Quick Cryptic 745 by Flamande

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic
This is the first time that Flamande has cropped up in my Monday slot, holiday swaps notwithstanding, which is a pleasant surprise given that I’ve been a fan of his puzzles in other places for several years. This crossword is fairly typical of the Flamande experience – smooth surfaces, a dash of humour, and a minimal quantity of obscurities. Thanks, Flamande.

The puzzle can be found here if the usual channels are unavailable: http://feeds.thetimes.co.uk/puzzles/crossword/20170116/21823/

Definitions are underlined.

3 Transport for team’s trainer (5)
COACH – double definition
7 Name old star of The Godfather (6)
BRANDOBRAND (Name) + O (old) to give us Marlon Brando, who played Vito Corleone in The Godfather. Today is the birthday of one of Brando’s sons.
8 Examination for all? Not entirely (4)
ORAL – hidden in (Not entirely) fOR ALl
9 Alec and Rob worried about Henry, fellow without a mate? (8)
BACHELOR – anagram (worried) of ALEC + ROB, about H (Henry, i.e. the SI symbol for the unit of inductance)
10 Part of allotment scheme (4)
PLOT – double definition
11 Rehearsal of singers in church perplexed opera critic (5,8)
CHOIR PRACTICECH (church) + anagram of (perplexed) OPERA CRITIC. Not in Chambers or ODO but in Collins.
15 One promoting harmonious relationships, such as Thomas Telford? (6-7)
BRIDGE-BUILDER – literal example of a figurative expression. Telford’s most famous bridge is perhaps that across the Menai Strait, linking Holyhead to Anglesey – at least, that’s the one I remember from History O-Level.
16 Letters man read aloud (4)
MAIL – homophone (read aloud) of MALE (man)
18 How to take clipping from newspaper? Please don’t do that! (3,2,3)
CUT IT OUT – literal interpretation of a figurative phrase, i.e. if you wanted to take a clipping from a newspaper then you would CUT IT OUT
20 Something wrong, swallowing hot piece of beef (4)
SHINSIN (Something wrong) around (swallowing) H (hot). I’ve usually encountered this as “shin beef” rather than just “shin”, but Chambers has: “The lower part of a leg of beef”.
21 Fellow is half-rude and cheeky (6)
RUPERTRU (half-rude, i.e. the first half of the word “rude”) + PERT (cheeky)
22 Extremely tipsy drinking rum, an alcoholic beverage (5)
TODDYTY (Extremely tipsy, i.e. the first and last letters of the word “tipsy”) around (drinking) ODD (rum). Often encountered with the adjective “hot”, this is (Chambers): “A mixture of spirits, sugar and hot water”, though I think honey is more commonly used than just straight sugar. The same word also means (Chambers): “The fermented sap of various palm trees”, though I would imagine solvers (at least UK-based ones) will be more familiar with the previous definition.
1 Swimmer, about to get in short rest (8)
BREATHERBATHER (Swimmer) around (to get in) RE (about)
2 Nick loses head a little bit (4)
INCH – {p}INCH (Nick loses head, i.e. the word “pinch” (Nick) without its first letter)
3 Entering wood, everyone’s about to fall down (8)
COLLAPSE – reversal of (about) ALL (everyone), in (Entering) COPSE (wood)
4 Declare a cleric briefly is uplifted (4)
AVERA + reversal (is uplifted) of REV (cleric briefly, i.e. the usual abbreviation for Reverend)
5 Ah! Pistol goes off in infirmary (8)
HOSPITAL – anagram of (goes off) AH PISTOL
6 Drop round for pudding (4)
SAGOSAG (Drop) + O (round). Nice surface, which has been exploited before (e.g. by Joker in March 2015).
12 Disinclined to do much during party before pre-Easter period (8)
INDOLENTIN (during) + DO (party) + LENT (pre-Easter period)
13 Infidelity upsets true lady (8)
ADULTERY – anagram of (upsets) TRUE LADY. As with several other clues in the puzzle, Flamande has chosen an anagram indicator that is perfect for the surface.
14 The sound of people policing PM’s residence (8)
CHEQUERS – homophone (The sound) of CHECKERS (people policing), to give the Buckinghamshire retreat of the British Prime Minister. I can’t find an exact equivalence of “to police” and “to check” in any of the usual sources, but they are both synonyms of “to control” so it’s not much of a stretch.
17 Uncomfortable feeling inside teacher (4)
ACHE – hidden in (inside) teACHEr
18 Maybe ace vehicle with detachable top (4)
CARDCAR (vehicle) + D (detachable top, i.e. the first letter of the word “detachable”), with an indicated DBE (definition by example) referring to playing cards
19 Error that you print out at first (4)
TYPO – initial letters of (at first) That You Print Out

30 comments on “Quick Cryptic 745 by Flamande”

  1. … is as straightforward as they come. A couple of unusual words that may not be familiar to Quicky solvers, but in general the clueing is generous and the definitions clear.
      1. When I did the puzzle shortly after midnight there were only two people on the leaderboard and they had both posted times faster than their averages – since I had too, I thought this was a sign that it was an easy-ish puzzle. Looking at the comments on the blog now, there is by no means a consensus on it being easy. The dangers of a small sample size – sorry …
  2. A nice puzzle. I didn’t see anything at first, FOI finally was CHOIR PRACTICE. LOI INCH. COD TYPO.
  3. All over in 7.27 so reasonably straightforward -even after late night (Shanghai Time +8hrs) watching Zlatan & Co. get even with Liverpool. Pogba’s ‘Moulin’ was rather disappointing, as was the result.

    Which one of Brando’s sons? Kate Moss too!


    1. Myles Jonathan Brando. It’s also Sade’s birthday – I think I wore out my copy of “Paradise”.
  4. Nothing to scare the horses, but some very nice surfaces, e.g. 3d and 1d (my COD). The DBE in 18d, for those who object to DBEs, is covered by the ‘Maybe’ in the definition (a ? at the end will also do it; unless you object to DBEs, of course). Surely ‘X practice’ (piano practice, football practice, …) is a legitimate lexical item? And I imagine most of them won’t be listed in dictionaries. 5:43.
    1. In my experience, it’s extremely rare for (Times) puzzles to contain words/expressions that don’t explicitly exist in some appropriate reference work or other (dictionary, atlas, Shakespeare, etc). There’s good reason for this, in particular when it comes to definitions of words – we need a common arbiter of what the meaning of a word is, rather than the 10 different meanings you’ll get if you ask 10 different people (not that that stops people on crossword forums arguing – daily – against the dictionaries’ contents …)

      In my mind, I also expect this property to extend to constructions like “X practice” – sure, people would know what I meant if I referred to choir practice (only in Collins), piano practice (not in any of the usual sources), didgeridoo practice (ditto), and erhu practice (ditto), but I would not want to see any of them except the first in a crossword.

      I realise that I may be adopting a hardline approach here that is not shared by all, but the extreme rarity of answers that violate this “rule” is such that I’m assuming most crossword setters/editors follow it.

      1. You know, even as I was typing my comment, there was a still, small voice whispering in my ear that I had once objected, rather strenuously, to a phrase that would not have shown up in a dictionary, being just a concatenation of two words (grammatical and meaningful concatenation, of course, but). Well, I threw the creep out of my office, but he, and of course you, had a point, and I’ll concede it. I wish I could remember my example, though, because Peter defended it.
        1. I’m such a non-fan of these expressions that they always stick in my mind when they come up, and the one you’re thinking of is GERMAN WINE: http://times-xwd-times.livejournal.com/1389449.html Mr Moorey followed this up in his very next puzzle with MORE DISTANT, which you also gamely objected to (I’d given up hope by that point). But even though Peter and his setters don’t seem to view such expressions as verboten, they are still mercifully rare.
  5. My brain was still functioning when I solved this (my comment above re the 15×15 refers) and I completed it in 7 minutes flat.

    I always welcome the opportunity to check the accuracy of my QC records so I looked up Flamande’s appearances on Mondays and found he’s been on my watch 11 times, but he was twice before today on yours, mohn, #225 (19 Jan 2015) and #435 (9 November 2015). I should get out more!

    Edited at 2017-01-16 05:15 am (UTC)

    1. Ah yes – I searched the folder in which I keep my blog drafts, but on reflection I only started keeping the drafts last year.
  6. About 40 mins, finished quite quickly but with 4 remaining: 16a, 20a, 6d and 17d. Shin for beef needed a leap of faith.

    After some head scratching, all was in place except the pudding.

    Had to go through the alphabet before the pudding crumbled.

    The only parsing I couldn’t see straight away was 9a.

  7. I’m afraid my knowledge doesn’t extend to SAGO and CHEQUERS, so came a cropper at 6dn and 14dn. I absolutely breezed through the rest, so I’m guessing this will be very easier for most. Gribb.
  8. I don’t keep records but 8 mins must be up there with the quickest. Even that may have reduced had I noted that 11ac was (5,8) on first reading. LOI 7ac – which had worried me through thebcrossword as I’m no good with such things – but the cluing with checkers was plain. Thanks mohn2 and Flamande.
    1. Well done on the PB. I look forward to your first under 10 minute effort in 2017! Happy Chinese New Year.
  9. Surprised that CHOIR PRACTICE isn’t in some dictionaries. Pity that Flamande’s excellent surfaces may be wasted, need to be savoured afterwards. 4’15”, thanks mohn and Flamande.
  10. Sub 6′ so a gentle start to the week. I think you are mostly right about the main puzzle mohn. Three quarters of it at least should be accessible to QC regulars, so it is worth a go.
  11. A quick (for me) 23 mins today, with 1d and 8ac (!) preserving the 20 min barrier. Flamande’s gentle style makes for straightforward QCs once you have picked up a few of the tricks of the trade. Invariant
  12. I thought I was on for a sub 10 minutes finish today as most of this went in without problems. Unfortunately I’d forgotten who Thomas Telford was which made 15a a bit trickier than it should have been. Eventually completed it in 12 minutes. LOI 21a
  13. Personal Best for me, 17 minutes, my first time under 20 minutes. Good start to the week. Thanks for the Blog
  14. 9 minutes today, with lots going in as I read the clue, but some taking a little longer. FOI was AVER, LOI was INCH after BRANDO finally sprang to mind. Nice puzzle thanks mohn2 and Flamande.

    Edited at 2017-01-17 11:54 am (UTC)

  15. Avery good time for me too – inexact but about 25 minutes including time to go back and convince myself in the NE e.g. 1d 2d 3d. FOI 3a. LOI 22a. COD 19d. Yet still learned from the blog. Thanks all.
  16. Just back from a day out. Solved this on a train this morning in just under 9 minutes -easily my personal best. LOI was 9a. No real hold-ups or problems. After trying the difficult weekend puzzles, maybe I was match -fit. David

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