Times 24880 – Oright guv, ow’s abart a bit of brussel and sprout

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic
Solving time: 1:12:29, it says

The left half was done in about 20 minutes, and then the combined effects of Bob the Builder, Big Ted, Postman Pat, the Wiggles et al and the search for blue gully-gully (my niece’s security blanket) rendered my brain non-functional and some “aids” were sought to get the job done before lunch had to be made. Oh, and did I say I was solving online with a slow internet connection which kept dropping in and out? Were some of the clues that deceptive or were my circumstances numbing my faculties? I’ll let you decide, hopefully quickly, before Dora starts another expedition. Vámonos!

1 WOOZY = YZ reversed standing by WOO
4 DICKY-BIRD. Bird for prison sentence is Cockney rhyming slang derived from birdlime = time, allegedly.
9 Deliberately omitted. The possibilities are hardly limitless.
10 BRASS; take the I.E. off BRASSIE, which is one of your standard golf clubs of yore, roughly equivalent of a 2-wood. I was hoping it was a 1-iron, so I could tell you the joke about a 1-iron being the best thing to hold aloft if caught on the course in a lightning storm, because not even God can hit a 1-iron, but alas, I’ll have to keep that one for next time.
11 LORDLY, being LOWLY with the W for wife replaced by a RD for road
12 CEREMONY; a double definition
14 GRANNY FLAT, the old being part of the definition. I can still tie granny knots with the best of them, even when attempting running bowlines.
16 PARR being R for Queen placed by RAP reversed. Henry VIII’s last Kate.
19 GAPE, being PA in E.G all reversed
22 PUNCHEON = PUN + CON around His Excellency; a word which seems to have so many meanings, you’d think I’d have heard of one of them outside the context of crosswords. Here it’s a short upright post, but it can be a walkway through a bog, a more substantial alternative to a corduroy. I particularly like the advice “Corduroy should be considered a temporary
, presumably only in the event of extreme pantlessness.
23 DISPEL, being I’S P inside an abbreviated DELI
26 NAOMI = I MOAN reversed, The daughter-in-law is Ruth, a Biblical reference.
27 AITCHBONE = A ITCH ONE covering B for British. One that defeated me, but a nice connection to the Cockney theme. In Australia, even ABC presenters pronounce it haitch these days, a certain sign of a society in decline.
29 REMIT = TIMER reversed. I was thinking UK Athletics Association something, but that wasn’t promising.

2 OSIER, being ‘OSIER. Another clue in the Cockney theme.
3 YEARLING, being YEARNING with the N for knight replaced by L for large. What’s the first doing? On edit: It’s telling me it isn’t YEARNILG. Muchas gracias to mctext.
4 DAIL, being DAI that has L, the Irish lower house.
5 CANDELABRA = BALANCED* + a Royal Academician
6 YABBER = YR containing an Abbé
7 INAMORATO = NAOMI* + (R for runs TO) around A. Another word I’ve never heard in a sentence, but then, see comments to 27ac.
8 DISHY = DI for girl + SHY for the “of mousy disposition”.
13 AFICIONADO = A FIDO around C for caught and IONA.
15 ALPENHORN. A cryptic definition, unless I’m mistaken.
17 RESILIENT = RE SENT for “troops posted” around IL I for the Italian island. Great clue, which totally defeated me. I thought the definition was an anagrind, and so it had to be ROSILSPOT, in the Hebrides.
18 FINISHER. Couldn’t get this one either. Truly, I had lost the power of thought at this point. Strangely the Finns never appear on my inner list of Europeans. I never go further north than Denmark.
21 THRILL being TRILL around H for husband
22 PANIC; a double definition
24 PRO(E)M. It’s a preface found in crosswords.
25 Deliberately omitted. The forum’s tête-à-tête will encompass a solution.

43 comments on “Times 24880 – Oright guv, ow’s abart a bit of brussel and sprout”

  1. Found this quite easy (18m) — a relief after various disasters last week — so Koro must indeed have been distracted by ABC Kids!
    Couple of notes:
    1. It’s “First knight” cos there’s another N in “yearniNg”.
    2. AITCHBONE has an interesting etymology (NOAD):
    ORIGIN late 15th cent.: from dialect nache [rump,] from Old French, based on Latin natis ‘buttock(s),’ + bone . The initial n in a nache-bone was lost by wrong division; compare with adder.
    That should keep the Haitchers at bay for a while!

    Edited at 2011-06-20 02:57 am (UTC)

    1. Bruce Moore from the Australian National Dictionary Centre, in his history of Australian words, says the use of haitch is spreading in Australia and is strongly associated with Irish Catholics. The received wisdom, he says, is that haitch was introduced to Australia by the Irish Sisters of Mercy and the Christian Brothers in their Irish Australian schools. Anti-Irish prejudice ensured that the haitchers were frequently criticised by the aitchers as ill-educated or socially unacceptable.
  2. 28 minutes, unless you want to tack on the 32 it took to come up with AITCHBONE (the capitals here are not because it’s the solution, but to express rage). The last time I encountered PUNCHEON, I was maybe 8, and I think it referred to logs sliced lengthwise to make a cabin floor, for Davy Crockett I believe it was. COD to 27ac, for making me late for dinner.
  3. I’m putting my slow time (95 minutes) down to the effects of getting up in the wee hours to watch McIlroy make history. Fitting, then, to have two golfing clues (BRASS and WOOZY[!]).

    I stymied myself by mis-spelling SCURRILOUS, which made the European clue impossible. Quite a few unfamiliars added to the struggle, including PUNCHEON, PANIC grass and my last in, AITCHBONE.

    PARR seems fine to me, as ‘Catherine?’ may be parsed as an example of the Catherine species, that is, Parr.

    1. My eldest children used to go to Queen Katherine School in Kendal, named after the town’s most famous daughter. But a quick tour of the internet suggests that she is now more commonly known as Catherine and that she wasn’t born in Kendal after all. How disappointing.
  4. Rattled through in 12:54. First rate surface readings throughout, and well clued, although found subject matter a little uninspiring. COD to well-constructed AFICIONADO with added entertainment value.
  5. 1 down is ‘whirligig’ (as you clearly have), koro. Stuck on Parr for 5 minutes at end. 28 in all. Nice little tester.
  6. Quite a range of times amongst the early posters for this one. I was slower than usual at 55 minutes, but thought it was time well spent, and I was quite pleased with myself for working out the tricky PROEM/AITCHBONE/FINISHER corner.

    I had a brassie in my first set of golf clubs, so was wounded to hear Koro describe it as a ‘standard club of yore’. But like the 1-iron, it’s a club that doesn’t really merit inclusion in the bag any more.

  7. Around 40 minutes today having lost time by misspelling AFICIONADO and SCURRILOUS – by mentioning the latter I risk calling down the wrath of Jimbo as it’s an anagram FGS!

    At 4dn I immediately thought DAI+L but didn’t put it in because I couldn’t think how DIAL(sic)fitted in with ‘lower house’ in the clue. Can one become dyslexic as one grows old?

    This could have been a good start to the week for me if I’d engaged my brain a little sooner.

      1. Thanks jackkt and joekobi; that’s corrected now. I plead DTE syndrome (Dora the Explorer). I challenge anybody to watch more than one episode and remain sentient.
        1. It’s when they put on a Barney the Dinosaur video that you must vacate the room or risk your sanity.
          1. You might be interested in this “proof” that Barney is evil…

            Barney is a cute purple dinosaur. Romans (why Romans? Why not?) didn’t have a letter ‘U’ so they would have written CVTE PVRPLE DINOSAVR. If you take all the Roman numerals out of that, viz C,V,V,L,D,I,V and add them together, you get 100+5+5+50+500+1+5 = 666.


  8. A fairly easy 13:10 but I thought some of the clues were a bit ‘Telegraphy’ (hope it’s OK to say this!) but overall a nice start to the week.
  9. Easy one this, rattled through during the first cup.
    I am unsure about the statement in 15dn and rather doubt its veracity. Has the setter tried, and if so did it work?
    My grandson and I quite like Bob the Builder, though it is extremely far-fetched (You can start when?? Now??? And it’ll be finished today?? And not to worry about the money?!!) – I am concerned it is not equipping him sufficiently for the harsh realities of life
  10. PANIC as a grass was unknown (my knowledge of grasses – ‘bent’, ‘fescue’, ‘rye’ – seems to come from golf and tennis commentators) and PUNCHEON existed only somewhere in the deep recesses of my mind. So slowed in the SW but overall about 30 minutes.

    Thanks for an entertaining and helpful blog, koro.

    1. PANIC is a type of grass that I only know from doing this crossword. It appeared a couple of times last year, including here. Interestingly this puzzle is also the reason I got LLANO last week and EMCEE in this weekend’s jumbo.
  11. 15 minutes, not interrupted by anything. The one that caused me most grief was DISHY, because I couldn’t justify the Y after resolving “attractive girl” as “dish”. Some times it’s possible to be dense without the excuse of Dora the Explorer.
    ALPENHORN was a weird clue, not least because I associate it with human communication not calling cattle – I thought in Switzerland you just gave them a bell. One of those where the answer was obvious even if you disagreed (wrongly as some dictionaries claim) with the unravelled cryptic definition. Are we missing some incredibly well hidden wordplay?
    CoD to DICKY BIRD: nice surface, chucklesome cryptics.
      1. Interesting! “Using the alpine horn for this purpose was dying out after 1800”. Bit before my time, that!
      2. Now if only the Scots used alpenhorns, Mary wouldn’t have been lost across the sands o’ Dee.
  12. 16 minutes. So I thought it pretty gentle in spite of a couple of unknowns (PUNCHEON, AITCHBONE) and a number (NAOMI, OSIER, YEARLING, DAIL) where I knew the word but would never have got the answer from definition alone.
  13. Where have all the comments gone…. Down from 18 to 3 when I last looked! This has happened before but it remains a mystery to me.
  14. …got stuck in the SE (had A-T–BONE, so should have got that one, and had bizarrely thought of FINISH sic withouth the H + ER, but there weren’t enough letters…), and had PUN+CON, but didn’t know the HE ref, nor the answer for 22ac.

    Ooops, and I also had BEANS, as I’ve not come across a ‘brassie’ (nor a ‘beansie’, it must be said).

    PANIC grass and PROEM were unfamiliar, but correct.

    Not a brilliant start to the week, but enjoyable all the same. Thanks for clear explanations.

  15. A fast time for me (for the Times) of 12 minutes. I hadn’t noticed while solving, but on reflection perhaps, as Tringmardo says, the clues may have been a bit ‘Telegraphy’ which may have helped as I have been solving the DT puzzles for over 40 years. A very enjoyable crossword.
  16. I didn’t know PUNCHEON in this sense. I’ve always associated it with alcohol – specifically rum. Is there such a thing as a Rum Puncheon or am I getting alcohol fixated? Thanks to mctext for definition of AITCHBONE. I had no problem with the word but assumed that it referred to an H shaped bone (cf T-Bone). This just goes to show how unobservant I am since I’ve eaten it and never queried the absence of the aforesaid bone! An enjoyable puzzle and a steady 29 minute solve.
  17. 34:13 – Although a number were thrown in either as unknown words derived from wordplay alone (DAIL, PROEM, PUNCHEON, AITCHBONE), or without full understanding of the wordplay (YEARLING, PANIC).

    Quite surprised to be all correct.

  18. There only appear to be 3 comments which strikes me as odd at this time. Doubtless many others will miraculously appear when I’ve posted this.

    22:55, slight problems accruing due to my keying in ALPENHRON which didn’t get resolved until I reverse engineered NAOMI from INAMORATO, if you know what I mean.

    Nothing out of the ordinary here, either good or bad, just a solid Times puzzle.

    1. Were you logged in when there were only 3 comments? Apparently this makes a difference.

      Despite all the problems I have had accessing LJ over recent weeks (currently resolved somehow or other) I have never experienced the missing post phenomenon.

      1. No Jack, I wasn’t logged in. Because this site is barred on my work’s network I have to access it via a proxy. I can post under my user name but can’t log in as such.
  19. Easy puzzle after golf, just what was needed. Pleasant 25 minute stroll with no need for great exertion. Nothing really outstanding or moan worthy.
  20. 14:22 here, minus about a minute to take a phone call. Agree with Jimbo, a pleasant stroll with nothing much worth mentioning. PANIC gave me problems in another puzzle a few days ago as I instantly thought “grass” when the more familiar meaning was required!
  21. 21:38

    I think I spotted the dramatis personae of an unpublished Smollett novel in here:

    Dail Dickybird
    Naomi Aitchbone
    Puncheon Parr
    Woozy Whirligig
    Dishy Dispel
    Granny Flat
    Yabber Thrill
    Lordly Alpenhorn (and his faithful manservant,
    Osier Brass)

    There may be more.

    Yes, I’m avoiding work this morning.

  22. Didn’t time this, but I finished it over a rushed dinner before a rehearsal, so it can’t have been much over 10 minutes. Liked the surfaces, wasn’t sure about 15 down, but figured it had to be a crypticish definition? PUNCHEON and AITCHBONE from wordplay.
  23. I fouled up the SW by looking at INAMORATO and thus entering IMOAN at 26 (yes, I know that doesn’t mean anything), which had to be reversed eventually but lengthened my time to about 30 minutes. Like vinyl, I’ve not heard of the AITCHBONE. I hadn’t heard of PANIC grass or the PUNCHEON either, but no real problems with the rest, many going in on first read. Regards to all.
  24. The cryptic element of 15d seems to consist solely in the word “highly” as a reference to the Alps.
  25. Lots of Y’s in the top half of this one. Thought it my be a theme for a while , but none in the bottom half. Several words only found in captivity in crossword land , never seen in the wild : inamorato, proem, aitchbone, osier. Wanted to spell Afficionado extra loudly with two Fs, but that didn’t work, so amended to the quieter version. 29mins all up.

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