Posted by Pete Maclean on September 1st, 2011
Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of August 20
Cinephile is back with a themed puzzle. I copped to the theme fairly quickly and, having been a Steinbeck fan in my youth, easily filled in most of the “novel” answers. (And last year I visited the Steinbeck Center in Salinas, California.) The rest followed fairly well although 29A (ICONIUM) was tough for me. There are a few clues that I have concerns about.
4, 9. GRAPES OF WRATH – anagram of SOFTWARE in GRAPH (mathematical drawing). But surely the proper name of the novel is “The Grapes of Wrath”?
10. SCRAPER – double definition. An economist is one who scrapes? Of course it makes for a less shiny clue but I fancy that should be an economiser.
11, 12, 16, 1, 31. THE BEST LAID SCHEMES OF MICE AND MEN – THEBES (ancient city) + anagram of IS CLAD in THEMES (subjects) + OF MICE AND MEN (novel). This reinserts the name of Steinbeck’s book into the line of Burns’ from which it was originally taken.
13. OTHER IDEAS – hidden words. This clue cleverly hides the answer but seems a bit of a mess. Is “taken-for-granted” the definition? Or “taken-for-granted opponent”? I do not see how either works. And I see no clear hidden indicator unless we allow one that overlaps with the fodder.
15. THREAT – anagram of HATTER
20. ISOTOPE – I (one) + SO (like this) + TOP (highest) + E (note)
21. SCOTIA – double definition
24. INDEFINITE – FIN (swimmer’s organ) in INDITE (write)
28. DECIDER – DE (of French) + CIDER (drink)
29. ICONIUM – ICON (picture) + I (one) + UM (some hesitation). This was the hardest clue for me. It works well but it took me a while to find a connection between St. Paul and this city.
30. SATANIST – A (a) + TAN (sunburnt complexion) both in SIST. My thanks to EB for explaining this — see comments below. “Diabolical fellow” seems a close but not a precise definition of satanist.
1. OBSOLETE – SOLE (fish) in anagram of TO BE. This is probably my favourite clue of the puzzle.
2. MARDI GRAS – DIG (like) + RA (artist) both in MARS (planet)
3. COPE – COPE[nhagen]
5. RETRENCH – re-trench (dig again)
6. PRESIDENCY – anagram of DENIS PERCY
7. SCENE – homophone (“seen”)
8. FETISH – FE (iron) + anagram of THIS
14. EAST OF EDEN – TO (to) + FED (FBI man) both in EASE (leisure) + N (pole)
17. EXTREMIST – anagram of STRIMME[r]
18. OPEN ARMS – OPEN (begin) + ARMS (weapons)
19. MARKSMAN – MARKS (boy’s) + MAN (island)
22. HINDUS – [alla]H[abad] + INDUS (river)
25. DUCAT – hidden word
27, 23, 26. JOHN STEINBECK – anagram of KENNETHS JOB IC (in charge)