Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor 1229: WINO by Nutmeg

Posted by duncanshiell on May 23rd, 2012

duncanshiell.

This puzzle had a fairly long preamble: "In every clue but one, a letter must be removed from the definition part before solving.  In clue order, these spell out the beginning of a quotation by an author whose three initials appear regularly spaced in row nine.  Solvers must illustrate the remainder by

1. highlighting eight cells, having deleted the answer to the only ‘normal’ clue;

2. completing the perimeter and

3. highlighting seven cells.

All entries in the final grid are real words:  unchecked perimeter letters could be

rearranged AS WASTE EMERGES".

My strategy on solving puzzles where letters have to be removed from the clues is to try and identify words that just don’t look right on first reading.  In some cases in this puzzle, the odd words stood out, but there were a good number where they didn’t.  Fairly obvious ones included GOOD-O! in 10 across, DON in 11 across, CHRISTY’S in 13 across and TOUTS in 16 across, which enabled me to make a confident start in the top half of the grid.  There were also one or two obvious anagrams such as A LATIN in 36 across and ARE ITS at 26 down which gave a foothold in the bottom right hand corner.  Gradually I joined the top to the bottom and the skeleton of the quotation appeared with DON’T YOU and BEAUTIFUL looking strong possibilities for words in the quotation.  It didn’t take too long after that to come up with

DON’T YOU FIND IT A BEATUIFUL CLEAN THOUGHT, A WORLD EMPTY OF PEOPLE, JUST UNINTERRUPTED GRASS, AND A HARE SITTING UP?

which is a quotation from the D H LAWRENCE novel, WOMEN IN LOVE.

By this time I had the H and at least one L in the ninth row, so the position of the D was fairly easily deducible.  

Overall it was a steady grid fill from start to finish with no really intractable clues.  Mosstly, I found the parsing very clear but I took a while to parse BEHOOF correctly, and the parsing of RIYAL took longer than it should.  

At this point the grid looked like this:

  

  

  

  

  

 

 

 

 

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

 

Given that the clue at 14 down did not have a letter removed before solving, I then removed HOMO (man, men, people) from the grid and discovered THE EARTH  [8 letters] could appear in that column to represent A WORLD EMPTY OF PEOPLE, if I used theT from AS WASTE EMERGES in the blank perimeter cell in the top row.  That dealt with instruction 1 in the preamble.

Also visible in the grid, rising in column 3 from the bottom row was LEVERET [7 letters, baby hare] representing A HARE SITTING UP.    Instruction 3 was now complete.

This left Instruction 2 which implied that the perimeter had to represent UNINTERRUPTED GRASS.  Using the only remaining letters of AS WASE EMERGES it was fairly clear that GARDENERS, GARTERS , FEATHERS, GRASS and GRASS  were going to appear in the outer columns and top row.  This left W E and M to find a home for.  A little bit of research threw up LYME-GRASS (a coarse sand binding grass) and WHANGEE (any of several grasses of a genus (Phyllostachys) related to the bamboos, found in China and Japan).  For completeness GARDENER’S GARTERS is a variegated garden ribbon-grass and FEATHER-GRASS is a pernnial grass with a feathery beard.  This completed Instruction 2.

I admit that when I first saw HANGE in the bottom row and UNINTERRUPTED in the quotation I thought that CHANGELESS was somehow going to feature in the perimeter. With a bit more thought I realised that it couldn’t.

By omitting HOMO at 14 down we were left with new words at 13 across SABBAT ( a variant spelling of SABBATH), 20 across, SASH (scarf being one meaning), and 25 across SCUT (a short erect tail as in a hare [very appropriate given the quotation]).

The final grid looked like this:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This puzzle was not too difficult, but it had a number of layers, each of which was cleverly presented.  I thought the clues generally read well in both their original and amended forms.  I also thought that virtually every word in every clue served a purpose, with very few simply acting a link words.  I particularly liked the use of ‘head/foot’ and ‘either’ in the clue for 27 across.  

The title of the puzzle was  WINO.  No doubt we were meant to think of drunkards.  The clues had a few references to drunkards - 16a (He likes his tots regularly in shorts), 5 down (In sleazy bars ….), and 22 down (Drunk half-heartedly ….)   However I think WINO can be parsed as WOMEN (W) IN (INLOVE (zero, O)

I note from the Inquisitor archive on Fifteensquared that this is the fifth Nutmeg puzzle that I have blogged – one dealt with a quote by Robert Schumann about Frédéric Chopin, one with volcanic ash & tourism, one with Isaac Albeniz and one lead to a message in cells associated with prime numbers.  Nutmeg provides a wide range of interesting and enjoyable puzzles.  I look forward to her next one.

Across
No Original Clue Letter New Clue Wordplay Entry
9 Body later recovered from den, dead, possibly alien (6)

D

Boy later recovered from den, dead, possibly alien (6)

D (dead) + an anagram of (possibly) ALIEN

D ANIEL*

DANIEL (reference the Biblical story of  DANIEL [boy] in the Lion’s Den. DANIEL was recovered unharmed from the den)
10 Burglar’s top man brought back loot – good-o! (6)

O

Burglar’s top man brought back loot – good! (6)

B (first letter of [top] BURGLAR) + HE (man) reversed (brought back) + OOF (old slang for money [loot])

B EH< OOF

BEHOOF (benefit, convenience; good)
11 What must bankers don? (answer not positive) (4)

N

What must bankers do? (answer not positive) (4) REPLY (answer) excluding (not) P (positive) RELY (depend; bank)
12 Briefly Bard’s dealt with key service in church… (5)

T

Briefly Bard’s deal with key service in church… (5)

(E [musical key] + RN [Royal Navy; armed service]) contained in (in) CE (Church [of England)]

C (E RN) E

CERNE (Shakesperean [Bard's] shortened [briefly] form of CONCERN [deal] [with])
13 …souls returned thoroughly clean, making Christy‘s day (7)

Y

…souls returned thoroughly clean, making Christ’s day (7)

BAS (souls in ancient Egyptian religion) reversed (returned) + BATH (clean thoroughly, as a verb)

SAB< BATH

SABBATH (a day set apart from work, variously Friday, Saturday or Sunday in different religions; Christ’s day)
15 Hoax that is wicked ultimately created a rout (7)

O

Hoax that is wicked ultimately created a rut (7)

GULL (dupe; hoax) + IE (id est; that is) + D (last letter of [ultimately]

GULLIED (to wear a channel  in; create a rut)
16 He likes his touts regularly in shorts (3)

U

He likes his tots regularly in shorts (3) 1st, 3rd and 5th letters of (regularly in) SHORTS SOT (habitual drunkard; one who likes his shorts [a drink of spirits])
17 Cunning wiles to back good chap who’s flagging locally (5)

F

Cunning wiles to back good chap who’s lagging locally (5) ST (saint; a person of outstanding virtue; good chap) + [to back] RAG (coax or cajole as in students rag week seeking to part people from their money for good causes.  I’m not sure that this is quite the same as cunning wiles, so I might be missing something) STRAG (straggler, a dialect [local] word for one who lags behind)
20 Kinky sex remains cause of actors’s great ruin? (5)

I

Kinky sex remains cause of actors’s great run? (5)

SM (sadomasochism; pleasure, esp sexual gratification, obtained by inflicting pain on another person and having pain inflicted on one by another person; kinky sex) + ASH (remains)

SMASH (reference SMASH HIT, an overwhelming success in entertainment of any kind; may be the cause of an actor’s great run)
21 Sound of metallic bang (5)

N

Sound of metallic bag (5) STEAL (sounds like [sound of] STEEL [iron containing a little carbon; metallic]) STEAL (bag)
24 Southern clubs exposed card-fixing traveller (5)

D

Southern clubs exposed car-fixing traveller (5) S (southern) + C (clubs) + OUT (exposed) SCOUT (patrolman [an employee of a motoring organisation on patrol to help motorists in difficulty; car-fixing traveller])
27 Just head/foot missing, in other words either (3)

I

Just head/foot missing, in other words ether (3) FAIR (just) excluding (missing) F (first letter [head])  Note that F also represents foot, so we are losing either head or foot when excluding the F AIR (‘ether’ is the clear upper AIR)
29 He plants college border during series (7)

T

He plans college border during series (7)

(C [college] + HEM [border]) contained in (during) SER (series)

S (C HEM) ER

SCHEMER (one who plans)
32 Caries disheartened hygienists crossing Scots town (7)

A

Cries disheartened hygienists crossing Scots town (7)

HS (first and last letters only of [disheartened] HYGIENISTS) containing (crossing) ALLOA (Scottish town near Stirling, at the foot of the Ochil Hills)

H (ALLOA) S

HALLOAS ([hunting] cries) urging hounds to run on)
33 Couple of vermin in trap taken as bread (5)

B

Couple of vermin in trap taken as read (5)

VE (first two letters of [couple of] VERMIN) contained in (in) GIN (snare or trap)

GI (VE) N

GIVEN (taken as read)
34 Sound of Sewell’s horse not quite right right (4)

E

Sound of swell’s horse not quite right right (4) ROAN (animal with spots of grey and white, especially a horse) excluding the last letter (not quite) N + R (right) ROAR (sound of the sea; sound of swell)
35 The Spanish still mean in competitive game (6)

A

The Spanish still men in competitive game (6) EL (‘the’ in Spanish) + EVEN (still) ELEVEN (there are eleven men in a team in football and cricket, to name but two competitive sports; men in competitive game)
36 "Sucker in mouth" – a Latin translation (6)

U

"Sucker in moth" – a Latin translation (6) Anagram of (translation) A LATIN

ANTLIA (the suctorial proboscis of insects of the Lepidoptera order; moths are members of the Lepidoptera order);

Down      

 

 
No. Original Clue Letter New Clue Wordplay Entry
1 One might spot skint students eating up chopped meat (6)

T

One might spot skin students eating up chopped meat (6)

NUS (National Union of Students) containing (eating) (VEAL [meat] excluding the final letter [chopped] L, reversed [up; down clue])

N (AEV<) US

NAEVUS (a pigmented spot or an overgrowth of small blood vessels in the skin)

2 Current standing for king’s old Fiat in Medina (5)

I

Current standing for king’s old fat in Medina (5)

ROYAL (of, or relating to a King [or Queen]) with I [electric current]  replacing (standing for) the O [old]

RIYAL (currency of Saudi Arabia.  Medina is a major city, and the second holiest city, in Saudi Arabia.  ‘fat’ is an old word for money.  To make the clue even better, Saudi Arabia is a monarchy ruled by King Abdullah)
3 Rib-roast interrupts main part of European feast (6)

F

Rib-roast interrupts main part of European east (6)

Anagram of (roast) RIB contained in (interrupts) SEA (main)

SE (RBI*) A

SERBIA (country of Eastern Europe)
4 Merriment stopped by black cloud some time ago (5)

U

Merriment stopped by black clod some time ago (5)

B (black) contained in (stopped by) GLEE (merriment)

GLE (B) E

GLEBE (obolete [some time ago] word for clod)
5 In sleazy bars a rising journalist grinds alway (7)

L

In sleazy bars a rising journalist grinds away(7)

(A + ED [journalist] reversed [rising; down clue]) contained in (in) an anagram of (sleazy) BARS

ABR (A DE<) S*

ABRADES (wears down; grinds away)
6 Cleaves to son after loss at sea’s reported (6)

C

Leaves to son after loss at sea’s reported (6) REC (sounds like [reported] WRECK [loss at sea]) + [after] (TO + S [son]) RECTOS (the right hand pages of an open book; the front pages of the leaves of a book; leaves)
7 Gravels of old England upset Old English author (5)

L

Graves of old England upset Old English author (5)

OE (Old English) reversed (upset; down clue) + RLS (Robert Louis Stevenson, author of Treasure Island  and Kidnapped amongst other books. Note the English goes with Old English as Stevenson was a Scot)

EO< RLS

EORLS (obsolete [old] form of Earl, a British [England?] nobleman ranking between a Marquis and a Viscount].  ‘Grave’ is being used here in its sense of a Count or person holding office.  The wife of an Earl is a Countess)
8 Movements often played least, and not going over notes (6)

E

Movements often played last, and not going over notes (6)

NOR (and not) reversed (going over) DOS (notes of the tonic sol-fa – DO [variant of DOH]  being the first note)

RON< DOS

RONDOS (musical compositions whose principal subjects recur in the same key in alternation with other subjects, often the last movements of sonatas)

14 Man who first ignored doctor (4)

 

Man who first ignored doctor (4) WHO excluding (ignored) the leading (first) W + MO (medical officer; doctor) HOMO (man)
18 Precipitate reason for aitch (4)

A

Precipitate reason for itch (4) RASH (over-hasty; lacking in caution; precipitate)

RASH (an outbreak of red spots or patches on the skin; reason for itch) double definition

19 Winger nearly on medical support following game (7)

N

Winger early on medical support following game (7)

GO (a game of skill for two players) + SLING (a hanging support for an injured arm or foot; medical support)

GOSLING (young goose; early winger [one who flies])
22 Drunk half-heartedly embraces one just sot (6)

T

Drunk half-heartedly embraces one just so (6)

TIDDLY (drunk) excluding one of its central letters (half-heartedly) D containing (embraces) I (one)

TID (I) LY

TIDILY (neatly; just so)
23 Usher pro tem voicing humble support for prayer (6)

H

User pro tem voicing humble support for prayer (6) LOANEE (sounds like [voicing] LOW [humble] + KNEE [support for prayer]) LOANEE (one who has temporary ownership; user for the moment [pro tem])
25 Earl’s detective gathers round a passage leading to the noose (6)

O

Earl’s detective gathers round a passage leading to the nose (6)

(CHAN [reference Charlie CHAN, a fictional detective created by Earl Derr Biggers {1884 - 1933}] containing [gathers] O [round shape]) + A

CH (O) AN A

CHOANA (one of the internal nostrils which open into the roof of the mouth in air-breathing vertebrates; passage leading to the nose)

26 Are its bats tops for the bounce in India? (6)

U

Are its bats tops for the bonce in India? (6) Anagram of (bats) ARE ITS

TERAIS (wide-brimmed double-crowned ventilated felt hats, first worn in the Terai , India; tops for the bonce [head] in India)

28 Heartless drive back over very noisy dog (5)

G

Heartless drive back over very noisy do (5)

REPEL (drivie back) excluding the middle letter (heartless) P containing (over) V (very)

RE (V) EL

REVEL (riotous feast; noisy do)

30 Left without paper in loo, but unharmed (5)

H

Left without paper in loo, but unarmed (5)

(LEFT excluding [without] FT [Financial Times; paper]) contained in (in) CAN (slang for lavatory; loo)

C (LE) AN

CLEAN (not carrying a weapon; unarmed)
31 To some extent like Arthur Dent (5)

T

To some extent like Arthur Den (5) Hidden word in (to some extent) LIKE ARTHUR EARTH (a burrow, especially of a badger or fox; [badger's] den)

4 Responses to “Inquisitor 1229: WINO by Nutmeg”

  1. Jack says:

    Enjoyed this one, got behoof last, looked up quote and have now started reading book.

  2. nmsindy says:

    Thanks, Duncan and Nutmeg – yes, WINO was a nice coincidence. Good luck in your reading, Jack, but IMHO, there are better ones in the DHL canon which you might look at if you enjoy that. Great writer.

  3. regalize says:

    The preamble……always makes sense in the end. I really enjoyed this one, sifting through the layers of the instructions and reaching a conclusion which was very satisfying, and a very neat title, too.
    Thanks Nutmeg and Duncan.

  4. Swando says:

    I read 17 ac. as “arts” (wiles) backing ‘g’ (good)’, ‘”chap” being part of the definition.

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


four × 8 =