Never knowingly undersolved.

Indy 7728 Klingsor (Sat 23-Jul-2011)

Posted by beermagnet on July 30th, 2011



I started off at a canter with this one from the bottom right, but slowed to a stop after 30 mins with just over half in place.
A re-start saw 1A fall providing useful first letters for other missing lights.  Then the struggle to fill in and understand those final 4 or 5. In fact I didn’t understand many of them until preparing this blog though the answers are pretty solid from the definitions.
So there are some loose ends to polish off below.



1 PROTOZOA Very simple types concocted a poor argument ultimately carrying little weight (8)
OZ (little weight) inside (POOR [argumen]T)* AInd: concocted. Def: Very simple types
6 SHRIKE Bird’s cry when migrating East (6)
SHRIEK with the E (East) migrated a position Def: Bird
9 BEAR IN MIND Remember what A A Milne had for his most famous creation? (4,2,4)
Double Def with one a cute CD that’s so apt I wonder if I’ve seen it before
10 MAUL Married man’s not the first to discover what hooker might do (4)
M[arried], [p]AUL (man, not the first) Def: what hooker might do. That’s hooker in the Rugby playing sense you understand. This ain’t Private Eye y’know. A Maul is a rugby term – it’s one of those makeshift scrums that form which are most exciting to watch to see who actually gets the ball. There are, of course, very strict rules about what players can do in a maul – if the ref can see – otherwise the usual kicking, thumping and biting can proceed as usual I understand.
11 WHEELER-DEALER Penniless bum we hear repelled shrewd businessman (7-6)
(WE HEAR REPELLED – P)* AInd: shrewd. Def: businessman. I didn’t nail down this wordplay till reviewing the blog before publishing. Though I was sure of the answer from the def, I thought it was either some kind of homophone (“we hear”) or reversal (“repelled”) or CD (visions of a down-and-out wheeling a supermarket trolley). That Anagram indicator, shrewd, looked like part of the def.
<edit> shrewd is indeed part of the def.  –  bum is the Anagrind.  Ta. caretman
13 RAVEL He scored runs, with Australian at cover dropping one (5)
R[uns] A[ustralian] VE[i]L (Cover dropping one) Def: he scored, indicating a composer.
I spent a long time trying to think of an Aussie to fit AVEL. Who could it refer to? A cricketer? Rod Laver?
14 IN FULL CRY Criminal decapitated leaders of local crime rings hot on the trail (2,4,3)
[s]INFUL (Criminal, decapitated) L[ocal] C[rime] R[ings] Y[ards]
17 NOTEBOOKS Bound tomes are _______ created by computers for computers (9)
Double Def: NOT E-BOOKS are “Bound tomes”; NOTEBOOKS are computers.
(I loved “not e-books”)
18 EBONY Black hole’s final radius possibly endlessly variable (5)
[hol]E (hole’s final), BON[e] (radius possibly endlessly), Y (variable). Def: Black
20 PRONOUNCEABLE Perhaps she’s a celeb on the rocks? That can be said (13)
PRONOUN (perhaps she) (A CELEB)* AInd: on the rocks.
23 BURR Murmur made by small stream, not quite river (4)
BUR[n] (small stream, not quite) R[iver] Def: Murmur. This was the last I wrote in. I couldn’t decide between PURR and BURR, and thought it might be something else, till I saw that wordplay.
Old Unionist died after one stab with blade this could help contact him (5,5)
O[ld] U[noinist], then D[ied] after I JAB (one stab) OAR (blade). This was the first clue I read and the first I wrote in. My eye was caught by the capitalisation of Old Unionist in the clue and the (5,5) lettercount and I think I had the answer before finishing reading the clue. When that happens solving can only go downhill.
25 CENSUS Count abandoned countess, losing zero time (6)
(COUNTESS – O – T)* AInd: abandoned
26 GRAY’S INN Its members can enter bar and chap’s popped in to drink before noon (5,3)
Ray’s (chap’s) inside GIN (drink), then N[oon]. Def: Its members can enter bar. Gray’s Inn is one of the four Inns of Court (professional associations for barristers and judges) in London. As I work within spitting distance of Gray’s Inn I can vouch for the fact that they do ‘pop in to drink’ at my lunchtime retreat occasionally before noon. Strange hours these lawyer types work – a bit like us computer types (that’s my excuse).
2 REEF Bank charge is overturned after resistance (4)
FEE< (charge overturned) after R[esistance]
3 TORCHIERE Plant mostly sheltered by tree struggling to get light (9)
ORCHI[d] (plant mostly) inside (sheltered by) TREE* AInd: struggling. Def: light
4 ZINGER Scoundrel’s put out by Pope Benedict making lively quip (6)
RAT (scoundrel) removed from RATZINGER (Pope Benedict) Def: a lively quip.
I can’t really explain why, but this little clue gave me much pleasure and for that I bestow my Clue of the Puzz award.
5 ALIVE AND KICKING Full of vigour, a knave I’d flogged’s thrashing around (5,3,7)
A, then (KNAVE I’D)* AInd: flogged. inside LICKING (thrashing)
6 SIDE DRUM A couple of chaps need strong drink in the kitchen (4,4)
SID and ED (a couple of chaps) RUM (strong drink) Def: it’s in the kitchen. THe percussion section of th orchestra is colloquially known as the “kitchen”. Memorably evocative – especially the kettledrums.
7 RUMBA Weird sailors are ejected from barn dance (5)
RUM (weird) BA[rn] the Sailors ejected from barn are the RN
8 KRUGERRAND It could be cashed to pay for champagne on trip? (10)
KRUG (champagne) ERRAND (trip) I prefer the widow Cliquot myself
12 BATON ROUGE Stay in hotel away from violent quarter in state capital (5,5)
BAT ON (stay in, in cricket terms) ROUG[h] (H for Hotel removed from violent) E (quarter – East). Def: state capital. State of Louisiana. Another of many in this puzzle where the definition + letter count gave the answer but the wordplay had to be teased out.
15 LIBELLOUS Spreading lies or bull without right could be this (9)
(LIES O|R BULL – R)* AInd: spreading. &Lit: Definition is the whole self-referential clue.
16 POPULOUS Excited about taking part in game with America be packed (8)
UP< (excited, about) inside (taking part in) POLO (game), US (America)
19 HAVANA City that’s the Big Smoke? (6)
21 NORNS Sisters whose origin is in old Scandinavian, largely (5)
N (origin – i.e. the first letter of the answer) inside NORS[e] (old Scandinavian, largely). How’s that for a self-referential clue. We’ve seen these weird sisters in other puzzles else I wouldn’t have heard of them.
22 GRIN Smile when work is rarely presented preposterously (4)
RING* AInd: preposterously. Def: Smile. Is that all it is? Is the rest of the clue noise? I can’t help thinking there’s more to this clue than that parsing explains. I’m trying to convince myself that “presented preposterously” can imply the last letter G (the “post” letter) of RING is put at the front (“pre”). That’s what I thought when I solved it but I’m failing to convince myself that’s how it works now I’m writing the blog.
<edit> jmac & ChrisP point out that I should have checked Chambers.  preposterously can mean last to first, rarely – see comments

7 Responses to “Indy 7728 Klingsor (Sat 23-Jul-2011)”

  1. caretman says:

    Thanks, beermagnet, for the blog, and explaining some wordplay that escaped me (particularly 12d).

    On 10a, I note that Paul of the Guardian is getting married today; I wonder if the clue, referring to a married Paul, is in honor of the occasion.

    On 11a, I think the anagrin is ‘bum’, not ‘shrewd'; the latter I think is indeed part of the definition.

    I also liked the ‘not e-books’ reading for 17a, a clue that I figured out the answer for and then had to figure out why.

    In addition, I particularly liked 20a, with ‘perhaps she’ = PRONOUN well disguised in the surface.

    On 22a, I was puzzled as well. I wondered if the ‘Wagner’s work’ in the clue was indicating Lohengrin, with somehow the Lohen then being dropped. I expect others will come in and explain it (and I’ll slap my forehead and utter, d’oh!).

    A fun, although fairly quick, puzzle. Thanks, Klingsor!

  2. Allan_C says:

    Defeated by the SW corner, not helped by putting LINE BOOKS for 17a (thinking bound=limit=line but even then not entirely convinced). Guessed 13a had to be a composer from “he scored” but was looking for one ending in R. Then I saw that only Q and X would be needed to make a pangram and no way could I fit both of those in to 13a, 23a and 12d. At which point I gave up.

  3. jmac says:

    Thanks for the blog Beermagnet. Re 22, I read “preposterously” as meaning “back to front”, hence “Ring” becoming “Grin”. Nice puzzle, thanks Klingsor.

  4. ChrisP says:

    Chambers defines preposterous as “literally inverted, having or putting the last first (rare)” so I think this explains 22d including inclusion of ‘rarely’. rinG–>Grin

  5. nmsindy says:

    Yes, this was a cracking puzzle with great clues all through, thanks, Klingsor and beermagnet, my favourite clue was CENSUS.

  6. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Another good crossword from Klingsor.

    I agree with a lot of different people today :).
    With caretman @1 on 11ac: ‘bum’ the anagrind, ‘shrewd businessman’ the definition.
    With ChrisP @4 on the parsing of GRIN (22d).
    With nmsindy @5 on ‘the favourite clue’.

    Many thanks, beermagnet, for the blog which made clear that I wasn’t the only one who thought of PURR for 23ac.
    In the end BURR is indeed better, but I’m not sure whether PURR’s wrong. According to Chambers PURL can be ‘a tinkling brook’ (which is a stream, I guess). Moreover when you look at ‘murmur’ in the Chambers Thesaurus you will find a mention for PURR (and, strangely enough, not for BURR [which can indeed mean ‘to murmur’]).

    Have to admit that I gave up on MAUL (10ac). Didn’t think of Paul as a man, and moreover, I know hardly anything about that sport with the oval balls.

  7. beermagnet says:

    Thanks for the clarifications chaps, and sorry for missing “man” from the 10A’s clue.
    I didn’t know Paul was getting married yesterday when solving or blogging, but anyway doubt that 10A’s “married man” is a reference to him specifically as a) this puzzle was a week early, and b) can it be acceptable to refer to a setter’s Guardian pseudonym in the Indy?

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