Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor 1243: Paradise by Kruger

Posted by kenmac on August 29th, 2012

kenmac.

Preamble: Wordplay in each clue, presented in alphabetical order of solutions, yields an extra letter. When clues are arranged in conventional order, the extra letters give a vision of paradise and the name of its creator that should help to identify the 7 unclued entries (a sample of the delights allegedly found there). Additionally, the initial letters of the first 12 reordered clues pose a question, the answer to which (3 words) should be written below the grid.

I think this is the first time I’ve had to blog a crossword whose clues aren’t in the conventional order. When the clues are in answer order like this, once you have some answers then others become easier as you have an idea what their starting letters are. This grid lent itself to an easy start when it came to filling the answers as column g contained a single 13-letter answer, however, this also caused grief as I initially had LETTER MISSIVE (without full justification, of course.) Another thing that made the grid fill difficult was the fact that there were seven unclued answers.

As the grid began to fill, I could see BLUEBELL as a possible candidate for 5a but as that gave me LR__ in 10d it looked unlikely, aha, it’s BLUEBIRD. Then when LEMONADE (21d) started to appear something triggered my memory and I realised that the “vision of paradise” that we were seeking was The Big Rock Candy Mountain – one of my favourite songs from childhood. The lyric can be found here.

Thus the “delights” (all from the second verse) are: BIRDS and BEES (32d, 1a), CIGARETTE TREES (16a, 35a), LEMONADE SPRINGS (21d, 23d) and BLUEBIRD (5a.)


The extra letters once put in conventional order spelled out: BIG ROCK CANDY MOUNTAINS HARRY MCCLINTOCK. Surely this is a mistake as all references I found have the mountain as singular rather than plural!

The final piece of the puzzle, the initial letters of first 12 reorder clues revealed the question: WHAT DO HENS DO? And the answer, to be written below the grid is: LAY SOFT-BOILED EGGS.

I have one query, I can’t quite see how SAGAS (14a) works. And, surely the word in the last clue should be AUTONOMOUS.

Nice, relatively easy and fun puzzle, thanks Kruger – and, if you’re reading this, perhaps you’ll explain all about Katherine and Lee and their “Special Day.”

Clue
Grid position
Entry
Extra letter
Wordplay
Startle mailman delivering odd letters
to gypsy
36a ALARM O
mAiLmAn+ROM (gypsy)
Warmed cabin sheltering Tom at first – it
was fantastic
!
11a ANTIC B
T(om) inside CABIN
(anag: warmed)
Arabian artist with current weapon put on
trial
37a ARRAIGN U
AR(abian)+RA (artist)+I (current)+GUN (weapon)
Left in charge, abuses wobbly seesaws 1d BASCULES I
L(eft)+IC (in
charge)+ABUSES (anag: wobbly)
Most vile and brutal person devours
wings of albatross
5d BASEST A
A(lbatros)S (wings of) inside BEAST (brutal person)
Girl in Aberdeen wears somewhat low Spanish
petticoats
8d BASQUINES Y
QUINE (Scottish girl) inside BASSY (somewhat low)
Dakota’s space makes me cold (American space) 29a CELOM D
ME COLD (anag:
makes)
Caught stashing beer in dangerous shepherd’s
hut
29d CHALET O
ALE (beer) inside C(aught)+HOT
(dangerous)
Eccentric person from the south won raffle 10d DRAW C
CARD (eccentric
person, rev: from the south)+W(on)
Enforcers of the law mostly order the
French
22a EDILES C
EDICt (order,
mostly)+LES (French “the”)
Lamb’s following priest with cut
ragwort
28d ELIANS T
ELI (priest)+TANSy
(ragwort, cut short)
Refurbish den twice over 38a ENDED N
DEN DEN (twice,
anag: refurbish)
Harry, Reg and Angie: one could secure
their services
(THEIR: his or her; thus singular)
12a ENGAGER I
REG ANGIE (anag:
harry)
Half of sirens beside river delta put in
pits
2d ENSILED N
sirENS (half of)+NILE
(river)+D(elta)
Earl’s sensible domestic slave 40a ESNE A
E(arl)+SANE
(sensible)
Floor in European theatre 3d ÉTAGE S
E(uropean)+STAGE
(theatre)
Salmon for those in lowest class? 33d ETAS K
KETAS (salmon)
Design car speedo incorporating knots 13d GNARS C
desiGN CAR Speedo
(hidden: incorporating)
Disrespectfully, woman revolutionary turned
up in school
27d HEDER N
HEN (woman, disrespectfully)+RED
(revolutionary, rev: turned up)
Joyous cry when Ben possibly joins
motoring organisation
31d HURRA C
HUR (Ben)+RAC (motoring organisation)
Allow mostly brusque author time absorbed in
document conferring privilege
6d LETTERS PATENT R
LET (allow)+TERSe (brusque, mostly) +T(ime)
inside PARENT (author)
Oldish comedian nearly takes wife in county
town
19a LEWES C
W(ife) inside CLEESe
(comedian, nearly)
Places to sign engine drivers 25d LOCOMEN I
LOCI (places)+OMEN
(sign)
Believe merchant went round engaging chief
magistrate
9d REEVE M
beliEVE MERchant
(hidden: engaging, rev: went round)
Holding incomplete endorsement for passport,
northern holidaymaker returns for newer version
20a REVISAL K
VISa (endorsement, incomplete) inside LAKER (rev: returns)
Crass tits upset church officers 39a SACRISTS T
CRASS TITS (anag:
upset)
Ancient narratives : boastful talk
about good Norse god
14a SAGAS G
GAS (boastful talk) G(ood) SAGA (Norse god)
somehow they all go together but it beats me :(
Public alarms leader of council
visiting allotments
4d SCARES H
Council (leader) inside SHARES
(allotments)
Stupid person in school initially lost
two of encyclopaedia’s pages
26a SCHLEPP N
SCH(ool)+Lost (initially)+ENcyclopedia+PP
(pages)
Different size? Ours contains elastic at the
front and fits
18a SEIZURES O
Elastic (at the front) inside SIZE OURS (anag: different)
Not married – celebrate with beer! 24a SINGLE A
SING (celebrate)+ALE
(beer)
Overstated article on art lay
neglected
30a THEATRAL Y
THE (article)+ART LAY
(anag: neglected)
Canons in educational establishment
have rows
7d UNITIES R
UNIversity (educational establishment)+TIERS (rows)
Tree-moss from America not far away 15a USNEA R
US (America)+NEAR
(not far away)
Introduction to viceroy’s announcement
yielding name in corruption
34a VITIATION M
Viceroy (introduction to)+InTIMATION (announcement, without N(ame))
Clearly, road to autonymous region is alas
no more
17d WELLANEAR L
WELL (clearly)+LANE (road)+AR (autonymous
region)

5 Responses to “Inquisitor 1243: Paradise by Kruger”

  1. Al Dente says:

    Hi kenmac. I may be able to help on 14a. It is boastful talk GAS about, so reversed = SAG (g)ood Norse God = AS. The extra letter is g (good). Hope this helps Al(ice).

  2. Hi of hihoba says:

    I think your memories are of the version sung by Burl Ives which was the sanitised version with a singular mountain. The original McClintock version included the plural mountainS – as in your own link to the lyrics!

    I thought this was a great puzzle. I love alphabetical jigsaws (invented by Araucaria?) and with the extra complexity of extra letters and the exercise of re-arranging these in clue order and then finding the question from the initial clue letters, I found this one of the most enjoyable Inquisitors for a long time. Pity about autonYmous!

    I agree with Al about SAGA, though the G logically came from (G)as. It would be “cheating” to clue a letter individually, then remove it.

  3. Al Dente says:

    Hi of hihoba many thanks for your much clearer parsing of “sagas”.

  4. Kruger says:

    Thanks for your great blog, Kenmac.

    To clear up a few points :
    1 – The original song refers to mountainS (plural) although the Burl Ives version (which I suspect solvers are more familiar with) does not. In fact it differs in several other ways too.
    2 – SAGAS = [G]AS (rev) + G + AS. Retrospectively, I’d have to agree this wasn’t a brilliant clue!
    3 – AutonYmous – my submitted (Word document) version had autonOmous, so I don’t know when the error crept in, but I should have spotted it. Apologies.
    4 – Dedication – coincidentally, my daughter was married on the day of publication. John and the Indy team kindly allowed me a bit of self-indulgence!!

  5. HolyGhost says:

    Most engaging, so thanks, Kruger. (Hope the wedding went well.)

    It seems that Ken had an easier time with this than did I. For quite a while I had the long central down entry but little else in the grid – I plodded on. That’s OK, I enjoyed it – thanks for the blog.

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