NTSPP – 267 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 267

NTSPP – 267

A Puzzle by Prolixic

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by crypticsue follows.

A return to the Saturday afternoon spot  for Prolixic with one of his easier puzzles.   It has a rather splendid Nina, which reminded me of collecting friends’ autographs back in the 1950s and made me wonder whether this might have been the start of my obsession with all things cryptic.


6a           Living source of energy from fish found around Ramsey’s place? (7)
BIOMASS     A type of fish put round abbreviation for the island where the town of Ramsey can be found.

7a           Order satirical subject to be dropped (5)
IONIC An order of Greek architecture is obtained by removing the letter informally used to refer to the three basic subjects we study at school  from an adjective meaning satirical.


9a           Collapse of one in race (4)
RUIN   I (one) put in a verb meaning to race.

10a         Tailor – copy airman’s blazer?! (10)
PYROMANIAC   An anagram (tailor) of COPY AIRMAN.


11a         Give a new name to European animal moving back to front (7)
REBADGE   Give a new name or symbol to something.   E (European) and a nocturnal animal; the latter having the R at the end moved to the front before the E.

13a         In France you almost appreciate internet TV? (6)
TUVALU    TV is the internet  code (similar to .uk) for a country which can be obtained by following the French word for you with almost all of a word meaning appreciate.

15a         Capable of    doing (2,2)
UP TO   Double definition –   having the ability required to do something; or in the act of doing something, quite often linked with ‘no good’!

17a         Reflective and coy about trendy… (5)
SHINY   The two letters meaning trendy, fashionable, inserted into an alternative for coy.

18a         …tradesman who sounds appalling (4)
DYER   A homophone (sounds) of DIRE (appalling).


19a         Maybe Winstone returns cast as a gangster (6)
YARDIE   A reversal (returns) of the Christian name of Mr WInstone the actor, followed by a cast or stamp for creation impressions.

20a         Ensured Tito was treated (3,2,2)
SAW TO IT   An anagram (treated) of TITO WAS.

23a         Police force to stop special measures (10)
YARDSTICKS     An informal term for the police force, a verb meaning to stop and the abbreviation for special.


26a         Pretentious group loses leader (4)
ARTY   Remove the leading letter from a group.

27a         Religious person seen in church in Durham (5)
HINDU Seen hidden in churcH IN DUrham

28a         Judge arrives to eat snack (7)
ARBITER   A small amount of food (snack) is inserted into the abbreviation for arrives.

1d           Blond guy disturbed about old love gets fresh talent (5,5)
YOUNG BLOOD   An anagram (disturbed) of BLOND GUY, the abbreviation for Old and the number that represents nothing (love).

2d           American actor always stood up and spoke in a foolish manner (6)
YAPPED   Reverse (stood up) the surname of the star of, amongst other things, Pirates of the Caribbean, and an archaic way of saying always, ever.

3d           Client of American hospital department (4)
USER   Another way of saying American followed by their abbreviation for the Accident & Emergency Department.

4d           Medical science using IT with embryo reproduction (8)
BIOMETRY A reproduction or anagram of IT and EMBRYO.

5d           Privy to local ringing opposition leader (2,2)
IN ON   A local hostelry ‘ringing’ or going round the ‘leader’ of opposition.

6d           More aristocratic conman’s not very loud (5)
BLUER     Remove the musical abbreviation for very loud from a deceiver or conman.

8d           Idiot‘s letter read out on the radio (7)
CHARLIE   An informal term for an idiot is also the word used in the NATO Phonetic Alphabet (read out on the radio) to represent the letter C.

12d         Produces reversal of second dimension (5)
EMITS   As the clue handily instructs, you need a reversal of the abbreviation for second and a dimension.

14d         Graphic film with kinky deviants you finally discarded (5,5)
VIDEO NASTY   An anagram (kinky) of DEVIANTS YO – the U at the end of you being discarded as per the wordplay.

16d         Broadcast card game for ruler (7)
PHARAOH   A homophone (broadcast) of a game of chance played by betting on the order of appearance of certain cards.


17d         Old computer    array (8)
SPECTRUM   A 1980s computer or a range of something, eg colours.


21d         Condiment cut up with salt and iodine (6)
WASABI   A reversal of a verb meaning to cut up, one of the ways we refer to a sailor (salt) and the chemical symbol for iodine.


22 A 16d briefly sits on gold coach (5)
TUTOR   The abbreviated way (briefly) we might refer to one of the better known 16ds followed by the heraldic term for gold.

24d         Seaside feature composed of greyish-brown earth (4)
DUNE   The name of a greyish-brown colour plus the abbreviation for earth.


25d         Reach a verdict to detain oik (4)
CHAV   The BRB describes this oik found hidden in reaCH A Verdict s a boorish uneducated person who appears to have access to money but not necessarily to taste.

The Nina starts at the bottom of the first Down row and goes round the perimeter of the puzzle in a clockwise direction to produce one of the things I might have written in a friend’s autograph book


Prolixic having used the Roman numerals IV in his Nina round outside of the puzzle as letters are required for the crossword.   Say the letters out loud – Too wise you are, too wise you be, I see you are too wise for me!

Other entries that amused included:

If the BMT put more :
If the B . putting :

And my personal favourite:

Mary Rose sat on a pin
Mary Rose

25 comments on “NTSPP – 267

  1. Nice one Prolixic. Lots of good stuff but I particularly liked 8a and 13a for some excellent misdirection, Ramsey’s place indeed!

    **/**** from me. Thanks for the entertainment.

  2. I’m not certain why? But I think there is a nina in there somewhere.

    I’m not wise enough to fully understand!

    Thanks, Prolixic.

    1. Yes – for the first time ever nina is shouting at me but she’s not being very helpful!
      Completely stuck now . . . http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

  3. Thanks Prolixic, 2, 14, 21 down are my favourites. I looked for the Nina for ages and didn’t get it. Then an hour later I suddenly had an “aha” moment.

  4. Great stuff Prolixic.
    Loved 6a and 13a also.
    And both actors also.
    As for the Nina, I still have a long way to go before I get it. I’ve never been able to find one in the past.
    The only clue I didn’t like was 11a. Not so much it’s construction but the word in itself.
    Thanks again for the fun.
    Je suis 8d.

  5. Now I’m grumpy. Saw that there was bound to be a nina – still can’t get it wherever I start from.
    I still have three I can’t do, and that’s not counting a couple of Miffypop’s bung ins – mainly 23a.
    The bottom corner wasn’t helped by another of MP’s bung ins for 24d – sand! OK – I know it wasn’t very clever but. . . . sorted that now.
    I’d like to know what jean-luc is (see the previous comment) as 8d is another of the ones that I can’t do . . .
    And so it goes on really.
    “Oh dear” about covers it although I’ve enjoyed the battle.
    Thanks to Prolixic and thanks and admiration to whoever is clever and brave enough to untangle this lot! I have an idea who she might be.

    1. Why are there so many “Y”‘s around the periphery of the grid?

      I still don’t fully understand! Surely not just a coincidence?

      1. I hope people who have ‘got’ the Nina won’t let on as otherwise part of my review will become redundant.

        1. You must be having a laugh – if I lived into the next century I wouldn’t get this one! Dumb, or what, but . . . http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

          1. Come on Kath – I haven’t finished the puzzle yet but the Nina is staring me in the face. You went to school same time as I did………. think about it!

  6. We made life very difficult for ourselves by initially mis-spelling 16d. This meant we really struggled in the SW corner, particularly as one of the meanings for 17d and the answer for 19a were both new to us. Eventually got it all together and then found the Nina. It would have helped if we had spotted it earlier. Good challenge and good fun.
    Thanks Prolixic.

    1. Yes – I always spell 16d the wrong way – I should have learnt by now but . . . http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif
      Still can’t finish it – I give up – knackered and going to bed soon.

  7. Finally finished – gosh, that Nina took me back a way!
    19a is a new one for me and I’ve not heard of 13a before – just had to be what it was.
    11a – agree with Jean-luc, it’s a horrid word – didn’t even know it was a REAL word!
    Favourite is 10a just because I like the sound of the word. I also have a lot of gardening friends who would cheerfully admit to living up to the title.

    Thanks Prolixic, I shall go to bed remembering (or half-remembering) a whole range of playground ‘funnies’.

  8. Phew! Finally, I have a completed grid. It took forever but my stubborn side wouldn’t let me give up. The number of peculiarly British answers meant it was like pulling teeth for this long departed expat. One I knew because it has appeared a few times before, one I had completely forgotten about, and the others I have never heard of but did manage to unravel the wordplay and check on Google. If my answer to 2D is correct, I have no idea why, and the Nina totally escapes me. Loved 10A and 21D. Thanks, Prolixic. You certainly gave me a workout.

  9. Many thanks for the review, CS. I reckon Kath’s going to be kicking herself over the Nina!

    1. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_rolleyes.gif It was the V of chav in the bottom row that finished me off completely and managed to convince me that it had all gone horribly wrong.

  10. Super Nina. I was trying to make some sense of it. I was trying to sing along: Why why you are, why why I be, etc…
    Made me laugh anyway.

  11. Thanks for the review, CS! Ah, the lovely Johnny Depp. I had the correct answer but missed him completely. 13A was new to me. Of the “Britishisms”, I knew 25D, remembered 8D finally, but have never heard of 14D, 19A, or 17D as a computer. As for the Nina, I’ve never heard of that one either. I think it’s time for a trip home!

  12. Thanks to CS for the review. Thanks to Prolixic for the crossword and for nearly driving me completely scatty!
    I’m not going to admit what my original answer for 23a was because it was SO stupid – it wrecked 17d. Eventually sorted out 23a but not 17d – never heard of it anyway.
    I loved 10a – I’m definitely one, and not just in the garden!

  13. Many thanks to all for the comments and to Crypticsue for the review and untangling the clues.

    Another of the possible Nina was LOLOICAQI82QB4IP but there were too many numbers for this one to work!

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