Sunday Times 5052 by Dean Mayer

19:14. Quite a tricky one from Dean this week, up to the usual very high standard. I slowed myself down a little with a very confident wrong answer at 21ac, and I’m sure I won’t have been alone there. Otherwise the clues are all very clear, but slightly unusual or unexpected meanings of words led me repeatedly astray – which is of course the setter’s job! Good stuff.

Definitions are underlined, anagrams indicated like (TIHS)*, anagram indicators are in italics.

1 It points right on golf course
GROUTER – G (golf), ROUTE (course), R. ‘Point’ as in to finish brickwork.
5 Take a mouthful from Cheers VIP, say?
BITE OFF – sounds like ‘bye, toff’.
9 Priest protected by Hummer in US city
KALAMAZOO – KA(LAMA)ZOO. It’s in Michigan between South Bend and Grand Rapids if you wanted to place it exactly.
10 Refugee from former French island
EXILE – EX-ILE (de la Cité, for instance).
11 14 struggle with criticism
REVIEW – RE (Royal Engineers, see 14ac), VIE, W (with).
12 Met radio presenter with no idea about hugging
ADJOINED – (NO IDEA)* containing (hugging) DJ.
14 Senior general wrong to capture unknown soldiers
17 New style car parts guard braking component
MASTER CYLINDER – MINDER (guard) containing (STYLE CAR)*. I had never heard of this car part but it wasn’t too hard to construct from the wordplay.
19 Hand in substantial payment
21 Fruit seen in hands
PAWPAW – PAW, PAW. I initially put BANANA in here, which is a perfectly good answer in a non-cryptic crossword!
23 Part of one qualifying match
EQUAL – contained in ‘one qualifying’.
24 A Scot’s tears are his
GREETINGS – just a not-very-cryptic definition, I think, based on the fact that to greet means to weep in Scottish. Edit: see comments below, it is of course much cleverer than that. The definition is ‘his’, the plural of ‘hi’.
25 Makes patterns — all square, of course
26 Left before light show
1 Good old Ford model right for small racer
GO-KART – G, O, KA RT. ‘Old Ford model’ is always T, right? Wrong!
2 Not seeing lake, I will cut through plain
3 Paint (not on paper) like an artist?
TEMPERAMENTALLY – TEMPERA (paint), MENTALLY (not on paper, as in mental arithmetic).
4 Fell, removing top of skin
RAZEgRAZE. If you skin your knee, for example, you graze it.
5 Working party, caught by surprise, waste time
BOONDOGGLE – BO(ON, DO)GGLE. I don’t think I’ve come across this as a verb before.
6 Time to pay for quite a few?
THE MORNING AFTER – CD. If you’ve ‘had a few’ it normally refers to booze.
7 Hunter, or one almost catching one
8 One aim — blocking hunt that’s cruel
FIENDISH – F(I, END)ISH. At first I thought this was questionable, because hunting and fishing are quite distinct activities, but if used figuratively they’re the same thing.
13 Rights abandoned, scrutiny provokes revolutions
SEA CHANGES – SEArCH, ANGErS. An unusual device.
15 Wonder what a lid could be?
EYE-OPENER – two definitions, the more literal one being the cryptic. Remarkable how common this is!
16 Before trial, butters up the best-dressed
SMARTEST – reversal (up) of RAMS (butters), TEST.
18 Wry and artfully witty about a bit of sex
20 Think about old touchpad alternative
22 Go quiet, making little noise
PEEP – PEE (go), P (quiet).

39 comments on “Sunday Times 5052 by Dean Mayer”

    1. Ah yes, that makes sense, thanks. A purist might ask for a question mark to indicate the definition by example but that would spoil the clue.

  1. True, Kalamazoo lies between Grand Rapids and South Bend ,Indiana, but is more widely known as the halfway point on the drive on Interstate 94 from Detroit to Chicago.

  2. 48m 15s. A very good Anax puzzle. EYE OPENER and THE MORNING AFTER were very good.
    Thanks for SEA CHANGES, keriothe.
    Dean is plumbing the depths of US cities. I had heard of Kalamazoo but, post-solve I discovered it is not in the top 300+ cities by population in the US.

    1. I think KALAMAZOO has one of the most memorable names among US cities, though it has plenty of competition—and there are plenty of others that have featured in the titles of #1 hit songs (“I Got a Gal in Kalamazoo,” Glenn Miller, 1942).

      1. Indeed! I knew the name from the accounting system but had forgotten about the Glenn Miller tune.

        1. Not sure if it was part of the same system, but I have a hazy memory of some of my first pay packets, in school holiday jobs, being cash in something called a Kalamazoo envelope, which the internet seems to know nothing about. I would have recognized the name from the Glenn Miller number — I think it was the first track on a Miller album, one of the tiny number of albums my parents possessed, on reel to reel tape. In the 1960s’/70s, we were a household with no record player, which seems even odder than the absence of TV in a one classmate’s household.

          1. My first job was in the cashier’s office at a large factory. We issued the shop floor workers’ pay in Kalamazoo envelopes (office staff were paid by bank transfer). If I recall correctly, the point of a Kalamazoo was that it couldn’t be opened without damaging it, so if your envelope was received intact you couldn’t claim that someone had swiped a pound note (or conversely, no-one could swipe a pound note without damaging the envelope).

            PS I thought it was a great clue. It took a while for kazoo to come to mind as the “hummer”.

          2. Googling (with quotation) marks “Kalamazoo envelope” did turn up one definite mention (on a rather short page of results).

            « My dad worked [ca. 1979] in the stores of a vehicle spares company called Spafax, based in Corsham, Wiltshire. It was a real post-war-consensus bosses-and-workers kind-of place; pay came home weekly in a Kalamazoo envelope, bosses wore jackets and ties or pinstripe suits (depending on how important a boss they were), and storemen (and it was all men, women either typed or packed) wore open-necked shirts and casual trousers. »

            There was also a Kalamazoo Envelope Company in the city of that name, in 1909. Not sure of the relevance.

          3. Thanks, Peter, Mention of Glenn Miller reminded me that I once, briefly, knew a Captain (not Major) Glenn Miller who was a US Army officer. Amusingly, to me, he looked like Mickey Rooney!

          4. The pay packet brought memories. Did it have small holes in the bottom half so you could count your money without opening the envelope? It was a complete payroll system.

            1. I think the holes were there, but I don’t think I ever understood why. I think I found mentions of the system online, but nothing about the envelope, which surprised me for something experienced less than 50 years ago.

      2. In the 1970s I was selling Star Trek fanzines to American fans. (Coals to Newcastle?). One fan lived in Kalamazoo. I commented that I had only heard of it because of the Glen Miller song. I still have the badge/button she sent me produced by the Kalamazoo tourist office or suchlike. It says: “Yes, there really is a Kalamazoo!”

  3. BANANA is a perfectly good answer in a cryptic, as bananas are found in hands (bunches)!

      1. Nor are CDs really (in my view clues in a cryptic crossword should give you two ways to get to the solution). That’s why I so dislike them. This could easily have been a CD for BANANA; indeed I’ve seen similarly weak CDs in other crosswords, although perhaps I shouldn’t have expected Dean to be so feeble.

        At any rate I put it in with confidence and of course was unable to do the last three.

        1. Late to the party on this point …

          Plenty of CDs these days do give you multiple reasons for the answer. Among old ST clue writing winners:

          1534 Nineteenth hole
          Sandwich bar serving round after round?
          “Sandwich bar” interpreted correctly (Sandwich being a place with two gold courses that have hosted the British Open), “round” as a round of drinks , “round” as a game of golf.

          1487 Holding pattern
          In which crates are stacked-up by the tower?
          crates as planes, stacked-up as a holding pattern is a “stack” which is “up”, and this is done by the (control) tower.

          If you ban CDs, you ban many clues which have been seen as favourites.

  4. DNF, as I never got GROUTER. I also used aids for MASTER CYLINDER.
    I put in BANANA, too, and I imagine the P made me change my mind. And I parsed GREETINGS as Bruce and Guy did; it’s my COD.

  5. Too hard for me to finish without several resorts to aids. NHO BOONDOGGLE or MASTER CYLINDER. Another BANANA here – I think I have fallen into that trap before but can’t find it by searching so perhaps it wasn’t in a Times puzzle.

    That’s two Sundays in a row now, I wonder if the ST puzzle is becoming more 8dn?

  6. I found this medium hard.. a bit startled to see master cylinder there, but I had heard of it.
    i thought of banana like everyone else but didn’t write it in and it soon couldn’t be..
    24ac v clever. And the usual fine surface readings throughout

  7. The fact that this crossword is a pangram saved my bacon, as I had GO-CART for 1D, with a bit of a MER as I assumed it was normally spelled with a K. Then I had a major MER at CAZOO rather than KAZOO to give the city, the spelling of which I didn’t question as I don’t think I’ve seen it written down. However, on realising there was an almost pangram minus K, I revisited the MER site and saw the Ford Ka and the R for ‘right’ that I’d missed. Phew! I can’t say banana didn’t cross my mind, but I discounted it as not being worthy of Dean and the W soon gave the better answer. Liked the ridiculous BOONDOGGLE, but COD to the excellent Scot’s “Hi’s”.

  8. Not long ago I would have given up on this puzzle as too hard. But I persevered and enjoyed it.
    It didn’t help thinking of Knoxville (from John Knox) as the US city; no alternatives came to mind, so full parsing had to wait.
    After much time LOI was GREETINGS, unparsed as I did not know the Scots term and failed to spot HIs.
    Prior to that MASTER CYLINDER where I had two words which seemed OK; what goes on under the bonnet is not my forte. I did have a car with six cylinders; perhaps they had a hierarchy?

    1. Being equally weak on automotive engineering, I checked out “master cylinder” and found that it’s part of braking and/or clutch systems, so apparently not one of the six you were thinking of.

      The same meaning of “greet” was in ST Crossword 5050 – I wondered how many might notice, and felt quite relieved that it wasn’t being used on two successive Sundays.

      1. Given that we often have the same word on successive days in either the 15×15 or the quickie, or around two days apart, I wouldn’t worry about an elapse of a fortnight! Besides, it’s a great clue!

  9. I found this relatively easy for a Dean puzzle, finishing in a shade over half an hour. Lots of good clues, but COD to 24a – I wondered if everyone would get it, so I’m feeling a little smug!

  10. Those of us of a certain age will remember master cylinders very well. Always seemed to need replacing. Couldn’t get on with this crossword. Don’t know why as most answers are reasonably straight forward. However not being familiar with vernacular north of the border couldn’t get Greetings. As for boondoggle could someone help with a clearer parsing. In future if I get a cryptic clue that I don’t understand let alone getting the answer I shall consider myself ‘ boondoggled’. Not the correct use but the sound of it would sum up my confusion

    1. 1. Working = ON
      2. Party = DO
      3. Surprise = BOGGLE
      [1, 2] is ‘caught by’ (contained in) 3: BO(ON, DO)GGLE.
      Definition is ‘waste time’.

      1. Thanks once again keriothe. I’d got to the stage where I’d looked too long and hard. As usual it helps if you’ve heard of a word. Much appreciated

        1. It’s always a lot easier when you know the words! You’re welcome, and apologies if my initial explanation was too cursory. It’s sometimes difficult to know how explicit to be, but if I haven’t made something clear enough please don’t hesitate to ask.

    2. For the first 25 years of my motoring life I drove old banger VWs which I serviced myself. Back then I could replace the rubbers in a master cylinder with my eyes shut.

  11. Took me well over an hour in two sessions.
    Also had GOCART for a long time, I think KALAMZOO was my LOI, or else one of the ones it intersects with. I remember trying to make something with Chicago for ages.
    Got Greetings via hi-s, not knowing about the scots tears
    Very very hard! I guess Im still learning.

    1. Hi Steve
      For some reason I couldn’t get Chicago out of my mind either. I didn’t get Kalamazoo because I mispelt go kart as go cart

  12. All said above, except that I was lucky to think of Paw Paw before banana – thanks keriothe, anax, and ed

  13. As others have said, excellent puzzle with at least three outstanding clues (for me): 6 and 15d, 24 a. The rest a little marred by the unknowns: KALAMAZOO, BOONDOGGLE and MASTER CYLINDER, each too hard for me to guess at. Great misdirection in 21a . Dean definitely getting more 8d!

  14. Thanks Dean and keriothe
    Struggled with this one in a minute under 2 hours, across three sittings and a lot of mess in the SE corner where I was another initial ‘BANANA’ and also had to have three gos at 15d until was finally able to settle on EYE-OPENER (excellent clue, but cannot unravel all the over-writing now to see what the initial attempts on it were). Apart from that there were a few other clues where the answer or parts of the answer were new terms – GROUTER (in reference to ‘points’), that Scottish meaning of ‘greets’, BOONDOGGLE and although knowing that a MASTER CYLINDER had something to do with a car mechanism, had to check that it was to do with the brakes. Numerous excellent clues throughout (mostly already pointed out) and for once saw that it was a pangram – after completion.
    Finished with REVIEW, SEA CHANGE (really neat word play) and that GREETINGS (when finally twigged to the intention of hi’s and then had to trawl through Google to see what the ‘Scottish’ relationship was.

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