DT 30212 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30212

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30212

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

What has happened to New Zealand’s weather! The northern half of the North Island has been inundated lately. Auckland has had 8 times as much rain as normal in January and most of it fell in one huge dollop last weekend. Four deaths, thousands of homes flooded or damaged with landslips, many roads closed, all Auckland schools shut for a week and it just goes on and on. These are tropical weather systems that until recently always stayed well to the north of NZ but now seem to be coming right into our region.

We are far enough south on the island to have dodged most of it and just hope that this situation will continue. Our thoughts go out to all of those Kiwis north of us whose lives have been so disrupted.

Meanwhile another enjoyable Wednesday puzzle from Jay to deal with.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Put down drink (6)
SQUASH : A double definition. The drink usually contains citrus.

5a     The lad’s in a sort of club that’s tacky (8)
ADHESIVE : The lad’s written as a pronoun with ‘S is inside ‘A’ from the clue and a sort of club that coincidentally could be described as tacky.

9a     Ramblers may find such a place of comfort (3,2,5)
BED OF ROSES : An all-in-one clue with the definition being the last three words. These ramblers are not walkers.

10a     Milk pinched from upright moralist? (4)
PRIG : Remove a type of long-keeping milk from the word upright.

11a     Period that may be racist as is rewritten (8)
TRIASSIC : An anagram (rewritten) of RACIST IS. (An error in the clue when first published has now been amended on-line)

12a     Call wearing the Spanish coat (6)
ENAMEL : Call or title enclosed by the Spanish definite article.

13a     Surrealist needing energy for a retail outlet (4)
DELI : Start with a Spanish surrealist artist and replace his ‘A’ with E(nergy).

15a     Rough sailor varies at sea (8)
ABRASIVE : The two letters for a sailor and an anagram (at sea) of VARIES.

18a     Short sweet dish alternatively known as main course (8)
MOUSSAKA : Remove the last letter from a blancmange-like sweet dish and then the three letters for ‘alternatively known as’.

19a     Wrong women in a line (4)
AWRY : ‘A’ from the clue and a train line surround W(omen).

21a     Group that’s not working provide a counterbalance (6)
OFFSET : Not working or not in operation is followed by a group who might be jetters.

23a     Reveal a new grammatical term before church (8)
ANNOUNCE : String together ‘A’ from the clue, N(ew), a grammatical naming word and the Anglican Church.

25a     16 perhaps losing head as result of injury (4)
SCAR : Remove the first letter from what is probably the best known entertainment industry 16d.

26a     Sinister business that’s apparent throughout the universe (4,6)
DARK MATTER : Sinister or undercover and then business or concern.

27a     Money going with teachers for sugary snack (8)
DOUGHNUT : A slang word for money and then the industrial organisation that teachers belong to.

28a     Try blocking extremely serious cuts (6)
SHEARS : Try in a court of law is surrounded by (blocked by) the first and last letters (extremely) of serious.


2d     Singular ruin (5)
QUEER : A double definition. ‘Ruin’ is most commonly seen in the expression ‘xxxxx one’s pitch’.

3d     Inconsistencies as some nail a criminal (9)
ANOMALIES : An anagram (criminal) of SOME NAIL A.

4d     This is why broadcast is contrary to religious belief (6)
HERESY : A (4’1) way of saying ‘this is’ and then the letter that sounds like (broadcast) why.

5d     Upset to see poll down? (2,4,2,1,6)
AS SICK AS A PARROT : The poll here has nothing to do with elections.

6d     Somewhere to stay could be shortly arranged — outside Spain (8)
HOSTELRY : An anagram (arranged) of SHORTLY contains the IVR code for Spain.

7d     Pair oddly seen in marine tint (5)
SEPIA : Another word for marine contains the first and third letters of pair.

8d     Weakness accepting nothing finished in narration (5-4)
VOICE-OVER : A weakness or sin contains the letter that looks like nothing, then finished or ended.

14d     Former love keeps away here in France by virtue of job (2,7)
EX OFFICIO : In the order they appear in the clue we have a prefix meaning former, a three letter word meaning away, the French word meaning here, and finally, the tennis score love.

16d     Act of law covering alien image (9)
STATUETTE : An act of law passed by Parliament surrounds crossword’s favourite alien.

17d     Man stood trembling, seeing such a creature (8)
MASTODON : An anagram (trembling) of MAN STOOD.

20d     Point, welcoming North American hatred (6)
ANIMUS : Point or goal contains N(orth) then the two letter abbreviation for American.

22d     Quiet game, golf — show indifference (5)
SHRUG : The two letter instruction to be quiet, then NZ’s national game and golf in the phonetic alphabet.

24d     Acquit Conservative writer and illustrator (5)
CLEAR : C(onservative) with the writer and illustrator of ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’.

5d is our favourite this week.

Quickie pun    ease    +    tanglier    =    East Anglia

103 comments on “DT 30212
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  1. 2.5*/4.5*. Great fun, with the NW corner proving slightly more challenging than the rest, partly because the anagram fodder in 11a doesn’t yield the answer. Perhaps “as” is a misprint for “is”?

    Many thanks to the three birds.

    1. I was held up in the NW corner due to the incorrect anagram fodder in 11a. The clue has now been amended in the on-line Puzzles sites to:
      Period that may be racist is rewritten (8)

  2. On first read through thought this puzzle was going to be problematic. However all began to fall into place steadily. 5 down was my favourite clue and raised a guffaw or two.

  3. Surely there is an error in 11a – there are not two letter As in the solution as I spell the word – at least it appears to be wrongly printed in my copy of the DT. I think AS should be IS maybe?

      1. Sorry Shropshirebloke. Just rechecked and my copy is the same as yours! Bizarre that I never noticed and embarrassingly sloppy of me. I saw the solution and never noticed the excess of a’s……

        1. 😁👍No worries, NAS. A most enjoyable puzzle though, despite that minor error. Lots of smiles along the way. Thanks to today’s setter & 2Ks.

  4. It took me a long time to break into the NW, although the rest of this puzzle was fairly straightforward. Once the penny dropped 11a anda and 4d were my favourite clues, followed closeky by1a. Thanks to the Kiwis for the hints and to the compiler.

  5. This may well be the work of our old friend The Don, had more than one of his traits.
    I was held up in the NW for (quite) a while, where 2d can be justified but is hardly used in either context these days, and 11a has been explained above, rather took the shine off it.
    The rest was pretty straightforward and enjoyable.
    My favourite was 10a followed by 27a&7d.
    Many thanks to the setter and the Ks.

  6. Another fun puzzle, 5d made me smile-spot on pic from 2K.
    Agree with the**/****.
    I too was puzzled by 11a, assume an error.
    Favourite was 17d for the surface.

  7. Enjoyable but let down, I thought, by the error in the original 11a clue – thanks to the setter and 2Ks.
    My ticks went to 1a, 26a and 4d.

  8. Sorry to hear about the weather problems in NZ from the flightless ones. I hope the weather patterns down there stabilise soon. In the meantime, it’s a bright, bright sunshiney day here in south west London and I thought we had a puzzle to match. Particularly enjoyed 9a and my COTD 10a, although as far as milk is concerned it’s semi-skimmed all the way for me. Thanks to the setter for the crossword and the 2Kiwis for the hints.

    1. No way! It’s a crime to call that red and green topped liquid ‘milk’.
      It’s like orange juice without bits! Give me good old proper full fat milk any day !🤭

        1. I prefer semi-skimmed milk, nothing to do with calories. I buy 4 pints of blue-top and add 1 1/2 pints of water and the result tastes/performs just like green-top. And you get 5 1/2 pints for the price of 4. No idea how this alters the calorie value, but I’m only interested in the taste/texture.

          1. I don’t drink cow’s milk at all as I’m unable to tolerate the stuff. Tea and coffee are black , porridge is made wirh water. Strangely, I have no problem with eating cheese; apparently the more liquid the dairy product, the faster gastro intestinal transit and the more problems it gives me.

            1. I don’t have milk at all preferring both coffee and tea black. It stems from my days as a general practitioner. My nursing staff would regularly let the milk go off and I got fed up with it all. The only way to ensure the milk wasn’t off was to have none. I have grown to like it.

              1. I only buy 96% fat free milk, for that read ‘full fat’, what’s the problem unless you’re lactose intolerant.

  9. The NW quadrant was my last to fall too, but that was the only mild hiccup in an otherwise smooth and enjoyable solve. 27a was my favourite clue, ahead of 17d.

    My thanks to Jay and the 2 Ks.

    1. I’m halfway through ‘The Little Wartime Library’ and really enjoying it – glad you suggested adding it to my reading list.

      1. When I took the book back to the library, I said how much I’d enjoyed it, so they put it on the ‘recommended’ shelf

      2. ‘TLWL’ not yet released over here, scheduled date is the 21st of this (new) month. The Winnipeg Library seems to have underestimated demand as the on-line system tells me there is only one copy on order and I am 47th (out of 47) in the queue to borrow it – that translates to something like a wait of two years or more.

        I might help the library out by buying the book and donating it to the library when I have read it.

  10. Held up by the NW corner….I’m not usually one to criticise, but not keen on 2d…I only ‘got’ 9a from the hint and have gone from thinking it a v poor clue to seeing it as quite clever….

  11. Couple of hiccoughs in the NW but a very enjoyable puzzle to work through.
    Favourite has to be the humorous 5d with 9a & 4d close behind. Definite tooth-sucking where the second word of the Quickie pun is concerned!

    Thanks to Jay and to our 2Ks – hope you continue to avoid the worst of the torrents.

  12. Not only the blatant mistake in 11a , but I didn’t much like 2d or 4d either in terms of parsing . NW corner only difficult because of poor clues .

  13. Hmm, it’s all been said about 11a, so, apart from that, for me, Jay with more than a soupçon of Logman – ***/****

    Candidates for favourite – 9a, 23a, 5d, and 22d – and the winner is 9a.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  14. Light and absolutely cracking puzzle, not a duff (online printout) clue in sight, one of the best and most enjoyable puzzles for a while. COTD the wonderful 5d, with Hon Mentions to 10a, 4d, 17d & 20d.

    1.5* / 4.5*

    Many thanks to Jay and to the 2Ks – hope you stay dry, or if not, then that you continue to escape the worst of the wet!

  15. Greetings from another lovely day in the DHLawrence countryside.

    As a long term lurker, I love the blog which inspires, amuses and educates me. Although I attempt the crossword each day, I leave the checking and reading of the comments until early the following morning. That way I do not miss anything! I enjoy everyone’s contribution and feel a special affinity with Robert and Daisygirl as I realise they are my contemporaries.

    Today I am making steady progress but whether I finish or not is uncertain.
    Thank you to all involved with this blog.

    1. Like Daisygirl, the lovely lady of a certain age who does the splits for us every so often, let me add my welcome to my affinity brother. Some days I’m still 29, Sukay.

  16. 5d Never heard of poll for polly so that was one of the last in. 26a I’m not sure that physicists would agree that it’s apparent, it’s a theory that hasn’t been detected or proved to be real and is certainly not understood!

  17. Went well until the NW and, to my shame, 5d.
    Completed eventually, unaided, letters experimentation apart.
    I am not one to argue with the BRB, Heaven forbid, but 2d and part of 20d?
    Still, there we are.
    Big smile at 27a.
    4d naughty and very clever.
    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  18. A bit of a struggle but enjoyable, nevertheless. I had the same problems with 11a as others but didn’t consider a misprint. Plenty to like and my favourites were 9a (lovely PDM), 18a (liked the use of “alternatively known as”) and 27a (rather topical today with about 80% out on strike). My COTD is the sick parrot at 5d.

    Many thanks to Jay for the fun challenge and to the 2Ks for the hints. I hope your weather settles down soon. What a catastrophe – I think weather the world over is going mad.

    Meanwhile, it’s sunny with a cold wind in The Marches. At least the mud is drying making walking easier.

    I hope the illustration at the 1a hint is without bits or Terence may not visit today. :grin:

  19. For me somewhat ruined by the stupidest clue I think I have ever seen in 10a, words fail me in its inanity.
    Apart that that it was a pleasant exercise.
    Thx for the hints

    1. Oh Brian, you disappoint me. I thought it was very clever. Who remembers when real milk was left on the doorstep in glass bottles and the cream settled in a thick layer on the top? Oh happy days.

      1. Oh happy days.indeed DG and added to that, how about the third of a pint bottle of milk we used to have at school? Sometimes in the winter the cream froze like an iced lolly and stuck out of the bottle, or on other occasions the birds had pecked holes in some of the caps in order to pinch some cream.

      2. Yes, and sometimes pesky birds pecked through the tin foil caps and pinched some of the cream! Rather unhygienic when you think back …

      3. We are fortunate that a local farm sells its own milk from a dispensing machine at the top of its drive. Not cheap but only very lightly pasteurised and never more than a few hours out of the cow! The best thing about it? The thick creamy layer that settles at the top after a couple of days, even now in mid-winter: absolutely delicious on cereal. The milk is wonderful in coffee but too rich for tea. Very happy to pay the farm a significant premium over both what it gets per litre from the dairy and what we would pay in a supermarket.

      4. Ah Daisy girl, I just had to come out of my Gloucestershire closet and tell you that every morning at 2.30 am, milk in glass bottles arrives on my doorstep with the cream on top just waiting for my cornflakes. I am afraid even though I am more mature than you and Robert my brain is getting slower and I found todays crossword quite difficult and still struggling with the Spanish coat. .

    2. On the contrary Brian, it is a brilliant clue. Have you forgotten – this is a cryptic puzzle when all is said and done?

  20. Not as good as yesterday’s I didn’t think and reckon **/***. Needed the 2K’s to understand the answer to 10a. Very clever and thanks. 5&18d my favourites. Thanks to the setter. Not sure who.

  21. Oh my goodness – just imagine 1a with BITS IN IT! (shudders)

    Like many others I sailed serenely until coming up against the north-west. However, after a battle against the waves, I reached the harbour of completion.

    Thanks to the setter and The TwoKays

  22. Shame about the misprint at 11a & wasn’t keen on 2d either but the rest of it was thoroughly enjoyable. My money says it’s a Jay production. The golf today at Rand Park was a good bit better than Monday but still not great so I guess 22d ought to be my pick of the clues. Ticks also for 10&18a plus 4 (my real pick),5&8d.
    Thanks to the setter & 2Ks.

  23. Bucking the trend I found this quite difficult today, but none the less enjoyable for that. Took me ages to get a foothold. Eventually got going in the NE corner and worked my way anticlockwise around the grid, needing help to complete the NW quarter. I especially liked 9a, 26a, 6d, 20d and today’s favourite 14d. Thanks to Jay and to the 2Kiwis for their hints in the NW corner.

    1. Just ignore this altogether. Got myself in a real muddle trying to amend the original only to find it had already done it. One of those senior moments with regard to the wonders of technology!!

  24. Fortunately, my 11a has ‘is’ and not ‘as’. I therefore feel much better about this marvellous puzzle than many others do, and I simply don’t have enough superlatives to do it justice. Big winners, with ticks everywhere: 4d, 16d/25a, 26a, 20d, 8d–with special awards, for their laughter quotient, to 1a, 18a, and 5d. Thanks to the Kiwis and Jay. **/*****

  25. Got bogged down in the NW until I twigged the obvious answer at 1a! IMHO not the best Wednesday offering for a while, but probably down to my own inability to get on wavelength today.


    Fav 5d for the misdirection & LOI 2d after finally spotting 1a.

    Thanks to the setter & the 2Kiwis

  26. Assuming this is a Jay puzzle I managed this one pretty much ok. However new words for me in 11a & 20a.

    Overall 2.5/3.5* for me.

    Favourites include 1a, 9a, 26a, 27a & 16d with no clear winner today for me but if forced to pick one … 26a

    Thanks to the 3 birds for puzzle and hints.

  27. I actually had marked 10a as my biggest daisy, with 9&16 close behind. Thanks to the setter for the amusement and to the two K’s for sorting out the pesky 2d&11a clues. George’s party was a Huge success, senior grandson motored down after a days work at JLR and it was a fabulous surprise. Having seen him at the family lunch on Sunday we did not expect to see him midweek. Beautiful food, masses of drink and a terrific cake which I would show you if it was not too many kilohertz or whatever’s on a Henley theme with an edible photo of George in a boater! Some of the people at the party had no idea of George’s interesting life story and I don’t want them to think of him as a deaf old has been. – So I did a sort of potted life story which went down well. Someone did warn me it was George’s show and I was NOT to do the splits! I’m off to have a good nap now. Too much excitement for an old lady.

    1. So pleased to hear that the party went well, DG, I do hope George enjoyed his time in the limelight. I’ll bet that card from DD1 was a high spot of his day.

  28. Good afternoon. An early check-in from me, owing to a 4pm start at work. Got em all, I’m pleased to report; 5d elicited today’s forehead slap and a “Crikey!”

    Thank you to 2K and today’s compiler.

  29. Coming in late after lunch at a favourite Dartmoor pub. I think everything has been said above. I’ll settle for 9a as my COTD though 5d comes a close second.
    Given up on the Toughie. The setter is writing a novel not lovely concise crossword clues!

  30. Thoroughly enjoyed this, 5d definitely my favourite.

    As ever, thanks to setter and 2Ks – particularly for putting me out of my misery with the parsing of 20d, which was driving me mad!

  31. Generally I found this pretty friendly considering I often find Wednesday’s as my toughie of the week. I got 1a straight off which opened up the troublesome NW immediately which no doubt helped. Also doing the online version mid-afternoon by which point the typo was long-since fixed thankfully. Like others I raised an eyebrow at 2d and I thought 5d too tenuous to work. On the positives, 10a was very clever, and on another day 18a would have been a strong COTD contender for the great surface and clever use of AKA. I also liked 16d and 25a connection – though I’m almost alone on this blog it seems!! However, on today of all days with my kids out of school, 27a gets gold with an appreciative smile. */***

    TY to our setter and 2Ks

  32. Quite tricky (as usual) but a lovely Wednesday Jay crossword.
    I wouldn’t have been able to do 11a anyway – not because it was a dodgy clue but I’d never heard of the word.
    I loved 9a and 5d.
    I think everything’s already been said so I’ll live it at that.
    Thanks to Jay and to the soggy K’s.

  33. Morning all.
    Apologies for missing the error in the clue for 11a. We carefully counted the number of letters in the ‘fodder’ and then in the answer and totally overlooked that there were two A’s and one I in the fodder and two I’s and one A in the answer. We hope our little patch-up in the middle of the night helped some of you.
    We’re a bit rushed this morning as we are heading to Wellington to board a Cook Strait ferry to the South Island. We will be missing for the next two Wednesdays so there are other team members who’ll be doing the Wednesday blog.

  34. Very nice and amusing puzzle 😃 ***/**** Favourites almost too many to mention but 9a, 15a & 5d are up there 🤗 Thought the Quicky pun humorous as well 👍 Thanks to the 2x Ks and and to Jay, so sorry to hear about the awful rain on North Island and hope it will soon return to normality

  35. On the plus side of being across the pond, the mis wording in 11a was all resolved before I sat down to breakfast. On the other hand, completely forgotten 1a as a drink, as it is never used over here, probably because the vegetable by that name is so popular. And 10a was another mystery as I don’t think I’ve ever seen UHT milk in our supermarket. Never heard of 5d referring to a parrot, only to a dog? Rest was pretty fathomable, although I did need to click the answer a few times to verify before I penned in, so overall, another good day in crossword land.

  36. Hope your weather improves very soon, Kiwis.

    As with many, NW was my downfall. Not helped by the misprint. Not sure I’m keen on 2d.
    Overall, not my cup of tea today..but the misprint has a lot to answer for.

    Thanks to the setter and the 2 Kiwis.

  37. I didn’t fare well with this one. I know nothing about scifi, vaguely heard of uht but so long ago, at least 60 years, never heard of a parrot being sick, and so on, a lot more way beyond my pay grade. I did enjoy what I could do. Fave was 18a with 9a worthy of mention as my first in. Maybe tomorrow I’ll get my brain in gear.
    Thank you, Jay, and your unravelling of the other mysteries was much appreciated 2Kiwis.

  38. First reading left me totally blank.
    Slowly started from the bottom up having dismissed cashewnut in 27a as it didn’t fit.
    Liked the linked clues in 16d/25a and, at the risk of upsetting Brian, the UHT device in 10a.
    Thanks to Jay and to our kiwis. Your dire weather even made it on our national news. Hope the best for you.

  39. Really enjoyed this. Didn’t finish by a long way but went through the hints and as ever added to my knowledge. 5d made me laugh.
    Reading the various comments shows what a diverse crew we are
    Thanks to all

  40. If I’m honest and I always am I found this harder than the toughie, which most found hard. The typo in 11a was not corrected in the paper version, but I guessed it was. Some good clues but best was 14d which contained a French word which I googled yesterday and remembered and it’s Latin, happy days, there’s hope for me yet. Thanks to Jay and 2 K’s. If anyone is interested the pain in my buttocks is receding and the bump on my head only hurts if I touch it, so I don’t.

    1. Glad you are feeling better.
      Your bump on the head reminded me of Tommy Cooper going to see his doctor complaining about a pain in his arm when lifting it up.
      Doctor, it hurts when I do that.
      Well, stop doing it was his answer.

  41. Quite a tough workout. I did think the anagram offered at 11a was wrong in the paper, of course should have read ‘racist is’.Thanks to the three birds.


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