Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25055 – Orlando

Posted by Uncle Yap on July 6th, 2010

Uncle Yap.

A very good morning’s worth of entertainment. Orlando employed some tongue-in-cheek devices which got me laughing

9 AT LEISURE Former British Prime Minister, Clement ATTLEE (1883-1967) minus T&E -> ATLE + I (1) SURE (certainly) The answer to 4 is BUSY
10 EVITA E (first letter of emperor) VITA (life in Latin and Italian) Evita is a musical production, with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tim Rice and made into a 1996 film starring Madonna.
11 BAG LADY Ins of GLAD (happy) in BAY (niche)
12 FORKING A cheeky way of presenting For King and Country (royalist)
13 RATTY Ins of TT (teetotal, refusing alcohol) in RAY (fish or swimmer)
14 GOTHAMITE GOTH (one wearing black) A MITE (little) Gothic fashion is a clothing style worn by members of the Goth subculture; a dark, sometimes morbid, eroticized fashion and style of dress. Typical Gothic fashion includes black dyed and crimped hair, black lips and black clothes.
16 AIR VICE-MARSHALS *(have similar cars)
19 ENTRE NOUS Ins of RENO (US city) in *(tunes) between ourselves (French expression)
21 RHINO Ins of IN (favoured) in RHO, Greek letter
22 LESOTHO LES (short for Leslie, a chap) OT (rev of TO) HO (house minus use, indicated by useless)
24 ERATO ha for the Muse of lyric love poetry.
25 ALONGSIDE Ins of LONG (hunger) in ASIDE (remark in an undertone)

1 BARBARY APE Ins of Y (first letter of youth) in BARBARA (girl) + PE (physical education or gym) Primate found in N.Africa, presumably climbing the Rock of Gibraltar
2 BLIGHTER B (first letter of Boatman, another compiler from the Guardian stable) LIGHTER (boat)
3 BIGAMY BIG (grown-up) AMY (girl) having two spouses (halves as in the better half) This one got me smiling
4 BUSY From the tie-up with 9Across, this must be BUSY (engaged) but I do not see the connection with a police officer until Jack pointed out that Bizzies is Common Liverpool slang term for the police, it was invented as the police were always too “busy” to help or they were regarded as too much of busybodies.
5 BEEFSTEAKS BE (live) *(seek fast) Very neat construction without a single wasted word – a delicious clue
6 BEARCATS *(Arabs etc)
7 BIKINI BIKING (cycling) minus G (no good) + I
8 BANG Ins of N (first letter of nails) in BAG (sack)
14 GRECO-ROMAN (5-5) Buddy GRECO (an American  singer and pianist)
ROMAN Raymond Polanski (a French-born and resident Polish film director, producer, writer and actor; recently in the news after being arrested for some sexual crime)
15 EAST OF EDEN *(EA, middle letters of DEAN + softened) Excellent clue linking James Dean with his 1955 film, based on John Steinbeck’s book. My COD
17 IDEATION *(an idiot E)
18 ACID RAIN This is definitely an environmental problem but I struggle to see the word play until NeilW came to the rescue – A C.I. (Channel Island such as Jersey) DRAIN (something consuming resources)
20 TUSCAN TU (Trade Union or workers) SCAN (examination)
21 RESIGN Ins of S (South, a bridge player) in REIGN (rule)
22 LIEN Extreme letters of LIcoln greEN; a right to retain possession of another’s property until the owner pays a debt or fulfils a contract.
23 OXON Cha of OX (beast) ON (appearing) Oxfordshire

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

58 Responses to “Guardian 25055 – Orlando”

  1. grandpuzzler says:

    Thanks to Orlando and Uncle Yap. I especially liked 9A. What was up (and down) with the B’s and N’s on the perimeter? An homage to Bill Nighy?


    (just kidding, rightback)

  2. NeilW says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap.

    18dn A Channel Island DRAIN.

    I suppose there must be a play or opera etc. with a policeman called BUSY – otherwise, no idea either!

  3. Jack says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap & Orlando

    RE 4d – I found the following on Wikipedia:

    Common Liverpool slang term for the police, it was invented as the police were always too “busy” to help.

    Never heard the term myself but then I’m not from that part of the world – ‘rozzers’ was one of the names police were given where I originally lived but haven’t heard that term for ages.

  4. Matthew says:

    Hello and thanks, Uncle Yap—

    4d references Scouse dialect for the cops, though Liverpudlians (online Liverpudlians, at least) usually spell it bizzie.

  5. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Uncle Yap, this was very enjoyable and two mysteries (BUSY and GOTHAMITE) have now been cleared up.

    It took me ages to get 16a but well worth it.

    The B***N things are obviously a tribute to me. Thank you, O*****O.

  6. Ian says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap and Orlando.

    This offered much to admire as our blogger states.

    I particularly enjoyed the wordplay for ‘Evita’ @ 10ac, similarly the cleverness of the clue revealing ‘Forking’ whilst ‘Beefsteaks’ was a gem.

    Bravo Orlando!


  7. Ponticello says:

    Excellent entertainment! Splendid anagram at 16a! 9a and 4d very clever! Chambers gives ‘busy’ as a detective (slang).

  8. rrc says:

    definitely more challenging but very few smiles and aha moments

  9. Scarpia says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap.
    Excellent puzzle from Orlando.Particularly liked the brevity of some of the clues – 12 across,23 across,5 down,20 down.Also some very cleverly concealed definitions and some smart wordplay.
    Top clues,1 down,9 across,12 across and 15 down.

  10. Martin H says:

    Excellent stuff again from Orlando: meticulously constructed complex but economical clues; coherent but misleading surfaces. What a pleasure.

  11. tupu says:

    Many thanks Uncle Yap and Orlando!

    Like most others I found this an excellent puzzle – quite testing but full of ‘aha’ moments already listed. Like Ponticello, I checked and found ‘busy’ in Chambers.
    14d was made easier by a similar ref. to Polanski not long ago.

    6d I had to check ‘bearcats’ = pandas.

    re 14a There is an interesting entry in Wikipedia on Gotham City and NY. It seems to come straight out of Batman.
    23d took me longer than it should have (I thought at first it might be lion but naturally could make little sense of that (Lincoln minus several letters which would have been quite unsatisfactory).
    23a also took time to see – I got it and thought of ‘clocking’ as a kind of observation and the link via ‘watch’ did not ‘strike’ me immediately.

  12. Stella Heath says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap et al. for cleearing up my remaining doubts, es`. tupu @11 – although I could see the word-play, and knew the connection between Gothic and black, thanks to my daughter, I had forgotted the Gotham City was a fictional NY

  13. Stella Heath says:

    Sorry, typo – I do know the past For “forget”is “forgotten”. ;-D

  14. walruss says:

    You know a lot about what it is to be a Goth, Uncle Yap. Are you a participant yourself?! A good puzzle this one I thought, by one of the Guardian’s better writers. Very enjoyable.

  15. tupu says:

    Hi Stella

    Many thanks. I make enough cumulative mistakes myself to contemplate calling myself ‘typo’ rather than ‘tupu’ ( :)I even wondered if you were were doing that already in your second note). I imagine you already know too that one has to leave a space before smileys/gloomies (is that the word?).

    The preview button helps when I remember to use it. Freud has a nice tale of a newspaper correcting their attempted reference to a ‘battle-scarred’ veteran from ‘bottle-scarred’ to ‘battle-scared’ (or vice-versa?).

  16. Mark says:

    The word “bizzies” was used a lot in C4’s Liverpudlian soap Brookside, as a lot of the characters kept getting into trouble with them.

  17. liz says:

    Thanks for the blog, Uncle Yap. I thought this was v entertaining! Didn’t see the wordplay at 9ac, so thanks for that. Neat clueing and good surfaces. I wonder who BN is?

  18. tupu says:

    Is this where 8 of those lost 150 odd BillioN went?

  19. FumbleFingers says:

    Thanks, Uncle Yap. Keep ’em coming, Orlando!

    A fabulous puzzle – coherent (but nicely misleading) surface readings, admirable brevity, and broad-ranging references that were never quite so obscure as to force me to look anything up.

    Actually, the one thing I did research after completion was the (to me, at least) slightly intriguing use of RHINO as a plural. Surprisingly, I found no support for this in my dictionaries. But Googling, for example, “herd of rhino” proved conclusively that the dictionary-makers have yet to catch up with common parlance. Orlando:1, OED/Chambers/Collins:0.

  20. Gaufrid says:

    Hi FumbleFingers
    Regarding RHINO, I agree that Chambers gives the plural as rhinos but the latest Collins has “pl -nos, pl -no” and COED gives “pl. same or rhinos”, so two out of three of the standard references confirm that rhino can be plural.

  21. Stella Heath says:

    tupu @15, I did know how to do smileys so I must have got it wrong again. I’ll try again: ;-D

  22. Stella Heath says:

    Didn’t work, but I think the preview button shows smileys as text. Let’s see :-)

    Apparently it doesn’t so I’ll try the other one again ;-D

    In conclusion, that one doesn’t exist, as I tried producing the expression physically one I’d posted it, and found it impossible 😆

    Never mind, I actually meant this one anyway 😀

  23. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Stella
    Not a valid emoticon I’m afraid, at least for this site [you cannot use a ; with a D, it needs to be ; with ) or : with ) or D]. A list of those that can be used can be found here:

    The – for a nose can be included, if desired, but it is not necessary for the creation of the emoticon though either will work.

  24. Stella Heath says:

    Thanks for that link, Gaufrid. I’m only vaguely familiar with how to produce them, as the other forum I’m in allows you to just click on the appropriate symbol, but I am finding them fun to create 😀

  25. tupu says:

    Hi Stella

    Wow! Your middle one is wildly animated! I couldn’t see it on Gaufrid’s list. You are clearly a smiley wizard!

  26. Stella Heath says:

    That was “laughing out loud”, often used on my other forum. You write lol between commas 😆

  27. Gaufrid says:

    The last comment on emoticons, a subject which is decidedly off topic.

    I deliberately didn’t include the animated emoticons in the list on the post to which I linked above as I find them very distracting and I am sure that others feel the same way. Some people don’t like any emoticons so I think the compromise is to only use those that are less intrusive.

  28. walruss says:

    Emoticons make me “:x”

  29. tupu says:

    Thanks Gaufrid.
    Sorry re going off track and I agree re distraction.

    Re rhino and other animal plurals (FumbleFingers @19 and Gaufrid @ 20) There is an interesting discussion on Wikipedia under animal plurals.

    To quote: ‘As a general rule, game or other animals are often referred to in the singular for the plural in a sporting context: “He shot six brace of pheasant”, “Carruthers bagged a dozen tiger last year”, whereas in another context such as zoology or tourism the regular plural would be used’. Running along with choice of name and words in the Carruthers quote, Partridge apparently describes these as ‘snob’ plurals, but I would not wholly buy this. I would also not be surprised to find comparable usage in tourist camera-hunting contexts.

  30. tupu says:

    Sorry that should read ‘discussion of animal plurals in Wikipedia under English Plural’

  31. FumbleFingers says:

    VERY informative, thanks! In the back of my mind I sensed a tendency for the “huntin’, shootin’, and fishin'” fraternity to use the singular form for any number of their victims. Which is why a herd of rhino sounds natural to me, whereas I wouldn’t expect to hear that Noah had two rhino on his ark. Isn’t language marvelous?

  32. Mike M says:

    Great puzzle; took me a while, but I got there without recourse to electronic aids (a google-free solve, which is rare for me!). Enjoyed it a lot, especially BARBARY APE for “rock climber”

    My only gripe (and a very minor one) – in 1d (“…girl with youth leader in gym”) – given that the “PE” comes right at the end of the solution, Im not sure how this is “in gym”. “on gym” would work better, it being a down clue – but would ruin the surface, of course. Not a biggie anyway.

    Thanks Orlando!

  33. tupu says:

    Hi Mike
    I think it parses Barbara with y(outh leader) in next and next to gym i.e barbar + y + a + pe.

  34. tupu says:

    I think it parses as Barbara with y in and next to gym. i.e. barbar + y + a + pe.

  35. FumbleFingers says:

    Hi Mike M
    I think this is one puzzle where you’re going to search a long time to find structural fault with any clue!

  36. Mike M says:

    Thanks Tupu – yes, I understand that, but “next to gym” and “in gym” aren’t the same….

  37. Eileen says:

    I’m sure tupu can speak for himself but I think he read it as I did: ‘girl with youth leader in’ = BARBAR[Y}A + PE [gym].

  38. Jack says:

    Mike M #36

    The point is the ‘in’ does not refer to ‘gym’.

    ‘Girl with Youth leader in’ gives BARBAR(Y)A then ‘Gym’ on its own gives PE.

  39. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Mike M
    Let’s try some clarification without tupu’s ‘next to’.

    The parsing is BARBAR Y[outh] A (girl with youth leader in) PE (gym).

  40. tupu says:

    Hi Mike
    I’m sorry if I wasn’t clear. The ‘in’ is for the ‘y’ not for the ‘gym’. So it is Barbara with ‘y’ in. Then PE is added to that. Imagine it as a list
    1. Barbarya (Barbara with y in) followed by
    2. PE

  41. tupu says:

    Thanks all @ 37-39. My second message crossed yours.

  42. Eileen says:

    Wow – four people crossing in the post!

  43. John says:

    Fumblefingers @35, re your challenge – how about 18 dn?
    “Something consuming resources” (drain) is not “in Jersey” (a C.I.). It’s after it.

  44. Eileen says:


    ‘Buckingham Palace is a London landmark’ = ‘Buckingham Palace is a landmark in London’. A C.I. drain is a drain in C.I.

  45. Roger says:

    Better late than never, perhaps …..

    tupu @ 11 ~ had the same county in mind as you wrt 23d only I was trying to make something out of LYNX !

  46. tupu says:

    Roger. Pretty nifty. Pity it doesn’t work!Much better than Lion.

  47. FumbleFingers says:

    John @43
    I have no problem with “a Channel Islands drain” being something consuming resources, located for example in Jersey. Plus I hope I’m old enough & wise enough not to argue the toss with Eileen on such matters!

    Many hours ago I did have a problem with 23d. My co-solver at the time was up for LINCS/LYNX, but I was having none of that. My thinking was – CY is just about an acceptable abbreviation for “county”, ON is just about a synonym for “appearing”, and CONY is just about a variant spelling for CONEY. Which at least had the merit of assuming that Orlando doesn’t write malformed clues, period. Luckily I held back from inking it in until the real thing came along!

  48. Gerry says:

    Liked it quite a lot; especially Gothamite and air vice-marshalls..thought the latter was something to do with air miles but couldn’t see how the hyphen fitted. Greco-Roman was good too, though I thought it tends to be written ‘Graeco-Roman.’

  49. Roger says:

    Toyed with HART/HERT also before hitting on the ‘neat’ solution.

  50. FumbleFingers says:

    Hi Gerry
    I also thought the standard form was GRAECO-ROMAN (plus I’d never heard of Buddy Greco), so that was another one I didn’t put in until there were enough checking letters to convince me.

    But seeing your post I just Googled with/without the A, and can report that the world at large doesn’t have a big preference either way.

  51. Eileen says:


    Ouch! :-)

  52. Tony says:

    I’m not so sure about 5 down. “Bats” is an indicator of an anagram then or am I missing something? I’ve heard of situations or people being described as batty when they are confused or unusual but never as bats.

  53. crosser says:

    Tony @52, “bats in the belfry”?

  54. Tony says:

    Yes, I’ve heard someone being described as having bats in the belfry if he’s mad, but I’ve never heard anyone say: “This is bats”, or “He is bats”. Far from being a very good clue with not a wasted word, I would say it doesn’t have enough words.

  55. Eileen says:

    Hi Tony

    I’ve certainly heard ‘He [but perhaps not ‘this’] is bats’ – and it’s in Collins, under its own entry: ‘bats: mad or eccentric’, making it a perfect anagram indicator. In fact, I think we’ve seen it as such a few times lately.

  56. tupu says:

    Still no news about BN?

  57. Sylvia says:

    Gave up on this after getting only seven solutions (10, 22 and 24A, 22, 20, 14, 6 and 15D). Brain obviously not in gear today! Only unsolved puzzle for months :-(

  58. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Hi Sylvia,
    that is really BN …. [Bad News] :)

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