Friday, May 6, 2016

Friday, May 6, 2016 — DT 27992

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27992
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27992]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
BD Rating
Difficulty - Enjoyment - ★★★
Falcon's Experience
- solved without assistance
- incorrect prior to use of puzzle solving tools
- solved with assistance from puzzle solving tools
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by puzzle solving tools
- solved but without fully parsing the clue
- unsolved or incorrect prior to visiting Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by solutions from Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- reviewed by Falcon for Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- yet to be solved


They don't get much easier than this — either from the perspective of a solver or a blogger.

I invite you to leave a comment to let us know how you fared with the puzzle.

Notes on Today's Puzzle

This commentary is intended to serve as a supplement to the review of this puzzle found at Big Dave's Crossword Blog, to which a link is provided in the table above.

Primary indications (definitions) are marked with a solid underline in the clue; subsidiary indications (be they wordplay or other) are marked with a dashed underline in all-in-one (&lit.) clues, semi-all-in-one (semi-&lit.) clues and cryptic definitions. Explicit link words and phrases are enclosed in forward slashes (/link/) and implicit links are shown as double forward slashes (//). Definitions presented in blue text are for terms that appear frequently.


1a   True -- men are stupid // to pay (10)

6a   Hurried // outlay with no end of pain (4)

9a   Working in firm /for/ the next retirement opportunity? (7)

10a   Stretching /and/ breaking with the top off (7)

12a   Form of transport highly subject to inflation (3-3,7)

14a   Served local wine, /getting/ nicked (8)

Nick[5] is an informal British term meaning to arrest (someone) ⇒ Stuart and Dan got nicked for burglary.

15a   Invite // king inside since in favour (3,3)

"king" = K (show explanation )

K[5] is an abbreviation for king that is used especially in describing play in card games and recording moves in chess.

hide explanation

17a   Effect /of/ bill on Independent Member of Parliament (6)

"independent" = I (show explanation )

I[1] is the abbreviation for independent, likely in the context of a politician with no party affiliation.

hide explanation

"Member of Parliament" = MP (show explanation )

In Britain (as in Canada), a politician elected to the House of Commons is known as a Member of Parliament[10] (or MP[5] for short).

hide explanation

19a   Euphoric experiences with marijuana -- a most memorable thing! (4,4)

21a   Revolutionary Amish promotes // complete change (13)

The Amish[5] are the members of a strict Mennonite sect that established major settlements in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and elsewhere in North America from 1720 onward.

24a   Enormous // insectivorous bird -- a new finch, oddly (7)

The tits, chickadees, and titmice[7] constitute the Paridae, a large family of small passerine birds which occur in the northern hemisphere and Africa. These birds are called either "chickadees" or "titmice" in North America, and just "tits" in the rest of the English-speaking world.

The phrase "finch, oddly" is intended to clue the letters IC — which, to me, are the "even" letters rather than the "odd" letters of fInCh. This point is discussed in some depth on Big Dave's Crossword Blog in the thread spawned by Comment #22.

25a   Cheating // giant red ruler? (7)

Roo[5] is an informal Australian term for a kangaroo.

The red kangaroo[7] (Macropus rufus) is the largest of all kangaroos, the largest terrestrial mammal native to Australia, and the largest extant marsupial. It is found across mainland Australia, avoiding only the more fertile areas in the south, the east coast, and the northern rainforests.

26a   Egyptian // quietly lying in bed? (4)

"quietly" = P (show explanation )

Piano[3,5] (abbreviation p[5]), is a musical direction meaning either (as an adjective) soft or quiet or (as an adverb) softly or quietly.

hide explanation

A Copt[5] was a native Egyptian in the Hellenistic and Roman periods.

27a   New plush store // puts covers on chairs (10)


1d   Cause of food inspectors visiting // 'Rising Sun'? (4)

2d   A taste of apartment holidays? (7)

I would think that the entire clue might provide the wordplay, making this a semi-all-in-one clue, with the phrase "a taste of" serving as the hidden word indicator. Otherwise, the single word "of" would have to play this role.

Scratching the Surface
In Britain, a regular everyday apartment is known as a flat. The word apartment[5] is reserved for a flat that is well appointed or used for holidays [vacation]  ⇒ self-catering holiday apartments.

3d   Guard/'s/ twisty thing on timer making all nervous initially (5-8)

4d   Concerned with criminal trial to secure end of rogue // trader (8)

5d   Beat // heartless hunky star (5)

7d   Parking help not on, /but/ given compensation (4,3)

8d   Decline // of French taxonomic groups -- those without heart (10)

"of French" = DE (show explanation )

In French, de[8] is a preposition meaning 'of'' or 'from'.

hide explanation

In biology, a genus[5] (plural genera) is a principal taxonomic category that ranks above species and below family, and is denoted by a capitalized Latin name (for instance, the red kangaroo above is in the genus Macropus).

What did they say?
In their review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, the 2Kiwis refer to genera as the taxonomic groups that come after species.
Genus comes above species in the taxonomic hierarchy — not what I think of as "coming after".

11d   Wears the trousers, // as a film director does (5,3,5)

13d   This scam goes wrong, Nick discovered, /becoming/ fractious (10)

16d   Up to now // the girl's almost top, after strike (8)

18d   Part of race /to get/ Stones number one? (3,4)

Scratching the Surface
The Rolling Stones[5] are an English rock group featuring singer Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards. Originally a rhythm-and-blues band, they became successful with a much-imitated rebel image, and are known for songs such as ‘Satisfaction’ (1965) and ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ (1968).

20d   I am covered in glue -- /it's/ my hobby (7)

22d   Right, step up /and/ summarise (5)

23d   Language skills must take // a long time (4)
Key to Reference Sources: 

[1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
[2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
[3]   - (American Heritage Dictionary)
[4]   - (Collins English Dictionary)
[5]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
[6]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
[7]   - Wikipedia
[8]   - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
[9]   - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
[10] - (Collins English Dictionary)
[11] - (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

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