Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7680 / Nestor (Prize Puzzle Sat. 28th May)

Posted by Gaufrid on June 4th, 2011


Not the easiest of Indy prize puzzles that I have solved but not the most difficult either. There were a few ‘entry’ clues that went in during the first pass and then it was a case of slow but steady progress parsing the rest.

Yesterday’s themed Indy (7679) made 13ac a little easier than it might otherwise have been and there was also a little help from yesterday’s FT for 23dn.

1 SOUPED UP OUP (OED publisher) ED (edition) in SUP (small sample)
6 DIAZ AID (to help) reversed Z (an unknown) – Cameron Diaz.
11 PACER AC (account) in PER (for each)
12 BATTERSEA BAT (to be in) TERSE (not likely to expand) A (area) – a district in London on the south bank of the River Thames noted for its power station and dogs’ home.
13 THE WINTER’S TALE T (time) HEW (chop) INTER (bury) STALE (hackneyed) – some might consider this clue to be an &lit !
14 GOOGLE GO (proceed) OGLE (look [up] with prurient intent) &lit – note that ‘to google’ has now entered Chambers and so an initial capital is no longer required.
16 PACIFIED DEIFICA[tion] (extreme worship dropping the last four) P (quietly) reversed
19 DETACHED DE-TACHED (having upper lip shaved) – tache, or tash, is an informal term for a moustache. ‘Objective’ as an adjective.
20 JIGGER EGG (nit, possibly) I (one) reversed in JR (junior)
22 DOG IN THE MANGER *(MEN GET HOARDING) – “a person who has no use for something but will not let others enjoy it” (Chambers)
25 LIKE STINK LIKES (approves of) KNIT (cardigan, say) reversed
26 IDAHO hidden in ‘florIDA Houses’ – the ‘rocky state’ could refer to the fact that a least part of Idaho lies in the Rocky Mountains or it could also be a reference to the state’s nickname which is the ‘Gem State’ and of course ‘rock’ is a slang term for a precious stone.
27 MARX R (Republican) in MAX (at most) – Karl Marx.
28 ENDANGER END (wind up) ANGER (wind up)
2 ON CUE U[rging] in ONCE (when) &lit
3 PARTIAL ECLIPSE ALE (beer) CLIPS (speeds) in PARTIE[s] (endless revels)
4 DEBATE A (answer) in DEBT (something to pay back) E (energy)
5 PETER PAN PE (exercise instruction) *(PARENT)
7 INSULTING INSUL[a]TING (article ignored in protecting from unpleasantness)
8 ZEAL when put between ‘new’ and ‘and’ you get New Zealand, the location where scenes for the films ‘The Lord of the Rings‘ and the yet to be released ‘The Hobbit’ were shot.
9 UPSTAGED *(PUTS) AGED (geriatric)
10 GENTRIFICATION *(REFITTING A COIN) – ‘quarter’ as in an area of a town or city.
15 OUTWORKER TWO (more than one) in OUR (my people’s) K (king) ER (queen)
17 DARKROOM cryptic def. – back in the days when cameras had films and photographs were printed onto photosensitive paper using an enlarger and chemicals, rather than glossy paper and an inkjet printer, a photographer who produced his/her own prints would need a darkroom and several trays, known as baths, containing various liquids, one of them being a fixer to make the print image permanent.
18 WESTLIFE *(FLITS) in WEE (small)
21 PEAKED double def.
23 GRAZE homophone of ‘greys’ (gets white hair) – cf the clue in yesterday’s FT (13,704) for the same answer (oddly enough in a similar position in the grid): ‘Reportedly, horses feed on grass’.
24 GLAM GL[e]AM (glow but lacking heart)

4 Responses to “Independent 7680 / Nestor (Prize Puzzle Sat. 28th May)”

  1. Allan_C says:

    Thanks, Nestor, for a puzzle which I would agree with Gaufrid was neither the easiest nor the hardest of prize puzzles. Some great clues, quite a few of which took some working out even after getting the answers.

    The SW corner proved a bit slow, LIKE STINK, GLAM and WESTLIFE being the last to go in. Also, after seeing J, K, X and Z, I was diverted into looking for a pangram.

    Favourites possibly DETACHED and GENTRIFICATION but difficult to choose.

  2. caretman says:

    I started this off like gangbusters; the first five clues I looked at all went in straight away. But the right side of the puzzle stymied me for a while. I got there in the end, but it took some work. DIAZ and ZEAL were my last couple in, and I needed to 14a to confirm that WESTLIFE (gotten solely from the wordplay) was really the name of a band. I really liked 14a, 16a, and 28a, and happy that I could work out the answers in 22a, 25a, and 15d from the elements. And that’s a tribute to Nestor, for providing a perfectly fair but intricate puzzle. Much fun! Thanks, Gaufrid, for the blog.

    The Indy prize puzzle seems to show up on the website a week after it appears in print, so in this case Gaufrid’s blog appeared around the same time that I could see the puzzle on the website. Is there a way to see the current prize puzzle? I’m not complaining if not, since I can do these puzzles for free and am thrilled that the Indy is making its puzzles available this way. Being on foreign shores, I am lucky to have access to such high quality puzzles on a regular basis.

  3. nmsindy says:

    caretman at #2, the policy of putting Sat (and also Sun) puzzles on the Indy website exactly one week late (ie on the date the solution appears in the paper) was fairly recently adopted and the blogs are timed to go up on those days, I believe.

  4. caretman says:

    Thanks, nmsindy, that was the answer I suspected since it appears online with the cheat features available. I was just holding out hope that maybe there was a different web address for the prize puzzles. But no worries, I’ll just do them when they become available.

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