DT 28895 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28895

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28895

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***


Hello, everyone.  Our Telegraph Puzzles Editor Chris Lancaster informed us yesterday that the back-page setting roster is being rearranged to allow John Halpern (Dada, Paul, Muss, Punk) to take over the Sunday slot just vacated by Brian Geer (Virgilius, Brendan, Jed).  As a result, the main Tuesday setter (who I'm not sure I'm allowed to name but see FAQ #28 if you're curious) will move to Monday, and Tuesday puzzles will be set by a cast of Mysterons with puzzles from Chris Lancaster "appearing on Tuesdays on a fairly regular basis".  If this is indeed my last Tuesday blogging under the old arrangement, I must thank the outgoing Tuesday setters for consistently providing excellent puzzles that I've found enjoyable and entertaining to solve and to blog.  I shall be paying special attention to the Monday Quickies from now on to see what trickiness might be lurking within those grids.

Before we move on to the hints, I need to ask for help from the BD community.  Many of you will be painfully aware that about a week ago the site's "spoilers" (the grey buttons that reveal the answers when clicked) started misbehaving.  The usual issue is that the spoiler displays as a vertical grey line that does nothing when clicked.  I have developed a manual blog-by-blog workaround that seems to cure the problem for most people, but we need to discover and fix the underlying issue if spoilers are to work again with the thousands of older blogs on the site.  It's been hard to debug the issue because all spoilers work properly on every computer and browser that I've been able to try.  I have therefore created a short survey asking readers to load three blogs and report how the spoilers appear on their systems, in the hope that we might identify a common factor among those having issues.  [Edit:  The survey is now closed.  Thanks to everyone who responded].

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions.  Clicking on the Answer buttons will reveal the answers.  In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background.  Clicking on a picture will enlarge it or display a bonus illustration.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Unfortunately curtail rap at beginning of single: here's the details (11)
PARTICULARS:  An anagram (unfortunately) of CURTAIL RAP with the beginning letter of SINGLE

9a    See a blemish (4)
SPOT:  A straightforward double definition

10a   Study team: give opinion on performance and be helpful (11)
CONSIDERATE:  Put together an archaic verb meaning to study, another word for a sports team, and a word that means "give opinion on performance"

11a   Brave warrior: he takes half of Italian city (4)
HERO:  HE from the clue followed by half of the capital city of Italy

14a   In secrecy, cleverly use again (7)
RECYCLE:  The answer is hidden in the remainder of the clue

16a   Surveys returned about calcium in seafood (7)
SCALLOP:  Some surveys are reversed (returned) and wrapped about the chemical symbol for calcium

17a   She's a band named after her, maybe backed by a chap named Cooper? (5)
ALICE:  The answer is a girl's name associated with a wide hair band and also the first part of the stage name adopted by rock singer Cooper

18a   Boast about argument (4)
CROW:  The single letter abbreviation for roughly or about is followed by an argument

19a   Pigpen, we hear, is an eyesore? (4)
STYE:  This eye affliction is a homophone (we hear) of a pen where pigs live 

20a   Indian perhaps in old vessel crossing Spain (5)
OCEAN:  The abbreviation for old with a metal storage vessel containing (crossing) the IVR code for Spain. "Indian perhaps" indicates that Indian is an example of the answer

22a   One's honest about celebrity (7)
REALIST:  A usual (2) word for about or concerning with an informal (1-4) adjective for a top-tier celebrity 

23a   Spoil study by independent old electrical engineer (7)
MARCONI:  A charade of spoil or damage, the study we met in 10a, and a single-letter abbreviation for independent

24a   Try a game of cricket (4)
TEST:  A double definition.  The cricket game is a serious international match played in whites and lasting up to five days if you're lucky (or unlucky, as the case may be)

28a   Device for telling pub-goers to drink up: in the past, or the future? (4,7)
TIME MACHINE:  The answer could, whimsically, be a device that emits the traditional shout from the bar inviting last orders.  The answer's usual definition means it could also perform that function in the past or in the future

29a   French bread causing tummy ache? (4)
PAIN:  The French word for bread is what a tummy ache is an example of (indicated by the ?)

30a   Servant combining charm with bed? I am! (11)
CHAMBERMAID:  An anagram (combining) of CHARM BED I AM



2d    River in which star is reflected (4)
AVON:  The reversal (reflected) of a star that has suddenly increased in brightness

3d    Throw at ship (4)
TOSS:  A synonym of "at" followed by crosswordland's usual ship 

4d    Black maybe worn by Edward and Mark (7)
CEDILLA:  The first name of Liverpudlian female singer Black is wrapped around (worn by) a contraction of Edward to yield a punctuation mark.  "Black maybe" indicating that Black is here being a definition by example of the required first name

5d    Attract student runner from Yorkshire (4)
LURE:  The usual single letter denoting a student or learner is followed by a river in Yorkshire (a "runner" because a river runs)

6d    Inform on people in modern society (3,4)
RAT RACE:  Join together synonyms of "inform on" and a people

7d    A very quiet woman morphed into just 'a name' (11)
APPELLATION:  Concatenate A from the clue,  the musical abbreviation for pianissimo or very quiet, a woman's name, and an anagram (morphed) of INTO

8d    Type of pressure we're all under (11)
ATMOSPHERIC:  A cryptic definition of the roughly 14psi of pressure we feel because of what's above us

12d   Old dinosaur with three dangerous points to face? (11)
TRICERATOPS:  Presumably this is a cryptic definition, with the literal reading describing perfectly this dinosaur

13d   Rich, posh lass almost organised educational grant (11)
SCHOLARSHIP:  An anagram (organised) of RICH POSH and LAS[S] minus its last letter (almost)

15d   Vote into office and pick leader off (5)
ELECT:  The answer is found as a word for pick or choose with its first letter deleted (… leader off)

16d   Leave first of sheep and cows with male animal (5)
SCRAM:  The first letters of SHEEP and COW are combined with the male variety of an animal seen a few words earlier in the clue

20d   East German supported by well-off person scared to face reality (7)
OSTRICH:  The German word for east is followed by (supported by, in a down clue) an adjective meaning well-off

21d   Set forth, and rushed back with speed (7)
NARRATE:  The reversal (… back) of rushed or dashed with a synonym of speed

25d   Danger: medication masks bug (4)
GERM:  The first two words of the clue are hiding (masks) the answer

26d   It's a pretence when embarrassment's not complete (4)
SHAM:  A synonym of embarrassment without its last letter ('s not complete)

27d   Against a new note? (4)
ANTI:  Cement to together A from the clue, the abbreviation for new, and a note on the sol-fa musical scale


Thanks to today’s setter for a fun solve.  My favourite today was 4d.  Which clues did you like best?


The Quick Crossword pun:  SALLY + FOURTH = SALLY FORTH

83 comments on “DT 28895

  1. How can I put this without offending some people… I can’t. So on the basis that you cannot please all the people all of the time, here goes: The Telegraph cryptic crossword must be of a certain level of difficulty. It has managed to achieve this over the decades. Making it easier to attract new solvers will not work in the long run. I understand that society is changing and that ‘dumbing down’ is happening all around us. I also understand that the imperative to recruit fresh eyeballs to read advertising has never been greater.

    The Times Crossword has become much easier as well but they realised that for entry-level solvers there should perhaps be an entry-level puzzle – they came up with the ‘Quick Cryptic’. Fine. Maybe The Telegraph should do the same.

    Clues at the childish level of 9a, 24a, 29a etc are pretty insulting to seasoned solvers/subscribers. It is not overstated to say that the ONLY reason I subscribe to the DT is because of the cryptic crossword. More puzzles like this and there will be one fewer subscriber.

    1. It has rattled my cage that the Tuesday setters will be moving to Monday’s. I have really enjoyed the last few months.

    2. Surely the crosswords are enjoyable, they are not an indication of greater intellect. My granson who is 9 is staying he looked at some of the 4 letter clues, with a little help,his response was “pops” is this rightSo there.
      I don’t consider it insulting to put easy four letter clues in. It gives those of us of advanced years a start.

    3. Go and do the Guardian if you want a tougher challenge and leave the back-pager to thickos like me then.

      1. Well said, Hoofit, and thanks for saying it. I’m approaching the age where it gets harder to bring words up to the front of my little brain, I’m so pleased to be able to solve the odd puzzle without help.

      2. HIYD. I think it’s difficult for relative newcomers, like yourself and Mr K, to fully understand the historical situation with the DT back-page cryptic. Over the decades it had become the best middle-of-the-road serious puzzle. Not as difficult/recondite as the Times or The Guardian, but certainly of much better quality than the Express (for example) and most other publications. Every day it was challenging but fair. There were never any “easy” ones. Traditional, grumpy old beggars like us don’t like change – especially when it’s for the worst. I could retort by suggesting that if you want easy/elementary cryptic puzzles then go and do the Mirror or Sun, but I’m far too polite for such a thing.

    4. The DT Toughie is there for that very reason, so that those of you who find the regular cryptic insufficiently taxing have somewhere else to go. I was delighted with this crossword today. Have been doing them since the 70s, and although my solving skills have improved greatly since finding this blog, I don’t often manage to finish unaided. Please don’t begrudge us the occasional day of pure pleasure at finishing sans hints.

  2. Far to easy & not at all taxing, I would rate this one at less than * for both difficulty & enjoyment I would also agree with Hector Pascal on this one.

  3. I have to agree largely with HP, above. I’d rate it as very poor, not very enjoyable and certainly not worthy to appear on the back page of the illustrious DT. 1* / 1.5*

  4. Maybe your perceived decrease in difficulty is because you have had years of practice? Maybe you should try doing the Toughie instead? (Ah, well, maybe not today’s ……)

  5. What HP said – very disappointing, the proscribed term is definitely in play today, and the Toughie is close to being in the same category.

    I know it’s Tuesday, but I solved both of today’s puzzles in a combined time that was faster than it takes me to solve a ‘good’ Ray T or Giovanni.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  6. Oh dear, the world and his dog seem to have taken the grumpy way out of bed this morning!

    In defence of the setter – and editor – I found this of a similar standard to many early-in-the-week crosswords I’ve encountered, albeit over not all that many years.

    I will admit that this wasn’t my favourite ever Tuesday puzzle, but I still found plenty to enjoy, as did many lurkers, I’m sure.

    Thanks to the setter and blogger.

    1. I’m long-time lurker and I’m coming out in order to say that today’s xword actually offended me. I may only complete a few puzzles, but today I felt like I was being treated like a moron. In fact, I had to dumb myself down to think at the correct level and complete it while the ink was still drying on particulars.

  7. I did notice a good number of four letter clues almost writing themselves in today, but still was going to refer to the blog for a full explanation of 12d (until it ‘came to me in the bath’). Quite good fun but on the easy side – if that bothers people so much, it isn’t that difficult to access The Guardian or FT free of charge. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

      1. I was misdirected towards danger or points of the compass etc, but the ‘dangerous points’ were just the horns on the creature’s head. That’s how I saw it anyway!

  8. 0.5* / 2.5*. This was very light indeed, but I did enjoy the immaculate surfaces and accurate cluing.

    For anyone wanting more of a challenge but who doesn’t normally stray into Toughie territory, today’s Warbler is very accessible and a lot of fun.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and Mr K.

  9. Reluctantly, but in all honesty, I cannot disagree with Hector, although there were also some good clues. I will give it the benefit of the non-existent doubt and consider that this one slipped through the net. Also have to agree that The Times is not what it used to be.

    However, things will inevitably move on – they can’t not (pardon the grammar), and generally I am enjoying the shake up the current editor is overseeing.

    1. I don’t think the Times has changed that much. As a relatively recent convert, I have been catching up by working my way through the compilation books. I am now up to 2014, so I have covered many crossword years in a short time frame. I would say that the level has been remarkably consistent over a very long period. The main difference is perhaps there is less reliance on literary/classics GK but that is balanced by more science and a willingness to embrace modern idioms.
      What is indisputable is that it remains far superior to the DT, even to many of the so-called ‘Toughies’, today’s being a very good illustration. Given that the rest of the paper has been going to pot for some time, I am keeping my subscription going more out of habit and sentimentality than anything but it wouldn’t take much to push me over the edge.

      1. Fair enough, Rick. The Times is different, because correct me if I’m wrong, the puzzles are set collectively rather than by an individual.
        Yes, they are frequently trickier – not convinced that they are ‘far superior’, though.

        1. No each one is the work of an individual setter. There is though, I think most would agree, a much more consistent ‘house style’.
          To be consistently successful with the Times requires a higher level of technical solving skill, greater word power and far wider general knowledge, so that makes it superior in my book.

  10. Good morning
    Yesterday the answer links were not covered ie the answers were all on display.
    Today there are no answer links

  11. Well I enjoyed it. It was on the easier side, but there’s nothing wrong with that.

    Thanks to all.

  12. Some gimmies (see reply) to Hector, and more searching clues. I wonder if Hector has tried to devise a cryptic crossword? Even compilers are allowed a bit of an off day.
    Nevertheless thanks to Mr K and setter.

  13. What I like about the back pagers is the variety of their difficulty, some days I struggle (mainly Thursday’s!) 🤔 so I really like the occasional puzzle that is easy to solve */*** and allows plenty of time for other things 😳 Favourites today 20a & 20d 😃 Big thanks to Mr K and to the Setter

  14. While I agree that this was somewhat less demanding than usual, I liked being able to complete the task without reference to the hints for once ! The point of most “exams” is that most candidates can solve a fair percentage of the problems set; not just the more able students, otherwise how do we measure progress or success? Hopefully there will also be plenty of harder puzzles to come, for the super sleuths to relish and we lesser mortals to learn from !! Incidentally, I don´t regard less experienced solvers as “dumbed down” , rather a little less practiced. Long may the challenges continue, thanks to all !

  15. Yes today’s was easier than normal but enjoyable nevertheless . 4D my favourite .

    We get grumbles when too hard in the opinion of some and to balance today the opposite . Each day will vary and we get days where some think it hard others easy .

    Please accept the inevitable as setters differ in standard and no solver will always have the perfect puzzle for themself .

  16. I have to say that I am confused by the comments about today’s crossword. If every back-pager was **** Ray-T effort, I would never have started this noble art form.
    If you want a tougher challenge, do err…the Toughie or the Guardian which as MP says is free.
    Perhaps some people were born experts.

  17. You can please all of the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time…

    Yes, it was on the easy side, but those just starting out deserve an opportunity to feel good about themselves, too. I may not enjoy all the setters, but I appreciate what they do. if you have a complaint, you can always contact the DT.

    Thank you Mr. K, and thanks also to today’s setter. 4D gets my vote.

  18. All crosswords are easy……………if you know the answers! Easier than normal but still enjoyable. For me 20A & 20D stood out. If the setter reads this, don’t be discouraged, from personal experience it may well appeal to many non experts and motivate them to try every day and, in due course, every Toughie, thereby ensuring a continuation of a great set of puzzles.

  19. An enormous amount of effort goes into setting the crosswords, reviewing the crosswords, and keeping this site up and running. I very much appreciate all the work involved, and wish The DT all the best for tomorrow as it changes systems. This was an easy crossword by anyone’s standards, but the enjoyment factor was still there. I smiled when the penny dropped for 4d as I’d looked for a shade of black to be worn rather than a particular name. I’d scribbled ‘ted’ in the margin so that didn’t help. I tried to do something with a jar, backwards, for 20a. Not every clue was read and write for me. Thank you mystery setter and Mr Kitty.

  20. Suffice to say this was as easy as they come as far as this solver is concerned. Without wishing to add any fuel to an already fast-burning conflagration, this was embarrassingly simple to solve and in no way challenging. The good news is I am sure we will all get our comeuppance in due course, as these things tend to be levelled out over time.

    4d was the standout clue for me, but I did not feel the experience lasted long enough to be enjoyable.

    Thanks anyway to our setter and to Mr K.

    1. “I did not feel the experience lasted long enough to be enjoyable”……..now, where have I heard that before 😉

  21. Well I for one am content with the varying wavelengths and degrees of difficulty with which the DT presents us. IMHO it’s good to have the odd nursery slope as per today but also some black runs. For my part I enjoy elements of GK combined with the cryptic so overall I am in favour of the status quo. I made a quick start in the North but the South was a slightly different kettle of fish mainly due to the knock-on effect of my stupidity in omitting the ‘h’ in 13d so needing to pluralise it. Not being up on dinosaurs or indeed how to spell their names I needed help with 17d as was the case with 4d (last to go in) because I had forgotten about Ms Black. Thank you Mysteron and MrK.

  22. On an Android Chrome phone, today I had non-responsive vertical black bars, yesterday visible answers within the usual frame, previously had been working as usual when other users reporting problems. (Apologies but could not get survey working.)

      1. Thanks for that tip, worked for me! (after I submitted survey – Android Chrome phone also). I would agree that crossword on easy side but quite satisying to get one rattled through rather than painstakingly working through over days as per some Toughies! Thanks to all bloggers and setters (for all the times I’ve read blog but not commented…

  23. Goodness, we’ve been round this block so many times before! As Hector said himself – ‘you cannot please all the people all of the time’. There are, hopefully, always going to be newcomers to DT cryptics alongside the more seasoned solvers – the crosswords need to reflect that diversity.
    A look into BD’s Rookie Corner will demonstrate just how difficult it is to compile a decent cryptic crossword – can’t we simply enjoy the setter’s art without complaining about how easy/difficult we found the result to be?

    Some excellent surface reads in this one and I quite enjoyed the stroll.
    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Mr K for the blog – I’ll take a look at the survey now.

  24. I must also be a “thicko” along with Hoofit, as I thoroughly enjoyed this easier than usual puzzle. Some days they are easy (rarely), somedays they are more challenging (more often) and sometimes they are just stinkers (not too often). Surely diversity is the name of the game.

    I want to give today’s setter a big thank you from us seasoned but slower solvers, and I am sure from those newer solvers. Did look at the hints afterwards as Mr K’s pictures are always amusing, and worth sharing with my adult cat owning daughters. So ta very much to Mr. K and today’s setter.

      1. I know you’re jesting, RD, but would a simple hyphen make it grammatically correct: “my adult cat-owning daughters”?

  25. I thought the whole point of the back pagers was that every day displayed a different level of difficulty? The same goes for the Toughie with the result that sometimes the Toughie seems easier than the back page. I’m all for the variety and thank the setters and bloggers for their efforts…and, at this time, a very big thank you to BD for this site!

  26. */**. I find it strange that anyone would find this puzzle “unacceptable”. Just accept it is as a beginners challenge and be thankful you finished it. If you feel less taxed try something like the GCHQ puzzles and see how you feel then. And as others have said there are plenty of other sources for cryptics. In any event thanks to all.

    1. I’ve said before that there is no point in having a 1-5* rating system unless you (even if not a prorated 40% of the time) get to use 1* and 5*. The latter is definitely a hens’ teeth appearance.

      I don’t agree that Guardian is that much harder – a couple of days a week, it’s not hard and let’s not forget that Mondays used to be Rufus in both DT and Guardian. I also find the Observer very achievable, although less fun than the DT backpager.

      I certainly agree about the GCHQ puzzle book. My brother bought it for me as a Christmas present. I have several degrees and it makes me feel astonishingly thick. It’s hit the wall so many times, I’m surprised it hasn’t surrendered.

      But, like all these puzzles, you generally improve with practice, so…….bite the bullet on easy days, turn down the grumpy button and find something else to do!

  27. Well, it just goes to show: my last outing was well received and this one was not – by some at least. Your editor passed this; so it’s a pity if it was deemed “too easy” for the DT. Maybe some of the clues passed muster, or raised a half-smile?

    1. Many thanks for popping in X-Type. It’s always great when the setters do that.

      Regardless of the degree of difficulty, I did enjoy this this puzzle particularly, as I mentioned above, due to the excellent cluing and exemplary surfaces.

      There is a huge range of solvers who tackle these puzzles and they differ enormously in what floats their particular crossword boat. Some less difficult offerings (especially when they are as well crafted as this one) are very welcome.

    2. Well done, X-Type, I loved it. Please revisit us soon to give us thickos (per HIYD) a chance to shine. Oh, and thanks for popping in.

    3. How great that in spite of so much whinging on this site you have courageously put your head above the parapet. Thank you again for today’s pleasant stroll.

    4. Thanks for commenting, X-Type. We like it when setters comment because then we know who we’ve been battling against and who we should thank. We love it when setters are willing to engage in conversation with us.

      Regarding the reactions to your crossword, the early comments here usually come from those who solved the puzzle quickly and without need of help from the blog. Those commenters are often going to claim to have found the puzzle easy (although I do wonder how many of them are hitting the sub-five minute solving times associated with the fastest solvers). You’ll see from the later comments that your puzzle brought pleasure and satisfaction to many solvers who took a little longer to fill the grid.

      Tuesday puzzles have tended to fluctuate in difficulty, which is good. An occasional one like this will be well-received by many people, as will from time to time meeting a more difficult puzzle (if you’re taking requests, I like extra difficulty to come from unusual or complex wordplay and well-disguised definitions rather than from obscure vocabulary, although that approach has its fans).

      Thanks again for the puzzle and for commenting. Are you now a member of the Tuesday setting team?

      1. In response to your query: I am not yet a “regular” for any particular DT day. Our editor says he’ll put me in now and again; and my (mostly unpublished) submissions have varied in difficulty – so I could possibly appear on any day, who knows? Re your other comment about the nature of “difficulty”: I also prefer misleading/odd definitions and unusual wordplay to out-and-out obscure vocabulary. (Although, in my “other life” as a Thematic Setter, I do put like to strange stuff in, of course – my own personal favourite being “Kgotla”…)

        1. I had to look that one up in the BRB, so now I’ve learned a new word. Thanks for that. I wonder where I will next encounter it?

      1. Duplication once again – not sure why deletions are happening. Have I offended in some way?
        Apologies for the multiple comments – seems I have a problem with posting on BD.

        1. I saw one earlier comment very similar to your 6:50PM that was marked for deletion, but I assumed that you had done that. I don’t think anybody is deleting comments.

          Do you refresh the browser after posting your comment? Until we get to the bottom of the caching problem that may be necessary before you see the updated page with your comment.

          1. I haven’t been refreshing but will from now on and hope that might help as it is becoming a nightmarish waste of time to try and post a comment and/or to access latest comments on the blog hence my numerous duplications/deletions. 😰😰😰 !

          2. I have refreshed but still my latest response to you does not appear – arrrgh!
            However now it does suddenly appear. I give up. 😰

  28. I am offended HP! I was so pleased to have got on well today, only had to look up 20 across and down. I forgot the E for Spain and didn’t know the OST for East in German. I see Mr K has put 2 stars for difficulty which sits well with me being a relative beginner, so despite HP, I’m still pleased with myself.
    Also, no problems with the spoiler buttons today. Thanks to setter and Mr K.

  29. Well, I enjoyed that, anyway. :-) Too easy? I’m guessing lots of solvers, like me, weren’t sure how to spell 12d, and paused for thought on 4d. Nicely balanced I thought.

  30. Dear fellow puzzlers it’s only a crossword,personally I enjoyed it. Thanks to the setter and Mr K-loved the captions 😊.

  31. Thanks to the setter and to Mr Kitty for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle with some really good surfaces. I did find it easy, but I don’t agree with Hector Pascal’s comments. I used to struggle to finish the backpager when I first started dropping in to this wonderful site. Now I usually finish them, and sometimes a Toughie too. What helped me to not get too discouraged, was that sometimes there was an easier one. Let’s have a bit more empathy for the beginners. I like 20d, but my favourite was 4d. Last in was 14a. Was 0.5*/3* for me. Off to try the survey now.

  32. As I said above, I enjoyed this. As I was solving, I wrote in the margin the names of those I knew who would complain that it was too simple, and I was not disappointed, got it 100%.
    My fave was also 4d, but a lot of others pleased me. My only help was to spell 12d.
    Thanks to X-Type and to Mr. K, nice to have our kitties back.

  33. Crosswords are like life. Some days life is a breeze: the sun shines; the birds sing; the roads are clear; the irritating man who has phone conversations at 100 decibels has missed the train; you start the day with 10 things to achieve and you achieve all 10; there is no queue at the supermarket and 25% off your favourite tipple. Does anyone complain about such days?
    Thanks to X-Type and Mr K. My only complaint is that there were no hyperlinks on Mr K’s survey!

  34. We have a difficulty rating scale from * to ****.
    So, nothing , therefore, wrong with today’s puzzle.
    Pleasantly enjoyable.
    Many thanks X-Type and Mr. K.

  35. Hear hear to you both. I’m more than happy to takethe rough with the smooth, so to speak. One of life’s little treats since I’ve been retired is brekky and a cryptic crossword puzzle once the paper boy has arrived with our DT. Some breakfasts only last half an hour or so and some become a two hour feast, which is okay by me, but sometimes I do have other things to do rather than sit on my bum for hours on end pondering over mind boggling cryptic clues, whilst I could be using my time more gainfully, so a cryptic quickie occasionally is cool as far as I’m concerned. I ain’t gonna knock it.

  36. Sorry, something went awry with my post. I should have tagged it to Hoofit and Merusa’s earlier posting.

  37. Well what a fuss! Me, I’m very happy with the status quo. When the crossword is undemanding I can then get on with the rest of my day. When it’s harder I start my day later. No problems.
    Thanks Mr X for the fun, and Mr K for the review. I’ll do the survey later, promise.

  38. Thanks to everyone who reported their spoiler experiences on the survey. I now have a lot of data to digest in the search for an underlying cause. In the meantime we at least know which workaround is best. It works for 90% of those responding to the survey.

    1. Wed am. Just to let you know all my spoiler buttons, both recent and older, are working OK now – via both Internet Explorer and Google Chrome. So thank you for rectifying it. I assume it was you?

      1. Other than applying the workaround to the two Wednesday blogs, we haven’t made any spoiler-related changes to the site since my blog came out. So it wasn’t anything we did. Did anything change on your system?

        1. I only use public computers in libraries, so I’ve no idea about changes they make to their systems. I just assumed it was an operating glitch with this website because other people had similar problems using various devices at the same time as me. Must be down to those mischievous gremlins…

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