Times 26866 – things that go 1 across in the night

Solving time : 11:42 for an interesting crossword. There’s a few obscurities here, though I think everything is accessible from the wordplay, though one long anagram may not come readily. Several hyphenated answers and a grid with the shortest answer being five letters may send solvers scrambling for a starting point.

I will admit to a little biffing, particularly with the hyphenated phrases where the enumeration was a giveaway.

Away we go…

1 BUMPTIOUS: BUM(ne’er do well) then an anagram of I,SPOUT
6 BUCKS: double definition for US currency and an abbreviation for Buckinghamshire
9 SATIN: didn’t stand out, it SAT IN
10 GLUTAMATE: A MATE(partner) after GLUT(excessive amount)
11 BOOLEAN: BOON(gift) containing LEA(the field) for an field of algebra based on logical expressions
12 PUNGENT: GENT(man) after PUN(a joke)
13 BACK-SEAT DRIVER: anagram of CAR,AT,KERBSIDE containing (satna)V. I have a friend who is the worst back-seat driver ever, which is amusing, because between the two of us, it’s me that has the clean license and intact car
17 SUPERABUNDANCE: it’s the SUNDANCE kid containing an anagram of BEAR,UP
21 ANTHILL: AN, then (approac)H in TILL(work)
23 CONTENT: double definition
25 GLADSTONE: GLAD(pleased) and STONE(something solid)
26 SUNNI: SUN(setter, since the sun sets) then IN(elected) reversed
27 NUDGE: NUDE(exposed) with G inside
28 DING-A-LING: GAL(girl) inside DINING(in a restaurant, perhaps)
1 BUSHBABY: H(hot) then A,B(bishop) reversed all inside BUSBY(furry hat)
2 METRO: First letters of Mole’s Evacuated Tunnel Running Off
3 TENNESSEE: remove the R from TENNERS(cash), then SEE.
I’m about 40 miles from the border of Tennessee
4 ORGANZA: ORGAN(newspaper), A(article) around Z(ionist)
5 STUMPED: double definition, out referring to cricket
6 BRAIN: BRA(personal support), IN(with it)
7 CHAMELEON: we don’t see a double container very often – it is ME(yours truly) in HALE(well) in CON(fraud)
8 SHEATH: HEAT(high temperature) inside SH(shut up – be quiet)
14 COURT CARD: COURT(go after), CARD(eccentric)
15 INDONESIA: hidden in mIND ONE SIAm
16 LEFT-WING: LEG(member) containing F, TWIN(counterpart)
18 ALL TOLD: double definition
19 UNCLEAN: UNCLE(relative) then (m)AN
20 MARGIN: MAR(spoil), GIN(drink)
22 ISSUE: SUE(girl) after IS(island) – definition is “young” as in children
24 ENNUI: last letters in emiratE fuN iN abU dhabI

49 comments on “Times 26866 – things that go 1 across in the night”

  1. Biffed a bunch, but managed to parse them all post-biff. I didn’t notice that ‘mole’s evacuated’ were initially ME, and instead deleted/evacuated MOLE and then added the 3 initials. 6d was my LOI, largely because I persisted in taking ‘capital of Mississippi’ as M. It was nice to see a different ‘setter’ for once.
    1. I think you can read it both ways, I think solving it I did it as ME,T,R,O but when I came to look at it a second time, it made more sense for it to be all the initials
  2. Only problem for me was typing MARGIN as MAGRIN and not noticing, which made finding a suitable prime-minister rather hard until I made myself check that I hadn’t mistyped or overtyped something.

    I was a ME from “mole evacuated” and never noticed it can work another way (luckily leading the the correct answer).

  3. But maybe I just had more sleep last night. Did most of it on my fifteen-minute subway ride home, filled in the last few over dinner. I didn’t write any in without parsing, though sometimes I was still parsing as I wrote them in.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 04:34 am (UTC)

  4. 15:03 … a worrying start but got going with the back-seat driver then solved this bottom-up.

    Enjoyed many things, like BUCKS and TENNESSEE, the word BUMPTIOUS and 21a for making me think of the Wacky Races.

    I really didn’t understand 28a but having looked it up now I’m assuming DING-A-LING = idiot/mug? Not a term I knew in this context.

    As it happens, one of The Ant Hill Mob was called Ring-a-ding, I think with a similar meaning.

    1. I always wanted Dick Dastardly, or at least Muttley, to win. Probably we all did. My eldest’s name is Mark, so you can guess what his nickname was at school.

      Edited at 2017-10-26 11:40 am (UTC)

  5. I found this quite heavy-going time-wise although it was very enjoyable, and as suggested in the blog, I qualified as one who had a problem getting started because of the absence of 3 and 4 letter answers in the grid. It took me around 3 minutes to find one that leapt out at me (24dn).

    I also went for the evacuated mole.

    I didn’t know the required meaning of DING-A-LING and before the checkers made it impossible I had been seriously considering whether DIAL-A-DISH might be some sort of food establishment loosely termed a restaurant. DIAL for ‘mug – face’ works, and DISH for ‘girl’ if one overlooks the non-PC element which has turned up before now in Times crosswords. ‘Breaks in’ might suggest containment of the ‘A’ although because of the order of words in the clue it’s not totally convincing. Anyway it wasn’t to be.

    Some solvers may recall the fuss in the UK over the Chuck Berry single, MY DING-A-LING that reached No 1 in the charts in 1973, when the morality campaigner Mrs Mary Whitehouse petitioned the BBC in a vain attempt to have it banned from the airwaves.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 04:19 am (UTC)

    1. I toyed briefly with ‘dial-a-dish’–which could also be a delivery service for something other than food–but quickly gave it up (and ‘dish’ has been in these cryptics far too often; although the last time I heard the word was in “4 Weddings and a Funeral”, where a young woman uses it to refer to a cute young man). mug=face, and face=dial, and so by the law of transitivity I suppose mug=dial, but does it cryptically?
      1. Not quite sure I’ve understood you last point, Kevin, but one slang word clueing another slang word for the same unmentioned literal meaning is common enough in Times puzzles, I’d have thought.

        I forgot to say that although ‘setter’ for ‘sun’ is not original, it made a welcome change for it not to be clueing a dog.

        1. I’m not sure that it qualifies as a point, even, but whereas I’d have no problem with mug<—>face–either one clueing the other–or dial<—>face (different face), I’d be less happy with mug clueing dial, or vice versa.
          1. Okay, but since you say dial <—> face (different face) I wonder if you’re perhaps not familar with dial as slang for human face (aka mug)? It’s in Collins and Chambers. Sorry if I’ve got my wires crossed; it wouldn’t be the first time!
  6. An hour and ten here, but that includes ten minutes for making a second cup of coffee as I’d slept badly, so I was probably making a meal of things.

    FOI 2d (though I’d actually already come up with PTIOUS and thought of “BUM” for 1a by then, but hadn’t actually clocked that they made a word. D’oh…) LOI CHAMELEON, as I’ve never really been sure what “fickle” means and I needed all the crossers.

    WOD DING-A-LING, which feels a bit American to me, but then I can imagine Del Boy calling Rodney one, so perhaps not… COD 17a for use of “Film kid”.

  7. 45 mins with yoghurt, granola, banana. “Chuck Berries in!” I hear you cry – so I did.
    I like a pun – and this gent (or lady) cheered me up. Also some fond (if mixed) memories of Boy George and Chuck – and now, thanks to Sotira, Wacky Races. Wasn’t there an Arkansas chugabug?
    I too pondered dial-a-dish (or Deliveroo as it has become).
    Mostly I liked: Bushbaby, Sat-in (COD), Pun-gent, B-S Driver, Sun-setter, Stumped and Left-wing.
    Top setting IMHO.
    Thanks whimsical setter and George.

    PS – I do prefer crosswords where there are a few what I would call funny words. Bumptious/Bushbaby as 1ac/dn is a great example.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 07:48 am (UTC)

  8. 21 minutes, of which a fair chunk spent on DING-A- LING, so welcome relief after yesterday’s toils.
  9. … played love’s sweet melody. About 40 minutes on this. Loved 17a, having first tried Dorothy and having failed to remember the Home Alone kid’s name. I think I knew the definitional meaning of DING-A-LING, although in my life it was the sound I’d make riding my tricycle when requesting people to step aside. It wasn’t Chuck Berry’s finest hour either. Ain’t that a shame? First heard Fats Domino over the crackles on Radio Luxembourg, your station of the stars, broadcasting on 208 metres, brought to you by courtesy of Clearasil. COD BOOLEAN. I was hoping it would confound all you humanities types but you’re all too smart. Nice puzzle. Thank you George and setter.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 08:23 am (UTC)

    1. Me too. His death took me on a long sojourn into nostalgia remembering the new places to be seen – coffee bars – and the juke box pounding out Blueberry Hill as well as Radio L
  10. Excellent puzzle that was always interesting, tricky but not too hard. Nice Blog George.
  11. 6 minutes so back in the game after yesterday’s catastrophe. Like others I’m sure I biffed DING-A-LING at the end.
  12. Totally flummoxed by BUCKS, but it had to be, especially as I am currently there in spirit, threading Three Men in a Boat, for the first time, no less. 43 minutes.
  13. I too eviscerated the mole at 2d, which was my FOI. My LOI was DING-A-LING, which brought back memories of Chuck Berry, which like Myrtilus, is what I did to my porridge this morning, along with adding some grapes and a banana. I was with BW, expecting that BOOLEAN would fox a few. In the 70s Burroughs had a mini computer which found its way into all the banks as it had one of the first data-comm processors which allowed it to talk to the mainframe (via a 1200/600baud BT modem, which was a hefty piece of work). It used to come with an A3 sized logic book, which was entirely printed in Boolean logic. If you wanted to trace a circuit to ‘scope, you had to draw out the gates first. At least I did, as I couldn’t visualise it from the original. I failed to spot the hidden INDONESIA and instead parsed it as INDIA with ONES in it. Worked for me! 13a was a biff I didn’t even attempt to parse. PUNGENT stumped me for ages as I had STUNNED at 5d. Liked BUMPTIOUS and BUSH BABY. Great puzzle. Thanks setter and George.
    On edit: forgot to mention 39:37.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 10:42 am (UTC)

  14. 20:32. I thought it generous of the setter to give us two ways of getting 2d. I chose the evacuation of the mole route. Nothing too difficult here once I got going. It was nice to see setter as neither a dog nor the compiler in 26a. Yes I remember the fuss over ‘My ding-a-ling’ too. Held up by 7d, taking a while to see the double inclusion which then gave me the C to finish with BUCKS. Good fun. Thanks setter and George.
  15. My first completion of the week but I made heavy weather of this. Helped by getting the two long across clues quickly, but held up by thinking All Done for 18d before I finally thought of a phrase for 28a. Then nearly blew it thinking Sweaty = High for 8d; fortunately had a re-think so all done in 60 mins while watching the Ashes otherwise I’d have been stumped! Nice puzzle and blog
  16. Yes, I scratched my head a bit over this but in the end I took “mug” to mean a fool and recalled a popular US tv program of the 70s called All In The Family in which the husband was always calling his wife a “dingbat” or perhaps a DING-A-LING. I never actually watched it but there were only about 5 channels then so it was almost inescapable. 15.57
    1. Based on ‘Steptoe and Son’, I’m told, though I never saw that. Didn’t see ‘All in the F’ much either, as it was seldom amusing. And it was ‘dingbat’. His son-in-law was ‘meathead’.
      1. Surely some mistake (Ed). It was based on ‘Till Death Do Us Part’. Archie Bunker’s ‘dingbat’ was Alf Garnett’s ‘silly old moo’.

        Them were the days.

  17. 52m for this enjoyable puzzle. I had confidently biffed MILAN for 6a until, struggling in the NE – could be my new pseudonym now I think of it – there was a flash of inspiration that in fact MILAN wasn’t a capital anyway, even if LAN could represent the red rose place. Guessed the mug but had not come across it before. I was pleased to get BOOLEAN as well though what it was or is remains one of those dark mysteries. Thank you, setter and George for the pleasure and enlightenment.
    1. In ordinary algebra expressions like x + y = z denote numbers. In Boolean algebra they denote the values “false” and “true”. These values are represented by 0 and 1 respectively so you will see an immediate application to computer processing
  18. Poor day at the office for me. An hour and a bit.

    Had glutamine in mind which stopped others from dropping in…

    Ah well. I enjoyed the superabundance parsing and will be looking to return to form tomorrow.

    Andy (guest)

  19. 43:50 so my first decent (for me) time in quite a few days.

    I thought 13a was a very clever clue which probably took far more effort to think up than to solve, which is a shame. BUCKS had me guessing for a while and I also punted for DING-A-LING without knowing why.

    COD 21a because ANTHILL came up in my mental trawl of places of industry but was initially dismissed until the checkers brought me back to it.

    Thanks blogger and setter for a pleasant lunch break.

  20. 18:48. I got properly stuck about half way through and needed SUPERABUNDANCE to get me going again. Count me as another who had no idea what mugs had to do with ding-a-lings.
  21. 43:40 and back to some semblance of normality after what has felt like a topsy turvy (mostly turvy) week, solving experience-wise. FOI 12ac. The answers flowed reasonably smoothly with no real hold ups. My eyes skipped over “standing” in 1dn and I entered bushbaby wondering why the setter had not indicated that “hot” and “a bishop” were not contained separately in the Busby. Heard of Boolean but could not tell you what it means. I liked the Sundance kid and the setting sun, the tennes being right out of cash and I’ll give a shout out to my LOI ding-a-ling where I liked both Def and word play.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 01:27 pm (UTC)

  22. 12:59. I thought this was going to be another stinker after my first pass through the acrosses but then I picked up speed. The bottom half was a bit easier than the top.
    Today’s unknowns: DING-A-LING, COURT CARD. ORGANZA only from crosswords.
  23. I’ve been asked whether I think ‘grizzly’ works as an anagram indicator in 17a as my correspondent things ‘grisly’ would be better, apart from the surface reading of the clue, of course.

    What do you think??

    1. I totally agreed! And am sorry I didn’t notice that. Of course “grizzly” merely means “gray” (or, over there, “grey”), like “grizzled.” Collins says “grizzly” is “sometimes WRONGLY used” for grisly (emphasis added).
      1. I know the word grizzle applied to young children is a verb meaning to become grumpy and tearful, especially when tired and that the word grizzly was certainly used by my parents to describe me and my siblings when we were in such a state. In this clue I took the word to have that meaning and to indicate an anagram by suggesting upset.
        1. Thanks! This isn’t in Collins, where I’ve been finding Britishisms most reliably, but in Oxford. Well, this is (doesn’t exactly say “upset”): “(of a child) inclined to cry fretfully. ‘a grizzly baby’”

          I sometimes wish the blogger would simply indicate (if they know), when a usage is rare, limited to a particular dialect, or technical (e.g., from a particular sport).

          Edited at 2017-10-26 04:28 pm (UTC)

        2. I’m well aware of this usage, which would certainly have been used in our household when I was a child. Never about me of course.
  24. Totally flummoxed by BUCKS, but it had to be, especially as I am currently there in spirit, threading Three Men in a Boat, for the first time, no less. 43 minutes.
  25. About 30 minutes, held up in the NE area because I thought the capital of Mississippi must be ‘M’. Finally saw the BRAIN, which unclogged that, but my last in was DING-A-LING. Enjoyed the appearance of the Sundance Kid. Regards.
  26. I have read all the comments and still not seen a citation of ding-a-ling in a context here it clearly means any of the things that mug means. If some fictitious person uses a new expression of another how can we guess what they mean?
    1. My concise OED has: ding-a-ling n. 1. the ringing sound of a bell. 2. N Amer. informal an eccentric or stupid person.
  27. I’m not sure it was that meaning he had in mind when Chuck Berry sang about 28ac!
    In 14d I had the A and the D so wondered if queen might refer to Queen, the BAND. Not so.
    Regarding the discussion on grizzly/grisly, I guessed straightaway it was an anagram indicator so no problem for me.

    Edited at 2017-10-26 06:51 pm (UTC)

  28. The single is a cut down version of the album track from Chuck Berry Live in London released in 1972. I have it on a cassette somewhere. The full 11 and half minutes can be seen on YouTube in all it’s glory and Mrs Whitehouse would certainly not have approved.
  29. I was happy to F, having DNF’d yesterday’s.

    The Crossword Club page is now working for me, but for reasons known only to itself won’t let me review the completed puzzle. (Ah, no, wait – now it will. Aren’t computers lovely?)

    Nice to see George Boole getting a mention. Boolean logic is so fundamental, universal and inescapable that it is very hard to imagine its not existing; but equally hard to imagine bringing it into existence. I’d rate it as one of a handful of truly creative acts. And that’s before considering how it underpins all digital electronics and, hence, all of almost everything. Gravity, relativity and quantum mechanics are all very well and good, but I think Boole was in a different league.

  30. Just over an hour (but I had a longish break before filling in my LOI, which was COURT CARD — I kept wanting the queen to be MAUD, but that didn’t make much sense). Very enjoyable puzzle with gems like BUCKS as the capital of Mississippi, SUNNI’s setter, BRAIN …

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