Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,467 / Mudd

Posted by Gaufrid on August 18th, 2010


It may just be me, but Mudd seemed to be lacking some of his usual humour today. There were attempts at it, such as the definition in 8dn (though the overall surface didn’t make much sense), but none of the clues stood out particularly. 13ac did raise a wry smile but 28ac appeared to me to be faulty.

10 MAYOR  MAYO (county) R (king)
11 CONTAINER  *(TIN CAN OR [otherwis]E)
12 COUGH UP  UGH (I’m digusted {sic}) in COUP (great achievement)
13 CREW CUT  cd&d – defn. [hair]style
14 STEAL  homophone of ‘steel’ (alloy)
16 IN BLOSSOM  IN (not out) B[atsman] LOSS (casualty) MO (second) reversed
19 TAE KWON DO  *(TAKE) WON (having secured victory) DO (participate)
20 ROAST  dd
22 INGRESS  INGRES (painter) [painting]S – Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres.
25 SECULAR  LA (Hollywood) in SECUR[e] – ‘insecure’ needs to be split to parse the clue.
27 TREASURER  U (for all to see) in *(REARREST)
28 LATHE  LATHE[r] – I do not see how ‘to be concluded’ can indicate the omission of the final letter, it would need to be ‘not concluded’.
4 INCEPTION  IN CEP (mushroom) *(ON IT)
5 TONIC  dd
6 STAGE DOOR  STAG (male) EDO (ego having change of heart) OR
7 IONIC  I (one) ON IC[e] (held in reserve, not entirely)
8 ERRATUM  [glu]E RAT (animal) in RUM (odd)
9 SMOCKS  S (son) MOCKS (laughs at)
15 LOW SEASON  W (western) SEAS (waters) in LOON (diver)
17 BOOTSTRAP PARTS (bits) TO O (old) B[rogue] reversed
18 SCARLATTI  CAR (machine) in SLAT (fine piece) IT reversed
19 TWIN-TUB  WIN (secure) in BUTT (end) reversed
21 TURKEY  dd – from Chambers “a play, film, etc that is a complete failure (slang, chiefly N American)”.
23 GREEN  d&cd – a reference to the number of holes on a golf course.
24 SURER  R (right) in SUER (complainant)
26 CELEB  C[ome] E[arlier] L[ighting] E[venings] B[rightly]

7 Responses to “Financial Times 13,467 / Mudd”

  1. Eileen says:

    Thanks, Gaufrid.

    In 28ac, I took ‘to be concluded’ as a gerundive: ‘requiring / deserving to be concluded’, as in ‘Gaufrid is to be commended for an admirable blog’. 😉

    Is ‘Hollywood’ really acceptable for LA?

  2. smiffy says:

    I quite enjoyed the – admittedly genteel – vein of humour that permeated this one, with both 3D and 6D featuring as particular satisfying moments of solving enlightment. Like Gaufrid, I thought that ‘fluff on paper’ was an inspired def’n, but one that deserved to be accompanied by far less arbitrary wordplay.

    My own quibbles were centred around 24D (I don’t think equates to ‘more right’, but the question mark probably acknowledges that) and 29A (not sufficiently wry as to merit an exclamation mark; and House of Orange or Mandarin Dynasty would be less tenuous puns, in my book).

    Eileen, your Hollywood/LA point is perfectly valid. But similar such examples of geographic/urban fuzziness seem to be well-established and accepted (e.g. NE/Newcastle, from either a postcode or compass-point perspective).

  3. Eileen says:

    Hi smiffy

    Yes, 3dn was a good one – and, in these days of abdominoplasty, & lit, surely? [I’ve spared you a link to the video!]

  4. Tony Welsh says:

    Why is “U” “for all to see”?

  5. Gaufrid says:

    Film classifications. They’ve probably changed since I last went to the cinema 30 years ago but I remember U and PG being two of them.

  6. Scarpia says:

    Thanks Gaufrid.
    Maybe not Mudd’s finest but I still enjoyed this puzzle and if his humour wasn’t as much to the fore as usual,i still got a few smiles from it.
    LATHE just about works for me – I think you can see what the setter is getting at even if it is a bit “loose”.
    25 across I enjoyed – that type of clue appeals to me.
    Other favourites were IN BLOSSOM and TWIN TUB.

  7. Tony Welsh says:

    Thanks Gaufrid for explaining the “U”. I should have known, though I too rarely go to the cinema and in any case live in the US.

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

nine − = 7