Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor 1200: Juke Box Jury by Nimrod

Posted by HolyGhost on November 2nd, 2011


Phew – what a scorcher!
Twenty 3-letter answers to be fitted where they will (seven abbreviations, thirteen of another sort yielding a “juke box source”), an anagram of ten letters in shaded cells – mostly unchecked – to be figured out, then sixty-one (yes, 61!) cells to be highlighted.
And I’m on a narrowboat on the Llangollen canal for the weekend (partner’s birthday) armed with a dictionary but no web access.

I skip past the 3-letter abbreviations (3LAs) – too daunting – but get a few of the 3/4-letter double definitions (3/4DDs). No help, of course, because I don’t know where in the grid they go. On the first pass through the normal clues I solve just one of the Across’s and two Down’s – things are not looking too promising. However, my two Down’s are in the rightmost columns, and I begin to get a grip on the 3LAs and manage to enter a couple of the 3/4DDs, which means I can have a stab at the clearly signalled anagram at 8d – the slogan I come up with seems possible but I have no means of checking it. Anyway, I run with it and, after a first longish session, the right 60% of the grid is filled, but the rest is decidedly blank. I have GLORIA ESTEFAN as the “juke box source” and there are plenty other pop music references littered around.

(The next day partner turns 60 and we cruise over the magnificent Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and the charming Chirk Aqueduct so the puzzle doesn’t get a look in.)

After a sustained attack 1a falls, followed by a couple more Across’s in the top left quadrant, then I have a guess at the second clearly signalled anagram at 2d – something else to check when I get home. The bottom left quadrant sorts itself out, bringing 1d with it. Grid nearly done, but for some reason I’m struggling with 19d which would give me the tenth and final letter to be anagrammed. Eventually I have YRIONMUAEE to be arranged to confirm that “the setter’s the solver” (3 words).

“You are mine” is my best suggestion, and, now back home, I start looking for some connection with Gloria Estefan. In a career spanning 35 years she has 14 albums and over 60 singles for me to trawl through. My familiarity with Cuban dance music is very thin and I seem to be getting nowhere, so a day later I resort to my Listener-solving colleague. He has a vague notion of a chorus that starts “1-2-3-4 Come on baby” and ends “Until you are mine” … and everything falls into place. The complete chorus from “1-2-3″, her top 10 hit with Miami Sound Machine from 1998 is:

1-2-3-4 come on baby say you love me
5-6-7 times
8-9-10-11 I’m just gonna keep on counting
Until you are mine

And marvellously, starting at 1d-2d-3d-4d we find COME ON BABY SAY YOU LOVE ME, three synonyms for “time” at 5d-6d-7d (ERA, TEMPO, SECOND), and at 8d-9d-10d-11d we end with I’M JUST GONNA KEEP ON COUNTING. Brilliant! (Even “until”, the word seemingly missing from the start of the fourth line, is in fact present, italicised, in the preamble.)

“Hit or miss?” Hit! Give that man a prize.

29a: wordplay?
Resolved by comment 7 (thanks, John): IO =10, as “keep one’s head” in the clue is the answer to 10d.

3-letter abbreviations
3LA Answer Wordplay
CSE Certificate of Secondary Education   a school-leaving qualification between 1965 and 1987 in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland
ELO Electric Light Orchestra electric (=shocking) light (=with members missing) orchestra (=players)
JNE Journal of Nursing Education journal (=periodical) nurse (=tend) education (=learning)
NTY No Thank You [OUT ON]* around HANKY (=blower)
ONT Ontario ON (=first part of previous answer) rev. + TA (=thank you, =second part of previous answer) + RIO (=Brazilian city)
OTT Over-the-top ET (=alien) in OVERT (=public) + HOP (=dance)
SIG Signor (w)RONGIS(h) (=somewhat incorrect) rev.


3/4-letter double definitions
Entry Letter 3/4DD
SAO G sao (=Neptune moon), sago (=grass)
SAY L slay (=kill), say (=perhaps)
INN O in on (=knowing about), inn (=pub)
MOE R moe (=grimace, obs.), more (=again)
GON I go in (=enter), gon (=grade, geometry)
LEE A alee (=toward the lee-side, =to shelter), Lee (=American general)
TIS E tis (=notes), ties (=neckwear)
MEW S mew (=confine), smew (=duck)
ALE T ale (=bitter), tale (=story)
TUN E tune (=air), tun (=cask)
REE F free (=uncage), ree (=female bird)
ION A ion (=charged particle), Iona (=Scottish isle)
OVA N nova (=new star), ova (=eggs)


No. Answer Wordplay
1 CROSSLET TORC (=armband) around ELS (=golfer) + S(outh) (=bearing) rev.
12 NANO- ONAN (see Genesis 38.9) rev.
15 MOBY MO (=moment) + BY (=passed)
{ref.: American musician, DJ, …}
18 AYRES A + YES (=positive) around R(esistance)
{ref.: Pam Ayres, English poet}
21 IN-BOX IN (=during) + BOX (=fight)
22 MOON M(aiden) + O (=ring) + ON
26 USERS Hidden: (addict)S RESU(ming) rev.
29 IDIOM I’D (=one’d) + IO (=10, “keep one’s head” in the clue being the answer to 10d) + M(ass)
32 AGOG A + GOG (=giant)
33 HE-HES (t)H(r)E(e) + (c)H(e)E(r)S
34 MILNE L(earner) (=trainee) in MINE (=pit)
{ref.: A.A.Milne, English author}
38 METE Double definition
41 AXES Double definition
43 SILKWEED SEED (=fruit) around ILK (=kind) + W(omen)
No. Answer Wordplay
1 COME INTO PLAY COME IN (=response to someone knocking) + TOP (=no. 1) + LAY (=song)
{ref.: BBC Radio 7 serial, 2010}
4 LOVE ME DO LOVE (=0) & O around MED (=sea)
{ref.: first hit for The Beatles, nickname the Fab Four}
5 ERAS ERAS(e) (=wipe out)
6 TEMPOS [MOST E(xtended) P(lay)]*
7 SECOND MEN SE (=South East, London area) + CONDIMENTS (=pepper-and-salt) – ITS
{ref.: catchphrase from ad. campaign, late 2000′s}
10 KEEP ONE’S HEAD K(elvin) + HE (=chap) in [DEEP-SEA]* around ON
11 COUNTING [N(ew) UNIT]* in COG (=old warship)
19 YOU SAID IT US (=compilers) in [I TODAY]* around I (=Nimrod, the setter)
20 NAUSEATE A (=one) + US (=American) in NEATE(n) (=trim)
23 ORIGINAL ORAL (=spoken) around I (=one) + GIN (=spirit)
29 IGLOOS I + LOO (=can, lavatory) in GS (=Grammar School)
34 MINI IN (=occupying) in MI (=M1, big road)
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7 Responses to “Inquisitor 1200: Juke Box Jury by Nimrod”

  1. kenmac says:

    Well done, HG. Brilliant blog on an outstanding puzzle.
    This was one of those rare puzzles that cause you to stand back and say, “WOW!” when you’re finished. What a work of art! Like you, I found GLORIA ESTEFAN fairly early on. I got a little confused thinking that the 4-letter answers also had to go in the grid :-( The long down answers, especially on LHS, took me the longest. No ideas on 29 IDIOM, I couldn’t see the missing I or O either. And I didn’t justify all the 3LA’s but then I didn’t need to since they fell into place and it wasn’t my week to blog – thank goodness ;-)

  2. ele says:

    Wow indeed! I completed the grid – not without some difficulty and a little help from my friends. But got completely sidetracked by choosing the wrong GLoria Estefan song to try and fit into the 61 characters. Google returned one called ‘You’ll be mine’ which includes a chorus with the moon rising etc. and so thought that the ‘you are mine’ was the answer to that. Seeing moon in the centre, I was convinced. But it didn’t work and I’m afraid I gave up. Thanks to Nimrod for a real workout – did he put the moon in to mislead us I wonder – :) and thanks to Holy Ghost for the true explanation.

  3. regalize says:

    Yes WOW again – what a great puzzle this was. After finding the lyrics, it was the 5, 6, 7 (times) which truly had me stuck till the logical side of my brain went into gear. I have to admit googling the source with the anagram, which on its own threw up some weird hymns. But putting that italicized word in made all the difference. My children gave me the the initial insight. (As they do).
    Thanks HG for the blog and of course to Nimrod, I don’t know how he does it.

  4. Shirley Curran says:

    Yes, indeed, I had about five solutions in place before a more gifted solver gave me a mighty help and we were both just dazzled by the ingenuity of this – especially by the way the clue numbers told us where to find the lyrics of 1-2-3-4 Come on baby, say you love me etc. It was the figure 61 (other cells) that needed to be shaded that gave me the hint to look for the various types of time. This was truly memorable and raises the IQ bar a few feet for compilers – how does anyone live up to that sort of quality?

  5. twencelas says:

    This was a puzzle of the highest quality as the theme slowly revealed itself. The intrigue at the beginning with the number of cells to be highlighted – more than a third of the puzzle. The hard slog to get there, but boy was the end game worth the effort. Truly a work of art. Many thanks to Nimrod and HolyGhost for the blog

  6. Chaz says:

    A piece of genius. Also worth noting: published in October 2011 gives 10/’11/12(00).
    Thanks Nimrod.

  7. John Lowe says:

    The clueing to 29 is right: “keep one’s head” is the answer to 10 down so I think it represents IO.

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