Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,544 / Phssthpok

Posted by Agentzero on November 16th, 2010

Agentzero.

No shortage of cleverness here!  Some of these clues needed a second (or third) look before I could be sure I had parsed them correctly.  My clear favourite is 17 down: natural surface, original wordplay.  26 across and 19 down were also amusing, and 20 down was impressively put together.

Across
1 PUT-UP JOB PUT UP (nominate) JOB (patient man)
5 LIMPET LIMP (plastic) ET (alien)
10 ADVERSE ADVERTS (publicity campaign) minus T[ime] plus E[nergy]
11 OVERARM *([p]ROM RAVE)
12 ARRAY A + homophone of RAY (beam)
13 UNNATURAL even letters in rUnNiNg At ThUg ReAlLy
14 NATIONAL DEBT dd.  The second reference is to the Grand National or National Hunt racing generally
18 ACHILLES HEEL *(HELL LIES + EACH)
21 SARGASSUM GAS (fuel) in SARS (virus) + [d]UM[p] (“dump contents”)
23 NACHO NA (not available) + CHO[p] (“chop end off”)
24 OFFBEAT OFF (away) BEAT (journey)
25 UP-AND-UP U (homophone of “you”) PAN (criticise) DUP (Democratic Unionist Party = “political party”)
26 TUSCAN TU (“you,” French) SCAN (run over)
27 WHITECAP dd
 
Down
1 PLAZAS PL[ace] + A, Z (letters furthest apart) + AS (“when,” trailing)
2 TAVERN AV (bible) in [s]TERN (grave without S[uccess])
3 PARTY WALL PARTY (ball) W[ith] ALL (everyone)
4 OPEN UNIVERSITY Sort of a reverse clue.  Open University, briefly, is OU, which is “where” in French
6 INERT INTER (bury) moving T[ime] to the end
7 PEA GREEN AGREE (match) in PEN (write)
8 TEMPLATE TEMP (employee) LATE (dead)
9 DOWN IN THE MOUTH d&cd
15 LIE IN WAIT E, W (both flanks) in *(INITIAL)
16 PASSPORT PAs (secretaries) SPORT (fun)
17 SHERIFFS SHE RIFFS (woman plays guitar)
19 ACIDIC CID (police) in A1 (road) + C[aught]
20 VOX POP V[ery] O[ld] XP (version of Windows) OP. (works, almost)
22 ARENA hidden in bARE NAked

2 Responses to “Financial Times 13,544 / Phssthpok”

  1. Tony Welsh says:

    Thanks Agentzero. I got them all except 5a. I was convinced “mine” was “pit” which blinded me to all else. There were also a couple which I solved but without fully understanding the word play. 2a, 15a, and 21a come to mind. Personal favorite was 4d.

  2. bamberger says:

    While I only got about half out, I was very impressed by the clues. If I’d got 16d , things might have been different. i had secretary=pa but couldn’t think of fun =sport. So thank you setter -don’t think I ve done a Phssthpok before- and blogger

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