QC 1095 by Grumpy

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic

Oh the shame! I am sorry everybody, I’ve had such a busy weekend that I had forgotten I was on duty this morning and have been tidying up admin tasks since 7.00 am instead of doing this!

I’m only going to have time to say:

FOI: 1A, pretty straightforward.
LOI and COD: 8A, nice cryptic with a continental flavour.

Plenty of other very enjoyable clues, really enjoyed it and found it a bit towards the more difficult end of the spectrum. What did everybody else think?

Many thanks to Grumpy, whom I can’t remember if I have encountered before. But I like the name as it’s what my wife and I call each other whenever one of us gets, well, grumpy!

Definitions are underlined, and everything else is explained just as I see it in the simplest language I can muster.

1 Rastafarian leaders backing former emperor (4)
TSAR – the first four letters (leaders) of RASTafarian reversed.
4 Musician rings any number to get mother admitted (8)
BANDSMAN – BANDS (rings) + N (any number) admitting MA (mother).
8 What retired teller did in Parisian milieu? (4,4)
LEFT BANK – a cryptic retired teller might have LEFT a BANK.
9 Unprepossessing, lumpy, extremely unpleasant (4)
UGLY – the ‘extremes’ of UnpreposessinG and LumpY = UGLY.
10 Prison agitation (4)
STIR – double definition.
11 Stubborn old boy expected to hold rodent (8)
OBDURATE – OB (old boy) + DUE (exoptected) ‘holding’ RAT (rodent).
12 Go through ruined arches (6)
SEARCH – anagram of ARCHES (‘ruined’).
14 Praying mantis, say, as part of religious group? (6)
INSECT – an example of an insect, which could be read as IN SECT (as part of religious group).
16 Regret of stumbling high jumper (4,4)
TREE FROG – anagram of REGRET OF (‘stumbling’). I don’t think tree frogs are particularly high jumpers in terms of jumping many times their body height, but they can be seen cryptically as high jumpers (jumpers who live in trees).
18 Expensive honey (4)
DEAR – double definition.
19 A bit of fluff in one’s sherry (4)
FINO – hidden in flufF IN One’s.
20 Child runs with unknown soldiers (8)
INFANTRY – INFANT (child) + R (runs) + Y (unknown in the algebraic sense).
22 Most verdant meadow seen before short holiday abroad (8)
LEAFIEST – LEA (meadow) before FIESTa with the end chopped off (short holiday).
23 Guy useless before 4th of November (4)
DUDE – DUD (useless) before E (4th letter of NovEmber)
2 That woman has two articles to enclose (7)
SHEATHE – SHE (that woman) + A + THE (two articles).
3 Part of helicopter going up and down (5)
ROTOR – a palindrome (‘going up and down’ in this down clue).
4 Sort of scarf for snake (3)
BOA – double definition.
5 Really expressing agreement about King and I (2,7)
NO KIDDING – NODDING ‘about’ K + I (King and I).
6 Royal family united in launches (7)
STUARTS – U (united) ‘in’ STARTS (launches).
7 Missing first vote for grant (5)
ALLOT – BALLOT (vote) mising its first letter.
11 White rose represented differently (9)
OTHERWISE – anagram (‘otherwise’) of WHITE ROSE.
13 Stagger away, say, without apparent effort (4,3)
REEL OFF – REEL (stagger) + OFF (away). When you REEL OFF something that you have committed to memory then you say it without apparent effort.
15 Vegetable, we hear, that’s scorched (7)
CHARRED – homophone, sounds like CHARD. The only vegetable I know of that traditionally comes from Switzerland.
17 Right height in English river (5)
RHINE – nice bit of misdirection here, as the English is part of the wordplay and not a dsecription of the river in question. R (right) + H (height) + IN + E (English).
18 Row before editor had a meal (5)
DINED – DIN (row) + ED (editor).
21 Suitable starters for feast in trattoria (3)
FIT – first letters of Feast In Trattoria.

21 comments on “QC 1095 by Grumpy”

  1. Slower than I should have been for some reason, taking too much time to remember the STUARTS, and to work out ALLOT and BANDSMAN. 7:41.
  2. I thought this was quite tricky and was surprised to find I’d completed all but 6d in less than 10 minutes. However, it was 12:06 before I managed to get this with an alphabet trawl. Unfortunately SQUIRES came before STUARTS, and I wasted time trying to parse it, which of course I couldn’t! No doubt Jack will confirm or correct, but I believe this is Grumpy’s second puzzle. Lots of well hidden definitions. TREE FROG took me a while. Thanks Grumpy and Don.
    1. Grumpy was one of the very first setters, beginning with QC3 on 12 Mar 2014. He set 13 in that year, 5 in 2015, 7 in 2016, only 1 in 2017 and 2 so far this year making a total of 28 in all. Astartedon blogged one of his puzzles previously, QC1005 on 15 January 2018.

      I needed 9 minutes to solve this one. An enjoyable blog, Don, that does the job nicely.

      Edited at 2018-05-21 09:20 am (UTC)

  3. 32 minutes so not quick.

    Struggled to remember fino/verdant/milieu.

    LOI Left Bank.
    COD Dude or tsar.

  4. I was surprised to find I finished in an under-average time as this felt a bit tricky. After FOI 1a I struggled to put much in at a first reading, but a second lap saw things drop into place. I liked the deceptive surface for TREE FROG and the 4th November device for DUDE – my COD.
  5. Oh dear, carelessness led to two errors today. I misspelt ‘Shaethe’ in 2d which led to me putting East Bank in LOI 8a. I was so relieved to finish (after 25 minutes) that I forgot to parse it and submitted it without a final check.
    Overall I found this a tough start to the week, with 4a, 6d, 11d and 16a also holding me up.
  6. Just a minute over target so a good puzzle from my perspective. I was particularly impressed by the clever 11d. LOI for me was also Left Bank which took a while to twig.
  7. Less than 7 mins for all except 13 & 17d and 16a. Thought I was on a PB, but gave up after 30 mins with same 3 missing
  8. First the good news: thanks to doing these QCs regularly I was able to complete both Saturday’s and Sunday’s puzzles without aids. Not quickly and with several unparsed,but way beyond my previous levels.
    So I came to today’s QC full of confidence.
    I put it down after about 20 minutes with lots of gaps and read the paper and solved a few of the main puzzle. Returning to it,I really had to work hard to complete it. Tsar and Bandsman were slow to come. Stuarts completed the NE.
    My last few were in the SW. I had to correct a very lazy Greenest at 22a. I managed to see Tree Frog (which I think defeated me in another puzzle recently) and then got Rhine and LOI was, as so often, the hidden- Fino. Time 30-35 minutes.
    Excellent demanding puzzle which I think newcomers will struggle with. But the struggle is worth it. David
  9. I started off very slowly (don’t know why) but once I had solved a few clues, finished off strongly in 12:12.
  10. Thank Grumpy, that was fun. I thought TSAR was a really clever clue and it set the tone, a puzzle full of neat touches. I found it quite tough but managed to complete in only 2 Kevins, so within target. Struggled with REEL OFF (put ROLL OFF at first, as in roll off the tongue) and like David and vinyl I biffed GREENEST initially.

    Very impressed by the high speed blog, Don, maybe you have discovered a new method!


  11. Thank god for Astartedon — not a hope in hell for me with this one. I gave up halfway through, which (given my recent roll) was most disappointing. It didn’t help that I had “down fall” for 16A; made sense at the time! Also stared at 11D for ages, wondering if it could be an anagram but couldn’t see how “represented” was an anagrind. Still can’t, if I’m honest. Had a dreadful day at work, too, so will just write the last 12 hours off as a disaster all round! Bring on Tuesday, says I.
    1. Well thanks as always for your enthusiasm lucybrooke5! But in fact I see that I let you down on that particular 11D as in my haste this morning I indicated the wrong anagrind! Of course it is ‘represented’ for exactly the reason stated by the anonymous post in reply to yours. ‘Otherwise’ is of course the anagrist (to coin a term?)

      I must do better next time!

      1. If it wasn’t for bloggers like you, I’d still be staring at the QC like a donkey at an empty trough…so thanks again for all your help.
      2. And too hasty again! ‘WHITE ROSE’ was the angrist and OTHERWISE was the answer!
      1. Ah, NOW I see it! The old mispronunciation fail again 🙁 thanks Anon!
  12. Too difficult for a qc I thought. The ship is wandering off course again and the editors need to bring it back on tack if it is going to continue to appeal to novices. Most of us have no interest in the main crossword

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