Toughie 148 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 148

Toughie No 148 by Kcit

Not as difficult as it looks

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

I’m still struggling with the effects of Saturday’s hard drive crash combined with an Internet connection that is varying today from poor to non-existent.  Will be back with this puzzle after a trip to the dentist.  Can the day get any worse?

Well, I finally managed to get around to this puzzle, and it looked at first as if it was going to be difficult.  However, the setter was very kind with all four long answers being anagrams.  One or two curiosities, but overall not a bad puzzle.


7a Called from here – then spoke like crazy about nothing (9,5)
{TELEPHONE KIOSK} – this place from which you make calls is an anagram (crazy) of THEN SPOKE LIKE and O (nothing)

9a A fellow provoked issue about new secretary (10)
{AMANUENSIS} – A MAN (a fellow) then an anagram (provoked) of ISSUE around N(ew) gives this posh name for a secretary

11a Large-scale photo sent over the net? (4)
{EPIC} – a word meaning large scale could (hence the question mark) be an E-PIC (photo sent over the net)

12a Loud noise not initially a contributor to a row (3)
{OAR} – take a (R)OAR (loud noise) without the first letter (not initially) and you get a contributor to a row in a boat

13a Who could be travelling on show mare? (10)
{HORSEWOMAN} – travelling indicates that the answer is an anagram of ON SHOW MARE

16a Cultured individual, though powerless (4)
{ARTY} – this word meany cultured can be derived by taking (P)ARTY (individual in the legal sense) without the P (though Power less)

17a Daughter, during function, rejected dance – very curious (7)
{ODDBALL} – take this D(aughter) and put her between (during) DO (function) reversed (rejected) and BALL (dance) and you get something, or someone, very curious

18a Copper boarding one new vehicle with spirit (7)
{INCUBUS} – put CU (chemical symbol for copper) between (boarding) I (one) and N(ew) on the one hand and BUS (vehicle) on the other to get this devil supposed to assume a male body and have sexual intercourse with women in their sleep (spirit

20a Fish not caught in location of castle (4)
{ORFE} – this golden-yellow semi-domesticated fish, a variety of id (another crossword favourite fish) is derived by taking the C (Caught) away from (C)ORFE Castle

21a Materials for unions philosopher’s gathered in Texas (10)
{TROUSSEAUX} – the clothes and sometimes household linen collected by a bride for her marriage (materials for unions) are obtained by putting (Jean-Jacques Rousseau) ROUSSEAU inside TX (Texas)

23a Article about to be dismissed by mid-afternoon (3)
{THE} – the definite article is constructed by taking (to be dismissed) RE (about) from TH(RE)E (mid-afternoon)

24a Something in food’s off, by God! (4)
{ODSO} – this odd one is hidden (something in) foOD’S Off and means expressing surprise (by God)

25a Standard behaviour for me, participating in agreement? (10)
{UNIFORMITY} – it’s teeth-sucking time as this synonym for standard behaviour comes from putting FOR and MI (alternative spelling of me, the third note of the scale in sol-fa notation) inside (participating in) UNITY (agreement)

28a Bohemian writers begin to eat near rocks (4,10)
{BEAT GENERATION} – I was quite a fan of Jack Kerouac and the other members of this group of Bohemian writers, well at least until I tried without success to read Doctor Sax, so it was not too difficult to work out that you got them by finding an anag (rocks) of BEGIN TO EAT NEAR


1d Bad form – grid set awkwardly – that’ll give you a battle (8,6)
{STAMFORD BRIDGE} – this battle is an anagram (awkwardly) of BAD FORM GRID SET

2d Dessert’s cooler – lecturer’s to tuck in? (4)
{FLAN} – this dessert is found by taking FAN (cooler) and putting L(ecturer) inside (to tuck in)

3d Copy’s located around southern part of church (4)
{APSE} – take APE (copy) and place it (located) around S(outhern) to get a part of a church

4d Chart-topper’s a bit unpleasant (7)
{NOISOME} – combine NO I (number one / chart topper) and SOME (a bit) to get a word meaning unpleasant

5d Elements of cuisine I note in shanties (10)
{SEASONINGS} – this excellent clue gives you some elements of cuisine by putting I N(ote) inside SEA SONGS (shanties)

6d Good writing – there’s an attraction about it, time and time again (10)
{LITERATURE} – this synonym for good writing is created by putting LURE (an attraction) around (about) IT ERA (time) and T (Time again)

8d Holy man shows what forces unite against us (5,9)
{SAINT AUGUSTINE} – this Holy man is an anagram (shows what forces) of UNITE AGAINST US

10d Religious writer and physician taking top off instrument (3)
{UKE} – religious writer and physician seems a bit of an understatement for Saint LUKE, gospeller and patron saint of physicians, surgeons, students, butchers, and artists; having said that, to behead him (taking top off) just to get this informal abbreviation of a ukulele is downright cruel

14d Type of tiger distressing to the boars (5-5)
{SABRE-TOOTH} – glorious surface reading for this tiger, which is an anagram (distressing) of TO THE BOARS

15d Flawed lute confused composer (10)
{WALDTEUFEL} – I’d never heard of this composer, but fortunately confused told me to feed FLAWED LUTE into my usual anagram solver

19d Holy man penning one Queen’s signature (7)
{MONIKER} – the second holy man today is a MONK; put him around (penning) I (one) and add ER (Elizabeth Regina / Queen) and you get a slang word for a signature

22d Man having no time in prison (3)
{STIR} – it looks at first that you need to find a man and then take away T(ime) to get a prison, but it’s actually the other way around; take the T away from S(T)IR to get this man

26d Scottish town working to secure educational achievement (4)
{OBAN} – this Scottish town comes from ON (working) around (to secure) BA (Bachelor of Arts / educational achievement)

27d Spoil match’s beginning and end (4)
{MAIM} – a word meaning to mutilate (spoil – quite badly!) is derived by putting M (Match’s beginning) in front of AIM (object or purpose / end)

An enjoyable puzzle that would have had a higher rating if it hadn’t been for two or three not-so-good clues.  What did you think?

Between updates of the blog, I have managed to install MS Office and the Avast anti-virus software.  I still lack a fully operational email system, but that won’t be far away.

6 comments on “Toughie 148

  1. Hope you enjoyed your weekend away at least Dave. I too have been suffering terrible internet connections. Hope your dental problems are sorted as easily as todays toughie.

    1. Thanks BigBoab

      After 25 minutes of scraping and polishing, the good news is that I don’t have to go back for another 3 months.

      I ran the BT speedtest yesterday and, after failing to load at the first two or three attempts, it finally said that the line was working at just under 6 meg – well it doesn’t seem like it.

  2. Dave, glad you liked 5d, I have to confess that was one clue that “struck a chord” with me too.

  3. Well i couldn’t get 10d without help, but Hotlips wants to nominate 11a as his personal favourite clue of the week so far. Hope the dentist wasn’t too painful

  4. Found this very easy but I’ve done lots pf Kcit’s puzzles under other pseudonyms. The bit of Waldteufel you all know: The Skater’s Waltz – played rather splendidly here by by NBC Symphony Orchestra under Toscanini.

    mi/me: Which is the variant depends on your standpoint. “mi” is certainly the orginal (read up on “Aretinian syllables” to see how ancient this stuff is), and the one used in the written name of the Sound of Music song. “me” is really a variant to show English-speakers what “mi” sounds like.

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