24794 – Marie’s the name…

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic
This took me 31 minutes which is pretty good by my standards so I doubt it will have detained the speed-merchants for too long. I scanned through the first five or six clues both Down and Across and panic nearly set in because no answers leapt out at me so I adjourned to the SW corner where there were some really easy clues to get me started and boost my confidence. After that I just worked through it steadily without ever grinding to a standstill. There were some nice clues along the way but nothing outstanding. I rather liked 11dn and 1dn apart from the reservation expressed in the blog. Here we go…

1 TEAR, JERK,ER – And if the novel or film is historical it might also be a bodice-ripper. Wally as a derogatory term seems to be widely used around the world but I can’t find any definitive reason why.
6 EMIT – TIME (rev). ‘Time is money’ as the saying goes.
10 AUGUST,A – My knowledge of US matters is limited but this seems to refer to the one in Maine of which it is currently the state capital. On edit this could refer to any of  the Augustas in the US if they qualify as cities. Please see my first entry in the Comments thread.
12 P(1)LOT
14 HORSESHOE MAGNET – Cryptic definition.
17 PENCIL MOUSTACHE – Anagram of ‘has come up client’. As worn by David Niven and Errol Flynn for example.
20 B(L)ACK,BALL To blackball is to exclude a person from something, like the membership of a club, by voting against them.
21 RIF(criminaL)E
23 Deliberately omitted. I hope you don’t feel you have been this as a result.
24 A,VOCAl,DO – ‘Detailed’ indicates the removal of the L.
25 SOLE – Double definition.
26 GRAND-NIECE – Anagram of ‘ending race’.
1 TR(OOPS,H)IP – Oops is not specific to something dropped, more usually just an acknowledgement of a minor mistake, but Collins mentions ‘drop’ so it’s fair enough, or would be if there was an indication in the clue that it’s an example.
2 A,PPAL – LAPP (rev).
4 RE(DD,1S)H – I think we’re mostly familiar with Doctor of Divinity by now. This and one’s inside HER (rev).
7 MESS,IANIC – I’m not sure if there’s a subtle difference between a pig’s breakfast and a dog’s dinner but anyway we have a MESS followed by the anagram of ‘CAIN I’. The word has meanings specific to the (or a) Messiah but can also mean passionate.
8 TRACE – Double definition.
11 GOO(D AFTER,N,OO)N – Greeting in its more usual sense today. GOON is the thug containing DAFTER, Nigerian and O O for loves as in tennis. Punch is the containment indicator in the sense of piercing rather than hitting.
16 Deliberately omitted but it’s there to be seen.
19 U(New,LEA)RN – I don’t think the opposite of picking up knowledge is putting it down, but I get the drift.
20 BUCKS – Double definition as in ‘young buck’ and the abbreviated county of Buckinghamshire which I can see from my window in Beds as I type.
22 FLAME – I’ve got to get a song in somewhere and justify my headline so I’ll mention ‘His Latest Flame’ written by Doc Pomus and sung by Elvis Presley in 1961.

35 comments on “24794 – Marie’s the name…”

  1. 10 mis dead for this one, not helped by a tentative ‘comet’ for 12 ac. How dumb is that!
  2. Much blooming harder for me! (44m) With the same despair as yourself, jackkt, on first reading through the clues: except my despair lasted longer.

    Then, for reasons I cannot identify, I saw HORSESHOE MAGNET and JUST THE TICKET — some kind of cruciverbal voodoo was working? Then suspected GOOD AFTERNOON from the possible frontal def. But I just couldn’t see the cryptic for it. So (cf 17) pencilled in with the hope of getting some potentially fruitful crossers.

    There are quite a few clues here that could never be solved on their own, sans crossers. The 21/22 pair comes to mind but I suspect they’re in the majority. Look again at any of the clues in isolation if you doubt my assessment.

    Hats off to anyone under 20m I’d say.

  3. Bit of a relief after yesterday’s rout though more than usual went in without fully understanding the cryptics. AVOCADO last in and least understood. 40 mins.
  4. 56 minutes and one wrong (‘alpha’ entered in some desperation for the hoped-for literal ‘a’ at 2dn). My COD to GOOD AFTERNOON, as it took me on a wild-goose chase scanning my mental lexicon of 18th and 19th century Lordly prime ministers. Not a large lexicon, mind.

    I took AUGUSTA to refer to the one in Georgia, where the only tournament in the world to be watched by “patrons” rather than sepectators is held each spring, but there must be several Augustas in the US, I imagine.

    1. That’s why I trod warily, ulaca, but I made the mistake when writing the blog (as opposed to solving the puzzle) of forgetting that ‘capital’ was part of the wordplay rather than the definition.
  5. At last! I have managed to finish on-line in a sedately respectable time (21.33) without a typo or a botched answer. AND, for a few heady minutes, topped the leader board (while admittedly the only entry). Needless to say, I enjoyed this one, and will happily agree with anyyone else’s pick for COD. I liked 16 dn, as one of the better hidden answers.
  6. !2 and a half minutes but vastly prefer the tester of yesterday that took me a whole lot longer. The 25 clue just about sums it up. 17 was the nearest to being amusing but even then the surface hardly makes sense. A decidedly non-alcoholic offering. Incidentally why is a pilot “one up”?
    1. I’m sure you get the reference to one who flies a plane. Are we going to pick over that a pilot is still a pilot when he’s down? If so, it seems a bit mean. Apologies if you actually didn’t get the reference.
      1. I didn’t get it actually but the apologies should be on my part for not thinking about it enough . . . in the wide-eyed way required by this particular puzzle.
  7. Pretty good week for me if we ignore yesterday with only QUENELLE from earlier puzzle and HORSESHOE MAGNET from today’s requiring any assistance. Got HORSESHOE from solver but despite perusing COED, Chambers and Collins had to dredge MAGNET up from childhood.
  8. Not a difficult puzzle, just over 20 minutes to solve, but with some convoluted wordplays that had to be reverse engineered from a solution based on the definition (11D for example) and some questionable devices highlighted by Jack.

    “I dropped something” without a “perhaps”=”oops”? “pigs breakfast”=mess (isn’t it a pig’s ear or a dog’s breakfast?) “put down”=UNLEARN? And those who prize smooth surface readings must have been wincing at the likes of 17A.

    1. After scouring several reference books I found pig’s breakfast in Chamber’s Slang Dictionary as an alternative to dog’s dinner. It’s not listed in its own right. Other alternatives are chook’s breakfast, doggy’s dinner and dog’s breakfast. Rather interestingly it only has pig’s ear as CRS for beer and as Australian slang for year, but the usual sources confirm pig’s ear also meaning a mess.
      1. were you too polite to mention ‘pig’s knickers’? or were you confining yourself to those in your dictionary?
        1. I’m never too polite,joe, but I was listing only the entries under dog’s dinner in CSD. Pig’s knickers is not there, nor under its own entry which is interesting given the pages of obscene references to pig’s this and pig’s that. I’d have though pig’s knickers a comparatively mild expression.
  9. 24 minutes, with the same eerie start as Jack – nothing doing until the SW, RING A BELL being first in.
    Sometimes I think when you’re scanning through the first time, you skip otherwise easy clues because you become convinced the setter is more devious that is the case. I think if I’d got 1ac straight off, this one would have surrendered quickly.
    In anticipation of Spurs’ fate in today’s quarter final selections, I’m sending out for a 14.
    I was not helped much today by essaying LAGRAND for 10ac with only the G crossing, desperately hoping it was a State Capital, and in retrospect that it didn’t require an extra E at the end: L.A. GRAND looked promising for the cryptic. Another of the perils of working from the bottom up.
    CoD to CHEATED: nicely disguised definition.
  10. 28 minutes. I found this a tough nut to crack, although not as tough as yesterday’s. I needed all the checkers to get HORSESHOE MAGNET and like ulaca wasted a lot of time looking for a prime minister. Thanks Jack for explaining AVOCADO: couldn’t see it.
    A propos of nothing in particular, I’ve been dabbling in the concise crossword recently, and discovered that I’m absoutely terrible at it. There have been occasions when it’s taken me longer than the cryptic! My relatively poor vocabulary is a handicap in the cryptics but I can get over it via wordplay. It’s brought into much starker relief with the concise. Good training I should think.
  11. 51 minutes for us, so completing quite a good week. Agree with all the moans and didn’t much like ‘reddish’ either. COD to horseshoe magnet, which may be an old chestnut,but was new to us. Worried that ‘oops’ might pressage England’s performance in the cricket world cup.

    PS We progressed from quick to cryptic crosswords via ‘Quiptic’ puzzles published occasionally in the Guardian, which are a sort of halfway house.

  12. Like others, I started in the SW (with RING A BELL), and ended with HORSESHOE MAGNET. Found this much, much easier than yesterday’s, maybe because of the lack of somewhat obscure vocab/GK. Finished it complete and unaided, with full understanding of all but one (AVOCADO, thanks for explanation), so a good start to the weekend.

    See you all next week!

  13. 47:56 – Like many others, I started slow, wasn’t sure I was going to finish, but then speeded up and ended up posting a time I was quite happy with. An enjoyable puzzle pitched at just the right standard for me.
  14. 24:50 .. solved while falling asleep, losing concentration and spending time vainly pondering such matters as the breakfast habits of pigs and dogs, whether Kid Creole and his Coconuts were still going (they are – now that‘s a pencil moustache!) and Picasso (“It took me four years to paint like Raphael and a lifetime to paint like a child”, which I suppose is ‘unlearning’ in practice).

    I liked IMPROVISE – the clue sounds like the sort of proverb my Somerset grandmother regularly came out with and always managed to make sound profound and wise.

    I saw your blog title, jackkt, and immediately thought of The Smiths and their Rusholme Ruffians medley with His Latest Flame. But I love the Elvis version, too.

    Off to Arizona for a couple of weeks in the morning. May or may not be online. I should probably opt for spiritual replenishment, spend my days contemplating the sun-blushed rocks of Sedona and unlearning all I think I know.

  15. Took 31 minutes so agree with those who say that this was on the easy side. But…like many on first read through i only had Sole to enter,,,but once i focussed on this corner i ws off on a steadily increasing pace of solving…COD to Horse show Magnet and to the hiddden word….
    Doesnt bode well for the ease of tomorrows prize crossword
    well blogged too
  16. Like others, I couldn’t get started on this. It’s so much easier if 1a pops at first viewing. As it was SOLE was my first in. I had HORSESHOE quite early on but couldn’t think of anything to follow it except “pass” and “bat”. I needed all the checkers. I thought 16d was well hidden – took me ages to spot. A real pig’s breakfast for me. 40 minutes.
  17. About 20 minutes to finish, ending with HORSESHOE MAGNET. I also spent a couple of minutes searching for a suitable PM before realizing the literal meaning. COD to BUCKS and GOOD AFTERNOON. Sotira, I was in Sedona in Sept/Oct, and I recommend arriving from the north, if possible, on a switchback highway descending at least 1000 ft. into the canyon. The views are striking. Sedona itself was hot as blazes at the time, but is hopefully more temperate now. Bon voyage, and regards to all.
    1. Thanks, Kevin. I’ll see if we can make that work. Yes, a more temperate 75-80 degrees now… coming from Canada, that’ll feel like a furnace – I can’t wait!
  18. 40 minutes but failed on avocado so a disappointing end to the week rather like the freezing rain we have just had!
  19. 8:55 for me in a remarkably consistent week: my fastest and slowest times for the five puzzles so far are just 45 seconds apart! I’d have been quicker if I hadn’t wasted about half a minute desperately trying to start 7dn with MAST (“the fruit of the oak, beech, chestnut, and other forest trees, on which pigs feed”, to quote Chambers).
  20. About an hour off and on. Had to go to Onelook for avocado of all things. Liked Sotira’s Picasso quote…reminded me to keep it simple. Enjoy your trip Sotira.

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