QC 1965 by Orpheus

Last time out I said that Tracy had served up probably the most challenging quickie of my blogging history. This offering from Orpheus I found to be much more in line with the normal Monday ‘wake them up gently’ approach. I did it pretty quickly by my standards and I really only had half an eye on it, so thank you to Orpheus for a puzzle that should be well-received by the newbies, casuals and learners among us.

FOI was 1A and I think my LOI was 13A which also gets my COD award. It was one of the only clues that I had to come back to for a second look and the surface is also pretty smooth

Definitions are underlined and everything else is explained just as I see it as simply as I can.

1 Cede most of county, no doubt at first with hesitation (9)
SURRENDER – SURREy (most of county) + ND (No Doubt ‘at first’) + ER (hesitation).
6 Long priestly vestment, a pound (3)
ALB – A + LB (pound).
8 Item of bedding left outside back of hotel (5)
QUILT – QUIT (left) ‘about’ L (back of hoteL).
9 Stroll involving yours truly and that Cockney woman (7)
MEANDER – ME (yours truly) + AND + ‘ER (that Cockney woman). The luvvable crossword Cockneys of course dropping their aitches as usual – shades of Arthur Daley and ‘er indoors.
10 Uneducated rating on manoeuvres (8)
IGNORANT – straight anagram (‘manoeuvres’) of RATING ON.
11 Unit of heredity a woman talked of (4)
GENE – sounds like (‘talked of’) JEAN.
13 Callous governor lacking cultural pretensions (9)
HEARTLESS – HE (governor, as in His or Her Excellency) + ARTLESS (lacking cultural pretensions).
16 Long to ignore head and make money (4)
EARNyEARN (long ‘ignoring’ head).
17 Prospect of girl coming between Dad and Mum (8)
PANORAMA – NORA (girl) ‘coming between’ PA (Dad) and MA (Mum).
20 African capital’s crude oil used on excursion (7)
TRIPOLI – TRIP (excursion) + OLI (anagram (‘crude’) of OIL). Capital of Libya.
21 Steer clear of a chasm (5)
AVOID – A + VOID (chasm).
22 Toupee, one adopted by Grace initially (3)
WIG – I (one) ‘adopted by’ W + G (initials of W G Grace, famous cricketer of the Victorian era. By all accounts quite a personality, and a good-natured and indulged cheat into the bargain if the memorable portrait in Francis Thompson’s poem At Lord’s is anything to go by, where he is described as “The long-whiskered Doctor, that laugheth the rules to scorn…”).
23 Obstacle rocking inn hard by church (9)
HINDRANCE – HINDRAN (anagram (‘rocking’) of INN HARD) + CE (Church of England).
1 Clothing ornament from Kent area, one of five (6)
SEQUIN – SE (Kent area) + QUIN (one of five).
2 Period with first of Georges in control? (5)
REIGN – G (first of Georges) ‘in’ REIN (control).
3 Old bird on a lake outside (8)
EXTERNAL – EX (old) + TERN (bird) + A + L (lake).
4 Protest monster originally received in post (13)
DEMONSTRATION – DEMON (monster) + R (‘originally’ Received) ‘in’ STATION (post).
5 Hurried to catch old horse (4)
ROAN – RAN (hurried) ‘catching’ O (old).
6 Speak to daughter wearing a formal garment (7)
ADDRESS – D (daughter) ‘wearing’ A DRESS (a formal garment).
7 Unproductive peer, by the sound of it (6)
BARREN – sounds like (‘by the sound of it’) BARON (peer).
12 Elegant girl coming out and broadcasting? (8)
DEBONAIR – DEB (girl coming out) + ON AIR (broadcasting).
13 A woman’s token of matrimony? Something fishy here (7)
HERRING – HER (a woman’s) + RING (token of matrimony).
14 Confer privilege finally on street in East London area (6)
BESTOW – E (privilegE ‘finally’) + ST (street) ‘in’ BOW (east London area where the luvvable crossword Cockneys (see 9A above) come from, being born within the sound of the bells of the church of St Mary-le-Bow in Cheapside).
15 About to pop off, collecting duke’s golfing attendant (6)
CADDIE – CA (circa, about) + DIE (pop off) ‘collecting’ D (duke).
18 A scam involving first of ripe fruit (5)
ACORN – A CON (a scam) ‘involving’ R (first of Ripe).
19 Leaders of Great Ormond Street Hospital? I say! (4)
GOSH – hardly a clue really, just exactly what it says: Leaders of Great Ormond Street Hospital. Res ipsa loquitur as the lawyers say – it speaks for itself!

52 comments on “QC 1965 by Orpheus”

  1. 8 minutes but with DEMONSTRATION unparsed. I saw the anagram [originally] of MONSTER and ‘in’ as a containment indicator and was left wondering how DATION could possibly mean ‘post’!
  2. I ‘parsed’ DEMONSTRATION as Jack did, and got no further. Also couldn’t see where the W in WIG came from; ironically, W.G. Grace is the only cricketer’s name I know. 5:25.

    Edited at 2021-09-20 05:39 am (UTC)

  3. I think that’s the second-fastest time I’ve done – an orderly solve. Only minor hold-up was SE corner where I tried to end the 17a answer “SH” instead of “MA” (feels like I always interpret “Mum” that way) and also expect to spell CADDIE with a -DY ending.

    Thanks for the comments, vinyl – I always wondered if it was really possible to do clue-parsing and typing, and also record a fast time. Your advice confirms my suspicions, and I can see the beginnings of short-cutting creeping into my own efforts.

    On a related matter, one thing that bugs me about The Times online format (QC and 15×15) is that when I start, 1a is highlighted, but not ready to accept keyboard input. The number of times I’ve solved the clue, typed in the answer, then looked up to find it blank …then double-click the top left square and start again. Grrrr! Anyway, with my crummy typing, I guess I’ll never make it into the speed-demon category.

    Thanks Astartedon and Orpheus

    1. Ms Tremble, if one works with the traditional pen and paper, one can avoid this sort of annoyance, and easily beat your PB !
  4. I can name several Japanese baseball players! Yu Darvish; Ichiro Suzuki; Hideki Matsui; Sohei Ohtani.


    LOI 19dn GOSH!


    WOD 6ac ALB

    Edited at 2021-09-20 06:09 am (UTC)

  5. A pleasing 12m solve today. FOI would have been ALB but I’d never heard of one so it had to wait for checkers to arrive. Six on the first pass but mainly in the bottom half with the NW holding out the longest. Enjoyed seeing EXTERNAL appear and from that SURRENDER, REIGN and SEQUIN (I’d got ‘quin’ immediately but had to come back to it to make sense of the ‘Kent area’) fell in a flurry before completing with ROAN — which I knew from Spaniels not horses. Positive — and fun — start to the crosswording week.
  6. About 15 mins and a fairly straight forward solve other than having chucked in BARRICADE at 23A simply because it fitted and had BAR to go with inn and CE at the end. Once I tackled the down clues I realised a bit of proper parsing was in order, and my obstacles were removed.
    SURRENDER took a little thought. Liked MEANDER.
  7. 48 minutes with 5 trips to Chambers. Caddie threw me for a while as I had always used the caddy spelling. Not heard of Roan before but managed to guess it from the letters present.
  8. As Don says, a more normal QC …
    …which kept me happily busy for 11 minutes. Not entirely straightforward, and I spent time on 11A Gene (where “unit of heredity” didn’t immediately indicate the required gene to me), 18D Acorn (which it took a while to see as a fruit — is it not a nut?) and 1D Sequin, which I biffed and only then saw SE as the answer to “Kent area”.

    Several very nice clues; particularly liked 1A Surrender and the callous governor in 13A Heartless. Having worked at the Bank of England for much of my career and a number of different governors, i don’t think any of them were “heartless”.

    Many thanks to Don for the blog

  9. A slow start with my FOI being IGNORANT, but this led to 1d & 2d and the rest of the top half swiftly followed. No major hold ups in the bottom, but the parsing of CADDIE needed a little thought.
    Finished with HINDRANCE and PANORAMA in 7.57, and my COD goes to DEBONAIR.
    Thanks to astartedon.
  10. An enjoyable start-the-week bimble. Not too easy, not too hard, plenty to enjoy.

    FOI SURRENDER, LOI GENE (like Cedric I had no idea what a “unit of heredity” was intended to indicate and so I spent some time racking my brain for heraldic terms!), COD DEBONAIR, time 09:11 for 1.7K and a Decent Day.

    Many thanks Orpheus and Don.


  11. A pleasant Monday outing (makes a change). I was on target but, more importantly, I enjoyed the puzzle and feel liberated after casting off the pressure of desperately trying to achieve a quick solve.
    Unlike the super-quick solvers, I do parse as I go along. It avoids delays resulting from coming to a halt and having to work out which biff was wrong and, more importantly, allows me to enjoy the scenery as I work my way through. My LOI was GENE. Thanks to Orpheus (who offered lots of smiles along the way) and to Don for a good blog. John M.
    1. I too parse as I go along. For me this is the most enjoyable part of doing the QC. Just into the SCC today but happy that all solved, parsed and correct. Really enjoyable, and very doable for a newbie like me. Particularly enjoyed MEANDER, HEARTLESS and PANORAMA. Many thanks Orpheus and Don (I always enjoy all the extra information you provide!).
    2. Perhaps we should start another blog “passing on the parsing” for those of us who get enjoyment from the solve rather than the time 🙂
  12. Huffed and puffed my way around the grid this morning making heavy weather. Don’t know why as all straightforward once you see the answers. COD MEANDER. Thanks Orpheus and Astartedon for dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s.
    Builders turned up this morning to finish the building work. 18 months late. Is that a record?
    Have a good week everyone.
  13. I didn’t even need to write out the anagrams as I biffed then parsed.
    AVOID made me smile, as did HERRING.
    Thanks for blog, Don.
    A good start to the week for me, after recent less than brilliant efforts.
    (I think ALB was in the dread Da Vinci Code.)
  14. much of the above. I Liked MEANDER and HERRING. DEMONSTRATION I see went in semi-parsed at best, as did HEARTLESS, WIG, and SURRENDER (from the beginning “S” and hesitation = “ER”) So, many thanks to astartedon for the hows and the whys!

    Needed BARREN to get my NHO LOI ALB. One to file away I think.

    Not even *that* quick considering the amount of bunging-in.


  15. ….for which Orpheus deserves thanks (not forgetting you Don !)

    I went straight through the clues, and had only to come back for my COD and my LOI. I only parsed WIG afterwards.

    TIME 3:19


    Pleasing start to my QC week. Thanks to astartedon for the blog (wise words I too often fail to heed) and Orpheus.

  17. As others have said

    Tried to bung HINDERANCE in which caused a few issues

    Pleasant fare

    Thanks Orpheus and Don

  18. FOI ALB (that shows crossword knowledge well absorbed) and then very quick before a general hold-up in the NW.
    En route I could not parse WIG and so had to wait for BESTOW. I tried Irish counties in 1a before nearby Surrey emerged. Then I was able to get the missing downs before LOI SEQUIN. 10:38 on the clock.
    COD to CADDIE.
  19. A pleasing 17 min start to the week, with a couple of minutes held up by 11ac “Gene”. I thought this was a good example of a grid where sometimes it’s best to start at the bottom half rather than the top — if I had, I may have been even quicker.

    Lots of clues to like and quite a few biffs. Didn’t parse the 22ac “Wig” although now that I see it, I can appreciate it.

    FOI — 14dn “Bestow”
    LOI — 11ac “Gene”
    COD — 9ac “Meander”, although I liked 17ac “Panorama” as well.

    Thanks as usual!

    Edited at 2021-09-20 09:16 am (UTC)

  20. All green in just under 11 today, so a relatively quick solve for me.

    Held up by SEQUIN (one of five = QUIN threw me) and QUILT at the end, my LOIs.

    Aside from those two, the top half of the grid went in in around 3 mins so bottom half held more demons – but even so a straightforward solve.

    Thanks setter and blogger for a fun start to the week.

  21. Thirteen minutes. FIO alb, sixteen on first pass, LOI external with a pdm. Not all completely parsed eg SE from sequin, station for post etc. Thanks for the blog, Don, and for the puzzle, Orpheus. COD Acorn. Which is a fruit, or oaknut. Oaknuts are unique to plants of the genus Quercus. A true nut has only one seed, oaknuts may sometimes contain two seeds. So an acorn is a fruit and a nut. A special kind of nut. Well, anyway … GW.
    1. Thank you GW. Encouraged by your reference to Oaknuts (one learns so much from the TftT site …) I have now been on a merry internet wormhole search and discovered several more interesting things about fruit, nuts and seeds. For example, as well as acorns being fruit not nuts, large numbers of things with “nuts” in their name (including peanuts and walnuts) are not actually nuts either. A walnut, I am told, is a seed, and a peanut is actually a legume. Who knew?
  22. Unlike James, the top half of this flew in but nearly everything from Heartless onwards went in slowly to give me an 18min finish. I think part of the problem was I kept coming back to Demonstration, which stubbornly refused my parsing efforts. I even gave it an extra minute at the end, but all to no avail. Noted the usual home counties bias that I’ve come to expect: Surrey, SE, Bow, but at least it reduces the number of options. Hard to pick a CoD with so many good clues, but I think 12d, Debonair, just beats Herring. Invariant
  23. 13 minutes for me with LOI BESTOW. I was slowed by trying to make NAIROBI parse when I should have seen TRIPOLI when faced with xxIxOxI — stupid boy! I also biffed EXTERIOR instead of EXTERNAL, but that was much quicker to resolve. No problems with GENE, that’s how my mum spelled her first name — thanks again for the memory. And thanks too to Astartedon and Orpheus.
  24. The NW corner prover very tricky.

    I was sure that 4d started with an anagram of ‘monster’, I carefully put in REMONSTRATION, with received=RATION. Pretty unlucky.

    Maybe if the clue was

    Protest monster surprisingly received in turn (13)

    then REMONSTRATION would have worked nicely. You can have that one for free, Orpheus.

    Also did not see QUIN, trying ‘toe’ for my one in five. And ‘AB’ for rating, as many words start AB seemed reasonable. I don’t think ‘manoeuvres’ is a good anagram indicator, ‘on manoeuvres’, or ‘manoeuvring’ would be better.


  25. Some of the speed merchants above will have finished the whole puzzle before I had even solved my second clue today, as, apart from MEANDER (great clue, BTW!), more than 5 minutes had elapsed before I biffed DEMONSTRATION – and I never did parse that clue. Eventually though, I got going in the lower half of the grid and managed to reach six-to-go with less than 25 minutes on the clock (a good time for me).

    Trouble was that all of those six clues were interconnected in the NW corner, including 1a and 1d – so I had no starting letters. It took me a further 10+ minutes before SURRENDER surrendered and the remaining clues (REIGN, QUILT, SEQUIN and IGNORANT and EXTERNAL) all then fell in around 90 seconds or so. Total time = 37 minutes.

    Mrs Random, on the other hand, started after me, finished in 19 minutes without rushing or fretting, and then moved on to the Polygon (where she achieved her usual goal of ‘Good’ including the source word). She is now harvesting our first ever home-grown aubergines for a Mediterranean-style dinner this evening. Scrumptious!

    Many thanks to Orpheus and astertedon.

  26. Not sure why but we seem to have made heavy weather of this one but lots of clever and fun clues made this a very pleasant start to the week. We finished in 16 minutes.

    FOI: ALB

    Thanks Orpheus and Astartedon.

  27. A very enjoyable puzzle pitched at the right level (well, for me anyway). Nothing too obscure but not all a write-in by any means. I finished in 16 mins but failed to parse HEARTLESS and WIG. Spent too long really on those two and CADDIE, where I had to work hard for the parsing.

    LOI – 17ac PANORAMA
    COD – 13dn HERRING

    Thanks to Orpheus and Astartedon.

  28. A PB at 13 mins in my birth year! My second PB in a few days and very pleased to achieve it on QC number 1965 (yes, that makes me about 45 years old again).

    Very enjoyable, fully parsed and a giggle at Deb On Air makes that my COD.

    Thanks Orpheus and Astartedon for a happy Monday.

    1. Congratulations (again) on your new PB, Prof.
      P.S. If you work in Base 13 you will be 45 yet again, this time next year.
  29. 4:00 just after lunch. A gentle start to the week with everything fairly straightforward. COD 4d “demonstration” required the most time to sort out.
    Liked 9 ac “meander” too. An old mate from Uni has formed an acoustic musical duo with his daughter and called it “Meander”. Since he has won the Listener Crossword prize at least twice, I wouldn’t dream of criticising his wordplay.
    Regarding quick times and biffing, I know the really fast solvers can speak for themselves, but I get the impression that they are capable of performing the tasks of reading/solving/parsing and entering almost simultaneously.
    I wonder if this puzzle might signify a sequence of slightly easier QC’s this week?
    Thanks to Don for the blog and to Orpheus
    1. Yes, it’s impressive. Actually, even I find that I can do all of those things within 5-6 seconds on perhaps one clue in each puzzle. However, it’s the consistency of the fast solvers that really impresses me. It’s just the same with golf, darts, archery, etc. Most of us can fire off one excellent shot occasionally, but ….
  30. We found the top half slow going, but transferring our attention to the bottom half all suddenly seemed to knit together, finishing in the nw. Pleasant puzzle, thanks Orpheus.
  31. poetry in code, brilliant!
    now if i can decode it…
    ; )

    these are not for rookies!

    beyond word association, syllabic meanings
    i think i would need AI to read meaning

    ACORN – A CON (a scam) ‘involving’ R (first of Ripe)
    GOSH – hardly a clue really, just exactly what it says: Leaders of Great Ormond Street Hospital. Res ipsa loquitur as the lawyers say – it speaks for itself!

    i mean, WOW !!
    thanks for the mind jog!

  32. Sorry, that was me. I was still logged out – now remember I had to change my password after putting my tablet back to factory settings. What a palaver!

    Edited at 2021-09-20 05:48 pm (UTC)

  33. A nice gentle Monday offering. Never heard of alb but the clue was obvious enough. My only setback was biffing Nairobi when I had _ _ I _ O_ I.

    Edited at 2021-09-20 05:55 pm (UTC)

  34. Thankyou for the tip-off Mme B. We haven’t been there and hadn’t heard of it before now, so we will try to visit when we’re next en-route north. By the way, we’re off on our first trip away for over two years on Wednesday, to Guernsey, where our second son lives and works (doing his accountancy training). We will try to keep up with these QCs while we’re away, of course.
  35. Did this in 7:30 after a lovely day out at a new garden to me – for those of you who are interested (Random?) it’s Winterbourne House and Garden at Birmingham University. Lovely gardens, very interesting Arts & Crafts house and jolly good cake – what more could you want on a sunny September day?
    A nice crossword, that’s what 😉 I did find this quite easy but realise that there was a bit of biffing on the way – a few clues jumped out at me and I forgot to go back and fully parse them. But I got the gist in all cases so don’t feel too bad.
    FOI Alb
    LOI Demonstration
    COD Meander
    Thanks Orpheus and Don
  36. As newbies we found this fun, just over 20 mins with only DEMONSTRATION unparsed. We wanted Nairobi (which we couldnt parse) before realising TRIPOLI. Thanks Orpheus
  37. Didn’t think this was that easy, so was pleased with my time of 18:43, until I came on here and found pretty much everyone else had gone through it fairly quickly too. I’d say that makes it a perfect QC. Never heard of an ALB, failed to parse HEARTLESS, and DEBONAIR was one of those that I only understood because of what I have learned on here. It’s always quite satisfying to get one of those. FOI a tentative ALB, LOI EXTERNAL, COD MEANDER. Thanks Orpheus and Astartedon.
  38. I know Winterbourne and the University well after living in Brum for 6 years (some time ago). The other place to explore if you visit the area is the Birmingham Botanical Gardens and Glasshouses. They can’t be more than half a mile away from Winterbourne.

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