Posted by beermagnet on July 9th, 2012
Back to a slightly tougher crossword this time. At least that’s how I found it, both to get started and to find those last pesky couple of answers.
I’ll admit after getting started, there was a mid-solve period of slotting answers in quite regularly, helped by a few crossing letters. But I wasn’t that fast, as there was a wide range of clue types (albeit solidly Ximenean) along with in-crowd and cultural references in both the clues and answers.
|8||WARMONGER||Bet that’s holding back negative Mr Tony Blair? (9)
Def. Blair WAGER (bet) “holding” (NO MR)<
|10||TWEET||Not a boozer to imbibe piss and immediately relay the news to fans? (5)
TT “imbibing” WEE (piss)
|11||STROBES||Our proprietor’s second best, or crooked (7)
S[econd] (BEST OR)* AInd: crooked. Second must be doing double duty here as Emmanuel Strobes is the (fictional) second-in-command to Lord Gnome, the (purported) proprietor of Private Eye
|12||CYNICAL||Hardnosed crossword setter in Clancy novel (7)
I (crossword setter) in (CLANCY)* AInd: novel. Is there a crossword setter in a Tom Clancy novel?
|13||MEMBERSHIP||Union rank and file politician’s getting “with it”? (10)
MEMBER’S (politician’s) HIP (with it)
|15||ODDS||Date spiking sad sod’s chances (4)
inside (SOD)* AInd: sad. First clue solved. Furthest I’ve got before finding a “write-in” for some months
|17||EDWINA||Curry, perhaps, said to be the cause of breaking wind in ‘easy’ stages (just 1 and 2) (6)
(WIND)* AInd: breaking, inside EA (first two letters of EASY)
|19||NEEDLE||Sting‘s end stimulated with eel (6)
(END EEL)* AInd: stimulated. Not sure I need to draw your attention to the piscine Tantric imagery conjured up by the surface reading
|22/5||COCK-STAND||Chef’s prime stock soup, plus erection (4-5)
C[hef] (STOCK)* AInd: soup, AND (plus). Last answered. Not a term I’m familiar with. (Sounds like a perch for your rooster’s early morning doodle-do.) So I had to accurately get the wordplay to make sense of it. For a long time I thought the def. was “Chef” and the answer might be Rick Stein somehow, though I already had an out of place crossing N
|23||SELF-PARODY||“Auto-extraction of micturition effluent”, aping Will? (4-6)
Double def. One referring to Will Self. There’s rather a lot of Will-aping here
|26||EXTINCT||Dinosaur-like pointless copulation can start to contract time (7)
[s]EX (pointless copulation) TIN (can) C[ontract] T[ime]
|27||ATLANTA||Rusbridger, possibly penning Times leader, thanks City (7)
T[imes] inside ALAN (Rusbridger – editor of the G) TA (thanks). I can’t imagine mild-mannered Harry Potter doppelganger Rusbridger “penning” James Harding. The reverse maybe.
|29||DROSS||Pisspoor material from rather formal Motown artist (5)
D. Ross for Diana Ross in a formal manner
|1||TWOSOME||Conventional couple figure on getting a bit? (7)
TWO (figure) SOME (a bit). I found this clue tricky till I had some crossing letters – can’t see why – just one of those that seem easy when you know the answer
|2||BRRR||Ejaculation prompted by cold, second-rate mainstays of education (4)
B (second-rate) RRR (the three Rs – mainstays of education)
|3/30||DOUBLE DIP RECESSION||Lookalike princess no longer with prince, has depression – result of coalition’s pisspoor policy? (6,3,9)
DOUBLE (lookalike) DI (princess no longer) P[rince] RECESSION (depression)
|4||FRICTION||Heat-raising activity between Cameron and Clegg when queen enters story? (8)
R (queen) inside FICTION (story). Kind of two defs and wordplay here, to get an allusion to the cooling of the relationship between our current ruling civil partnership
|6||PECCADILLO||Worsted clad police’s small indiscretion (10)
(CLAD POLICE)* AInd: Worsted.
|7||STYLIST||Fashionable sort of piggish place, bank (7)
STY or STY (piggish place) LIST (bank)
|9||GASES||Off message Cyclops ignored farts’ hot air? (5)
([me]SSAGE)* AInd: off. Remove ME from MESSAGE as given by “Cyclops ignored”
|14||MEDICATION||Pissed comedian taking back sex drugs? (10)
IT< (sex, reversed (back)) inside COMEDIAN* AInd: pissed
|16||MEDALLIST||Murdoch’s chief hack wants the lot – it’s about being a winner in the field? (9)
M[urdoch] ED (hack) ALL (the lot) (IT’S)* AInd: about
|18||APERTURE||Orifice of Primate with hernia (having an erection’s out) (8)
APE (primate) R[UP]TURE (hernia – remove UP (erection’s out))
|20||SCREEDS||Lots of tedious writing from credit-grabbing Stones, maybe (7)
CR inside SEEDS (stones, maybe)
|21||TYRANNY||Abuse of power when Blair heartlessly sought office before Brown’s last brief year (7)
T[on]Y (Blair heartlessly) RAN (sought office) [brow]N Y[ear]
|24||FRANC||France’s ready for a pre-euro time! (5)
Cryptic Def. Ready as in slang for money
|25||GNASH||Grit causes wound round organ’s tip (5)
GASH (wound) around [orga]N. Grit as in gritting your teeth. I found this very hard given the 2/5 crossing letters available
|28||NEIL||Former party leader‘s “Prepare for knighthood” broadcast? (4)
Homophone “kneel” Ref. to Neil Kinnock the “Welsh windbag”. Here’s one person from the establishment that won’t be kneeling. I believe he is apt to turn down honours on political grounds – whilst at the same time becoming Lord Kinnock of Bedwellty “for practical political reasons”.
In general, it is best not to anthropomorphise inanimate objects.
They hate it when you do that.
(For proof see the new film, Ted, featuring a talking teddy bear)