Mephisto 3289 – Tim Moorey

Greetings, barred-grid fans.

After the past few weeks, it felt like I flew through this one, with the usual witty Tim Moorey clues and some fun references along the way. Not as many unusual words in the grid this week, or maybe I got lucky with the knowledge.

In Mephisto puzzles, definitions can be verified in Chambers, so I will focus on wordplay here.

Away we go…

4 Certainly boring church conference? It reduces one to silence (9)
CHOKE-PEAR – OKE(OK, certainly) inside CH(church) and a conference PEAR. Pear for conference has appeared so often, I haven’t noticed that it doesn’t appear to be in Chambers. It is in Collins.  Oops – strike that – it is in Chambers, under CONFER
10 Foreign currency no good ultimately on Scottish island (8)
NGULTRUM -NG(no good), ULT(ultimately), and the island of RÙM
11 Pick chop for Scottish snack without a starter (4)
HACK – CHACK(Scots snack) minus the first letter, and two definitions
12 Method of ringing changes clearly on tap (8, two words)
PLAIN BOB – PLAIN(clearly) BOB(to tap)
13 A good head of hair on one foreign chief officer (4)
AGHA – A, G(good) first letter of Hair, A
14 Affectation of superiority surrounding name for Edinburgh clubs (5)
AIRNS – AIRS(affectation of superiority) surrounding N(name)
15 A girl caught spanking is something for the press (6)
GARLIC – anagram of A,GIRL,C(caught)
17 With instructions on passing, match associated with upset (7)
TESTATE – a TEST match with ATE(upset)
21 Urge Dutch to give up on odd Chinese food (7, two words)
EGG ROLL – EGG(urge on), then remove D(Dutch) from DROLL(odd)
23 Jack in distress and it doesn’t look good (7)
EYESORE – EYE(a detective, Jack), SORE(in distress)
26 Drunk reported by Latin sailor leads to rising in Pakistan (7)
INQILAB – sounds like INKY(drunk), then L(Latin), AB(sailor)
27 Voice which is inspiring the heart of Europe (6)
THROAT – THAT(which) containing the middle letters of EuROpe
28 Love horse seen on the left in gallery (5)
PRADO – O(love) with PRAD(a horse) on the left
31 VAT all right? Nothing escapes the UK taxmen as before (4)
KEIR – OKE(all right, making its second appearance) minus O(nothing) then IR(Inland Revenue)
32 Womaniser, hair in order after time in loo (8)
LOTHARIO – anagram of HAIR after T(time) inside LOO
33 Sign in Ladies omitting Welsh (4)
OMEN – WOMEN(ladies) minus W(Welsh)
34 Numbers of irregular regiments disheartened (8)
INTEGERS – anagram of REGImENTS minus the central letter
35 A PC averse to change providing time for preparation (9)
1 Home long-suffering? One’s hospitalised actually (9)
IN-PATIENT – IN(home), PATIENT(long-suffering)
2 Fruit found in trug? Likely (4)
UGLI -hidden inside trUG LIkely. A trug is a fruit basket
3 Arab tent village in deserted Middle East union once (4)
DUAR – D(deserted) UAR(United Arabic Republic)
4 See shreds of fibre in rocky outcrops (6)
CLINTS – C(see), LINTS(shreds of fibre)
5 Spacecraft in passing about right (7)
ORBITER – OBITER(in passing) surrounding R(right)
6 Ban boomerang flying? Not on (7)
EMBARGO – anagram of BOOMERANG minus ON
7 Beacon hospital in reserve not special (5)
PHARE – H(hospital) inside SPARE(reserve) minus S(special)
8 Big predator decapitated both dog and chicken (8)
EAGLE-OWL – remove the first letters of BEAGLE(dog) and FOWL(chicken)
9 Yarrow seen in a cold drainage channel (8)
ACHILLEA – A, CHILL(cold), EA(drainage channel)
16 Nick is departing from French port on a drinking bout (9)
CALABOOSE – remove IS from CALAIS(French port) then BOOSE(drinking bout)
18 Those engaged in New Year showing redness in the face? (8)
ERYTHEMA – THEM(those) inside an anagram of YEAR
19 Rather greasy emirs are out of order (8)
20 People from African country in endless mess (7)
SOMALIS – MALI(African country) inside SOSS(mess) minus the last letter
22 Fur suit including rare trim (7)
GENETTE – GEE(suit) containing NETT(rare trim)
24 Rent increase? Tabloid’s replaced Kelvin (6)
HIRAGE –  HIKE(increase) with RAG(tabloid) instead of K(Kelvin)
25 Girl from Orlando wanting fare for party (5)
LORNA – anagram of ORLANDO minus DO(party)
29 Turned up sermon about Greek god (4)
ARES – reversal of SER(sermon), A(about)
30 Daughter forgetting money for obscure Highland weapon (4)
DIRK – D(daughter), then remove M(money) from MIRK(obscure)

4 comments on “Mephisto 3289 – Tim Moorey”

  1. Parsing of 11, 21, and 23 puzzled me. Now understood, thanks. Didn’t realise or had forgotten JACK = EYE. I can’t find EGG ROLL in Chambers. SPRING ROLL is there, which I assume is synonymous. Overall a pleasing puzzle and completed in my usual slow pace of a couple of sessions on Sunday evening and Monday morning.

  2. Conference is listed in Chambers as a pear, though it specifies with a capital. I assumed so when solving, so lower-case in the clue is a bit of a MER? For various reasons, only got round to this at eight thirty last evening, so was pleased it was relatively gentle. 24d is a reference to Kelvin McKenzie?

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