Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations No.1019 – Losing the Plot by Nutmeg

Posted by Mister Sting on June 2nd, 2012

Mister Sting.

A standard format this week: missing letters form a message that will hopefully give enough information about the theme to allow the grid to be filled in without too much difficulty.

A lucky guess on the entry at the bottom of the grid, and having the confidence to stick with what some of the other entries (such as 25ac) seemed to be meant that I breezed through this one with little difficulty. I recall having a some trouble with a couple of clues that don’t look too tricky in retrospect (such as 29 down and, before I recognised the significance of the phrase “wherever it occurs” in the preamble (every instance of the letter is to be omitted), I was a little puzzled by e.g. 21 across. Still, it didn’t cause any major headaches.

The construction of the grid, therefore, involves recreating this situation.
FLORAL BORDER, PERGOLA, ROCKERY and POND are found in the grid and LITTLE PEOPLE running along the bottom.

The title is a gentle pun, then, on someone who is mentally challenged enough to believe in an enchanted garden and on ‘plot’ as the (lost) garden that has to be filled in.

The perennial issue of editing seems only to have impacted on one clue. I think that  32 across 8 should read ‘explains’.


(xxx) = definition
[xxx] = (anagram/homophone/container/etc.) indicator
XXX* = anagram
< = reversal
xxx = unused letter(s)
TRIBUNE = omitted letter

Please post a comment if the explanations are not clear.

T 11 TRIBUNE One roll filling repelled queen’s champion (7) champion: ins. [filling] of I (one) + BUN (roll) in <[repelled]ER (queen)
H 12 HAD A GO Tackled criminal lawyer from US in past (6, 3 words) tackled: ins. of DA (criminal lawyer from US) in AGO (past)
E 13 UNRIGGED Stripped gunmen’s leader during struggles (8) stripped: {G [Gunmen’s leader] + DURING}* [struggles]
R 14 TORC Twisted ornamental circlet primarily (4) semi-&lit: Twisted Ornamental Circlet [primarily]
E 15 PELAGIAN Scheme to trap soldier, a devotee of monk (8) a devotee of monk: ins. [to trap] of GI (soldier) in PLAN (scheme)
A 16 YEAN Intense desire to give birth (4) intense desire: to give birth
R 17 TEENSIER  Adolescent son that is not so tall (8) not so tall: TEEN (adolescent) + S (son) + IE (that is)
E 18 STONED  Tired and emotional, nod off on street (6) tired and emotional: ST (street) + NOD*
F 19 CRAFTS  Leading clubs reviewed artistic activities (6) artistic activities: <{STAR (leading) + C (Clubs)}
A 21 VANDALS  Wreckers demand loan, gatecrashing events on regular basis (7) wreckers: ins. [gatecrashing] of DL (demand loan) in eVeNtS [on regular basis]
I 23 FLINTY  It’s hard knowing about books (6) hard: ins. [about] of NT (books) in FLY (knowing)
R 28 BERG  Fail to answer growler perhaps (4) growler perhaps: fail to answer
I 30 CAGELING  Flier behind bars, young lady in pillory (8) flier behind bars: ins. of GEL (young lady) in CANG (pillory)
E 31 RETIE  Artiste’s content to make another bow maybe (5) to make another bow maybe: aRTIste [content]
S 32 CLEARS UP  Explains peculiar dancing (not current) (8, 2 words) explains: PECULiAR* [not current]
A 33 CARTEL  Councillor suffered over political alliance… (6) political alliance: CR (councillor) + <[over]LET (suffered)
T 34 ALTRUIST  …since keeping one web address back he thinks more of others (8) he thinks more of others: ins. [keeping] of <back{I (one) + URL (web address)} in AS (since)
T 1 FRUITY Rich youngsters you and I heard coming in (6) rich: ins. [coming in] of {U [homonym of ‘you’] + I} in FRY (youngsters)
H 2 LINCHET Obstructed old houses including terrace (7) terrace: ins. of INC (including) in LET (obstructed, archaic)
E 3 OBERON King and not man commonly elevated (6) king: <[elevated]{NOR (not) + BO (man commonly)}
B 4 BANGLED Having members adorned with corners (7) having members adorned: with corners
O 5 LEGATORS They leave rats scuttling under stage (8) they leave: LEG (stage) + RATS* [scuttling]
T 6 BUDGET Cheap move (6)
move: cheap
T 7 TOASTIER More warm and cosy, I arose refreshed (8)
more warm and cosy: IAROSE* [refreshed]
O 8 RODMAN Fisher slipped holding up doctor (6)
fisher: insl [holding] of <[up]MD in RAN (slipped)
M 9 EGOTISM In ascendant position, be done away with self-conceit (7)
O 18 SUPERCOOL Very calm policeman disembowelled criminal (9)
very calm: SUPER (policeman) + CriminaL [disembowelled]
F 19 COAL-FLAP It enables delivery wholly welcomed by cold pensioner (8, hyphenated)
it enables delivery: ins. [welcomed] of ALL (wholly) in {C (cold) + OAP (pensioner)}
O 20 ALONG In company a learner’s no good (5) in company: A + L (learner) + NG (no good)
U 21 VENTURI Tube for measuring volcanic orifice on Indonesia (7) tube for measuring: VENT (volcanic orifice) + RI (Indonesia)
R 22 LOGROLL Move trunks to work inside lounge (7) move trunks: ins. of GO (work) in LOLL (lounge)
G 23 FINE LEG In the end England’s opener replaces amateur cricketer (7, 2 words)
cricketer: replacement of A (amateur) by E [England’s opener] in FINALE (the end)
A 24 TEQUILA Queen halfway through lime drink in Mexico (7) drink in Mexico: ins. [halfway through] of QU (queen) TEIL (lime)
R 26 GARNET Booby half-heartedly hoisting tackle (6) hoisting tackle: GANNET (booby)[half-heartedly]
D 27 LECHED Companion in shelter behaved in lewd manner (6) behaved in lewd manner: ins. of CH (companion) in LEE (shelter)
E 28 BEAR UP Fired-up gunners in local don’t let spirits drop (6, 2 words) don’t let spirits drop: <[fired up]{ins. of RA (gunners) in PUB (local)}
N 29 GIPSEN Ed’s Romany is crossing softly inside Georgia (6) Ed (Spenser)’s Romany: ins. [inside] of {ins. [crossing] of P (softly) in IS} in GE (Georgia)

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