Posted by Pierre on April 22nd, 2013
After his offering on the day of the royal wedding in 2011, some folk had Morph inked in for a Thatcher tribute puzzle last Wednesday; but the editor seems to have resisted that temptation. However, we haven’t had long to wait for another of his crosswords, and it was a fine one to start the Indy week. Pretty tough, though, and there are a few where I need help with parsing. But Fifteensquared folk being helpful types, I’m sure there will be plenty of volunteers.
This one didn’t fly in, let me tell you. To be fair to the setter, there were anagrams scattered around the grid to give you a way in, and we can’t complain about ‘obscure’ words; but the wordplay was intricate in many cases. But then there’s a sense of satisfaction when you do finally crack a puzzle that you found tough, so I’m quite chuffed with myself this morning.
It’s a pangram, which for beginning lurkers who are using the ‘easy’ Indy Monday puzzle as a route into Crypticland, is a puzzle where all 26 letters of the alphabet are used. Having paid attention in class, I now usually look out for one if I see that the filling grid has Q, W, X, K and so on. And in fact this helped me with my last one in, 13ac. Given ?A?I, there are lots of possibilities; but when I realised I was short of the Z, it came to me.
cd cryptic definition
dd double definition
anagrind = anagram indicator
[x] letter(s) missing
definitions are underlined
1 More than one studio needed to get such an enterprise rolling?
If two studios were required to make a film, it would be a JOINT PRODUCTION, as indeed would an enterprise for rolling joints, or spliffs. A kind of dd cum cd, I suppose.
9/12 Berlin takes disturbed kids
(BERLIN TAKES)* gives you a slang term for small children. I prefer RUG RATS.
10 TV personality delivers lines pat – canned laughter’s beginning
(LINES PAT)* with L for the first letter of ‘laughter’ inserted. ‘Delivers’ is the anagrind. I’m trying to fall in love with PANELLIST as a definition of ‘TV personality’, but I don’t think we’ll be going out on a second date.
11 River flowing quietly westward in sleepy land
A reversal (‘westward’) of DON. It’s referring to And Quiet Flows the Don, a novel in four parts by Michail Aleksandrovich Sholokhov.
13 Authoritarian Spaniard, insular type, back after dropping international school exam
My last one in. A ten-word clue for a four-letter word usually spells trouble, and I won’t tell you the four-letter word I said when I finally twigged this. Morph is telling us – in an extremely devious way – to take IBIZAN for a ‘Spaniard, insular type'; reverse it to get NAZIBI; and then remove IB for International Baccalaureate, which is the ‘international school exam’.
14/17 Be in the same social network as wits who burble inanely
RUB ELBOWS WITH
(AS WITS WHO BURBLE)* with ‘inanely’ as the anagrind.
20 Surgical procedure making cheek round
A charade of LIP for ‘cheek’ and O. Short for LIPOSUCTION, where a surgeon hoovers fat out of your thighs or abdomen.
21 Skin disease endlessly returning between ram’s head and bottom – get tick off
I held myself up by carelessly – nay, stupidly – putting in REPRIMAND. It’s an insertion of HERPE[S] reversed in R for the first letter of ‘ram’ and END for ‘bottom’. HERPES is a skin disease, the genital version of which you might risk catching with a 27/3.
23 Newspaper covering sport backing racing
Morph’s inviting you to put RU for Rugby Union or ‘sport’ in FT for the pink’un, and then reverse it all.
24 Stuck in mud, an axle’s flipped over in poet’s city
Hidden reversed in mUD AN AXle.
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea
Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s opium-inspired poem.
26 Vintage, mostly worthless rubbish
CRU[D] CRU (strictly, crû) is the French past participle of the verb croître, ‘to grow'; hence ‘growth’ or ‘vintage’.
28 Maybe weeping tree, say, one’s put outside institute
I can’t quite make this work. It appears to be a charade of PLAIN for a homophone of PLANE, the tree; then I can see that I’VE could be ‘one’s’ in the sense of ‘one has’. But where the T fits in I can’t see.
29 Column‘s style and hairdo tips costly, for the most part
A charade of DO for the ‘tips’ of hairDO and RIC[H]. Think Euston station in London.
30 Emergency transport of bone china?
A charade of SKELETON for ‘bone’ and SERVICE for ‘china’.
1 Not hard for chap having a whale of a time round an east end piano
The cockney rhyming slang for ‘piano’ is an insertion of AN in JONA[H], who was allegedly swallowed by a whale. Whether that constitutes having a whale of a time is open to argument.
2 Bugged – without silence, didn’t work
4 Regarded as fair, like a shot it’s OK to take again just one time?
A rather whimsical way of saying that if you were allowed to have another go on the green, your shot would be REPUT[T]ABLE.
5 Doctor accepting a kebab
An insertion of ONE in DR.
6/19 Spurn day-old lamb?
An idiomatic expression for ‘spurn’ is what leftover lamb becomes. Nice with a dollop of chutney.
7 Current Number One, tennis’s top ace Henman on the way up … it’s not for real
A charade of I for the symbol for electrical current followed by MITATION, a reversal (‘on the way up’) of NO I, T, A and TIM.
8 Incorrect posture regularly adopted in evening
An insertion of OTR for the even letters of pOsTuRe in NIGHT.
15 Capital increasing by itself when account’s maintained
Well, my best stab at this is that it’s a charade of UP for ‘increasing’, and an insertion of CA for ‘current account’ in PER SE. But that could well be complete balls.
16 American arms grew uncontrollably, say Pentagon strategists
(A ARMS GREW)* Not sure I’ve heard this term before; happen I’m missing something.
18 Unusual Australian puts play on
I’m not being much help to you this morning, am I? It’s (PUTS PLAY)* and if the definition is ‘unusual Australian’, then we need ‘on’ as the anagrind, which I can’t see. If ‘unusual’ is the anagrind then surely it’s in the wrong place?
22 Queen of hearts tucking into frozen tart
A charade of QU and an insertion of H in ICE. What real men don’t eat.
25 Do I have authorisation to proceed, pal?
AM I GO?
26 Dog that’s amazing set on soldier
Brenda’s breed of choice is a charade of COR! and GI.
27/3 Encounter between upright individuals which may lead to 1 of 9,12?
This made me smile. Coitus while standing up (usually leaning against a wall in a secluded alleyway) could indeed lead to an ANKLE BITER appearing 40 weeks later.
Thanks to Morph for this one; apologies for not being able to explain it all properly.