Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8084/Eimi

Posted by John on September 11th, 2012


A nice accessible crossword from Eimi today, with only one or two clues that I struggled to understand. The very strange grid, with its preponderance of three-letter answers and its unches at the top and the bottom, cries out that there is a Nina, but I can’t see anything beyond LISA in one of the rows going across, which makes me suspect that there is a private message here and so no wonder that we don’t see it. But I also suspect that it is there for all to see.

8/29 EVERY CLOUD HAS A SILVER LINING — (cash on delivery ruins village)*
10 HUNTER — 2 defs
11 ROBS ON — ref Robson & Jerome, the TV series; I thought; but I see they were a pop duo in the 1990s, despite their later TV appearance — either way Robson and Jerome are partners
13 PATIENCE — 2 defs, one referring to the card game (which is often nowadays called ‘solo’), one I think referring to the girl’s name, so the ‘some say’ is because not every right-minded man calls a woman a bird
16 sKIN Graft
18 PERCY — (rep)rev. c{arefull}y, and an American singer of whom I’d never heard
19 CO OK — Alastair Cook is the new captain of England’s cricket Test team
20 FLORENCE — but I didn’t get this immediately since there are no doubt several
22 MURRAY — (rum)rev. ray — the Murray River
24 WILSON — w(1 {controversia}l {barones}s)on — a nice &lit. referring to the supposed long-running affair between Harold Wilson and Marcia Williams (later Baroness Falkender)
27 PUR(CHA)SE — since 13 Down is ‘purse’
1 JETHRO — j (other)*
2 RE A.M. — presumably, the abbreviation not in Chambers but somewhere I expect
3 WYVERN — w (nervy)*
4 ALAS{ka}
5 {t}OUCH{y}
7 onE’S SElf
12 SAG — I think that this is (as)rev. g, where the g is the first letter of Gasherbrum, indicated by 1 (which is the same as ‘first’ as in William I, although some might say that ‘Gasherbrum 1′ needs to be ‘Gasherbrum’s 1′) — Gasherbrum is a remote group of peaks and there are various ones, denoted by numbers — alternatively it might be a hidden reversed (the first three letters), but if it is then how does one explain the 1 and where is the hidden indicator? — so this alternative is unlikely [Flag when climbing Gasherbrum 1]
13 PURSE — 2 defs
14 TRY — 2 defs
15 COO — 2 defs split after ‘say’
17 ILL — 2 defs, where one of them is Illinois
18 PIN — 2 defs, one of them Personal Identification Number — aren’t we getting rather a lot of the same type of clue around here?
19/27 CAR PARK — this has taken me ages to work out but the only thing I can see is that it’s probably cark [an archaic word for worry, as either noun or verb] around Arp [Jean Arp the painter, who came from Alsace]
21 RUSTIC — (Curtis)* — a nice anagram alluding to the golfer Curtis Strange
22 MERCIA — ({A}merica{n})*
25 IPA D{runk} — the beer IPA or India Pale Ale
26 NAVY — navy blue and a fanciful adjective from ‘nave’
28 HAIL — 2 defs

11 Responses to “Independent 8084/Eimi”

  1. Richard3435 says:

    I think there’s a theme of Olympic silver medallists:

    Peter and Richard CHAMBERS (lightweight coxeless fours)
    Mark HUNTER (lightweight double sculls)
    Laura ROBSON (mixed doubles tennis)
    Luke PATIENCE (sailing – 470 class)
    Mary KING (team eventing)
    Iain PERCY (sailing – star class)
    Tina COOK (team eventing)
    David FLORENCE (canoe slalom C2)
    Andy MURRAY (mixed doubles tennis) or Samantha MURRAY (modern pentathlon)
    Nicola WILSON (team eventing yet again)
    Zac PURCHASE (lightweight double sculls)

    Once more, Wikipedia provides far more information than anyone could ever need.

  2. Rorschach says:

    Thanks John and Eimi,

    A rare morning solve for me – late night last night for a lot of us so took the morning off. Just what we’ve come to expect from Eimi – lots of clues, the tightest of cluing and good fun. Curtis Strange is a particularly nice touch.

    If 12 down is G = Gasherbrum 1 then I might try and sneak Kanye West past him as = K (Kanye’s West) – I parsed it as per your latter parsing but think you may be right. I was also confused as to the existence of the I – it may be that he would argue the “Gasherbrum I” is “the first of the Gasherbrums” which is fair enough.

  3. MaleficOpus says:

    Thanks Eimi and John.

    All the across entries apart from the phrase are all silver medallists at the Olympics, hence the slightly odd grid.

    HUNTER took nearly as long as the rest put together, not knowing much about watches or horses, and the parsing of CAR PARK was surprising, but I suppose there aren’t many things called multistoreys.

  4. Rorschach says:

    I went down the golf route… But thanks Richard – I would never have got there.

  5. MaleficOpus says:

    Gah, beaten to it, but while I’m here, I’d say that it is Samantha Murray, since Andy won gold as well, which may or may not have inspired him to win the US Open, for which I offer my congratulations.

  6. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, John.

    With the slightly unusual grid, I too was looking for some theme, but I didn’t spot one. Good puzzle, though, which I enjoyed and solved without too much of a struggle. Being of a certain age, I particularly liked WILSON. Although of course nothing untoward happened between the two. Allegedly. Because phone hacking hadn’t been invented then.

    I would never have spotted all the silver medallists, so thanks to Richard for flagging that up. And of course now EVERY CLOUD HAS A SILVER LINING makes a bit more sense too.

  7. rowland says:

    A good thing to celebrate the silver winners, and done in a really nice way. The grid caused maybe a few too many shorter words but with such an entertaining theme I didn’t mind a bit. CoD the Curtis Strange reference, really good.

    Well done Eimi and John,


  8. Dormouse says:

    What a difference a day makes. After struggling on yesterday’s puzzle, I looked at this first think this morning and found I’d filled in about three-quarters of it without thinking. I stopped then only because I didn’t have time to look at any further clues. When I got back to it, only 13ac gave me any problem. Even when a word search revealed only one possible answer, it still took me quite a while to work out why. Then again, I never did work out the parsing of 19dn so thanks for the explanation. As others have said, there isn’t much that is called multistorey. No, I never spotted the theme.

  9. Bertandjoyce says:

    Well done Eimi – what a way to celebrate the number one losers (to quote Jerry Seinfeld)!

    We missed the theme completely but we knew there must be something going on as soon as we saw the unusual grid. Well done Richard for spotting them all.

    Thanks John for the blog as there were a couple that we couldn’t quite parse.

    The Indy does it again!!

  10. allan_c says:

    The theme completely passed me by, but didn’t prevent me solving the puzzle – which is how it should be. I did think there must be a theme or nina because of the grid pattern but couldn’t see it.

    Re 2d, Chambers 1998 edition has amplitude modulation as one meaning of AM.

  11. Dormouse says:

    Re allan_c@10, AM is in the latest Chambers, too: 12th ed., 2011. I thought it was a well known abbreviation. All the radios I owned up to about 1972 used AM.

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