Posted by shuchi on January 28th, 2011
I had mixed feelings about this puzzle. Liked some clues such as 17a, 16d, found others a bit shaky.
1,5 PERSIAN CARPET (APPRENTICES A[lways] R[eady])*; “principal always ready” = A R? Hmmm :-|.
8 TEARDROPS TAR (sailor) around ‘E, DROPS[y] (disease, ended early)
9 POP-UP PUP (youngster) OP (work). A pop-up book has images jumping out of the page.
11 OZONE O[slo] ZONE (district); ozone is informally used to mean fresh air.
12 HANDICAPS HANDI (sounds like ‘handy’) CAPS (headgear); “its” appears to be only a filler.
13 HOT PANTS (TOP)* in HANTS (another word for Hampshire)
15 PILEUM (PLUME I)*. New word for me – pileum is the top of a bird’s head.
17 TIPTOE TIP TO E (drug)
19 FOUNTAIN dd
22 REPUTABLE REP (delegate) U (sounds like ‘you’) TABLE (BOARD)
23 SPEAK S (second) PEAK (mountain)
24 HAIKU H[oliday], initial letters of ‘And I Keep Us’
25 MARCO POLO dd
26 PAIN IN THE NECK (N PINE KITCHEN A)*
1 PUT TO THE TORCH (THATCHERS OPT OUT – AS)*
2 READOPT RE (the musical note) ADO (difficulty) PT (gym)
3 INDIE INDIA (country) with A changed with E
4 NEOPHYTE NEE (born) around OP (work) (THEY)*
5 CASINO hidden in ‘inCAS IN Olden times’ &lit. Not a fan of this one: the word “times” is redundant and the definition seems contrived.
6 REPTILIAN hidden reversed in ‘NAIL IT PERfectly’
7 EXPIATE PAT (Irishman) in EXE (river), with I (one) inside
10 POSTMAN’S KNOCK Anagram of K (thousand) + SMACKERS + NONSTOP – RES (reserve) &lit
14 ABOUT TURN (RUNT)*, a rebus-style clue.
16 NO SECRET (SCORE TEN)*; very nice surface.
18 PAPRIKA PAPA (father), around KIR (drink), reversed
20 AWESOME dd
21 OBI-MAN ROBIN (Boy Wonder, Batman’s sidekick) – R, around MA (degree). I enjoy superhero/SFF references in clues. The wordplay has a little problem here: “his” is superfluous.
23 SLOPE S (south) (POLE)*