Quick Cryptic 899 by Pedro

Morning all.  Not much to say today on what I thought was a fairly straightforward offering from Pedro.  Took me 4:08.

Anyone trying to improve his or her solving skills could do a lot worse than checking out the series of vlogs (Cracking The Cryptic) that have appeared on youtube this week.  Yesterday’s instalment was presented by the Usain Bolt of crossword solving, Mark Goodliffe.

Now, on with today’s parsings…

Clues are reproduced in blue, with the definition underlined.  Anagram indicators are bolded and italicised.  Then there’s the answer IN BOLD, followed by the parsing of the wordplay.  (ABC)* means ‘anagram of ABC’.

1 Problem ward, is this (8)
DRAWBACK – “Ward” reversed = “DRAW” BACK
5 Slender model debuts in Western action in film (4)
WAIF – Initial letters (debuts) of Western Action In Film
8 Racecourse where you’ll see a person from the North (5)
ASCOT – A SCOT (person from the North)
9 Touching performance, dressed in hat (7)
TACTILE – ACT (performance) “dressed in” TILE (hat)
“Tile” is slang for hat, based on an analogy to roof tiles.
11 Factory I support in an instant (11)
MILLISECOND – MILL (factory) + I + SECOND (support)
Always wondered how long an instant was.  Turns out it’s a thousandth of a second.
13 Academics holding over draft publications (6)
PROOFS – PROFS (academics) “holding” O (over)
14 University put in figures showing prestige (6)
STATUS – U (university) in STATS (figures)
16 Brandish weapon, taking on English literary figure (11)
SHAKESPEARE – SHAKE (brandish) + SPEAR (weapon) + E (English)
Anyone not get this immediately?
18 Die down? Some wretched wind lessens (7)
DWINDLE – Hidden (some) in wretcheD WIND LEssens
19 Collective wisdom about one French river (5)
LOIRE – LORE (collective wisdom) “about” I (one)
20 Stick tin next to middle of shelf (4)
CANE – CAN (tin) + E (middle of shElf)
21 Promising bad weather as reported by The Times? (8)
THUNDERY – Double definition
The second def references the Times’ nickname, “The Thunderer”.  The nickname dates back to 1830 apparently.
1 Fed up about article, apparently not hearing? (4)
DEAF – DEF [FED reversed (up)] “about” A (article)
2 What hotel may provide attempt at a compromise? (13)
ACCOMMODATION – Double definition
3 Billet fated for demolition where soldiers are active (11)
4 Caught with a quantity of milk overturned (pet’s favourite) (6)
CATNIP – C (caught) + A + TNIP [PINT (quantity of milk) reversed (overturned)]
6 Mistress, maybe, with item of gossip about team? (1,3,2,3,4)
A BIT ON THE SIDE – Double definition
Sounds a bit Frankie Howerd-ish these days.
7 I stop tucking into cod, say — far too tough (8)
FIENDISH – I + END (stop) “tucking into” FISH (cod, say)
10 Autumn in various centres is somewhat gloomy (11)
12 Like many TV series, is copied fraudulently (8)
Haven’t we seen this a few times recently?  Maybe in the 15×15.
15 Understand about power presented by church sermon? (6)
SPEECH – SEE (understand) “about” P (power) + CH (church)
17 Refuse to acknowledge study, say, in the end (4)
DENY – DEN (study) + last letter (in the end) of saY

24 comments on “Quick Cryptic 899 by Pedro”

  1. THUNDERY took me ages; I knew the term, but didn’t realize it had survived into this century. MILLISECOND: according to Johnny Carson, the shortest time period measurable by current science is the interval between when in New York City the signal turns green, and when drivers start honking their horns. 6:07.

    Edited at 2017-08-18 10:05 pm (UTC)

  2. Home in 8.31 – the slowest time recorded so far.

    For once 16ac SHAKESPEARE was a write-in.

    LOI 21ac THUNDERY which remaqined unparsed until Lord Galspray revealed himself, as he is wont to do.

    WOD 5ac WAIF

    COD 19ac LOIRE

    Mistress, Quickly back to Julius Caesar (Part Two) – what have I missed? Exeunt Robert E Lee and Stonewall Jackson…..

  3. Yep, managed to solve this one over lunch.

    I couldn’t parse Thundery but managed to bang it in.

    That makes two I have solved this week.

    And yep Shakespeare went straight in. As did Ascot – we had that recently.

    Edited at 2017-08-18 05:22 am (UTC)

  4. 6 minutes, which I think is as fast as I can fill the grid whilst handicapping myself by insisting on parsing as I go.

    A good puzzle with only TILE for ‘hat’ and the Times nickname noted as being perhaps slightly obscure for newer solvers, and only one chestnut, the racecourse clue at 8ac.

  5. 7:38 for me. DNK Tile=Hat so was on a bit of a guess with 9a. Took a while for the penny to drop on LOI 21a
  6. A smidge under 16 minutes for me; for some reason I’m finding crosswording hard this week. Perhaps I’m not drinking enough. 21a unparsed, as with virtually everyone else, it seems. Glad I didn’t biff “blustery”, which was the first thing I thought of, looking out of the window in Bristol.

    At least I’ve knocked horryd from the “slowest time recorded” spot.

  7. Watched the vlog – a bit tough for me I don’t think I would have got retinue = train
    Also I dont like to follow the “get one in and then work away from it” method, I always try all of the acrrosses and then all the downs before filling in gaps, and (almost) always parse as I go. Exceptions today were 9a and 15d hence about 13mins. I think tile must be slang for hat in a different part of the country from me, speaking of which it is bright sun and a gentle breeze in Southend, so no help with 21a.
      1. I lived in the east end for more than 10 years and don’t recall it, despite coming across such marvels as the maintainence staff in my factory all being called ginger despite varying hair colours, turns out it is ginger beer = engineer
        1. The example of tile/hat that usually comes up is from the song ‘Any Old Iron’ performed by many, but perhaps most associated with the Cockney comedian, Harry Champion:

          Any old iron? Any old iron?
          Any, any, any old iron?
          You look neat. Talk about a treat!
          You look so dapper from your napper to your feet.
          Dressed in style, brand-new TILE,
          And your father’s old green tie on.
          But I wouldn’t give you tuppence for your old watch and chain,
          Old iron, old iron.”

          1. Ok youve got me I did know that song, I must admit I hadnt parsed the lyrics as thorougly as I do the QC
      1. Yes, that was written by the American Vaudeville comedian Joseph J Sullivan who had no Cockney associations that I’m aware of. He performed blacked up so would be persona non grata these days.

        Edited at 2017-08-18 01:01 pm (UTC)

  8. A PB for me at 5:36, for once managing to avoid any typos. A top to bottom solve with 1a FOI and THUNDERY LOI. First time I think I’ve seen the technique in 1a used in a QC, as Vinyl also mentioned. Nice puzzle. Thanks Pedro and Galspray.
    1. I am sure that we have seen it at least 3 or 4 times before (no I didnt spot it this time)

      Edited at 2017-08-18 12:10 pm (UTC)

  9. A thousandth of a second eh? Turning this over – is it not surprising that the EU hasn’t tried to introduce kiloseconds in place of hours? Or that our esteemed blogger has yet to solve the QC in a time of a few hundred milliseconds?
    9 minutes. Cod To Waggle Dagger esq.
  10. Ended the week with the same time (35mins) as Monday, and similar thoughts about how it should have been quicker. Drawback was my CoD, but it needed all the checkers before I saw the answer – a hard introduction to the grid. Invariant
  11. All went in smoothly today starting with 6d and ending with 15d.
    Tile has come up more than once recently and Ascot is the default racecourse. Episodic seems to be episodic too. Just over ten minutes, so very fast for me.
    Enjoyed it. COD to 7d. David
    PS I am enjoying the Vlogs.

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