Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25049 – Paul

Posted by Uncle Yap on June 29th, 2010

Uncle Yap.

What a treat to blog Paul with his unique sense of humour and the dashes of risque. I learned a lot of details while searching for answers to explain each clue. Aren’t we all collectors of trivia? Normal people will know the name of the Lone Ranger’s horse but only we, crossword solvers, know the name of Don Quixote de La Mancha’s horse :-)

8 KASHMIRI Cha of K (king or monarch) ASH (remains from burning) MIR (rev of RIM, edge) I (one) region in the north-west of the Indian subcontinent
9 OUNCE dd For those not familiar with the British Imperial system, 16 ounces make up one pound (represented by oz and lb respectively)
10,4,19 THAT SINKING FEELING No explanation should be required for this superb clue alluding to that ill-fated passenger liner that struck an iceberg and sank on its maiden voyage in 1912
11 TAKE THE RAP Ins of A K (thousand) ETHER (anaesthetic, number) in TAP (strike)
12 ZOMBIE Ins of M (first letter of Marley) in ZOB (rev of BOZ, pseudonym used by Charles Dickens (1812–1870) in his early works) + IE (id est, that is, that is to say)
14 NOONTIDE Rev of EDIT (change as in correct for publication) NO (number) ON ; poetic way of saying noon, midday or 12
15 TRIUMPH Ins of I (one or individual) in TRUMP (better as in bridge) + H (hospital)
17 STRETCH dd A prison sentence (doing time) and what you do after two hours sitting down and listening to some boring lecture
20 TRICORNE *(rector in) Tricornes survive today as part of the traditional dress of the Chelsea Pensioners
22 FETING Ins of ET (Extra Terrestrial, film) in FING (sounds like thing or item after you have had a few down the hatch)
23 OLDE WORLDE Ins of L (line) DEW (water on grass in the early morning) OR L (lake) in ODE (poem)
24 SLUG A slug is slang for bullet and I really do not see how repelled by pellets work. Thanks to the ever-vigilant and erudite NeilW, a slug is a garden pest repelled by pellets
25 EPSOM Ins of S (second) in EPOM (rev of MOPE, moon)
26 NICTATES Ins of TAT (rubbish) in *(since)

1,5 WASH YOUR MOUTH OUT *(What’s humour to you) What a cleverly crafted clue
2 CHAT dd; a small songbird of a subfamily (Turdinae) of thrushes, including the stonechat and the whinchat; any of various Australian wrens.
3,24 LITTLE SLAM I wonder how I would categorise this delightful clue which is also *(small title). A little or small slam in bridge is winning all the tricks (tricky :-) bar one and “slam” these days is a title from certain tennis or golf events, like Wimbledon now
6 INVESTMENT Tichy clue as vestment is a ceremonial garment worn by a clergyman
13 BLUE CHEESE Substitution of BLUE (depressed) for HARD CHEESE (bad luck)
16,22 PARDON MY FRENCH *(Normandy cypher minus Y plus F) What a lovely clue with some unique devices; why not for removal of the letter Y and F*** off to add F to the anagram fodder and off as anagrin. My COD.
18 CONSUMER DEMAND I am feeling like Isner after ten hours of tennis. Someone help me parse this. Again NeilW came to my rescue. CON (Tory party) + ins of MERDE (French for shit, a swear word) in SUM (arithmetic problem) + AND
21 RELIEF 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

26 Responses to “Guardian 25049 – Paul”

  1. NeilW says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap.

    24ac refers to slug pellets, that repel slugs.

    3,24 I’m sure you meant to add that its an anagram of “small title”.

    18dn is obviously correct but, like you, I’m still waiting for the penny to drop.

  2. NeilW says:

    Think I’ve got it now: Party CON MERDE (French swear word) “feeding” problem: SUM AND

  3. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Uncle Yap and NeilW, but there were too many obscurities for my liking.

    I was fully convinced that the puzzle comprised the names of the successful German Fußball Team but, sadly, Paul spurned a glorious opportunity.

    Maybe next time?

  4. molonglo says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap. I like this setter, no matter how maddening sometimes. Intuition delivers the answers soon enough and then comes the wondering. In 16,22 are the asterisks the definition? In the companion 18,7 is merde doing half duty as definition, or what? Never mind, it’s all good (although on 15a I’m not keen on trump=better). Last to get was 21d.

  5. beermagnet says:

    Held up by 18/7 by hurriedly slapping in NOONTIME, then even after realising that mistake I stupidly read it as 7/18 and wondered what could possibly fit -E-A-D –N-U-E-. I often have that problem when multi-light clues lay “unnaturally” on the grid.
    Like M above last in was RELIEF, which is curious as in retrospect it is a very solid clue.
    Oh woe! I got one wrong – I put LITTLE STAR – thinking of “Twinkle, twinkle” as the “small title” and Tricky, the musician
    I wondered if he was known for being small – probably not as he’s not the answer – but he’s not “big” (in both senses of the word) is he?
    Overall – very enjoyable. Paul back on form if not too hard. ZOMBIE raised the best smile.
    (I wish someone would put some pepper down to shoo off that darn cat.)

  6. rrc says:

    today plenty of aha moments and smiles – to many to list

  7. Ian says:

    Thanks Uncle yap and to Paul for an amusing if somewhat tough crossword with plenty of cunning in the setting.

    I especially liked the superb ‘Little Slam’ and the equally well contrived ‘Wash Your Mouth Out’

  8. RV says:

    Thanks Paul and Uncle Yap. great fun. I too liked Wash Your Mouth Out. I think revolting would have worked better than disgusting in the clue but maybe too obviously an anagram then?

  9. liz says:

    Thanks for the blog, Uncle Yap. I found this quite tough to get into and failed to get 21dn, which is annoying! Didn’t understand some of the wordplay, so for me this puzzle was one of those that I enjoyed more in retrospect than while solving.

  10. Rishi says:

    In 1ac “coming from a region in Asia” is the def. Kashmir is the region and KASHMIRI is adjective.
    Of course, it could also be a noun meaning “a native of Kashmir”.
    As “one” is part of wordplay, I would think that the def is as I have stated above, alluding to it as an adj.
    I am writing this as I am not sure if the note above makes it quite clear.

  11. Shirley says:

    3,24 – Uncle Yap just to be a bit picky a little slam in bridge is actually 12 out of 13 possible tricks. A grand slam is all thirteen.
    But a great puzzle and a lovely blog thanks. Our favourite was 25A Epsom – so cleverly disguised!

  12. Scarpia says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap.
    Great to find Paul back on top form after a couple of puzzles that fell below his usual(very high) standard.
    Many excellent clues,ones that stand out for me are 11,12,22 and 24 across and 16/22 and 18/7 down.
    Last to go in was 23 across(another very good clue),kept trying to work blue or clue into the wordplay.

    molonglo @4 – from
    trump(vb) – To get the better of (an adversary or competitor, for example) by using a crucial, often hidden resource.

  13. cholecyst says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap. I thought 18d v.clever, esp as it contains 2 French swear words: CON + (obviously) MERDE.

  14. NeilW says:

    Yes, cholecyst, I considered CON too and in fact that’s what then lead me to MERDE. I agree with you that it could have been a really great clue if Paul had contrived to keep “Party” out of it.

  15. FumbleFingers says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap (and NeilW, for enlightening me on the outrageous deconstruction of 18/7d!)

    I think I spent more time deconstructing the clues than figuring out the answers, which I mostly had before knowing why.

    This truly is Paul at his best! I’m with Uncle Yap that COD is PARDON MY FRENCH, but I’d have to put LITTLE SLAM in there with joint top billing. Both exquisitely crafted – the first epitomises Paul’s risque streak, the second showcases his uncanny ability to do ever more with less.

    This coming so soon after Brendan’s geometric tour de force last week, I wonder if they know something we don’t about Aruacaria’s retirement plans, and are vying for the top dog slot!

  16. NeilW says:

    FumbleFingers (Apologies if off topic but it seems to be a dry day for comments.) Regarding Araucaria’s retirement plans, refer you to one of his very recent prize puzzles: 25,017, 4dn…

  17. tupu says:

    Thanks UY and Paul.
    An excellent but a hard one to get back to, full of teasing but well-crafeted clues. It took me far too long, but it felt good to solve it all and see why, and not to feel ‘cheated’ or disappointed by an answer even once in the process. I found it specially hard to get into the clues and P’s ‘Delphic oracle’ mind, being often misdirected by the cluing – e.g. thinking 20a must be an anagram of rector with some reference to Chelsea included and the answer being possibly a pensioner, before it clicked! Sometimes, like others, I guessed the answer and then saw why, but even this was not easy for me much of the time. A quick solution would have demanded much more flexibility of response than I could muster, I’m afraid.

  18. FumbleFingers says:

    @NeilW – sticking firmly off-topic, I’ll just say I did actually agonise over my choice of words in the first place…

    It seems like Araucaria’s been around long as the Queen, and I can’t really imagine either of them handing over the reins until the bitter end. Maybe as you say, 25017 4d implies he plans to die in HARNESS.

    Admittedly it was only in jest, but a couple of hours ago I couldn’t quite bring myself to ponder publicly whether Paul & Brendan knew something about Araucaria’s health, which was why I eupemistically substituted “retirement plans” (apologies for lowering the tone).

  19. Bryan says:

    FumFin @ 18

    Please don’t worry about Araucaria.

    He’ll probably live longer than Methuselah who lived to the age of 969.

  20. Sil van den Hoek says:

    As one who criticised Paul’s recent crosswords as being too Middle of the Road [what an awful band that was] I am with everyone who said that Paul was back on form today.

    Intelligent clueing/cluing [I still don’t what’s right] with TRICORNE as a particular highlight because of its misdirections [as tupu #17 rightly pointed out].
    Best clues, though, WASH YOUR MOUTH OUT and LITTLE SLAM [even if it is a very easy anagram].
    We thought 16,22 (the infamous PARDON MY FRENCH) was fine too, but at the same time a bit contrived [at least, we thought – for example, there’s no cryptic role for *** within the construction – don’t worry, I do see ‘the fun of it’].
    And unlike others we were not fully convinced by (16 22) for MERDE (as PMF is not really referring to FRENCH swearwords), but OK – maybe we would have liked a “?” behind 16 22.
    But this is only a minor quibble about this very fine crossword in which only SLUG beat us [in the absence of any form of resources].

  21. Mr Beaver says:

    Good fun, even though we didn’t quite finish it (only started at 9pm, and it’s getting late…) – but Uncle Yap, why the reference to Don Q’s horse ?
    Have I missed Rosinante putting in an appearance recently ?

  22. Mr Beaver says:

    Sil (@20) – if you were a gardener, slug pellets would be very familiar items :)

  23. Carrots says:

    A perfect day in the garden: hours wiled away with an excellent Paul (thank you Paul!)and a couple of glasses of chilled Rose….watching seven species of birds perform an action replay of the Battle of Britain over the bird feeders. Bliss…as was PARDON MY FRENCH and CONSUMER DEMAND. Lovely!

  24. Frances says:

    11ac Please would somebody explain how one gets “Ether” from “number”.

  25. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Frances
    ‘Ether’ is an anaesthetic therefore it numbs or is a ‘number’.

  26. Frances says:

    Thanks, Gaufrid. I just couldn’t see that one – as with so many other clues till coming to this site!

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