DT 26782 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26782

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26782

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment **

I’ve not much to say about this one really. It doesn’t present much in the way of difficulty. Your thoughts, as always, are solicited.
If you need to check an answer just highlight the gap between the brackets under the clue.

Across Clues

1a  Odd cola drunk outside foreign casino (10)
{OCCASIONAL} – an anagram (drunk) of COLA goes round another anagram (foreign) of CASINO to make an adjective meaning odd (as in “He smokes the odd spliff”).

6a  Shy drunkard comes back with son (4)
{TOSS} – reverse a drunkard and add S(on) to make a verb to shy.

9a  Liberal Al Gore unfortunately missing start of outburst (5)
{LARGE} – an anagram (unfortunately) of AL G(o)RE without the first letter of outburst gives us an adjective meaning liberal (as in liberal helpings of food).

10a  Leave Detective Inspector with article in private (9)
{DISAPPEAR} – we want a verb meaning to leave. Start with the abbreviation for the police officer, then insert an indefinite article in the informal name for a private in the Royal Engineers.

12a  Caesar perhaps appears regularly in troubled Rome (7)
{EMPEROR} – Caesar is the definition by example (perhaps) here. Put the even (regularly) letters of appears inside an anagram (troubled) of ROME.

13a  A drink around middle of day? Another time (5)
{AGAIN} – A is followed by an alcoholic drink containing the middle letter of day.

15a  Left with last bit of dignity after madman loses head completely (7)
{UTTERLY} – the definition here is completely. L(eft) and the last letter of (dignit)Y follow a slang term for a madman without the initial N (loses head).

17a  Trial: a time to persuade (7)
{ATTEMPT} – A is followed by T(ime) and a verb to persuade.

19a  Grave debts following end of dealings with the Queen (7)
{SERIOUS} – an adjective meaning grave comes from promissory notes (debts) after the last letter of (dealing)S and the Queen’s cypher.

21a  Add in evidence about daughter (7)
{INCLUDE} – a verb meaning to add is constructed from IN followed by a piece of evidence (the sort a SOCO looks for) containing D(aughter).

22a  A carriage returns separately (5)
{APART} – start with A, then reverse (returns) a light, two-wheeled carriage.

24a  Polished end of table leg — walnut — regularly (7)
{ELEGANT} – to get this adjective meaning polished or refined start with the end letter of (tabl)E, then add LEG (in the clue) and the even (regularly) letters of walnut.

27a  Tiger ate nuts after initially cutting snout (9)
{CIGARETTE} – snout is a slang word (especially in prison) for tobacco. The tobacco product that we want is an anagram (nuts) of TIGER ATE after the initial letter of C(utting).

28a  Article taken from dirty relative (5)
{UNCLE} – remove the indefinite article from the end of a synonym for dirty.

29a  Tramp covered in waste paper (4)
{STEP} – hidden (covered) in the clue is a verb to tramp.

30a  Intelligence shown by bishop with correct cape (10)
{BRIGHTNESS} – intelligence comes from pulling together a) the abbreviation for a bishop on the chessboard, b) a synonym for correct and c) a cape or headland.

Down Clues

1d  Hens — headless birds (4)
{OWLS} – headless (i.e. the instruction to remove the initial letter) applies to the hens here, rather than the birds.

2d  Chippy — go in after fish (9)
{CARPENTER} – in the surface chippy is a slang term for a Fish & Chip shop but as a definition it’s a traditional name for a skilled worker. Put a verb to go in after a deep-bodied freshwater fish. So what’s your favourite pun for a chip shop name? Two that I’ve seen recently have been Chip ‘n’ Fin and The Cod Delusion.

3d  Prime Minister rises following second snooze (5)
{SLEEP} – the surname of a 19th century British PM is reversed (rises, in a down clue) after S(econd).

4d  Well-behaved soldier (7)
{ORDERLY} – double definition.

5d  A test almost supporting American country (7)
{AUSTRIA} – the name of this country is A followed by a synonym for test without its final L (almost) which follows (supporting, in a down clue) an abbreviation for American.

7d  Musical composition lifted from popular EP outrageously (5)
{OPERA} – hidden (from) and reversed (lifted) in the clue is a musical composition.

8d  Gents swimming across river subsequently get tougher (10)
{STRENGTHEN} – a verb meaning to get tougher is formed from an anagram (swimming) of GENTS around (across) R(iver), followed by a synonym for subsequently.

11d  Unattractively artificial end in picture (7)
{PLASTIC} – another word for end (as in “that’s the end of the turkey and it’s only the fourth of January”) goes inside an abbreviated picture.

14d  Materials from underwater vessels in position? On the contrary (10)
{SUBSTANCES} – on the contrary means that we have to reverse the wordplay instructions, so instead of putting underwater vessels inside position we have to insert a synonym for position into underwater vessels.

16d  List of military personnel includes old bird (7)
{ROOSTER} – put O(ld) inside a list of who’s scheduled to carry out which assigned duties. Old chestnut.

18d  Weird shout came — Poirot devoted a lot of time to it (9)
{MOUSTACHE} – an anagram (weird) of SHOUT CAME produces what M Poirot spent a lot of time twirling.

20d  We rest a high jumper (7)
{SWEATER} – a type of jumper comes from an anagram (high) of WE REST A.

21d  One caught diving bird coming up for something to eat? (7)
{ICEBERG} – start with I (one) and C(aught) then reverse (coming up) a diving bird to make a variety of a salad ingredient.

23d  Fish’s point of view (5)
{ANGLE} – double definition.

25d  At least 18 heads of Academies denounced unsatisfactory, lazy teachers (5)
{ADULT} – take the initial letters (heads) of five consecutive words in the clue.

26d  A place to eat hash (4)
{MESS} – double definition.

None of today’s clues really stood out for me. How about you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: {TOOTS} + {SWEET} = {TOUT DE SUITE}

119 comments on “DT 26782

  1. Found todays a little tricky in places but thoroughly enjoyable – Lots of word play! liked 3d, 18d, 24a and 27a. For me it was more of a 2* Thanks to Gazza for the great H&T’s and the fab choices of illustrations – very good!

  2. Agree with your ratings on this one Gazza. Also no real favourites but I did quite like 1a and 21a.

    Thanks to setter and to Gazza for the review.

    BTW, as far as I can see there’s no Toughie on the web site today – is there one in the paper? If not, and you want a bit of a challenge, I can recommend the Brendan (Virgilius) in today’s Grauniad. It would class as a Tuesday Toughie in the DT.

  3. Enjoyed that & now that I’ve found the Toughie (ta pommers) I can get on with the rest of the day. Thanks to Gazza for the review and reminding me that I must pack a 20d for our weekend in York. I must say that you don’t get many of them to the pound…

  4. Good morning Gazza, an enjoyable one for me today, probably 2* IMHO, but yes, I actually did manage it all on my own, no books or electronic friends needed today, a rare occasion indeed, fav clue 2d really like that one and 14d for making me think outside the box, so to speak, a lovely sunny day here today but cold, I am staying in, doing some reserach on my mothers brother who was in 14th squadron RAF in WW2, shot down and killed Dec1943, but that’s all we ever knew, always been a bit of an enigma, it is fascinating what I have found out in only one day, tingles down the spine kind of stuff, good luck all, a nice one today, one that doesn’t make your brain hurt too much :-), thanks for blog Gazza, off to read it now

    1. Try the Imperial War Museum in London, I found them very helpful, also the RAF museum in Hendon. Good luck in your research.

      1. Thanks both, have already found out where he was shot down and the name of the German Officer flying the Messerschmidt that shot them down, they were flying a Marauder over the Adriatic doing reconnaissance duties at the time apparently, fascinating stuff!

    2. I had a similar reaction when researching my grandfather who was killed in action in Italy. I managed to find a photograph of the cemetery for my mother – it was the first time she had seen where her father’s grave was.

      1. In Whittlesey near where I live there is a Chippy Sues. We all know it as C Sue. Her Culinary prowess knows no bounds.

      1. Talking about iffy names, apparently one of the earliest “celebrity restaurants” in Hollywood was owned jointly by Sammy Davis Jnr and Ella Fitzgerald and called “Sam ‘n’ Ella’s”. It wasn’t very successful :D

        1. I minnow mood for all these fish jokes. I’m struggling with the crossword, but maybe g and t and wine at lunch have dulled the brain cells. I’ll try again in the morning.

      1. Mary, have you ever visited “A Fish Called Rhondda” – Ton Pentre, Pentre (Rhondda Cynon Taff)

        1. No Franco we are a long way from there but one of my friends has moved here from the Valleys, I’ll ask her if she knows of it -)

        1. Captain L,
          Your comment had to be moderated because you’re using a different email address from previously. Both should work from now on.

  5. Definitely a 2* for me today. I struggled on a few but got there in the end. Although I solved 21d I could no figure out “something to eat” until I saw Gazza’s hint . How dense can you get? Thanks to Gazza for the review.

  6. Thought at first this was going to have a tricky top half but came together nicely. One for the CC today I think for which I thank the setter. Nice not to have brain ache for a change :-)

  7. No real problems today, but some nice cluing and fun answers. Did anyone else get the impression that the setter is (or was) a military man – lots of references to the forces? A couple of clues I marked as very good – 30A, 21D and I really liked 7D, a nice way play on lifted/upwards.

  8. Digby has asked me to point out that if anyone is still fretting about yesterday’s indirect anagram Rufus has now left a comment on yesterday’s blog holding his hand up and promising never to do it again!

  9. Not too much of a challenge today, I liked 8d and 12a. Has anyone else noticed how often the word utter (or derivations thereof) seems to be appearing at the moment, or is it just me?

    I had thought we might get a Charles Dickens theme today, so was greatly relieved when I saw this one.

    1. I was expecting something to do with Charles Dickens today too. I was also expecting something a bit “royal” yesterday. Always feel a bit sorry for the Queen – it must be very difficult for her to celebrate her accession to the throne at the same time remembering it as the anniversary of her father’s death.

        1. Yes, maybe – and my compensation (don’t know quite what I need to be compensated for) is that, because my birthday is Coronation Day, it will be a bank holiday weekend this year! :grin:

  10. As I said to Gazza in an email this morning, this one was solved so quickly that it didn’t make much of an impression. No particular favourites. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza too.

  11. On the question of names, I recall from my youth Chip’s Plaice. Made my father chuckle every time we passed it.

  12. Not my cup of tea today, I thought it a bit too simple and rather unenjoyable, however, I could not set a crossword to save my soul so I should not criticise those who can, therefore , thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review.

    1. I missed some of the easy ones and struggled but finally finished. Thanks to all involved.
      Involved described some of the clues for me!

  13. More of a 2* for me because of my last four clues (21 and 27a and 11 and 21d) – they took ages. I think I’m probably having a bit of a dim day. I’ve never heard of a cigarette being called a “snout” – perhaps because, so far at least, I’ve never been in prison! The other three I have no excuses for – just me being slow! I liked quite a few of these – 15 and 30a and 2 and 25d. Oh, and 18d – I love David Suchet! With thanks to today’s setter and to Gazza – what is a SOCO in the hint for 21a? Can guess from the context but can’t find it anywhere.

    Can’t think of any funny names for chip shops but there is, or certainly used to be, a Chinese takeaway place in Worcestershire, very close to where BD lives, called “Wok and Roll”!

      1. Yes – you’re quite right! Never been there but, until my Mum moved to Oxford four years ago, I used to pass it every week on my way to see her. It always made me laugh! :grin:

    1. Scene of crimes officer – kind of thing you pick up if you watch police dramas, and I probably watch too many of them!

      1. Thanks – we watch lots of the sort of stuff too so I should probably have known that – am definitely having a VERY dim day!

        1. The only thing I could associate with snout was nose Kath, so couldn’t see where cigarette could possibly come from!

    2. A Chinese opened in Duckinfield in the 1970’s called the “Wan Kin Man” – apparantly the name of the owner. It changed its name pretty damn quick!

      Don’t know whether the owner changed his as well :grin:

      1. In a small bistro type place that we used to go to quite a lot they had a blackboard with the “specials” on it. We went in one evening and found them rubbing something out and replacing it with “ratatouille pancakes”. We asked them what had gone and they replied “Nothing really – it’s just that “rat pancakes” didn’t seem to be selling too well”!! :grin:

    3. We used to have a Chinese takeaway down the road from us and the owner used to drive a car with the registration WON9 – very amusing

  14. I agree with Gazza’s rating today – a touch on the easy side, so going to give the Toughie a go…

  15. … there’s also a fish shop – gold fish and tropical ones rather than the kind you eat – in Oxford called “Wet Pets”! :smile:

  16. Thicko time – v sorry to ask thos but why does Subsequently = hen?

    Hen is the welsh word for old I think but very strongly suspect that this not the answer.

    Best thing about today’s crossword was the pic for 20D. Er ahem cough do you have her number. I’d like to know where she buys her knitwear.

  17. Nice puzzle today, got all but 11d quite easily. Got the right answer for 8d, but was trying to get them swimming across the Trent, and couldn’t see where the H came from. The jumper in 20d seems rather low to me especially on such a cold day.

  18. In your hint for 30A, did you mean to write “b) a synonym for correct” instead of what is there ???

    My compliments on the picture for 20D :-)

    There’s a chip shop in Market Bosworth whose name always makes me smile: “The Batter Of Bosworth”

  19. I often pass a chip shop in the South Wales Valleys named A Fish Called Rhondda.

      1. Reminds me of “I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue”. The Late Arrivals for the Builders’ Ball……Mr & Mrs Chimney-Place…..and their son…Peter the Grate!

        1. And of course, please welcome to the Fishmongers ball, Mr and Mrs,Codfingers, and their son Chris P.
          Long live radio 4 extra, nee BBC 7 i say.

  20. Is it only me, but do others find the frequent use of a (to me, again) pejorative expression for people with mental health problems (see 15a) distasteful?

    Whenever this or similar is used in a clue I always feel my hackles rise just a little and I find myself mutterin, “I wish they wouldn’t in this day and age”.

    Probably because I’ve worked in that area and took pains to remind my staff that the term was unacceptable.

    Others’ thoughts?

    1. These days, to me at least, the term doesn’t mean someone with mental health problems – it means someone who’s being an idiot (although you could possibly argue the case…!).

    2. I can’t say that it bothers me but I have never worked in that area – I think that probably makes all the difference.

  21. Thanks to the mysteron & Gazza for the review & hints. I enjoyed this one, lots of amusing clues. Favourites were 13 & 27a, 2 21 & 26d. Got 10a, but couldn’t parse it until I read the hints.

  22. Quickly solved job today with a slightly military tone in spots.
    Likes : 10a, 18a, 27a, 14d, 18d & 21d.

    Re 10a how many of you ever read John Walters’ books?

    1. Forgot to mention weather here in NL – it is still freezing and up in Friesland they are beginning to think an elfstedentocht might become possible!!

      1. I guessed that “elfstedentocht” was something to do with skating on the canals. But I also thought that it might be what your eating this evening!

      2. Is that something like The Bonspiel in Scotland ? When the ice on the Lake of Menteith gets to a safe thickness they play curling on it. When you arrive there and open your car door you just about get knocked over by the smell of the whisky , A great day is had by all!!

      3. Answers to all of you!
        1. The elfstedentocht ( literally translated as ” the trip round the eleven towns”) is a famously traditional skating event in Friesland when the ice is really thick. It happens rarely.
        2. For dinner tonight I had Icelandic zeewolf (catfish) with chips (French fries) washed down with Sauvignon Blanc from NZ then blackberries and cream.
        3. In my post #23, I mentioned John Walters but none of the setters/bloggers followed it up – Sapper was McNeile and Walters was one of his books. I read them all.
        4. Annidrum – I used to import malt whisky into NL for rather specially endowed organisations several years ago but those days are over.

        Groetjes allemaal,

        1. Hi Derek, I’ve not read any of 3) but will look out for them. I’ve just rang I a good friend who rates them highly indeed. Will let you know how i get on

  23. While doing this to-day I felt a real thicko..after reading the comments I feel even more of a thicko!! I don’t often say this but I hated this to-day. I think I’ll pretend I’ve got a headache !!

        1. Next time take a drop of malt whisky – it clears your cardiovascular system and you feel a lot better afterwards!

      1. I’m quite sure we ALL have those days – I had a bit of one today – hopefully tomorrow will be OK and goodness knows what Thursday will bring – with a bit of luck a Ray T! :smile:

  24. The second enjoyable puzzle this week. The answers fell into place nicely with a few difficulties. Thanks for the hints Gazza, I used them a number of times to confirm my answers

  25. Have to confess I found it quite tricky, although I did finish eventually. Maybe I was also just having a “thick” day or maybe just lacking a little knowlege – i.e. I didn’t realise the soldier in 10a was just a private – thought it referred to the entire regiment whatever the rank? 8d last in – knew gents was in there somewhere but just couldn’t see it! Oh well, just one of those days perhaps.

  26. Nice, relatively straightforward. Perhaps having a “dry” February sharpens the grey cells? Thanks setter and Gazza – oh, and nice jumper…

  27. On the theme of shop names there used to be a hairdressers called “Curl up and Dye”. Near to West Ham football ground there is a dry cleaners with the motto “Don’t kill the misses. Let us do it”. Found this a struggle to get into – but then into 2nd gear and whooossh! 1a was my favourite.

  28. Best Blog for ages – it’s like reading Private Eye! Oh yes and the crossword ws very nice too – loved 18d and easy enough to make me feel smug, yet still have one clue over requiring help. Regardng the infamous jumper…..that young lady will catch her death in this weather!

  29. 21 d last in (entered but not sure why) and so obvious, just couldn’t get it. Thanks to setter and Gazza

  30. I’ll resurrect the “All gone to Bed Club”. Managed to look at this a number of minutes ago and wondered whay everything was so hard. THEN I realised that I was reading almost every synonym/definition round the wrong way. If this was the setters intention then well done, if it was just me the “Go to Bed!”. Thanks to the setter and gazza.

    In no particular order here are my hairdressing emporia that I have seen:

    A Snip at the Price
    A Cut above the Rest (presumably they did Brazilians too)
    Curl up and Dye

    and finally:

    Public Hair

    I’ll think of the rest later when I am not so tired!

  31. Quite a pleasant puzzle, this…all came together nicely with the exception of 17a and 11d – I just could not see those – the construction was clear to me, even before I checked the hints, but the correct synonyms for ‘persuade’ and ‘end’ simply refused to flash into my head. Colossal d’ohs with both of those – I feel silly having had to reveal the answers… :(

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