Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,530 by Cinephile

Posted by Pete Maclean on November 11th, 2010

Pete Maclean.

Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of October 30

A very easy puzzle from Cinephile this time. Easy for me except that I had to look up the names of the main characters in “Waiting for Godot”. The clues I like are 1A (BACKWASH), 12A (EAST INDIA) and 19D (ORPHAN) while some others are a bit drab, for example 10A (SWAMI). And then there is part of 1+21D (BUSTER KEATON) that I don’t understand.

Across
1. BACKWASH – double definition
5. SPIKED – ??? What kind of clue is this? A bit of a double definition, a bit of a riddle, a bit non-cryptic? I think it’s a marginally okay clue although it seems unconventional.
10. SWAMI – “swam I?” (did I go through water?)
11. ANIMATION – cryptic definition
12. EAST INDIA – anagram of ITS AN IDEA
13. THERM – THE RM [the Royal Marines] (soldier-sailors)
14. CONGER – CONGE (marching orders) + R (river). I was unfamiliar with “conge” which my dictionary defines as “formal permission to depart”.
18. LIMPOPO – LIMP (feeble) + O (love) + PO (river)
20, 15. SAMUEL BECKETT – ELBE (river) in AMUCK (uncontrolled frenzy) in SETT (home with badger)
22. DYING – hidden word
24. PARENTAGE – ARENT [i.e. "are not"] (do not live) in PAGE (part of book)
25. MELODRAMA – ME (setter) + anagram of OLD + RAM (sheep) + A (a)
26. GUILT – I (one) + L (left) both in GUT (seat of feelings)
27. REMOTE – double/cryptic definition
28. ESTRAGON – anagram of SET + RAG ON (wearing old cloth)

Down
1, 21. BUSTER KEATON – BUST (bankrupt) + ERK (aircraftman??) + EAT ON (continue his dinner). How does “aircraftman” clue ERK? Or does it not and do I have this entire wordplay wrong?
2. CLASSROOM – anagram of SOROS in CLAM (taciturn type)
3. WAITING FOR GODOT – IT (it) + IN (at home) both in WAG (jester) + DO (party) backwards in FORGOT (didn’t remember)
4. SLANDER – [i]SLANDER (Briton, say, beheaded). I have seen a very similar clue before.
6. PRACTICE MANAGER – CARP backwards (raised fish) + anagram of MICE in TANAGER (finch). I fancy “tanager” is not a well known word but I knew it because a street on the estate where I live is called Scarlet Tanager.
7. KNIFE – FINK (American nark) backwards + E (English)
8. DYNAMITE – homophone (“diner might”)
9. BICARB – CAR (transport) in BIB (feeder). I had not known that a child’s bib can be called a feeder but Chambers confirms that it can.
16. ELEVATING – anagram of NATIVE LEG
17. VLADIMIR – LAD (boy) in VI (sixth) + MIR (station in space)
19. ORPHAN – quasi-homophone (“often”). As a strict homophone this would not work well but, with “misunderstood” as the indicator, it turns out to be a great clue.
20. SURPASS – anagram of PRUSS[i]A
23. ISLAM – I (I) + SLAM (criticise)

5 Responses to “Financial Times 13,530 by Cinephile”

  1. scarpia says:

    Thanks Pete.
    one of the easier Cinephile puzzles as you say,but some good clueing and a few smiles along the way.
    1/21 – your parsing is correct,Cambers gives erk as R.A.F. slang for an aircraftman.

  2. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Re 5ac: guns may be spiked apparently [but I don't like guns] and a ‘spiked drink’ is a drink with something (eg drugs) put into it. So, thta’s what Cinephile is referring to.

    And in 1d, ERK is according to Chambers an “aircraftman” (RAF slang] – probably very familiar to Cinephile as he was part of the RAF in the days before WW II.
    [I just see that scarpia (a warm welcome back!!) makes a similar comment]

    We didn’t experience this puzzle as “a vey easy” Cinephile, that is, as far I can remember, but maybe it was.

    It was a good puzzle, but the only thing we didn’t like was “aren’t” for “do not live” in 24ac. We thought, Cinephile should have clued a contracted form with a contracted form, so “don’t live”.

  3. Pete Maclean says:

    Hello scarpia, thanks for filling me in on “erk”.

    Sil, I was clear about what Cinephile was referring to in 5ac; it just did not seem to be a very proper cryptic clue. And I agree about 24ac.

  4. Wil Ransome says:

    In 5ac I think it’s just two definitions: the first one is “Guns and drinks may be so” and the second one is “mistreated”.

    Whenever I do a puzzle by Cinephile I find a whole lot of irritating little things to grumble about. In 22ac I can’t see what ‘time’ is doing. In 26ac is guilt = criminality? How does 27ac hang together? It seems very loose. In 2dn ‘problem’ seems to me to be a very doubtful anagram indicator. In 8dn ‘produce’ should be ‘produces’, but of course that mucks the surface up. In 9dn is a bib really a feeder?

    Good thing I wasn’t blogging. I’d have been far more negative.

  5. Pete Maclean says:

    Wil, Thanks for your comments.

    You make a good point that ‘time’ is superfluous in 22ac. My Chambers gives a definition of ‘criminality’ as guiltiness which seems close enough to guilt for me. I think 27ac is okay given its question mark. ‘Problem’ can mean puzzle but I agree it’s not a great anagram indicator. The worst offense in my book is ‘produce’ in 8dn — I should have noticed that. And yes, believe it or not, a bib really can be a feeder!

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