Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday, May 21, 2010 (DT 26154)

This puzzle, created by Jay, was originally published Wednesday, February 3, 2010 in The Daily Telegraph

Introduction

Today is a red letter day, as I completed the puzzle completely unaided. This was especially satisfying as I thought some of the clues were rather difficult and I also managed to decode a couple of terms (one of them a Briticism) that I had never before encountered.

Today's Glossary

Some possibly unfamiliar abbreviations, people, places, words and expressions used in today's puzzle

Used in Solutions:

down3 - noun 1 a gently rolling hill. 2 (the Downs) ridges of undulating chalk and limestone hills in southern England.

glen - noun a narrow valley, especially in Scotland or Ireland.

point - noun Cricket a fielding position on the off side near the batsman.

transport cafe - noun Brit. a roadside cafe for drivers of haulage vehicles. [Note: the equivalent term in North America is truck stop]

water dog - [American Heritage Dictionary] noun 1. A dog that takes easily to the water, especially one trained for hunting waterfowl; [Collins English Dictionary] noun 1. a dog trained to hunt in water. [Note: obviously not a Briticism, but certainly a new term to me]

Today's Links

Tilsit's review of today's puzzle may be found at Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 26154].

Commentary on Today's Puzzle

5d Assume iron signs have no cover (5)

I assume you will have no difficulty with this clue, as long as the initial word in the clue assumes its proper meaning. Here, assume does not mean "accept as true without proof", nor "take (responsibility or control)", not even "begin to have (a quality, appearance, or extent)", but rather "pretend to have; adopt falsely".

16d Wet track means one retrieves the game (5,3)

Here "wet" is a verb, not an adjective, so it means water, as in "to water the garden". "Track" is also a verb, not a noun, and means "to dog". Thus the solution is WATER DOG. While the discussion on Big Dave's site seems to centre on one particular breed, the Portuguese Water Dog, a number of dog breeds are included in the category of water dogs - including the Standard Poodle (illustrated) as well as various spaniels and retrievers.

Paring and Extracting

In today's puzzle, we see several examples of expressions which are used to indicate that only a portion of a word either constitutes the solution or is to be used in the wordplay.
  • In 15a, "risks ignoring leader" indicates that we are to drop (ignore) the initial letter (leader) of the word "dangers" (risks), leaving us with ANGERS (gets annoyed).
  • In 26a, "source of rumour" indicates that we are to use the initial letter (source) of the word "rumour" (i.e., R) in the wordplay.
  • In 1d, "finally remove" indicates that we are to use the final letter (finally) of the word "remove" (i.e., E) in the wordplay.
  • In 5d, "signs have no cover" indicates that we are to use the interior letters (have no cover) of the word "signs" (i.e., IGN) in the wordplay.
  • In 23d, "dropped case" indicates that we are to use the exterior letters (case) of the word "dropped" (i.e., DD) in the wordplay.
Signing off for today - Falcon

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