Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations No.999 – All Change by Loda

Posted by Mister Sting on January 14th, 2012

Mister Sting.

‘All Change’ seems appropriate for a puzzle published on 1st January. Will the theme at least be more apt than last week’s war-based Christmas offering?

Once again, we’ve to resolve clashes by substitution with ‘a thematic symbol’. This time, non-clashing clues will guide us to the theme with misprints in their definitions. The number 10 or 12 seems to be relevant. Surely not more battles, but what? No bells are ringing yet (at least not for me).

Certain of the clues are easy enough. 35ac, for instance, gave a clashing clue almost immediately. Getting 31dn suggested that MAR was half of the clash – but what about the other half? As both of the clashes in ‘DECOKED’ were single letters, this suggested MARK. 28ac and 30dn provided another easy route to, or confirmation of, the theme, giving GUILD/ER. It seems pretty likely that the clashes spell out the ten currencies that were replaced by the Euro on 1st January 2002: LIRA, FRANC, PUNT, MARKKA, DRACHMA, ESCUDO, PESETA, GUILDER, MARK and SCHILLING (the ‘other two’ mentioned in the preamble being the other two francs).

Many of the misprints were not too tricky to identify (ruddle, Spencer, souple, bobby), so our solving could also be helped by discovering that the theme was the TENTH ANNIVERSARY OF [the] EURO’S LAUNCH. The only foray into economic commentary that I’ll make is to wonder whether Loda was concerned that a certain crisis might have rather changed things before the puzzle came out.

Population of the rest of the grid was thus aided, and having the message meant one knew which clues had clashes. A little bit of prodding was still necessary, but knowing what you’re looking for always helps in a search.

It’s a shame that this puzzle used the same mechanism as last week’s, but that’s hardly Loda’s fault. If, as I suspect was intended, ‘Nativity’ had been published on Christmas Day, this would have killed two thirds of my moans. Actually, there are only those two, although I’m tempted to think of a third in order to force that pun to work.

Happy new year to all!

(xxx) = definition
{xxx} = (anagram/homophone/container/etc.) indicator
XXX* = anagram
< = reversal
xxx = unused letter(s)
IRASCIBLE =clash in answer to be replaced by €
bill=misprint in definition

Please post a comment if the explanations are not clear.

1 IRASCIBLE One car is tampered with – 75% become sleepy and quick-tempered (7) quick-tempered: I (one) + CARIS* [tampered with] + BLEt (become sleepy)[75%]
Move house without right jerk (5) jerk: ins. of R (right) in FLIT (move house)
Divers observe old American first (5) divert: AM (American) + USE (observe old)
 E 11 CHOLIC Concerning bill, the best part’s unfinished, left inside (6) concerning bile: ins. of L (left) in CHOICe (the best part)[unfinished]
Hammer around core of zincked coils (5) coins: ins. of C (core of zinCked) in PENE (hammer)
 T 13 DUCT Daughter’s cut out cube (4) tube: D (daughter) + CUT* [out]
 H 14 DOTE Stow excessive Love Hearts for widows’ afters (4) show excessive love: wiDOws afTErs [hearts]
 A 15 GURGLE Sound coming from crew startled lugger (6) sound coming from craw: LUGGER* [startled]
Samurai sword and karate exercises not available (5) samurai sword: KATA (karate exercises) + NA (not available)
 N 19 SEWER Finally, bones were ground for charnel (5) channel: S (finally boneS) + WERE* [ground]
21 RACHMANISM Disreputable landlord’s conduct charms man I fired (5) disreputable landlord’s conduct: CHARMSMANI* [fired]
22 PRESCRIBE Lay down rules – “Beer must be drunk with cut crisps” (7) lay down rules: BEERCRIPS* [drunk/cut]
 N 23 ENNUIED Nut, nude and I danced, made one yawp (7) made one yawn: EN (nut) + [NUDE+I]* [danced]
Lags playing darts with screws, essentially (5) lags: [DARTS+RE(scREws essentially)]* [playing]
 I 27 CUSPS Swear phosphorous is inside parts of bute (5) parts of bite: ins. of P (phosphorous) in CUSS (swear)
Stone jug, one that cooks food with water (5) one that cooks food with water: ST (stone) + EWER (jug)
Denser inhabitant’s small ear – point and reject (6) Denver inhabitant’s small ear: NUB (point) + BIN (reject)
 E 34 ETAS Wagging tails from eight gorgeous Japanese tosa litters (4) letters: eighTgorgeouSjapanesEtosA* [tails/wagging]
35 MARINE Divers remain at sea (4) at sea: REMAIN* [divers]
 R 36 ON AIR Woods on studio sign or around new ones (5, 2 words) words on studio sign: ins. of N (new) + A I (ones) in OR
 S 37 ESCARP Elope, especially in motor? Just the opposite (6) slope: ins. of CAR (motor) in ESP (especially)
 A 38 REPLA Port, for some fruit: squash – pear – lemons, at first (5) part for some fruit: [PEAR+L(Lemons at first)]* [squash]
39 DISTILLING On return one chap secures work with last signs of rain easing, falling in drops (5) falling in drops: ins. [secures] of TILL (work) in <[I (one) SID (chap)] + NG [last signs of raiN easinG]
 R 40 MEDUSAN One’s snakes for hain, possibly made in US not Italy (7) one’s snakes for hair: MADEiNUS* [possibly/not Italy]
1 LANDMARK A significant historical event with Brand supporting pound (5) a significant historical event: L (pound) + AND (with) + MARK (brand)
One might set tape low in street (5) one might set type: ins. of MOO (low) in ST (street)
Theatrical drips – discourteously brief with acting insurance (8) theatrical drops: CURT (discourteously brief) + A (acting) + INS (insurance)
 F 4 BEER This might ruddle one pillowcase (4) double definition: this might fuddle one/pillowcase
 E 5 LANGSPEL I might produce tuns in Lerwick, surprisingly, gleans Paul disheartened (8) I might produce tune in Lerwick: GLEANSPauL* [suprisingly; Paul disheartened]
6 RANCHER U.S. stock farmer chased singer (4) U.S. stock farmer: RAN (chased) + CHER (singer)
 U 7 LODGER I’m not finished with German, he might rent part of horse (6) he might rent part of house: LODa (I’m [the setter] not finished)
 R 8 RICE Eric’s blown glass (4) grass: ERIC* [blown]
9 PUNCTURES Flats – more than one image I erased for him locally (7) flats: replacement of I with UN (him locally) in PICTURES (more than one image)
 O 12 PENS American galls authors (4) double definition: American gaols/authors
 S 17 AMIS Spencer’s cloak is unsuitable, not special (4) Spenser’s cloak: removal of S (special) from AMISS (unsuitable)
An editor’s edited mine in a geometric way (8) line in a geometric way: ANEDITOR* [edited]
With only two-thirds of number puzzle completed Rex Stokes sweats (4) sweats: SUDOku (number puzzle)[only two-thirds completed] + R (Rex) + S (stokes)
 A 20 WIRETAPS Resetting trap, Wise means to listen to those that cull (8) means to listen to those that call: TRAPWISE* [resetting]
21 DECOKED Inactive amateur leaves for fuel, carbon removed (7) carbon removed: replacement [leaves for] of of A (amateur) with COKE (fuel) in DEAD (inactive)
 U 24 UPBEAT Sonny Bono originally ate out after riding (6) sunny: UP (riding) + B (Bono originally) + ATE* [out]
26 PESTER Rocky steep ridge’s face is an annoyance (4) an annoyance: STEEP* [rocky] + R (Ridge’s face)
 N 29 WALLA Hard, Indian, wife not husband? God! (5) hand [worker], Indian: W (wife) + removal [not] of H (husband) from ALLAH (god)
30 GUILDSMAN Corporation member is glum and sickly (5) corporation member: ISGLUMAND* [sickly]
 C 31 NISI Condition for separating souple mini-silk partially (4) condition for separating couple: miNISIlk [partially]
32 BORSCH Head leaves York school for starter (4) starter: eBOR (York [Eboracum])[head leaves] SCH (school)
 H 33 BIRD A small quantity’s raised for bobby, perhaps (4) hobby, perhaps: <DRIB (a small quantity)[raised]

2 Responses to “Enigmatic Variations No.999 – All Change by Loda”

  1. mc_rapper67 says:

    All rather fun – thanks to Loda, and Mr Sting for the blog.

    Maybe this explains why the Euro is having such a hard time – heading for the troublesome teens!

    My eureka moment – fortunately, quite early on – was prESCribe and sUDOrs to give ESCUDO…

  2. Ernie says:

    Thanks for your blog, Mister Sting.

    I don’t think that the answer given for 28a should be in the plural – just a typing error I suspect.

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