Toughie No 1845 by Firefly
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment **/***
I have to say that I wasn’t overly enamoured with this one when I solved it – the four peripheral answers all went in very quickly and there are a lot of anagrams of various types (none very tricky), so the whole thing was over without any significant hold-ups. I did warm to it a bit more when I was writing the hints. I thought it was going to be a pangram when I got 17a but it turned out to be one letter short.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.
1a Might this produce me a car — or an image? (6,7)
CAMERA OBSCURA – a reverse anagram, with the indicator as the second word of the answer, will give us ME A CAR.
9a Bird’s uncomfortable neckwear? (9)
ALBATROSS – I couldn’t decide whether this was a double definition or a cryptic definition. In either case it’s what Coleridge’s Ancient Mariner ended up wearing around his neck.
Ah! Well a-day! What evil looks
Had I from old and young!
Instead of the cross, the *********
About my neck was hung.
10a Slacker among the basses? (5)
DRONE – this lazy person is also a type of bass instrument.
11a Writing about verse forms (5)
MODES – the abbreviation for a piece of handwriting contains a verse.
12a Part of shotgun I tested for detachment (4)
UNIT – hidden in the clue.
13a Brownie’s after pennies in old money (4)
PELF – we had this old word for (often dishonestly-acquired) money quite recently. A small supernatural creature (brownie) follows the abbreviation for pence.
15a Deficient padre given notice — dimwit! (7)
FATHEAD – append an abbreviated notice to a padre who’s deficient in the last letter department.
17a Steady with concertina — no case (7)
SQUEEZE – steady here is a noun. Drop the case or container from an informal term for a concertina.
18a Girl with mount in escape attempt (7)
EVASION – a girl’s name followed by the name of a specific mount or hill in the Middle East.
20a Ring road in Baltimore suffering disruption? Let me out! (7)
ORBITAL – an anagram (suffering disruption) of BALTIMORE after we’ve taken ME out.
21a Reason for a drink? (4)
SAKE – double definition, the second a drink from the orient.
22a High point seen regularly in Salcombe (4)
ACME – pick out regular letters from this attractive resort in South Devon.
23a Put away school’s report (5)
EATEN – this sounds like our usual Crosswordland school.
26a Victor’s cry of pain? Provide support (5)
VOUCH – the abbreviation for victor and a cry of pain.
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27a Course correction for watermen conveying king (9)
NEWMARKET – an anagram (correction for) of WATERMEN contains the chess abbreviation for king.
28a Scouse, perhaps, subject of tittle-tattle (4,2,3,4)
TALK OF THE TOWN – Scouse is an example of a patois specific to one urban area in England. Geordie might be another example.
1d Talisman joins odious campaign of flattery (5,9)
CHARM OFFENSIVE – bring together a talisman or amulet and an adjective meaning odious or repulsive.
2d Yank’s admission of error — admirably put right — no liar involved (2,3)
MY BAD – an anagram (put right) of ADMIRABLY without the mixed up (involved) letters of LIAR.
3d Where meat may be on the turn, putrefy, and is dumped on small lake (10)
ROTISSERIE – string together a verb to putrefy, IS, S(mall) and a North American lake. The surface doesn’t make a great deal of sense.
4d Pompous fanatic turns up in front of oyster bar (7)
OROTUND – a fanatic or enthusiast is reversed and inserted into the first letter of oyster and a bar or pole.
5d Flyers taking relatives (singly and as a group) over Sweden (7)
SISKINS – a single relative and relatives as a whole are followed by the IVR code for Sweden.
6d Release article in Le Monde to fit the bill (4)
UNDO – join together an indefinite article that may be found in Le Monde and a verb to fit the bill or suffice.
7d Made mental note: ‘Rusticate student to gain expiation‘ (9)
ATONEMENT – an anagram (made) of MENTAL NOTE after the student has been expelled.
8d Grouse — rubbery thing — in a dish (4,10)
BEEF WELLINGTON – concatenate a verb to grouse and something made of rubber.
14d How to acquire ales in second-hand market? (6,4)
JUMBLE SALE – another reverse anagram, this time the anagram indicator is the first word of the answer.
16d In a truck, sit changing gear for practice (9)
TRACKSUIT – an anagram (changing) of A TRUCK SIT.
19d Party with only bottled beer? Impossible! (2,3,2)
NO CAN DO – cryptic description of a party where all the beer is in bottles.
20d In open, Toughie team gets saturated (7)
OVERWET – into an adjective meaning open or public insert how Firefly may refer to the team of Toughie setters.
24d Capital letters missing from laman’s untutred aricle expunding taewondo; deal with them! (5)
TOKYO – this is a bit different. We have to work out the (fairly obvious) letters missing from the five defective words then make an anagram (deal with) of them. Hmm – I can’t say that I’m a fan and the clue also seems to in danger of entering indirect anagram territory. What do you think?
25d No fun aimlessly mixing handful of lentils (4)
DHAL – for our fourth subtractive anagram of the day we have to remove the jumbled (aimlessly) letters of FUN from HANDFUL and make an anagram (mixing) of what remains.
Clue of the day for me was 17a. Which one(s) gained your approbation?