Comment – Sep-Dec 2009

Archived Comments – Sep-Dec 2009

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  1. Alan Hopwood
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 10:03 pm | Permalink


    I have just recently started using the blog, found it purely by accident by putting the crossword number in to Google, and looking to see if there was anything on the web. Since finding the blog I have used it everyday, and found that I am nearing completion of most of the crosswords, rather than just a few. It is very rare that I complete a mid week crossword, but can often complete the Saturday’s which are relatively less difficult than midweek.
    The explanations are very clear and logical and as consequence great for learning how to solve the crosswords. I know that I am defintely getting better at solving as a result of using the blog.

    • gazza
      Posted September 18, 2009 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

      Hi Alan and welcome to the blog.
      You’re just the sort of solver that we’re trying to help, and it’s great to hear of your progress. Thanks for the comment.

    Posted October 11, 2009 at 11:31 am | Permalink




    • gazza
      Posted October 11, 2009 at 11:58 am | Permalink

      Hi Peter and welcome to the blog.
      I’ve never saved any games, but I hope someone else will be able to help.

    • Kram
      Posted October 13, 2009 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

      Hi Peter, I have been using Cluedup for just under a year, and my profile has shown 2 saved games for over 6months, to my knowledge I have never saved any games, and when I try to remove them/solve them, computer displays ‘link broken etc’. Accordingly I have come to live with the situation and ignore them.

    • Libellule
      Posted October 13, 2009 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

      I have the same problem. I have a number of “saved” crosswords that I cannot delete… including an unfinished version of Toughie 14 that I cannot access. Can I suggest that you send CluedUp an email and ask them how you get rid of them, and then report back when you know.

      • PETER WILD
        Posted October 17, 2009 at 10:30 am | Permalink



  3. BBD
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    I realise that I am a month behind the rest of the world (here in sunny South Africa) but I wonder if anybody recalls the crossword puzzle which featured an oystercatcher. The oystercatchers on our coastline are indeed the same as the one featured in Gazza’s pic. We even have a restaurant named after them. Next time you’re in Port Elizabeth treat yourself to a delicious seafood meal at the Oystercatcher!

  4. paul holland
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 12:43 am | Permalink

    BigDave u have done me a great service.
    Long have I laboured on Daily Telegraph 25964 ( thu 25 JUN 2009 ).
    I had abandoned the project and was about to discard the incomplete grid when I decided to google a bit.
    I GREATLY enjoyed your explanations, even some I got I had not properly analysed.
    PS I came across the xword by chance, probably it was left on a bus and I snaffled it , to see if I could do it. I have been looking at the puzzle on-and-off for about 3 weeks !!!

    • Posted October 21, 2009 at 10:27 am | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Paul.

      I hope you come back every day now that you have found us.

      BTW Gazza was responsible for that review.

  5. paul holland
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    Yep, Dave, as Arnie said in the movie “I’ll be back”. I’ll also tell a few others of the site.
    I’ve always believed in a bit of “gazza magic”, but that’s another sport. Meanwhile, Gazza has delivered me from what Festinger described as “cognitive dissonance”. You can be rightly proud of your Mighty Organ.

    • Posted October 21, 2009 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      I presume this is the other Gazza!


  6. mary
    Posted October 26, 2009 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    finished quite early today, now i can get the crossword from ‘clued up’ its great, a good one i think for us newbies and members of the clueless club :) – can’t wait to see the blog, cos i’m sure i’ve got 19d wrong

  7. NathanJ
    Posted October 27, 2009 at 2:50 am | Permalink

    Hi all

    Greetings from Australia. Just finished RayT’s puzzle (number 26,070) in my lunch break. After having had a disaster with his puzzle from two weeks ago, this one was far better for me. I really liked 17 down – great clue with an excellent surface reading. This puzzle represents Ray Terrell in top form – really well-crafted clues. What does everyone else think?

  8. Edi
    Posted October 31, 2009 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    Afternoon all. i have been in self imposed exile this week but still managed to pop in and see how you are doing.

    Two questions before i start saturday’s prize xwrd.

    Firstly to Cephas: What is a Pangram? (DT 26,068)

    Secondly to Tilsit : What is NINA? and what does it stand for? (Toughie 240)

    If anybody else reading this can shed some light i’d be grateful. :smile:

    • Posted October 31, 2009 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

      A pangram is a puzzle that uses all 26 letters of the alphabet. Strictly speaking it’s a sentence like “the quick brown fox”.

      A Nina is a hidden message, usually in the unchecked letters. This is based on artist Al Hirschfield’s practice of hiding his niece Nina’s name in his pictures.

  9. Edi
    Posted October 31, 2009 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    Many thanks for that BD.

  10. mary
    Posted November 1, 2009 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    ref: 2508 – good morning everyone – really enjoyed todays – even though i still needed lots of help from Chambers dictionary – got stuck on two 21d and 26a – didn’t like them even when i got the answers – loved 22a, good luck fellow ‘clueless club’ members! :)

  11. Len Stalker-Clarke
    Posted December 11, 2009 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    22a had me stumped for a period, but after a couple of ciggies, I finally sorted my head.

  12. Posted December 13, 2009 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    What a wonderful blog. It is just what I need to help me get to grips with the Telegraph crossword. I live in NZ and get the weekly expat telegraph which features the cryptic crossword and sometimes the prize crossword from the daily editions. I look forward to exploring the blog.

    Thanks from down under.

    • Posted December 13, 2009 at 9:16 am | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Chris, from “up over” !

  13. Prolixic
    Posted December 17, 2009 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Like the Christmas theme though looking at the bottom of the page after a rather nice Christmas lunch, I did wonder if I had overdone the liquid aspect until I realised that there were snowflakes as part of the theme and it was not spots before my eyes!

    • Posted December 17, 2009 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

      I wondered whether to put up a post to explain, but thought I’d leave it to you to work it out.

      The theme change is mine, the snow is a WordPress feature that can be turned on/off until Jan 4th.

      • Lea
        Posted December 17, 2009 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

        Like it – thanks for the addition

  14. tonyp17
    Posted December 21, 2009 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

    Have you thought about updating your Introduction page which speaks of passing 250,000 hits rather than approaching 700,000 as you now are.

    You provide such wonderful support to all of us attempting the various Telegraph crosswords.

    When I have time to review the blog I am amazed at how much I learn.

    • Posted December 21, 2009 at 2:32 pm | Permalink


      Thanks for pointing that out, it’s now sorted. The next job will be to add a year to everyone’s age in the biogs!

  15. Paul Howarth
    Posted December 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Hi Big Dave – thanks for all the help this year from Paul & Issy. Have a great Christmas! For what it’s worth my clue attempt for Crossword 26119 – 8a is:

    “Holy bed in which I became a sign”

    • Posted December 23, 2009 at 6:26 pm | Permalink


      Welcome to the blog and thanks for the kind words. I think Tilsit meant as a comment on the post itself, but don’t worry I’ll make sure he sees it.

  16. Prolixic
    Posted December 24, 2009 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Big Dave,

    Merry Christmas to you and Gazza, Libellule, Tilsit, Peter, Rishi and Anax and a big thank you for all your contributions and blogs over the past year. Hope that you have a peaceful and joyful Christmas and a very happy New Year.

    Seasons greetings also to all the contributors who make this site such a hit and to the setters for all the fun they have brought to us. Lastly, Merry Christmas to Phil McNeill as crossword editor.

    God bless you all!

  17. Leon Stalker-Clarke
    Posted December 29, 2009 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    I found this extremely difilcult, but eventually succeeded.

    • Posted December 29, 2009 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Leon (I missed your comment a couple of weeks ago)

  18. Ian Caeter
    Posted December 31, 2009 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    I’m a dedicated Telegraph crossword solver and can usually complete the “normal” cryptic puzzle. Recently I’ve started to do the Toughie and only a few days ago I found your website. I have found it a real help, and many thanks to you and everone who contributes to it. A very happy new year to you.

    • Posted December 31, 2009 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Ian

      Thanks for your kind words.