NTSPP – 250 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 250

NTSPP – 250

A Puzzle by Radler

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows.

I See No Smut

If crossword clues offer a window into the soul of the setter I would say that Radler is having a mid-life crisis!  We go from love and sex at the start of the across clues to lonely heart’s columns, Viagra, falsies, middle age and remembrances of old romances!


1 Proposal puts love on the line (6)
THEORY – The letter representing love or zero goes after (on) the THE from the clue and this is followed by the abbreviation for railway (line).

4 After break-up, divorcee became frigid (4,4)
ICED OVER – An anagram (after break-up) of DIVORCEE.

10 Past it? With Edward it’s just the opposite! (9)
OVERSEXED – … the opposite of past it.  A four letter word for past or completed followed by another word for IT (as in nookie) and the two letter word diminutive form of Edward.

11/12/25D Single person, unwelcome by couple’s kids, giving sweets (10,5)
GOOSEBERRY FOOLS – Another word for a person who sits in with a romantic couple spoiling their fun followed by another word for kids (as in bamboozles).

13 Small, erectile dysfunction, taking Viagra initially for length, requires discretion (9)
SECRETIVE – An anagram (dysfunction) of S (small) ERECTILE with the L (length) being replaced by a V (Viagra initially)

14 Woman on top of me recalled squeeze affectionately (7)
EMPRESS – Reverse the ME from the clue and follow this with a word meaning squeeze affectionately.

16 Fifty plus single approaches lonely hearts column (4)
LINE – The Latin for 50 followed by the letter presenting a single number and the inner letters (hearts) of lonely.

19 See 25

21 Alfie’s succeeded, jiggling contents of brassiere (7)
FALSIES – An anagram (jiggling) of ALFIES + S (succeeded).

24 An overwhelming amount have carnal hanky-panky right away (9)
AVALANCE – An anagram (hanky-panky) of HAVE CARNAL without the R (right away).

25/19 Middle-aged and single (5,4)
FORTY FIVE – Double definition of a type of record and the possible time of life when someone is middle aged.

26 Had romances in the past, but old now (5)
DATED – Double definition time again – the first meaning having gone out with someone and something that is passé.

27 Pop out boobs intermittently, Rory is making collection (9)
POTPOURRI – An anagram (boobs) of POP OUT followed by the odd letters (intermittently) of RoRy Is.

28 Passionate admirer‘s agreement to wed, but not yet (8)
IDOLATER – Split (1, 2, 5) this may indicate a promised to give the wedding vows in the future.

29 How it was sat awkwardly next to woman (2,4)
AS THEN – An anagram (awkwardly) of SAT followed by (next to) a northern term for a woman.


1 As Simon’s water‘s run out, filling bath directed (8)
TROUBLED – a reference to the Simon & Garfunkel hit… The abbreviation for run out goes inside (filling) another word for a bath and this is followed by another word meaning directed.

2 For speedy healing female’s taken medicine (3-5)
EYE-DROPS – An anagram (healing) of FOR SPEEDY without the F (female’s taken).

3 Uncertain teaching of religion and heaven (5)
RISKY – The abbreviation for religious instruction followed by another word for heaven.

5 Will extra twist get detectives sent back in? (7)
CODICIL – A three letter word abbreviation for detectives goes inside (sent back in ) another word for twist.

6 Long weekend off, we departed, leaving best friend here? (3,6)
DOG KENNEL – An anagram (of) of LONG WEEKEND without the WE (we departed).

7 Kennedy’s plaything? (6)
VIOLIN – The musical instrument played by Nigel Kennedy.

8 Direct to get drug injected for joint (6)
REEFER – A word meaning direct (as in point to) includes (injected) the abbreviation for ecstasy (drug).

9 Lives a little fast, six espressos in turn (6)
EXISTS – The answer is hidden (a little) and reversed in (in turn) FAST SIX ESPRESSOS.

15 One taken into paid care treated heart tissue (9)
EPICARDIA – Put an I (one) inside an anagram (treated) of PAID CARE.

17 Chief priest caught charter boat for couples (8)
HIERARCH – A homophone (caught) of HIRE (charter) + ARK (boat for couples).

18 One Middle-Eastern person‘s like another (8)
ASSYRIAN – A two letter word for like followed by the word for a native of Syria.

20 Fugitive taking one direction then another around water (7)
ESCAPEE – E (one direction) followed by S (another) and than CA (around – Circa) and PEE (water).

21 Estate Lawrence’s driven away chasing Formula One car (6)
FIESTA – The abbreviation for Formula One followed by (chasing) the ESTATE from the clue after removing (driven away) the initials of Lawrence of Arabia.

22 Punching kicking and hitting non-violent man (6)
GANDHI – The answer is hidden inside (punching) KICKING AND HITTING.

23 Signal‘s rubbish as well (6)
TATTOO – A three letter word for rubbish followed by another word for as well.

25 See 11 Across

16 comments on “NTSPP – 250

  1. Excellent stuff – thanks to Radler for some great laughs. The ones I liked best were 4a, 10a, 13a and 22d.

  2. Thanks Radler for a good workout.

    I liked 25/19 and 22d. I wasn’t quite convinced of the definition in 15.

  3. I’m finding this really difficult and seem to be totally stuck for the moment. Maybe brain will start up again (?) if I go and do something else for a while. Back later . . .

  4. Really good fun with lots to snigger and chuckle about. The other kiwi is away at present so, sadly, not able to share the fun this time. Perhaps I should print out a copy for her to enjoy later. Last one in was 16a, ‘pesky’ would be the description. Quite a challenge and loved it all.
    Thanks Radler.

  5. It has taken me max difficulty time to do three quarters of this puzzle. But I’m stumped by most of the NW corner. Thanks Radler for a good mental workout – I look forward to a few doh moments tomorrow.

  6. OK – brain has started to work again although I still have gaps in 17d and 25/19 across and a couple more that I can’t explain.
    The similarities that I notice in Radler and Alchemi crosswords, for me anyway, are that I always find them difficult; I always really enjoy them; I almost always have a couple, sometimes more, that I can’t do or can’t explain. Today was no exception.
    I suppose I’ll just have to be patient until the review tomorrow . . . I’m not a very patient person . . . .
    I’ve really loved this one particularly 10 and 24a and 6d.
    Thanks to Radler and, in advance, to whoever is going to sort out my problems tomorrow.

    1. 17d is two homophones (caught) of a) charter or rent and b) biblical boat containing pairs.
      25/19a Single is what you may have bought on vinyl.

    2. A wee help with 17d. Chief priest is the definition. Caught indicates a homophone so a homophone for ‘charter’, then one for biblical boat containing couples.

  7. It was lovely to find this enjoyable and very amusing puzzle with lots of innuendo to brighten up a really horrible day here in London, .

    I finished it all except 22d where it never occurred to me that “punching” might signal a hidden word.

    I also needed Prolixic’s help to understand the wordplay for 17d.

    Many thanks to Radler and to Prolixic.

    P.S. Prolixic you’ve missed a C from ERECTILE in your hint for 13a. Spell checkers don’t work with capitals!

  8. Thank you all for the feedback; I’m very pleased you enjoyed the puzzle
    And special thanks as always to Prolixic for his illustrated review and hints

  9. Determined not to give up as I was enjoying this one so much and revelling in every answer – but finally had to admit defeat with about 3/4 completed.

    What an excellent puzzle – thank you so much Radler. As for Prolixic – you made such easy work of explaining it all (!) and I loved the video clilps – the 6d pic. made me feel a bit sad, but I guess that’s a ‘girlie’ thing! Many thanks to you, too.

  10. I had three that I was stuck on…28A (because I had epicardic for 15D), 22D (no excuse there), and 17D, that I never would have got by myself. I was wrong on 16A, too. It was a slow solve but so much fun and too many great clues to pick a favorite. Thanks Radler and Prolixic.

  11. This was highly entertaining! **** for enjoyment. 7d was my fave, but I also singled out 21a, 28a, 29a, 22d (cleverly hidden) and 23d.

    I don’t find Radler at all easy, but I did manage to complete all but two correctly. I needed the answers, and, of course, the explanations, to 16a and 17d. Had a good laugh, too, at Prolixic’s opening comments. Very good!

    My thanks to Radler for a most enjoyable NTSPP and to Prolixic for an excellent review.

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