DT 30134 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30134

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30134

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

Now that your clocks have gone back an hour we have the new solving time of 1pm for our summer months. This till gives us plenty of time to get everything sorted and scheduled for publication while we are fast asleep.

We were racing through this one until we came to the SE quadrant and then slowed down considerably.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.

Across

1a     Conceal source of flour in mixing guacamole (10)
CAMOUFLAGE : An anagram (mixing) of GUACAMOLE contains the first letter of flour.

6a     Responsibility of old star from the east (4)
ONUS : O(ld) and the reversal of the star around which we orbit.

10a     Obsession of crew needing first class to return (5)
MANIA : Crew as a verb and the reversal of the letter and number used for first class.

11a     Person who challenges paid examiner? (9)
PROTESTER : The three letter abbreviation for somebody paid for what they do, then another word for an examiner.

12a     The guy’s Italian worker must be uncertain (8)
HESITANT : The guy’s written as a personal pronoun with the ‘S, then IT(alian) and a worker insect.

13a     Assault at filming location (5)
ONSET : The answer split 2,3 can mean ‘at filming location’.

15a     Family type looking embarrassed (7)
KINDRED : A type or variety and the colour associated with looking embarrassed.

17a     Turner does better than Brown (7)
CAPSTAN : Does better than or surpasses and then a light brown colour.

19a     Japanese object, being unusually tense about part of Europe (7)
NETSUKE : The part of Europe where most of you live is enclosed by an anagram (unusually) of TENSE. 

21a     Illusions of motorway madness beginning to surface (7)
MIRAGES : UK’s main motorway, then madness or anger is followed by the first letter of surface.

22a     Move like a snake casting skin, being slim and flexible (5)
LITHE : Start with a word meaning move like a snake and remove the first and last letters (casting skin).

24a     Daring dean occasionally seen in a university town (8)
AUDACITY : String together ‘A’ from the clue, U(niversity), the first and third letters of dean and a large town.

27a     Almost time, following everybody in fading light (9)
NIGHTFALL : Almost or imminent, then T(ime), F(ollowing) and a word for everybody.

28a     Steer clear of a space that’s empty (5)
AVOID : ‘A’ from the clue and an empty space.

29a     Lively spot across river (4)
SPRY : Spot or observe contains R(iver).

30a     Thinking back, caught stopping 11 in trouble (10)
RETROSPECT : An anagram (in trouble) of the answer to 11a contains the cricket abbreviation for caught.

Down

1d     Company doctor’s search (4)
COMB : The abbreviation for company and a doctor’s qualification.

2d     Potassium found in bread loaf and pulse (6,3)
MONKEY NUT : What bread is a slang word for contains the chemical symbol for potassium, and then an alternative slang word for what is sometimes called a loaf.

3d     A measure of rum — a mild sort of taste (5)
UMAMI : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

4d     Scheme adopted by youth for region of the north (7)
LAPLAND : A scheme or design is enclosed by a young male.

5d     Christian heretic may be good with no detailed criticism (7)
GNOSTIC : G(ood) then ‘NO’ from the clue and a term for criticism with the last letter removed (detailed).

7d     Observes attack from the South (5)
NOTES : The answer when reversed and split 3,2 could be attack.

8d     Examine rise in cuts planned (10)
SCRUTINISE : An anagram (planned) of RISE IN CUTS.

9d     Not feeling good at a discount (5,3)
BELOW PAR : A double definition.

14d     Mean people hide strikers once (10)
SKINFLINTS : Hide as an animal’s covering and an old means of creating sparks.

16d     Course must include permit for game (8)
ROULETTE : A course or direction of travel contains permit or allow.

18d     Line up drunk engineers to cover work (9)
TIGHTROPE : Drunk or squiffy, then army engineers surround an artistic work.

20d     Gentleman at expecting to take issue (7)
EMANATE : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

21d     Mould spreading after dropping contents in sections (7)
MODULAR : An anagram (spreading) of MOULD and then the first and last letters of after (dropping contents).

23d     Sort of economy that sees end of everything during row? (5)
TIGER : A row or level contains the final letter of everything.

25d     Men could be hot wearing hats (5)
CHAPS : A common type of hats contains H(ot).

26d     Make changes, having turned up link across Germany (4)
EDIT : The IVR code for Germany is inside the reversal of a link or something that joins.

24a is our favourite this week.

Quickie pun    wry    +    tie    +    dear    =    right idea

44 comments on “DT 30134
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  1. Largely straightforward and very enjoyable, all GK very fairly clued.
    Couldn’t make much sense of the surface read at 20d.
    I liked the 11/30 linked clues but my top three are 17a plus 23&25d.
    Many thanks to Jay (I presume) and the 2Ks.

    Cracking (and proper) Robyn Toughie by the way.

  2. I couldn’t make sense of the surface of 20d either, but that was the only slight flaw in an otherwise first rate and most entertaining puzzle. 17a was my particular favourite, ahead of 22a.

    Thanks to the three birds. I also thought today’s Toughie was really good.

  3. This really was a superb puzzle.
    Certainly with enough grit to get the grey matter working.
    Needed to experiment with letters to get 19a, in so doing accidentally saw the correct word, new to me.
    An overcrowded podium, 11, 15 and 17a and 5, 14 and 18 and 23d.
    The penultimate just taking gold.
    Many thanks Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  4. Once completed, I had the feeling that I had taken longer to solve this than I should have done. Perhaps I was not firing on all cylinders – 3.5*/3.5*

    I agree with StephenL that the surface read of 20d is somewhat odd.

    Candidates for favourite – 6a, 28a, 15a, and 3d – and the winner is 15a.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  5. I really enjoyed this especially as my first look at Robyn’s Toughie shouts “Impossible”
    There were some lovely clues. 24a is already mentioned so I’ll nominate 14d as my COTD

  6. Sailed through this after my third attempt to spell 1a – don’t know what was wrong with me. One of those occasions where the harder you try, the stranger it looks. Liked lots of clues, especially 19a, 5d and 18d. Thanks as always to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  7. Another thoroughly enjoyable gem by Jay (I too presume), with his usual exciting brand of wordplay. My favourites are 18d (very clever, that one), 5d, & 21d, with the 11/30a connection and 17a getting honourable mentions. Many thanks to the Kiwis and Jay. 2.5*/4*

    I too thought that the Robyn Toughie was quite splendid.

  8. A solid if unspectacular puzzle today. The 20d surface seemed poor to me also & didn’t particularly care for 7d&13a using the same 5 letters. Never heard of 19a but the wordplay was thankfully clear – immediately reminded me of Terence’s comments on obscurity free puzzles – thankfully free of 17th century Japanese miniature art. The SE the last quadrant to yield with 30a last in – along with 9&23d my top 3.
    Another shout out for Robyn’s Toughie.
    Thanks to Jay & 2Ks.

    1. Almost three years ago, Jane encouraged me to read Edmund de Waal’s wonderful The Hare with Amber Eyes–with the 19a being its principal focus, but there’s a whole lot more than that there to enjoy. Hello, Jane, if you’re up to reading the comments yet. Hope you’re doing much better now.

      1. I read his book too Robert which helped 19a. I found 18d tricky and needed the hints to help. So thankyou hinters and setter. Hope you’re recovering Jane.

  9. SE corner, particularly the odd surface of 20, slowed me down somewhat on the way to completing this very enjoyable puzzle. My podium places go to 17A (for the gold), 14D and 20D, my last one in. Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

    Dare I try the toughie, I wonder?

  10. Loved this one! Mostly straightforward but with some more quirky clues – a really Goldilocks puzzle – just right!
    Thank you.

  11. My homework after my first chemistry lesson at the grammar school many many years ago was to learn the periodic table. My mum made it such fun that night that I can still remember most of the symbols. She was full of little ditties to help me remember. PK nuts I will never forget. Thanks for the pic in 2d 2ks. 9d threw me for a while as I put in “right off”. I’m sure it fits, but no doubt someone will tell me I’m wrong. Another great puzzle today. Thanks go to Jay and the 2ks.

  12. Good light straightforward fare, with only the Japanese object giving pause for thought, however it was all so fairly clued that one cannot complain – some odd surfaces though. 17a my COTD.

    1.5* / 3*

    Many thanks to Jay and of course to the 2Ks

  13. Like others 19a required a bit of experimentation to crack & I found the surface of 20d strange. 2d was my favourite. Thanks to the 2Ks and today’s setter.

  14. Like the Kiwis, I moved speedily down the puzzle until I reached rhe SW, where the clues were more impenetrable. I wondered if it was a jay puzzle at first as some of the clues lacked the usual skooth surface read. There were lots of good lego clues, notably 21d and 20d was a good lurker. Thanks to the aKiwis for the hints and tobtheccompiler

  15. No real hold-ups (or should that be holds-up?) but I had my usual dither about the spelling of 1a.
    19a used to be regularly mentioned on the Antiques Roadshow so that wasn’t a problem.
    My favourite clue was 14d.
    Many thanks to our setter and the 2Ks.

    1. G, 19a. Indeed, 19a’s still appear quite often on the various antiques-related shows on TV. Apergne, etui and some other “obscure” antiques-terms do crop up in cryptic clues every now and then.

  16. By no means a walk in the park but very reasonably clued. I do however see that I was not alone in finding 20a clue obtuse even when realising it was a lurker hence it was my last to fall. Like RC and Jane 19a brought Edmund de Waal’s lovely book immediately to mind. My Fav was the simple 17a. Thank you Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  17. A very nice Wednesday puzzle. Fine clues, average-ish difficulty and a pleasing solve. Fav; 18d. 2.5*/3.5*.

    *I went shopping in Buxton this morning and wandered into a discount store which sells clothes and all sorts of miscellaneous household/office stuff. I was drawn to a stack of items on a bottom shelf – GENERAL PURPOSE TARPAULINS, and only £2.00 each! And the size of these “tarpaulins”: 1.65m x 1.100m or, in the old money, about 5′ 5″ x 3′ 7″. The size of a very modest tablecloth maybe?
    Now, I know that taurpaulin is a type of durable waterproof cloth, but my idea of “a” tarpaulin is something like: a large, heavy-duty waterproof sheet big enough to maybe cover the back of a truck or a sizeable stack of timber on a building-site, or whatever. Can a very small piece of plastic sheeting be really called a “tarpaulin”? Isn’t it “stretching” the meaning to the limit (or should that be “condensing”)?

  18. Super puzzle. This is so far a much better week for back pagers.
    Two new words today in 19a and 3d and my favs were 1a and 17a.
    Thx to all
    ***/****

  19. A very nice puzzle, but I’m surprised that both the setter and the crossword editor didn’t have misgivings about 20d.

    Maybe a late change from an original clue?

    1. S XYZ, 20d. It’s not unknown for DT cryptics, especially Toughies, to include the odd clue with a clunky or nonsensical/bizarre surface. But this one could have easily been improved (at least a bit) by something like: Gentleman at Euro 22 …

      Maybe the gentleman is attending (at) “expecting” (pregnancy) and is about to take issue (the baby) away???

  20. Just back from coffee and cake after spending some hours with Mrs RD’s mum, who is 100 today. She has a very nice card from King Charles on display.

    My rating is 2*/4* for a light but enjoyable puzzle apart from 20d’s bizarre surface. It also seemed a bit strange to have “onset” and the reverse of “set on” as intersecting answers.

    My favourite was 24a.

    Many thanks to three birds.

    1. Happy, happy birthday, Mrs. RD’s Mum! That is quite an achievement, 100 years almost two lifetimes. Here’s to many more.

  21. I always enjoy Jay crosswords – I nearly always find them quite difficult too, just like today’s.
    I’d met before but forgotten 17 and 19a and 5d.
    Getting answers wrong are never helpful, specially one that seemed completely reasonable – 13a = shoot?
    I’ve never heard of 23d but it had to be right.
    I liked 12 and 21a and 18 and 21d. My favourite was 2d.
    Thanks to Jay and to the K’s.

  22. I must say I agree with Senf as I thought this took me way longer than it should have done. 4*/3* for me.

    Several words I did not know such as 19a, 3d & 5d as well as the definition for 2d & 23d … and all those issues made things that much harder.
    Seemed more like a Logman puzzle than a ‘gentle Jay’ today.

    Favourites include 17a, 21a, 28a & 21d — with winner 21a

    Thanks to Logman Jay and 2 K’s

  23. Morning all.
    We were expecting to see some discussion here on whether, in these post-Brexit days, the surface reading of 19a was correct. Obviously everyone, including us, is quite happy that it is although we did a bit of Google checking to be sure. We even researched whether a different nation in eastern Europe that is much in the news lately uses the same letters in any way. It appears not to. It gave us an interesting post-solving diversion though.
    Cheers.

  24. I greatly enjoyed this puzzle. It was very good to finish unaided (after last week). Although there are many excellent clues I have picked out 16d, 18d, 17a, 22a, 24a. 2d took some work to figure out.19a reminds me me of one of my favourite books: The Hare with Amber Eyes by E de Waal. Superb.

  25. Can’t remember when I last enjoyed a Jay puzzle. Can usually get between a third and two thirds of the clues but finding the others impenetrable to my understanding of the English language. Still I am a Yorkshireman and many unfortunate not to be born in God’s own county find the same of us.

    Thanks to the 2Ks and Jay.

  26. I enjoyed today’s puzzle completed in two halves. Didn’t get 19a (had to consult the hints at the end) but could picture them from Antiques Roadshow and an episode of Midsummer Murders! A very wet and windy afternoon in the NW. Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  27. Nice crossword but I found it quite tricky in places ***/**** 😃 3d and 19a were also new words for me 😳 Favourites were 17a, 22a & 4d 👍 Thanks to the 2x Ks and to Jay

  28. Enjoyed today’s puzzles and completed without the hints. A couple of you suggested it took you longer than you thought – and I know we don’t discuss times on here. But the solving times given on the (new) crossword page seem a little wonky today. It told me I had taken 50 minutes to do this cryptic, gosh time does go quickly. When I finished the quicky it told me I had done it in 30 seconds, that WOULD be a record!

  29. Re 24a, “town” and “city” tend to be used interchangeably but in formal terms in the UK they are not the same thing. A town does not legally become a city unless and until it has been granted that status by the Monarch.

  30. New words in 3d and 19a as with others. I worked out 3d but tried googling “neteuse japanese meaning” and the correct word came up in the results. I suppose that means a dnf.

    A good solve though.

    Thanks to all.

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