Times 23658 – quick one today

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic
The title doesn’t refer to my solving time, which was average at best – 12 minutes, but to this blog entry. I have a busy day ahead of me, so this will be short and sweet.


5 (<=TIPS SEC)

9 RH(U-T)ENIUM – always handy to know your Periodic Table

11 TENSE – good, if obvious, double definition


13 OFF ONE’S OWN BAT – a clue that works for cricket and baseball, I suppose

17 INDUS-TRIALIST – neat clue

21 NISSEN HUT – (sunshine)*-T(hunderstorm)

24 CHEST – ha ha

25 BO(r)ING


27 (c)RE(GEN)CY – nice surface



2 SA(TIN-WOO)D – another good surface that took me longer to work out than it should have.

3 ONESELF – (feels no)*

4 T((c)HICKEN)ER – TER = (<=RET) – poultry may have been more accurate, but also much more obvious.


7 P-LEAD – more chemical elements

8 TR(A VEST)Y – another one that took me longer than it should have to get.


15 BUTTER-NUT – liked this one


18 S(TEN G)UN – nice surface, if easy

22 STING – double definition

23 HAPPY – last one I entered, although quite easy on reflection.

8 comments on “Times 23658 – quick one today”

  1. Should be R(U-T)HENIUM I think. Another quite difficult one I thought – the third in a row.
  2. 6:51, so one of the two easy ones for me this week. Had a good start, with the NW all coming out first time except that I was too thick on 4D to try for the clean sweep. Also got both 13s straight off, which is a big help on time. Somehow remembered that cinnabar (mercury ore) is red at 16D, though didn’t see the wordplay first time so waited for confirmation from checkers.
  3. How annoying. The last couple of days I have thought I had done very badly and was then relieved to find that everyone else had also found the puzzle difficult. But today I find that my 20:54 really is as slow as I feared. As well as CINNABAR, PIRATE and GREATER took me ages.
  4. Now that we’re pseudo-competing (i.e. recording times) I find that I’m far less obsessive about understanding wordplay while solving (in a way, makes it less interesting sadly). I found RUTHENIUM only having hazarded plutonium and deuterium first (the latter having the appeal of punning on “one or another”). E.g. didn’t understand wordplay for CINNABAR or SATINWOOD. Doubt that OFF ONE’S OWN BAT is familiar to american solvers — baseball aside.

    Loved BOING!

  5. 9 minutes for me. 16D was one of those where I had to work out the wordplay at my leisure after completing the puzzle, and even then it took me a while! Jason J
  6. 13:17 here. 1D held me up at the end, as I the only word I could think of that fit at first was PARITY and I couldn’t get it out of my head. That cost me at least a couple of minutes. I was also slow to get NISSEN HUT, even though I knew it was an anagram of sunshine + T and put in HUT straight away. Favourite clue was 25.
  7. I made a bad start to this one, putting in FALL OUT instead of PASS OUT for 1A (reasoning that FALL = “drop”) and took far to long to recover from it. Like linxit I also took a long time to get PARITY out of my head for 1D. And I somehow managed to type UNDUSTRIALIST which held me up again!

    9:29, so not a total disaster, but it should have been so much faster for a pleasant, straightforward puzzle.

  8. Just the six “easies” omitted from the blog – perhaps a sign of the quality?

    1a In the army, do so having proved ready to drop (4,3)

    10a First of nudists in neighbourhood creates scene (5)
    ARE N A

    28a Say this applied to cheese more (7)
    GREATER. SL Grater.

    6d Creature which can go up, and down (7)
    SWALLOW. Creature that can go up?

    19d Inflame with source of smoke (7)

    20d Tenacious steed brilliant when carrying you (6)
    STA YE R. In horse racing one that goes the distance?

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