Sunday Toughie 38 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
Be the first to leave a comment 

Sunday Toughie 38

Sunday Toughie No 38 by Zandio

Review by Sloop John Bee

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

This puzzle was published on the 16th of October 2022





1a Finally we can’t forget ‘Carry On’ with aunt’s bottle exploding (4,3,3,5)
LAST BUT NOT LEAST: A synonym of ‘Carry on’ or endure LAST, and an anagram of aunt’s bottle. A phrasal synonym of finally to start with.

9a One should teach about provincial painting, perhaps retrospectively (7)
TRAINER: About indicates RE, the province of Northern Ireland NI, painting gives us ART and retrospectively allows you to reverse them for a trainer who teaches.

10a Ticket for Versailles, the water spectacle (7)
TABLEAU: A small bit of a ticket to admit the bearer TAB, and how someone from Versailles may say the water, L’EAU for a TABLEAU or spectacle.

11a Not bothered with run? This should suit (4,5)
EASY CHAIR: a nice little all in one. To be not bothered or EASY, and to run a meeting perhaps CHAIR an EASY CHAIR a comfortable seat for one who can’t be bothered with running.

12a Truss, optionally reversible, used by runner to tighten belt (5)
SKIMP: Topically political from Zandio. The runner that slides across snow and the position held by our current premier. Optionally reversible because the two letters required can be used either way to indicate her elected status in parliament or the leadership role that she currently holds. How much longer she keeps either title is open to debate but not here. A week is a long time in politics!© H.Wilson. 

13a Establish fact number one should be rebutted (7)
STATION: An abbreviated numerical fact STAT, and a reversal (rebutted) of an abbreviated number one No1 give us STATION to perhaps establish a guard in position.

15a Perform piano backing with troupe’s online show (7)
PODCAST: To perform or DO and P for piano are reversed on a troupe or CAST to give us a PODCAST an audio performance available online. (The Infinite Monkey Cage with Prof. Brian Cox is my current podcast of choice)

17a Mumbling stuff in bed (7)
RHUBARB: stuff that grows in a bed of (usually horse manure) is also the term for offstage mumbling incoherent to the audience.

19a Poles acquiring company, lucky things (7)
MASCOTS: Poles or MASTS acquire Co for Company for lucky MASCOTS.

21a One’s turned or will turn 5 (5)
ROTOR: Something that turns is a palindromic conditional conjunction OR and the sort of hill or rocky height that 5d signifies TOR.

23a Enjoy a retro view of bizarre Mini scenario (9)
REMINISCE: To enjoy a retro view or to look back fondly is a lurker (of) hidden in the last three words.

25a Person waiting in front of prison cheers when one is incarcerated (7) BARISTA:
The person who may prepare and serve your 7d. The character that looks like one goes in the metal poles that a prison defines BAR(I)S followed by a cheerful thank you TA.

26a Very much at sea from cocaine? (7)
OCEANIC: An anagram (from) Cocaine.

27a Give up article going into some football draw with the Spanish (5,2,3,5)
THROW IN THE TOWEL: How a footballer may get the ball back into play THROW-IN, a definite article THE, to draw or drag TOW and how someone Spanish would say the same article EL.


1d What has five or two more itself? (7)
LETTERS: Not entirely sure I have got this, I was expecting the first word to have five characters but if you think of ‘what has’ as a definition by example we have seven characters but only five different ones. The term for those characters similarly has seven characters but only five different ones. As Gazza said in the hints probably more of a riddle than a cryptic crossword clue but checkers helped me see the answer. Thanks also to Gazza who has volunteered to do the hinty blog and review for Toughie 40 as I expect to be Hors-de-Combat after Elgar’s birthday bash.

2d Special unit’s OK intervening splitting up boozers (5)
SOAKS: A special military unit known by its initials, The Special Air Service or SAS, intervenes around OK.  SOAKS, boozers who drink to excess.

3d Take a scalpel to job one: chin augmentation — it’s delicate (4,5)
BONE CHINA: another lurker (take a scalpel to) produce some delicate pottery.

4d Area of water being evacuated by Portugal (7)
TERRAIN:  a water being TERRAPIN, evacuates the P for Portugal to leave an area or TERRAIN.

5d Unpopular group rocks, not all appearing for show (7)
OUTCROP: Unpopular or not ‘in’ OUT and most of a group or collection of a harvest CROPS.

6d Compact pads which sleepers may occupy (5)
LOBES: These sleepers are small comfortable earrings that go in the pads of the ears before bed.

7d Black resident of Martha’s Vineyard maybe needs love (9)
AMERICANO: A resident of Martha’s Vineyard an AMERICAN, and the character that love represents in a tennis score O. A long over-diluted (IMO) milk-free beverage served without milk (and therefore black) by a 25a.

8d Broadcast made by space traveller supporting president (7)
TRUMPET: our usual cinematic space traveller E. T. supports the former president TRUMP.

14d Member of union that’s moonlighting? (9)
ADULTERER: Moonlighting is a job outside the norm. If a member of the union of marriage has a bit on the side he (or she) would be committing this sin.

16d Purge of SF incited outburst (9)
DISINFECT: To purge of germs, DISINFECT is an anagram (outburst) of SF incited.

17d Food choice leads to scrap (7)
RAREBIT: Something choice or RARE is followed by (leads to) a scrap or BIT to give us some fancy cheese on toast RAREBIT.

18d Steal from bank over river, getting clear (7)
BARGAIN: I think it is a bank or shoal at a river mouth BAR and to clear is profit or GAIN. BARGAIN, such a good price for something that it may be considered a steal at the price.

19d Fly-by-night getting married in the morning — first whopper! (7) MAMMOTH:
the letter that indicates marriage M, and the morning or ante meridian AM, are followed by something that flies at night MOTH for something extremely large.

20d Outline of Elvis Concerto’s uplifting but hit-and-miss (7)
STENCIL: A reversal (uplifting in a down clue) and alternating letters (hit-and-miss) give us STENCIL an outline to aid the reproduction of a design.

22d Woolly sweater unravelling at hem again … (5)
RESEW: An anagram (woolly) of SWEatER after you have removed (unravelling) AT.

24d … and more than half of that’s wrapped in tissue (5) SINEW:
Three-fifths of the previous solution SEW wrapped around IN from the clue would give this connective tissue that joins muscle to bone.

Join the Conversation, Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 2 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video, document, spreadsheet, interactive, text, archive, code, other. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop file here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.