Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28266
Hints and tips by Mr Kitty
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning everyone. Today is, of course, the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Or, if you prefer, it’s 29 days before the first Wednesday in December. Either way that means it’s Election Day and for those of us across the pond relief from the ordeal that is the 2016 US Presidential Election is finally at hand. It hasn’t been all bad though. Buried in this year-long race to the bottom there’s a bright spot for cruciverbalists: the emergence of colourful new synonyms for “disaster” and “catastrophe”. Evocative expressions like “dumpster fire” have recently spread all over the web and even made their way into the online Oxford Dictionary (both links contain some rude language). The prospect of these phrases crossing the Atlantic got me pondering how DUMPSTER FIRE might be clued on the back page. I came up with “Running free, Mr Stupid is an American disaster (8, 4)”, but I’m sure many out there can do better.
Today’s crossword is as far from all that negativity that as one can get. Offering sparkling examples of most types of clue, it should provide entertainment for all and a welcome distraction for those who need one today. I rate it easier than last Tuesday’s and at least average on the enjoyment scale.
In the hints below the definitions are underlined and the answers will be revealed by clicking on the Click Here! buttons. If you’re seeing the answers already uncovered, click http://bigdave44.com/2016/11/08/dt-28266/ or type that link into the address box of your browser.
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1a Really popular female turn (2,4)
IN FACT: Put together our usual short word for popular, (F)emale, and a turn (on the stage, for example).
4a Sundial, perhaps one serving for ages (3-5)
OLD-TIMER: A cryptic definition of one who’s seen it all.
10a Dishonest dealer having big row, always against disappearing (9)
RACKETEER: Combine a big row (or the noise it makes) with a word for “always” minus its “v” (against disappearing).
11a Bother over sauce (5)
PESTO: A noun that’s a bother, followed by the usual cricketing abbreviation for over.
12a Of minor importance, time shown by competitor crossing island (7)
TRIVIAL: Follow T(ime) with a competitor enclosing (crossing) I(sland).
13a Performing animal sheltered by one (2,5)
ON STAGE: Insert a big animal with antlers inside ONE from the clue.
14a Belief in leader of expedition inside yurt (5)
TENET: Another insertion. Place E (leader of expedition) inside the generic shelter of which yurt is an example.
15a Show impatience with one in examination class (8)
TUTORIAL: A short verbal expression of impatience, followed by an unwritten examination enclosing the Roman numeral for one.
18a Sounds like important team in dock area (8)
QUAYSIDE: Begin with a homophone of a synonym for important, and follow that with another word for team.
20a Wee drink before start of Ayckbourn play (5)
DRAMA: A quantity of drink, particularly in the land where wee means small, followed by A (start of Ayckbourn).
23a Lift needed from Piraeus when travelling around (7)
UPRAISE: Anagram (when travelling around) of PIRAEUS (a port city near Athens, I learned).
25a Rest have told untruths before (3,4)
LIE DOWN: Splitting this common method to have a rest as (4,3) yields a word meaning told untruths before a word meaning have.
26a Escape notice coming in the day before (5)
EVADE: A two-letter notice inside the day preceding a day like Christmas or New Year’s Day.
27a All of the football players in a line on the pitch (6-3)
TWENTY-TWO: A clever double definition. The number of footballers on the pitch during a game, and a line marked across a rugby pitch.
28a Returning short gypsy girl’s telescope (8)
SPYGLASS: Drop the last letter from GYPSY (short), reverse it (returning), and append one of the usual crosswordland words for girl.
29a Burning forest close to coast (6)
ARDENT: Follow a well-known forest located mostly in Warwickshire with the last letter (close to) of coast.
1d Annoy Irish coming over in improper attire (8)
IRRITATE: Reverse (coming over) a two-letter abbreviation for Irish and put it inside an anagram (improper) of ATTIRE.
2d Fine performance in division (7)
FACTION: Combine (F)ine and another word for performance. This division is a part of some larger group.
3d What may be taught in school about helium? Master is to evaluate (9)
CHEMISTRY: Get ready for a serious charade. Concatenate an abbreviation for about, the symbol for helium, an abbreviation for Master, the IS from the clue, and a word meaning to evaluate. Phew.
5d Feel for this old invalid in novel (4,2,3,5)
LORD OF THE FLIES: An anagram (invalid) of FEEL FOR THIS OLD produces a famous novel.
6d Bugs circling a sort of bar in Benidorm? (5)
TAPAS: A verb meaning bugs (perhaps by attaching a device to a phone line) enclosing (circling) the A from the clue.
7d Cosmetic the old lady’s used to hide a disfigurement (7)
MASCARA: A two-letter informal noun for “the old lady” encloses (used to hide) the A from the clue and a disfigurement of the skin.
8d Cycled round hot southern island (6)
RHODES: Begin with a verb meaning cycled. Place it around H(ot), and finish with a very short abbreviation for southern.
9d Count, Italian, enjoys eating Italian, I must be honest (4,2,4,2,2)
TELL IT LIKE IT IS: Another complex charade. Put together a verb meaning to count votes, the abbreviation for Italy, and a word meaning enjoys which contains (eating) the abbreviation again and the I from the clue. I was not familiar with the topical meaning of the word that means count. But it is given in the BRB.
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16d Embarrassed on street exercising dog (3,6)
RED SETTER: The colour associated with embarrassment followed (on in a down clue) by an anagram (exercising) of STREET.
17d Running to a car in mac (8)
RAINCOAT: Anagram (running) of TO A CAR IN. The absence of capitalization tells us that the mac is one you wear and not a computer.
19d Not prepared to study in a Parisian yard (7)
UNREADY: Place a verb meaning study (especially at a university) between a French indefinite article and an abbreviation for yard.
21d Porter securing job for messenger (7)
APOSTLE: The porter here is one you drink. Placing inside it (securing) another word for job results in a messenger of very olden times.
22d Powerful figures on board in New York borough (6)
QUEENS: Two or more of the mightiest pieces on a chessboard.
24d Model bride a lover embraces (5)
IDEAL: If you were wondering where today’s lurker had got to, wonder no more.
Today we have 30 candidates vying for the title of favourite. I’m supporting the brilliant 27a. Which clue gets your vote?
The Quick Crossword pun: pair+mane=pearmain – paradoxically a type of apple – like the Worcester Pearmain