 COIR CHOIR (singers) minus H (hard) the strong fibre of coconut husk, used in making rope and matting;

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

45 Responses to “Guardian 25,043 – Pasquale”

  1. EdUS says:

    Re 18a “work” is PIECE and “centre” is CORE. Re 8d PUER is Latin for “boy” TORI refers to Tori Amos and then CAN.

  2. NeilW says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap

    17dn is FASTNET – I know it, of course, from the Shipping Forecast.

  3. NeilW says:

    Oh, and 20dn is PET reversed around A RU

    You were obviously running out of steam towards the end of the blog, Uncle Yap!

  4. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Uncle Yap, like you I found this very heavy going but my feelings towards Pasquale are much less charitable. In fact, I consider several of the clues to be absolute rubbish.

    I’d never heard of 1a, 2d or 24a while others (which have now been explained) also eluded me.

    What with England’s performance in the World Cup and the prospect of a harsh Budget later, this may be the last straw that drives me to drink.

  5. Eileen says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap

    In 11ac, the reference is to female broadcaster Kate Adie

    And, to expand on NeilW’s explanation:

  6. Eileen says:

    PS I liked [?] the wry topical reference 12ac! :-)

  7. Eileen says:

    I forgot to say that the clue for 2dn is faulty: the spelling of the University officer is also PROCTOR [from ‘procurator’].

    Otherwise, a lovely puzzle: thank you, Pasquale.

  8. Eileen says:

    A thousand apologies – I got my homophones in a twist! Oh [again!] for a delete button! [This was a response to a comment on the Guardian website – and I didn’t look again at the blog!]

  9. Ian says:

    Quite hard to get started on this in the NW corner due to me being thick. Again. Progress made eventually via the SW and SE segments where the clueing was a little more orthodox.

    Back to the NW section and I have to say that ‘Scotch’ as a DD was a tad loose. I cannot see this as 100% suitable as a reference to ‘frustrate’. Itseems tangiential at best.


  10. Pasquale says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap — and thanks too, Eileen, for being nice, but 2D is fine — Procter (of P & Gamble) which is the answer sounds like proctor (‘reportedly’). Sorry Bryan got out of bed the wrong side this morning.

  11. beermagnet says:

    INNER EAR wordplay: UY’s [p]EAR[l] is most likely what’s intended, but I thought of it as a cockney (Pearl – geddit!) homophone “In ‘er ear”, espesh as Pearl is a likely girl to wear pearls in her lobes.
    And Bryan, why else do you think some of us do these puzzles.

  12. Eileen says:

    Many thanks for dropping in, Pasquale, and for being so gracious. I think your comment crossed with my red-faced one! :-)

    To go some way to redeeming myself: Ian, ‘frustrate’ is the first definition Chambers gives for ‘scotch’.

  13. cholecyst says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap. Never heard of ESCHATON but did know ESCHATOLOGY so guessed the answer. Googling ESCHATON I find this in Wikipedia: “To immanentize the eschaton means trying to bring about the eschaton (the final, heaven-like stage of history) in the immanent world. It has been used by conservative critics as a pejorative reference to what they perceive as utopian schemes, such as socialism, communism etc. In all these contexts it means “trying to make that which belongs to the afterlife happen here and now (on Earth)” or “trying to create heaven here on Earth.” Hope the Chancellor knows about this.

  14. Shirley says:

    17D Uncle Yap – perhaps you have heard of the Fastnet race? It’s a race for yachts which goes round the Fastnet Rock on the SE coast of Ireland and back.

  15. liz says:

    Thanks for the blog, Uncle Yap. 1ac eluded me and I needed the check button for 21ac but I enjoyed the variety of clueing and the surfaces — 5dn being a good example. 13ac is perfectly apt for today!

  16. Martin H says:

    Lots to enjoy in this, and a great range of clues, both for style and difficulty. 1d, 25 and 10 stand out.
    One or two niggles: 4ac, ‘make-believe’ for spurious; 20, ‘perverse’ as a reverse-direction indicator; 21, the summer residence of a ‘religious’ person is not quite the same as a religious retreat; 2, ‘associated with Gamble’ is such a giveaway we didn’t need the (rather feeble) rest of the clue.

  17. Derek Lazenby says:

    Not for me this one. Liked about half of it though. It was the rest that I struggled with (heavy gadget mode), and I eventually gave up.

    Still I learnt several things I didn’t know. Trouble is I never wanted to know them, like where the chief papist goes for his hols.

    Who, apart from an entrant to the Python’s Upper Class Twit of the Year, has ever called being drunk stinko? At least I got the wordplay on that one.

    To equate make-believe with spurious is to denigrate all those wonderful literary and artistic works of the imagination that you people tell me I ought to know more about. Religion is the cause of most wars, torture and general abuse of human rights, and so is not spurious, despite being make believe. Hence it’s a bad definition.

  18. Stella Heath says:

    Never heard of eschaton, which I had to cheat on, or the wierd terms related to drink in the SE corner. I must have been out of the country for too long!

    Thanks Uncle Yap et al. for clearing up a couple of doubts, but can someone explain what’s so topical about part-owners?

  19. Eileen says:

    Hi Stella

    Re 10ac: it’s the clue rather than the answer – an in-‘joke’ for UK solvers. The Chancellor of the Exchequer is at this moment presenting his austerity Budget! :-(

  20. Val says:

    Uncle Yap, what does tichy mean? I assume it’s a well-known term because no one else ever asks but it’s not one I know and I’m never able to work it out from the context.

  21. FumbleFingers says:

    I’m with Bryan & Derek on this one – it’s a bit of a curate’s egg. And even if Uncle Yap wasn’t quite up to par this morning, I think the level of subsequent clarifications & corrections supports that assessment.

    I know I’m nowhere near as sharp or knowledgeable as many here, so my definition of “obscure” maybe doesn’t count for much. But it seemed to me CY PRES, ESCHATON, and ACCOUTRE, for example, are trivial clues if you know the words. But if not (i.e. – like me) they’re real stinkers. Oh, and I had to google CASTEL GANDOLFO too, but it’s probably just my heathen ignorance that I don’t know or care where the Pope takes his holidays.

    On the other hand I thought the cluing of, for example, MENSWEAR, PEACE CORPS, and INNER MAN were brilliant. As was COSH, though I couldn’t figure it out on my own.

    Overall I just felt that although it was scrupulously fair, as Uncle Yap says, this puzzle required a bit more general knowledge than I have available. I much prefer it when linguistic dexterity alone will suffice.

  22. Gaufrid says:

    I’m not Uncle Yap but I can confirm that this is a word he coined some time ago to indicate a clue that he thought was tongue-in-cheek, see the ‘key to abbreviations’ the bottom of the blog.

  23. FumbleFingers says:

    Val @20 I think “tichy” is Uncle Yap’s neolgism, which he defines in the glossary above as “tongue-in-cheeky”.

    Uncle Yap, I’m still waiting to see you classify a clue as a “dud”. Would that be where two supposedly distinct definitions in the clue are in your opinion excessively closely related shades of meaning for the answer word?

    I find those particularly irritating, so I’d like to know if the “surface reading” of your acronym is intended. And where is an example that we can vent our righteous spleen upon?

  24. FumbleFingers says:

    (that’s neologism, obviously)

  25. Martin H says:

    FF@21 – it’s ‘inner ear’ not ‘inner man’. I had ‘inner man’ at first, not knowing why except that it fitted and had something to do with ‘hidden’. ‘Revealed’ is weak here, I think. ‘Shared by Pearl’ might have been clearer.

  26. Richard says:

    I must say I agree with FumbleFingers et al about this one. I must say I have never heard of clothes = DUDS.
    Eileen, I’m being slow again and don’t understand what 10ac has to do with the budget…

  27. FumbleFingers says:

    Martin @25 – My mistake! I wrote INNER MAN on the grid without understanding it either. After receiving enlightenment from Uncle Yap I duly recognised the quality of the clue, then dumbly copied my own mistake into the post. Further evidence that I’m not really qualified to be here…

    Richard@26 – I think clothes = DUDS is relatively common & enduring slang. I don’t know if it truly was current in the American “wild west”, but it seems to me cowboys often come out with it in the movies. Though I’m deeply suspicious of Hollywood’s linguistic as well as historical accuracy.

    By contrast, STINKO strikes me as a very rare (middle-class?) slang term that fortunately resonates with BLOTTO to make it accessible. There are probably other words like that I can’t think of right now – for me -O suffix somehow implies alcoholic excess all on its own, perhaps by association with VINO…

  28. Kate says:

    Uncle Yap, I think you’ll find 18a parses as “piece” (e.g. of work) “core” (centre). When said (as per the clue) they sound like peace corps.
    Terrific blog – I never would have got 1a, as I was too busy trying to find co p_e_ (and getting stuck with copper birch in my head!)

  29. Kate says:

    Oops, sorry! Just noticed EdUS already explained at @1 (blush)

  30. Scarpia says:

    I thought this was a super puzzle,though I can understand why many felt otherwise.
    There were a good number of obscurities here and a certain amount of general knowledge was required,things I much prefer to themes of e.g. American football teams!
    I had to check 1 across,21 across and 3 down as the answers were unfamiliar to me,but they were all easily solvable once check letters were in place(2 anagrams and a ‘detailed’ word).I have acquired knowledge from doing this puzzle,as well as 40 minutes of diversion – what more can one ask?

    I loved the sheer diversity of 5 down – a Latin word and a modern pop singer in one clue – brilliant!(and not ‘puerile’ either!).
    ‘Stinko’ was quite widely used in the 1940’s,on both sides of the Atlantic by,amongst others,Evelyn Waugh and Raymond Chandler.

  31. brr says:

    When I was a lad, duds were trousers. I haven’t heard it used outside of the North-East of England though.

  32. Pasquale says:

    Despite some hostile criticism, I will continue to explore a range of cultural references appealing to solvers of different ages and interests – maybe sometimes reaching relatively untouched Guardian-type areas in a Heinekenish way. And when I do, I hope that the answers can be worked out from fair clues and that that something interesting will have been gleaned. As for STINKO — I’ve clued STANCE and STINGO so many times and I hate repeating old chestnuts if I can avoid it! Thanks to all, favourable or otherwise — over and out!

  33. FumbleFingers says:

    Hi Pasquale,

    Many thanks for the comments – I do hope MY criticism wasn’t excessively hostile!

    Just as I understand & accept Hugh Stephenson’s stated position that the Guardian puzzles should encompass a range of difficulty levels, I accept your wish to incorporate a range of cultural references even if I personally am a bit of an ignoramus and don’t get them all. I really DID enjoy this puzzle – and as Uncle Yap says, your clues ARE “scrupulously fair”.

  34. Dave Ellison says:

    3/12/2003 was the last (and possibly only) time I completed a Pasquale.

    I am curious that FumbleFingers #27 had INNER MAN for 23a which is what I also put in. I googled Inner Man and Pearl and came up with a reasonable connection, so I was satisfied that was the answer; on checking it just now I see the conection was spurious. Uncle Yap’s explanation is much more satifying.

    Pasquale, I noticed the similarity of STINKO and STINGO. It is indeed an old chestnut: I first came across STINGO (strong drink) in the Guardian Xword in 1966, and I wrote it in the back of my COD as it was not in the main body. As a consequence of this, I actually tried ordering a stingo in a pub in Manchester and was surprised to be served one! I wonder if that would still happen.

  35. morpheus says:

    @Bryan “may be the last straw that drives me to drink”. Well if it does you can at least take solace from the fact that alcohol duty was not increased.

  36. Davy says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap,

    I don’t know how you can describe solving this puzzle as “pretty routine” as I found it quite tricky. I was five clues short, one of them being 1d (COSH) which meant that I couldn’t possibly get 1a and who would have thought of CY as a word anyway. 3d was an obvious anagram but I failed to come up with a reasonable word although I’d never heard of ESCHATON. I did however enjoy this puzzle and like #34, my record of finishing Pasquale puzzles, is not that good. I should have got COSH but I didn’t, I was trying to find a word in the letters of Switzerland. Ah well, tomorrow’s another day. It’s about time for a Brendan.

  37. mismanager says:

    Thanks for the blog, Uncle Yap. The pedant in me must just say that the SI unit of energy (and work) is the joule. The erg is the equivalent in the cgs system. As a non-SI unit it is now rarely used.

  38. muck says:

    Thanks for the blog Uncle Yap and Pasquale for the puzzle
    I didn’t find this easy –
    I had a lot of the wordplay, but not all of the answers

  39. Derek Lazenby says:

    Pasquale, if you are still awake (11:45!) please be aware, some of us are not expert, so we always get phased by something or other. Naturally there is more we struggle with than the experts here do. It’s not just you we struggle, with so don’t sweat too much!

  40. FumbleFingers says:

    @Derek – I doubt we have to worry too much about Pasquale being upset by a bit of (fair/unfair) criticism. I think all compilers must be pretty thick-skinned just to deal with editors’ corrections & rejections. And any brave enough to appear here must have hides like rhinos!

    Besides which, obviously we love their work or we wouldn’t be here either.

  41. Uncle Yap says:

    I simply love this community for the sheer variety of opinions and the width and breath of knowledge and erudition.

    Yes, I must have been a bit off-colour yesterday but you put me right.

    As for dud, duplicate definition, this is a category of clue which I have identified (mostly coming from Rufus/Dante) where two definitions are from the same family or as I put it, water from the same well e.g. Bound to jump (6) for SPRING. It is unlikely Pasquale will ever clue a dud since the four examples of double definitions in his book Chambers Crossword Guide are all legitimate dd’s like Season well (6) for SPRING.

    Once again, thank you, this community for making my Tuesdays that much more exciting. Crossword isn’t such a lonely pursuit any more.

  42. FumbleFingers says:

    I share your sentiments, Uncle Yap (and pledge to hunt down & publicly denigrate dud clues wherever they lurk, now you’ve fully identified the enemy for me!)

  43. Val says:

    Gaufrid @22 – thanks for the explanation. I had looked for the ‘key to abbreviations’ in case it was explained there but had remembered UY usually putting that at the start of the blog so hadn’t looked down far enough to find it at the end. All much clearer now!

  44. Huw Powell says:

    A hard slog for me, this one. Only had it about half-finished and was just banging my head, trying to apply what I’d learned about the cluing style from some of the twisted ones I had solved.

    Later that night I shared the three crossers and the obviousness of the anagram fodder of 21 with some friends and one of them stopped using anagram generators and realized he knew it. That led to 21 > 5 > 4 > 7 and 21 > 13d > 13a > 3 > a wrong 1a.

    I jumbled and jumbled 3 and when ESCHATON came up at rang a bell (from an old Genesis song title?) and google proved it right. Of the four I missed (oops, 5, I mean 6) only that legal term struck me as a bit unfair. Having STONED prevented COIR, and not getting SCOTCH was embarrassing – since I had guessed “spirit” might mean liquor, and guess what I was drinkinig while solving.

    Anyway, I do love the variety of the various Guardian setters, so thanks Pasquale, and Uncle Yap.

  45. lutheras says:

    I share your sentiments, Uncle Yap (and pledge to hunt down & publicly denigrate dud clues wherever they lurk, now you’ve fully identified the enemy for me!)

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