23792 – My heart aches…

Solving time: 41 minutes

Mostly ok – it took me a while to get going but then the answers came pretty steadily. I had to think hard to get the wordplay for a few of the answers.


1 BOOGIE-WOOGIE – I’m not an expert on either genres, but I thought Boogie Woogie was more blues than jazz.
8 EWE LAMB – EWE sounds like U=posh and LAMB is Charles Lamb, a popular essayist and critic with crossworders. The phrase ‘ewe lamb’ comes from 2 Samuel 12:3 – I knew it came from the Bible but had to look up the verse!
9 O(CEANI)C – anagram of ‘a nice’ in OC=Officer Commanding, probably seen as often as CO=Commanding Officer.
11 TIE,POLO – I only vaguely knew the name but the wordplay was very helpful; I was initially concerned that I didn’t know any painters of grouse or pheasants.
14 LORIKEETS=”lorry Keats” – also evokes one of Keats most famous poems – Ode to a Nightingale.
16 BOMB,PR(O)OF – I saw PROOF straightaway and having the M, I thought of ‘damp-proof’ – I briefly had D=pence and AMP=a million pounds!
21 ADMIRAL – ADMIRABLE with BE missing – refers to Admiral Robert Blake. I didn’t have a clue about Crichton; I have since learnt that The Admirable Crichton is a JM Barrie play based on James Crichton.
23 RUSSIAN = RUFFIAN with FF replaced by SS.
24 NI,O,B(I)UM = NI=Northern Ireland, O=old, I=current.
25 IN(C)LINE – Reminded me of the classic: ‘Why is a sheet of paper like a lazy dog?’ A sheet of paper is an ink-lined plane > An inclined plane is a slope up > A slow pup is a lazy dog.
26 SHILLY SHALLY is how someone drunk might say ‘Silly Sally.’


2 ORATORY is in the word LABORATORY after LAB – it took a while to get the wordplay as I couldn’t see past TORY!
3 I(MB)R,OLIGO=’anag of igloo’
4 W,HOOP=’Pooh reversed’ – came quickly as I was watching The Tigger Movie as I solved this, although the pot Winnie the Pooh was eating from said ‘Hunny.’ Reminded me of the classic: ‘What do Winnie the Pooh and Alexander the Great have in common?’ They have the same middle name.
5 OB,ELIS,K – I think this is SILE,BO(=back order) reversed on K=king. I recently worked with someone called Sile, I’d have struggled if I didn’t know the name. I also had to look up BO.
17 MA,M(M)OTH – MA is female and M is man’s head
19 MUSICAL = MURAL with R swapped for SIC. Tommy is a musical (or rock opera!) by The Who.
20 NO(1)SILY – refers to a ‘Nosy Parker’
22 [b]LIMEY

9 comments on “23792 – My heart aches…”

  1. 4:44 for this. 14A has a nice link to someone’s Ode to a Nightingale so that’s my COD. (COWPOW Poll for last weeks puzzles will be up today.)
  2. Another 16 of them today equalling the count on 7th December!

    Quite a straightforward puzzle which took me less time to solve than it did to go out and buy the paper having found the site was still down.*

    I didn’t know TIEPOLO (did I just hear Tony gasp at such ignorance of yet another artist whose name is on every-one’s lips but my own?) and I only knew NIOBIUM because of the Tom Lehrer song, but both answers were fairly obvious from the wordplay.

    I liked the rhyming pairs at 1A and 26 but my COD goes to 20.

    *It seems to be back now with entry still via the back-door instead of the main page. If anyone can access yesterday’s ST puzzle could they post the link please as I can’t find it?

  3. I found this very straightforward with a solve time of 20 minutes. BOOGIE-WOOGIE is jazz piano (a sign of my misspent youth). Had to guess TIEPOLO and OBELISK (never heard of Sile). Are we happy at 13 across with “yasse” = “nearly Arafat”? A bit weak I thought. I liked 23 across. Jimbo.
  4. Wrong girl at 5D I think – if you “delay” the IS in Isobel by moving it to the back end, you get OBELIS. The Chambers names appendix reveals that Síle is the original Gaelic version of Sheila. No particular objection to ‘nearly Arafat’ here.
  5. Great entertainment, when finally available. I liked the top-and-bottom rhymes and also noticed references to the fictional butlers Crichton and Parker. However I missed the additional Keats reference in 14A – for which I also select it as COD. I wonder if this is the same setter who gave us DARKLING a few weeks ago? 23A provoked, I’m afraid, images of Soviet female athletes of the 70s and 80s.

  6. There are some admirable words in this one (especially at 21a) in the main generously clued so as not to make it too hard.

    There were 2 answers where I was only partially up to getting the answer – these are, of course, in the “easies” omitted from the blog. After a quick consultation with Mr Google and Madam Wiki I can now complete the blog:

    12a Patrol leader apt to be easily influenced (7)

    13a Attempt Arafat almost overturned (5)
    ESSAY. Yasse(r) backwards. Yasser Arafat was P.L.O. leader in case you were wondering.

    19a It’s a downward stroke, note (5)
    MINIM. I know the musical half note but the calligraphic downstroke part of this double definition had to be established after the event.

    1d A lexicographer’s suppliers of liquid refreshment (7)
    BREWERS. So called because the work in question is called Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. I had forgotten about that.

    6d Using strange (lingo be)* of low birth (7)

    10d One whose dealings may be partly in Caerphilly (12)

    18d One-sided though not complete (7)

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