DT 29690 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29690

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29690

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

Hello, everyone, and welcome to Tuesday. I reckon that today sees the return of X-Type with his entertaining anagrams, original cryptic definitions, and generally enjoyable clueing.  Solving this puzzle was time well spent. 

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 and a hover (computer) or long press (mobile) might explain more about the picture. Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.

 

Across

6a    Corps in map upset: a lot of time spent here? (6,4)
PRISON CAMP:  An anagram (upset) of CORPS IN MAP

8a    Broadcast screen went off once (4)
HIED:  A homophone (broadcast) of screen or conceal is an archaic ( … once) word for hurried or went off quickly 

9a    Vessel has lover on it: one of the crew? (9)
BOATSWAIN:  An aquatic vessel followed by a poetic/archaic word for a lover 

11a   Put back equipment to get ill-gotten gains (4)
TOOL:  The reversal (put back) of the answer is some ill-gotten gains or stolen goods, and so the answer is the reversal of said goods 

12a   Current measure shown by a member? (3)
AMP:  A from the clue with the abbreviation for a Member of Parliament 

13a   Corrupt, base male holding butt of revolver: 007 was nearly killed by one (5,4)
LASER BEAM:  An anagram (corrupt) of BASE MALE containing the end letter (butt) of REVOLVER
007: "Do you expect me to talk?"
Goldfinger: "No, Mr Bond. I expect you to die!"
If that and the video don't help, the definition is explained in full here

16a   Old blokes sign here (4)
OMEN:  The abbreviation for old with a synonym of blokes 

17a   Small scene shown in theatrical production around ten (7)
DIORAMA:  A theatrical production containing (around) two letters that look like the number ten 

18a   Defrauded Conservative getting very cross (7)
CHEATED:  The single letter for Conservative with very cross or agitated 

20a   British subject about to punch drunk (4)
SCOT:  The single letter for about or roughly inserted in (to punch) a drunk 

21a   Lout with basin ruined washing ceremony (9)
ABLUTIONS:  An anagram (ruined) of LOUT BASIN 

23a   Insignificant worker in company? Good (3)
COG:  The abbreviation for company with the single letter for good 

24a   Money? Please be quiet! (4)
DOSH:  The answer is an informal word for money that split (2,2) could mean "please be quiet" 

25a   Undo ties I tangled very thoroughly (6-3)
INSIDE-OUT:  An anagram (tangled) of UNDO TIES I 

29a   Got rid of  cabin (4)
SHED:  A straightforward double definition 

30a   Bird (European) found in French gin after processing (10)
GREENFINCH:  The single letter for European inserted in (found in) an anagram (after processing) of FRENCH GIN 

 

Down

1d    Translation for 'manger'? (4)
CRIB:  Another word for manger is also a key or badly literal translation used as an aid by students 

2d    Two articles about oddly slim landmass (4)
ASIA:  Two grammatical articles placed before and after (around) the odd letters of SLIM 

3d    Workers maybe covered in plant sap (4)
ANTS:  The answer is hidden in (covered in) the remainder of the clue 

4d    Sweet creature engages artist (7)
CARAMEL:  A desert creature contains (engages) a usual abbreviated artist 

Picasso's drawing of a camel

5d    Republican base: some sent off to see a distant state (10)
REMOTENESS:  The single letter for Republican and the letter representing the base of the natural logarithms are followed by an anagram (off) of SOME SENT 

7d    Headgear for the canal? (6,3)
PANAMA HAT:  A cryptic definition of headwear especially appropriate for a well-known canal 

8d    Stew a couple of toads -- that's a problem (3,6)
HOT POTATO:  A (3,3) stew with A from the clue and the first couple of letters in TOADS 

10d   Reportedly drink something essential on course (3)
TEE:  A homophone (reportedly) of a common drink 

13d   Garments from school fashioned with lint (10)
LOINCLOTHS:  An anagram (… fashioned with … ) of SCHOOL LINT 

14d   Pulled out of race, slightly injured (9)
SCRATCHED:  A smooth double definition

Motivational sign in marathon

15d   Pack calling for someone, going berserk (9)
RAMPAGING:  Pack or stuff is followed by calling for someone over a public address system, for example 

19d   Sparkle with information about record (7)
GLISTEN:  An informal word for information containing (around) a record or register 

22d   Temper in firepit (3)
IRE:  The answer is hidden in the remainder of the clue 

26d   Depression of journalist turning up with books (4)
DENT:  The reversal (turning up, in a down clue) of a usual abbreviated journalist is followed by some usual books of the Bible 

27d   Grand: run away from Wallace's dog and forget (4)
OMIT:  The single letter for grand and the cricket abbreviation for runs are both taken away from the dog belonging to film star Wallace 

28d   Fixed, one might say, with skill and sensitivity (4)
TACT:  A homophone (one might say) of fixed to something using fasteners 

 

Thanks to our setter. I found a lot to appreciate in this puzzle. I liked 13a because it's clever and because I work with them, 24a because it's just delightful, 1d for its misleading surface, 14d for its smoothness, and 28d because made a fine ending. I also appreciated the connection between the Quick pun and one of the clues. In other news, later this week I'm adopting the brother and sister pair of kittens who may be found lurking in today's blog. I expect that there will be more pics next week. And the week after that and …


The Quick Crossword pun:  JINN + COCKED + ALE = GIN COCKTAIL


120 comments on “DT 29690
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  1. This was going along fine, until the final hurdle. There my mount stopped and stared at the fence for ages until a very large penny dropped. The clue in question was 8a, filling in just two blanks took me well into *** time.

    Other than that, I just had a query about 11a which I thought seemed to be backwards. My COTD had to be 8d.

    Many thanks to the setter and Mr K.

    1. I have only just started but have been put off by 11a. I confidently put it in the wrong way round. I am always careful with this, having been caught in the past but went wrong this time. Only realised when 8d had to be what it is.

    2. Yes – 8a was stubbornly remaining at the end of what was otherwise an enjoyable solve. I also agree about 11a which fortunately had a checker so I got the right answer but it does seem to be the reverse of what I thought we were being asked. Thanks to Mr K for the hint to 8a and our setter.

      1. And me. It’s unusual for the key word or phrase not to be at the front or back but Mr. K’s reasoning made complete sense after I’d just put it in anyway.

        1. I’m with you on 11a. It was dodgy parsing in my opinion and I had it in the wrong way round until I decided that 8a had to have the T as the third letter.

  2. Another great puzzle and most enjoyable with just the right amount (for me) of head scratching. I finished unaided but 8a is a bung in. My COTD is 8d because of the great penny drop moment it gave.

    Many Happy Returns to Shropshire Lad. You certainly have a great day for the celebrations.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr. K. for the hints.

    I’m weeding today but it’s hot work. Salad for dinner tonight, methinks.

    1. Its the couch grass wound round ymthe lower branches of my shrubs that gets me, Steve. It gets my back too.

      1. It’s this stuff I’m doing battle with at the moment, Chrisscross – Sticky Willow. Trouble is, other things are pulled out with it.

        1. Why do I feel this compunction to go out and work alongside our gardener? I just wanted to lie down this
          afternoon but up she bowled, half my age and half my size and full of energy. I am now exhausted. They
          want us to open our garden this year for the village so she is really pushing me. phew.

          1. Let me know when you open your garden and we will drive over – I love nosing round people’s gardens and Melbourn is such a pretty village. By the way did you win the competition about village names some time back?

            1. No. It was run by Royston WI and there was so much sharing of answers I guess they would have been inundated with correct papers! Regarding OG the woman who is running it has not come back to me (0r one or two other gardens as far as I can tell) to confirm we are taking part. It is either 4th or 11th July. George used to run it for the Church so we always took part and indeed were at the hub of things. Then people started asking for it to be held at different times of the year which G did and of course that didn’t suit everyone and he stopped doing it about 10 years ago. Then this woman decided to start it up again for the NHS and G gave her all his files. I shall let you know as soon as I have confirmation. It’s quite a long journey for you?

              1. Thanks – Cambridge is about an hour and a half but I guess we would turn on to the A11 or 505 and go through the villages and go back down memory lane. Maybe a spot of lunch at the Queen’s Head in Newton, who knows.

                1. I’d love to offer you lunch myself but kind of guess I shall be busy busy if past OGs are anything to go by.! I can certainly offer you liquid refreshment! Queens Head – two kinds of soup, brown or white.

  3. I could mirror Malcom’s comment. I have a big question mark against 11a. Other than that quite quirky (especially a couple of parsings) and enjoyable. I particularly liked 20a plus 8&15d.
    2/4*
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K for his usual well illustrated blog.
    Ps Donnybrook in theToughie spot isn’t as tricky as he usually is.

  4. Pleased to finish this one unaided and quick for me. Lots of very easy clues scattered around and plenty of anagrams. 8a was also my last one in, took ages to get. Agree on 11a though i hadn’t noticed until you both called it out. Agree 8d CoTD.

  5. A real mixture of the blindingly obvious and a couple more obscure like 8a. Only slight hold up was reversing the answer for 11a making 8d a puzzle until all the other checkers were in place. Also wasn’t sure that crib was a translation in 1d. Otherwise a *** pleasant way to spend * time. Thanks everyone

      1. I put crib as it had to be that, and I’ve not checked the dictionary or the hint but to me crib means to cheat by copying somebody else’s answer or work.

        1. “Away in a manger, No crib for a bed.”

          So a manger is not a crib – it’s what animals eat out of so I put “grub”.

          1. Steve, initially I was surprised to see 1d used as a synonym of “manger”. However, when I looked it up in the BRB, the second definition of “crib” as a noun is “a manger or container for animal fodder”.

            1. So the guy – it could be anyone from Martin Luther to Jonathan Spillman – who wrote the carol got it wrong!

              1. Not necessarily, Steve. As “crib” can also mean “cot”, a translation (crib :wink:) of that line of the carol could be: “Asleep in a food trough as there was no cot for him to use as a bed”. However, that’s not nearly so poetic (and it doesn’t scan!)

                  1. My guess would be that although the one in the stable was definitely for animals to eat from, crib became synonymous with it. The Christmas Navity service is sometimes known as the Crib Service.

  6. The anagrams in this puzzle were quite enjoyable but some of the other clues would have been difficult to unravel without them. So, a curates egg as far as I was concerned and not particularly enjoyable (3*/1.5*). Thanks to Mr K for the hints and to the compiler.

  7. Thanks to X-Type for a very entertaining puzzle. Like others, 11a seemed the wrong way round, but that aside, this was a must rewarding grid to complete. 8d was my runaway favourite.

    My thanks to Mr K for his usual comprehensive blog, and Happy Birthday to my Shropshire neighbour. You have a lovely day for it.

  8. Now this was a Tuesday with a difference–a thoroughly enjoyable and cleverly tricky puzzle, with unusually fresh and refreshing clues. I too stared at 8a until the penny finally dropped. I agree with Mr K’s observations about individual clues and his overall assessment, particularly with these podium-worthy clues: 8d, 9a, 8d–and 28d. Lots to like here, even with the problematic 11a, so thanks to Mr K and today’s setter (X-Type?). ** / ****

    Very interesting Toughie today, a nice challenge for me.

    1. I agree that 11a is a problem, and I meant to mention it above. Tried to even with an edit, which doesn’t seem to have worked. Must be my gizmo here. (Or perhaps it did. I seem to be very slow on the uptake this morning.)

      1. Robert, there has been a problem with editing (at least on some browsers) for a few weeks. The edit function does actually work when you click on Save but you don’t get taken back to the updated comments thread afterwards. If you simply refresh the blog page after clicking on Save you can see the changes you have made.

  9. Agree with everyone re 8a and 11a. Otherwise solved in good time and found it very enjoyable. The picture at 4d reminded me strongly of my late father in his latter years, bent over with his walking stick – extraordinary likeness! Thanks to Mr K and the setter.

  10. I agree with others that 11a seems to be the wrong way round. For the current structure of the clue to work I think it needs to say something like “… this equipment …”.
    My favourite clue was 8d.
    Many thanks to setter and Mr K.

    Donnybrook’s Toughie is highly recommended.

  11. An enjoyable Tuesday puzzle with a good start by going Up the Downs – ***/****.

    I don’t think I have seen that many four-letter, and three-letter, clues, or should it be answers, in a puzzle before. But, only 8a caused any problems.

    Candidates for favourite – 17a, 14d, and 28d – and the winner is 28d.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  12. 2*/3*. This seemed different for a Tuesday puzzle but it was light and good fun apart from 11a which seems to need “Just the opposite” to be added to the end of the clue.

    The surface of 30a conjured up a rather unpleasant image, and the lover in 9a was new to me.

    8d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to X-Type (if it is his creation) and to Mr K. Also a very Happy Birthday to ShropshireLad.

  13. I too have a huge question mark regarding 11a. Little 8a was my last one in and was driving me bonkers until I finally saw it.

    Spoiler: this story has a happy ending. Any doubts that Lola has returned to full health may be dispelled. This morning she came hurtling in, making a familiar cry. I know that sound she makes and behold, she dropped a tiny blackbird at my feet, and stood over it in triumph. She looked at me and looked at the bird. I looked at Lola and looked at the bird. The bird looked at both of us. I picked the little creature up in a towel, took it back outside, and placed it on a storage box, hoping for the best. It had a little look around and (hooray!) managed to fly into the nearest tree. I hope it recovers fully from the trauma. Lola is reclining in her new favourite position in the garden – the bottom shelf of a potting table. It gives her a good overview of her territory, so that she is ready to strike when more opportunities arise.

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Wings – Band On The Run.

    Thanks to the setter (despite 11a!) and The Celebrated Mr K.

    1. Phoebe used to have the most blood curdling cry when she brought something in, lizard, bird, whatever.

    2. Our Merlin used to bring birds during the night (through his cat flap), and when we opened the kitchen door in the morning, it was not unusual to find one or two birds flying around in there, that we had to then safely usher out. He never seemed to hurt them, just liked to bring them in as gifts I think.

  14. Some of it was enjoyable, so thanks to the setter for that, but it was a bit of an extreme curate’s egg as someone said, and the odd bit of sloppiness was slightly irritating. The 11a issue has been noted, 5d felt odd and, re 1d, although it can be found in the dictionary as aligned with “translation” (presumably based on those quick fix revising books in language or literature, I think it’s not about the result so much as the cheating or nefarious nature of cribbing. It’s a tool to get you there quicker, a jumping-off point, a back door, a sneaky copying.
    I didn’t really have a favourite.
    Thanks to Mr K for helping with the NE.

    1. Vis a vis No Mow May, we did follow the rules – just pre-empted the end of the month by 24 hours.
      The grass was really long and full of wild flowers, very pretty.

      1. I don’t mind little drifts of uncutness, but, since the year I found the back half of a rabbit (courtesy of vixens and Cubs, I assume) , I always wonder what I’m going to find under all that lushness …

      2. I have to cut my grass, I have three dogs and poo picking is difficult in long grass and they seem to delight in hiding it from me.

        1. I have to admit it was only part of our grass we left – what we grandly call the Upper Lawn because it rises or I like to call it the orchard as we have 2 plums, 3 apples and a fig. But I always have had delusions of grandeur! Some folk would recognise it is where all the soil was dumped from building the annexe.

    1. That is a fine idea. There must be six or seven from this blog, plus a few hundred who never comment.

        1. There are thousands of blog followers on this site. I agree, it would be nice to see where everyone is from.

  15. Not a barrowload of fun due to some rather contrived clues. Wrong bung-in for 24a (which had to be erased to accommodate 13d) made life a little difficult but with MrK’s help it did raise a giggle in the end. Thank you Messrs. Ron and K.

  16. Thanks as always to the setter and Mr K but I agree that 11a is a big hmmm. The construction of the clue leads one too 💰 IMHO. Anyway, it was an easy fix to make it work with 8d but…🦇

  17. Not my favourite I’m afraid. I think I confidently inserted more wrong answers than ever before. My last one in was 5d which irritated me as all the checkers were vowels or s. I cribbed to the extent of partially looking at Mr K’s hint to realise I was looking for R for the first letter. I was fixed on N being the base of Republican. Without further uncovering this led me to the answer but had no idea where the extra E came from. I did get 8a after a tussle once I realised what I was looking for. 4d took a time with the vowel checkers but with the help of the artist I got there so this is a favourite. Other favourites 15d and 9a. The latter was straight in with the checkers I had and familiar words, both the answer and the liver. I did wonder of some people may be foxed by the spelling as these days it is normally spelt as it sounds. Thank you Mr K and setter.

  18. All went well until I got to 8a which I never got. Agree with consensus on 11a. Thanks to Mr. K and today’s setter.

  19. On the difficult side for a Tuesday for me. 2.5* and *** enjoyment.
    Agree problems with 11a.
    8d was my COTD.
    Thanks to setter & Mr K for usual excellent review even if cat orientated.
    Am amazed that no one seems to have noticed that the lady golfer in the photo hint for 10d is not actually using a tee. Must be the fact the her grip looks a little on the weak side has distracted people!

    1. I noticed the absence of a tee, LROK. I definitely would not have done in my younger days as my attention would be on the lady or is that too “woke”?

  20. Late in today as I was attending my new granddaughter’s christening this morning at ‘The Church in the Sea’ aka St Cwyfan’s on Anglesey. I can’t say whether she is going to be ‘righteous’ but the sun certainly shone for her today! We just made it back across the stony causeway before the tide got high enough to cover it………..
    Really enjoyed today’s puzzle on my return – with the exception of 11a which I still maintain is ‘A over T’!
    8a held out until the very end but I thought it was a clever construction, my top two were 8&28d.

    Thanks to our setter (X-Type sounds about right) and to Mr K for the review – can’t wait to see more of your terrible twosome!
    No time for Donnybrook now – back out for the christening tea party, so he’ll have to wait for my return tonight.

    1. I just googled St Cwyfan’s, Jane. What an awesome sight–starkly splendid and quite beautiful. So glad you’ve finally had the christening and that all seems to have gone so well.

  21. Late to this one today & can’t say it was plain sailing. Add me to the throng who had an issue with 11a, thought the excellent 8d the pick of the clues & had 8a left as the last in.
    Thanks to the setter & to Mr K & birthday greetings to Shropshire Lad.

  22. At 11a, I too, put in the reverse – and that was after carefully considering the clue. So had to backtrack once other checkers came in. I also fell into the ‘Grub’ trap at 1d. I liked 5d but I do need to remember the mathematical interpretation of ‘base’. ***/***

  23. Greetings all – Yes, it is I: X-Type (well spotted, to those who did!). It seems the old adage is true – you can’t please everyone: some really liked it, others were lukewarm; but that’s the Public for you!

    Re a couple of your grumbles: the four letter word-lengths are not my doing: we are given a limited range of ready-made grids to use; we are not allowed to design our own grids….and with regard to 11Ac; my original was different, but our esteemed editor told ME that I had got it “the wrong way round” and so he made me reverse its structure – even when I thought my original was correct. So mea non culpa on that one. Anyhow: many thanks for your comments: and especially the good ones!

    1. Thanks for popping in X-Type.
      Perhaps CL will pop in and explain the “woke” thinking on 11a.

      1. Can anyone tell me what this new word “woke” means please. Too modern to be in any dictionary & seems to be used in lots of different contexts.

        1. As I see it the term means being aware, alert, up with modern thinking especially connected with race, gender and social issues.
          I am a somnambulant dinosaur I am not afraid to say.

          1. Thanks, LROK. I don’t do social media etc: so maybe that’s why I didn’t know what it meant. I too am a dinosaur, long may we remain so!!

            1. The “woke” are the people who want to erase our colonial past by pulling down statues. Thankfully, there seems to be a backlash developing.

              The last people who tried to erase history were the Nazis and we all know what happened there.

              You don’t erase history. You learn from it.

              1. Thanks for that explanation I had been wondering. Why on earth would anyone want to eliminate history, it has never worked in the past. It happened, no one can unhappen it. Dingbats.

    2. Sounds like you were the victim of overthinking leading to wrong-thinking by the editor, X-Type. Thanks for joining us and also for an enjoyable puzzle.

      1. My original was “Equipment to get back ill-gotten gains” – which I tend to think is the right way round… (But please don’t upset CL – he does a very good job and more often than not, he helps greatly with his edits…)

    3. My original was “Equipment to get back ill-gotten gains” – which I tend to think is the right way round… (But please don’t upset CL – he does a very good job and more often than not, he helps greatly with his edits…)

    4. Thanks for popping in, X-Type and explaining 11a. Pleased it was not your fault. :good:

      Great puzzle and thoroughly enjoyable.

    5. Thanks for popping in and thanks for a great puzzle. As my comment was one of the “good ones” I am the recipient of especial thanks which are gratefully received X-Type.

    6. Well you can tell the Ed we’re all on your side re 11a!
      Thanks for a very enjoyable puzzle. I was on your wavelength!

  24. Thanks for the explanation XType. It seems a lot of us had issues with that clue. It seems very unfair that you
    cannot use the grid of your choice but I suppose we all have crosses to bear! Thanks for a nice mixture of easy
    and more difficult clues and thanks to Mr. K for explaining how I got to 8d. I entered the correct answer but did not know why.
    I was also in the hush money camp!

  25. A very enjoyable puzzle in my opinion. The same thoughts on 11a and struggles with 8a as everyone else. I too choose 8d as a favourite.
    Thanks to X-Type and Mr K

  26. I have not commented for quite a while as I usually save the crossword for bedtime and often on into the early insomniac hours, but this afternoon I have spent a very pleasant **/**** time sitting in the garden in the sunshine here in Tilsit-Town & finishing unaided.
    Reading the comments about weeding I sympathize, but as I am nearly 80 I have been able to use the lockdown isolation to get the garden really in order and a pleasure to look at as I sit here! (Yes, smug!!)
    I really enjoyed todays crossword, I am happy with any style of setting, anagrams, a bit of GK, lurkers and all the many other types of clues. I generally finish unaided about 2 or 3 times a week. 2 or 3 with 3 that need hints ( often in one corner block,) and then Friday & Sunday when I struggle! But even when I struggle I still enjoy the effort. I enjoy the blog which I always read next morning especially during lockdown. I often wonder if those who complain because a puzzle is too hard are confusing the enjoyment of the struggle with satisfaction, or lack of, on completion?
    And finally, very pleased to follow Lola’s recovery. We had a cat flap for our Mindy, but a local “Garfield” Ginger Tom discovered that if he battered hard enough he could break the plastic hinges and get in to eat everything in sight.
    Best wishes for a speedy recovery to all the invalids. I can only very rarely guess the setter , but thanks today’s setter & Mr K and all the others who give me so much enjoyment.

    1. Well done cookie B. I wish I could get my garden back into a weed free state but being well over 80 I get too stiff after 1/2 hour to keep at it for long enough. Enjoy being smug!!

    2. I have used lockdown to work in the garden, Cookie B but I never seem to get it in a pristine state. I occasionally manage “ aesthetically acceptable if you don’t look to closely”! 🌸🦋 😀

  27. I thought today’s offering was difficult for a Tuesday, once again I was defeated by one clue, 17a, it’s not a word I ever use although I have heard of it in the distant past, I must try and slip it into a conversation sometime🥴. Enjoyed the challenge so thanks to all.

  28. I started out thinking it was as friendly as yesterday’s puzzle but quickly hit a brick wall. I never did solve 8a or 5d, and 8d was a bung in, couldn’t get it at all, even with the hint, huge clang when I tumbled. Even though 8d gets extra points for cleverness, Wallace’s dog gets fave status.
    Thank you X-Type for the workout, and Mr. K for the unravelling and help completing it.

  29. A pretty straightforward puzzle today despite my late start */****
    NE was last in with the 8a and 11a conundrums that all have brought up. I tend to think the 11a is clue is constructed correctly though. 8a I needed help on.
    Clues to like include 9a, 13a, 20a & 8d with 8d winner

    Thanks to setter and Mr K

  30. Thought 13a was a charade at first with E for base and M for male in which I happily entered the required R so was looking for some kind of deadly germ.
    13d made me laugh. I don’t think you can find a smaller garment than this.
    Never got 1d and would easily have settled for grub too.
    Thanks to X-Type for the challenge and to Mr K for the review.
    Happy birthday to Jim.

  31. Well having read X-type’s explanation of 11a I have a slightly different view of this puzzle. If I’d got the right answer in the first place it would have made the top North East corner go in a lot faster but I spent a long time trying to come up with a three letter word ending in L before it finally dawned on me what 8d had to be. 5d caused a bit of difficulty until my husband suggested the state probably wasn’t a place and then I dredged up some Shakespeare (hie thee hither…) to get my LOI, 8a. Apart from that tricky corner I found the rest went in quickly and easily so it was a shame about the 11a mis-edit (I may have made that word up). Thanks to Messrs K and X **/***

  32. All pretty straightforward apart from the frequently mentioned 8a and 11a. The more mischievous side of me made me wonder if Nicola Sturgeon does the Telegraph crossword and what she’d have thought of 20a. I somehow doubt it though. Favourite was 13a. Thanks to X-Type and Mr. K. Now off to play darts.

  33. Well I knew there would have to be payback for the two user friendly puzzles yesterday. This wasn’t impossible today, just difficult in parts. I wrote in 11a the other way round, which held me up at 9d for a while. I started to write 13a in 13d, and generally made a mess of the puzzle. But I did enjoy it all anyway. Thanks to X-type and Mr K.

  34. I loved this. Lots of great clues and somehow I seemed to be on the right wavelength today so it all went pretty swimmingly for me. Lots of anagrams to give me a good leg up although I can never understand why some answers jump out at me unscrambled straight off the page whilst others come only after I’ve covered the page with different jumbly messes trying to pin them down.
    Honourable mention to 9a- as BoatLady I had to love it.
    Marred only by the aforementioned 11a and needing hints for 8a and 20a.

  35. Worked out that 8d was HOT POTATO but had LOOT as answer to 11a. Surely TOOL as answer is a flawed construction? Anyone agree?

    1. Leslie, if you read all the other comments on the blog you will see that almost everyone (even the setter!) agrees that 11a is flawed.

        1. Welcome to the blog, Leslie. Please do keep commenting now you’ve broken cover.

          Most people on here refer to me as RD, but Dave is fine too – although there are a lot of Daves in various guises who contribute to the site.

  36. Just on the off chance that you pick up a comment a day later, I thought this was a fine crossword x-type. And I much prefer your version on the dreaded 11a!

    1. Thanks Mikep – and others with your comments about 11a. As you regulars know by now, I enjoy making up anagrams and other clues that have a humorous surface to them…
      See y’all next time!

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