Toughie No 2231 by Silvanus
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Kitty is taking a break from blogging (not too long we hope) so I’ve been drafted in for a one-off Tuesday matinee. That’s no hardship as we have a fairly gentle but very enjoyable puzzle from Silvanus with his usual smooth surfaces throughout. Having originally missed the Nina in his weekend NTSPP I did spend some time looking for one here, but if there is one it’s too well-hidden for me.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle and tell us how you think it compares with the Saturday NTSPP from the same setter.
I hope that all those attending the Sloggers and Betters meeting ‘up Lunnon’ (as we say in my part of the country) are having a good time.
1a Firm accepting Yen note, undoubtedly that attracts attention (8)
CYNOSURE: our usual abbreviation for a firm includes abbreviations for yen and note then we finish with a synonym for undoubtedly. This was my last answer because, although I vaguely knew the word, I didn’t know what it meant.
5a Pop group said to blaspheme immaturely? You can count on it (6)
ABACUS: stick together what sounds like a Swedish pop group and an informal verb to blaspheme without its last letter (immaturely, i.e. not fully grown).
9a US ex-serviceman welcomed by order of escort vessels (9)
CORVETTES: the short word for an ex-serviceman in the USA goes inside an anagram (order) of ESCORT.
11a Essentially beautiful parrot species making comeback in mountainous region (5)
TYROL: the central letter of beautiful is followed by the reversal of a small parrot from the southern hemisphere.
12a Adjustments made with cutting wood small (6)
TWEAKS: the abbreviation for ‘with’ gets inserted into a type of hard wood and the abbreviation for small.
13a Rejected certain players meeting at opposing team’s stadium (8)
CASTAWAY: the players employed for a theatrical production followed by how a match at an opposing team’s stadium would be described.
15a Honest, and disposed to err in public (13)
INCORRUPTIBLE: an anagram (disposed) of TO ERR IN PUBLIC.
18a Soldier approaches broken-down airplane carrying hospital equipment (13)
PARAPHERNALIA: join together an airborne soldier and an anagram (broken-down) of AIRPLANE containing the abbreviation for hospital.
22a Backed by India’s banks, multinational corporation supplies tobacco (8)
VIRGINIA: the outer letters (banks) of India follow the name of the business empire controlled by Beardie (as Private Eye calls him) aka Sir Richard Branson from his tax haven in the West Indies.
23a Type of capital I collect (6)
ITALIC: hidden in the clue.
26a Scamp cut ends off shoes (5)
ROGUE: cut off the outer letters from strong outdoor shoes.
27a Story recalled musical left unfinished on Scottish island (9)
NARRATIVE: string together the name of a Lloyd-Webber musical without its last letter and an island in the Firth of Clyde then reverse the lot.
28a Total disregard about individual (6)
ENTITY: start with a noun meaning total or ‘the whole lot’ and take away the preposition meaning about or concerning.
29a Outrageous acts, they’re sometimes included in insurance policies (8)
EXCESSES: double definition, the second being the amounts of a claim that you have to pay yourself before your insurance company will stump up anything.
1d Change tack into wind arriving at Manhattan, perhaps (8)
COCKTAIL: insert an anagram (change) of TACK into a verb to wind or twist.
2d Swear having new leadership is the making of hospital worker (5)
NURSE: start with the more formal form of the verb to swear or blaspheme that we met in 5a and change its initial letter.
3d American trainer, one tending to go unnoticed? (7)
SNEAKER: double definition – trainer is something worn, not a person.
4d Form of pen requiring no cap (4)
RITE: a verb to pen or note down without its top letter.
6d Where to come clean and boast what hubby occasionally sacrificed (7)
BATHTUB: throw away every other letter from ‘boast what hubby’.
7d Extremely cool outside weather ruined acrobatic movement (9)
CARTWHEEL: the outer letters of ‘cool’ go round an anagram (ruined) of WEATHER.
8d Bob, anticipating fun, heading to sort fans out (6)
SPLAYS: concatenate the abbreviation used for the pre-1971 UK coin known informally as a bob, a synonym for fun or recreation and the first letter of ‘sort’.
10d Creature hard to isolate from effect of global warming? (3,5)
SEA OTTER: an effect of global warming may be to make the *** ****** by one or two degrees. Take away the abbreviation for hard.
14d Face up quietly to embracing one Northern initiative (8)
GUMPTION: reverse an informal word for a face, add the musical abbreviation for quietly then insert the Roman numeral for one into TO. Finally append the abbreviation for northern.
16d Protection for writer provided by detective, maybe just joining Yard (9)
COPYRIGHT: weld together an informal word for a police detective, the abbreviation for yard and an adjective meaning just or equitable.
17d Organ with sort of pipes to entertain elite mostly (8)
PANCREAS: musical pipes named after the Greek god of the woods contain a noun meaning elite or best without its last letter.
19d Time ran out to find clothing (7)
RAIMENT: an anagram (out) of TIME RAN.
20d Fertiliser cost is lower than man heard (7)
NITRATE: a synonym for cost or charge follows (is lower than, in a down clue) what sounds like a man on a chessboard.
21d Disinclined to declare with Essex’s two openers returning (6)
AVERSE: a verb to declare or attest followed by the reversal of the two opening letters of Essex.
24d Queues reported in Birmingham for butcher’s most tender cuts (5)
LOINS: the most tender cuts of beef (especially when preceded by the word ‘tender’ itself) sound like how someone from the English midlands might pronounce a synonym of queues.
25d Core Conservative vote keeping united to support Right (4)
CRUX: the single-letter abbreviation for Conservative and how we in the UK mark our choice on a voting form contain the abbreviations for right and united.
I liked 13a, 28a and 6d but my favourite clue today was 10d. Do let us know what took your fancy.
I’ll see you again tomorrow.