Toughie No 1877 by Micawber
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Micawber’s in a pretty gentle mood today but his puzzles are always enjoyable.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.
1a You have to accept this seaside town’s trendy (4,4,2)
DEAL WITH IT – a seaside town in Kent and a colloquial expression (4,2) meaning trendy.
6a Song of one cast out after taking sides (4)
ARIA – remove the outer letters of an outcast or undesirable person.
9a Kind of music newspaper/magazine (7)
RAGTIME – charade of a derogatory term for a newspaper and a US weekly magazine.
10a In a flap, fluster, needing to get calm (7)
RESTFUL – an anagram (in a flap) of FLUSTER.
12a Dress fitted the tiny character being taken on illegally (8,5)
IDENTITY THEFT – an anagram (dress) of FITTED THE TINY.
14a Having short break, daughter’s awaiting connection (2,4)
ON HOLD – start with an informal phrase (2,4) meaning having a break, shorten it by one letter and add the abbreviation for daughter.
15a A ship, reportedly stationary? (2,6)
AT ANCHOR – this sounds like a large ship for transporting liquids.
17a Pick fruit for show again (8)
REAPPEAR – weld together a verb to pick or harvest and a juicy fruit.
19a Property cleaner mainly rented (6)
CHALET – bring together a cleaner without his or her last letter and a past participle meaning rented.
22a Painting dune-buggies, perhaps, in turn-of-the-century style (4,3,6)
ARTS AND CRAFTS – a synonym for painting followed by what dune-buggies are examples of (4,6).
24a Wandering rodent nesting in Morecambe? (7)
ERRATIC – a rodent is found inside the first name of Mr Morecambe.
25a I refuse horse at agreed figure (7)
NONAGON – string together a response meaning ‘I refuse’, an old horse and an adverb meaning agreed or scheduled.
26a Bring west strange eastern vegetable (4)
EDDO – reverse an adjective meaning strange and the abbreviation for eastern. I didn’t know this vegetable which is of West Indian origin and has a nutty flavour (although it doesn’t look terribly appetising).
27a Old student alone with screen losing focus, in an old-fashioned way (10)
OBSOLETELY – stitch together the abbreviation for an old male student, an adjective meaning alone and an informal word for a screen or set without its middle letter.
1d Song’s no good — awful (4)
DIRE – start with a mournful song and remove the abbreviation for good.
2d Crushing hug is an agonising thing (7)
ANGUISH – an anagram (crushing) of HUG IS AN.
3d I let His Excellency pawn the bizarre unwanted gift (5,8)
WHITE ELEPHANT – an anagram (bizarre) of I LET H[is] E[xcellency] PAWN THE.
4d Agreement to have food during test (6)
TREATY – a verb to have food goes inside a verb to test.
5d Scientists taking time to bisect livid bug (8)
IRRITATE – the abbreviation for the British organisation devoted to scientific education (most famous for its annual Christmas lectures) and the abbreviation for time are inserted into an adjective meaning livid or furious.
7d Bring website up to date about attempt to silence whistle-blower previously (7)
REFRESH – this means to get an up-to-date version of a web page (e.g. by using Ctrl+F5). Put a preposition meaning about or concerning and an exclamation calling for silence after a whistle-blower on the sports field.
8d A b-brood heartlessly consumed, as prowling predator will? (10)
ALLITERATE – start with A and add a brood of young with its first letter repeated but without its middle letter. Finish with a verb meaning consumed. Other examples of a prowling predator here might be hungry hyena or terrifying tiger.
11d Put down the receiver and remain neutral (3,2,3,5)
SIT ON THE FENCE – string together a phrasal verb to put down or suppress, ‘the’ and a criminal receiver.
13d In endless outing drinking pints, hack’ll write this … (10)
JOURNALESE – an outing or trip without its last letter contains pints or beers.
16d … with account in boozer that’s example of black-and-white issue? (5,3)
PANDA CUB – a conjunction meaning with and the abbreviation for account go inside a boozer (the place not the person).
18d Adjusted treadle after shift? (7)
ALTERED – an anagram (after shift) of TREADLE.
20d Indian spinach filling in lean minced meat dish (7)
LASAGNE – an Indian word for spinach is inserted into an anagram (minced) of LEAN.
21d Aware of press release having precedence with dispatch (6)
PRONTO – a colloquial phrase (2,2) meaning aware of is preceded by the abbreviation for a press release.
23d Courier emitting zero? That might make him green (4)
ENVY – take the letter resembling zero away from a courier or messenger.
I have lots of clues in the ‘like’ column, especially 1a, 22a, 3d, 7d and 8d. Which clue(s) stimulated your taste buds?