Posted by shuchi on July 15th, 2011
The usual excellent puzzle from Bradman with eloquent clue surfaces and some deceptive use of punctuation (25a, 14d).
I started from the right of the grid and worked my way to the bottom-left. A couple of answers went in without fully interpreting the wordplay, some of which came to me while blogging. 5d remains to be explained, I wait to be enlightened. //Update: 5d explained and 1a, 26a edited, thanks to Eileen, Pelham Barton and jmac.
1 POST CHAISE IS in (TEASHOP)* around C (hundred). The post-chaise was a fast carriage in the 18th-19th centuries, usually drawn by two or four horses and had a closed body.
6 MISS hidden in ‘BirminghaM IS Sassy’
9 PARENTHOOD PA (the old man) RENT (ripped) HOOD (part of garment). I like the way the definition relies on the wordplay.
10 ADZE sounds like ads (commercials)
12 GRIND TO A HALT dd. An express train does not make frequent stops along its way. I’m not sure if there is more to the second definition in the clue.
15 BLIND SPOT BLINDS (screens) POT (vessel). A blind spot is an obscuration of the visual field, idiomatically used for a subject about which one is ignorant or biased.
17 RUMBA AB (sailor) reversed, after RUM (his drink) – sailors/pirates apparently had a special affinity for rum – look up the interesting background here: naval rum.
18 TONIC TO[o] NIC[e] (pleasant, almost). I loved this clue!
19 CAP IN HAND CH (companion) around A PIN (indication of personal identity), AND. Neat that AND isn’t a connector but part of the answer.
20 IN THE HOT SEAT dd; being in the hot seat is slang for being in a dangerous position. ‘Hot seat’ also means the electric chair used for executing criminals.
24 IONA I (one) ON A. An island in the Inner Hebridies, famous for its monastery.
25 VIETNAMESE (ENEMIES A TV)*
dd? The second part of the clue probably refers to the secondary meaning of ‘gore’ – a triangular piece of land that connects, like a neck, larger divisions of land. GOITRE (swelling in the neck) – IT
27 FLOODLIGHT FLIGHT (stairs), around LOO (room) D (Roman numeral for 500)
1 PAPA PAP (soft food) A[fternoon]. The second old man today, after 9A.
2 SURF sounds like ‘serf’ (old labourer)
3 CONTRADICTED I’D (I had) reversed, in CONTRACTED (shrunk)
4 ASHEN SHE (the woman) in A N (knight)
5 SHORTSTOP dd. A baseball fielding position. An excursion coach might make a short stop, often called a ‘comfort stop’.
7 INDIAN MEAL I (one) N (new), DIANA (goddess – Roman goddess of the moon) around ME, L[ying]. Indian meal is coarsely ground corn, also called cornmeal.
8 SWEATBANDS cd. Sweatbands are worn by tennis players around the forehead to absorb sweat.
11 LAUREN BACALL (CALIBAN – I + ALLURE)*
13 ABSTAINING A BING (Crosby), around STAIN (blemish). Bing Crosby was an American crooner in the 20th century.
14 PIANO TUNER cd. Grand is short for ‘grand piano’. A piano tuner is summoned to service the piano i.e. makes it better.
16 PICTORIAL PICT (tribesman) ORIAL sounds like ‘oriel’ (window). Had to Google for the name of the tribe.
21 SET-TO SETT (beastly home – the burrow of a badger) O (nothing)
22 BERG dd. Berg might mean Austrian composer Alban Berg or the Danish composer Gunnar Berg. The other definition is about the infamous berg that sunk the Titanic.
23 CENT CENTRE (HQ) – RE (about)