Times 27087 – Horryd please vote for 2d as word of the Day

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic
Did this is 20 minutes in my currently daily taxi to / from Bordeaux, on a nice smooth French autoroute, no potholes here (although it is péage). The second half of 18a was the only bit of vocab new to me, but an obvious answer. I had to think for a minute about *E*R*E options in 25a before the coin dropped. Nothing very stand-out today, I think 13d gets the CoD vote for ‘items displayed by posters’.

1 Description of aural event very pleasant, mostly (5)
SONIC – SO NICE = very pleasant, drop the E to make it mostly.
4 An atmosphere dismissing source of Italian style is rebellious (8)
ANARCHIC – AN AIR loses the I from Italian, then CHIC = style.
8 Provocative example of issue produced in Paris? (6,8)
ENFANT TERRIBLE – witty cryptic definition.
10 Poet closing parts of number with very dodgy metres (9)
RHYMESTER – Last letters of numbeR witH verY, then (METRES)*.
11 University in China attracting a female (5)
PAULA – U in PAL = china, A.
12 Family employee showing a positive attitude (2,4)
14 Romantic approach and solemn promise that gives access to secrets? (8)
PASSWORD – Make a PASS these days at your peril; give you my WORD is to make a promise.
17 A great many unwell in Eastern state, nursed by rather fewer (8)
TRILLION – ILL inside RI (Rhode Island) inside TON.
18 Customer, old man, at marketplace (6)
PATRON – PA = old man, TRON not known to me but Collins says: a public weighing machine, the place where a tron is set up, a marketplace.
20 Millions chasing woman who does enchant (5)
CHARM – ‘Woman who does’ (i.e. cleans for you) = CHAR, M.
22 Say nothing adopted by sort of professor is outrageous (9)
EGREGIOUS – EG = say, REGIUS professor adopts an O.
24 Bring up opinion by newspaper: motorist looks into it (4-4,6)
REAR-VIEW MIRROR – REAR = bring up, VIEW = opinion, MIRROR = a paper, as in Daily.
25 Crikey — it’s just like 1984 (2,6)
BY GEORGE – I assume this is because GEORGE Orwell wrote 1984, it was ‘by’ him.
26 Story-teller recalled river meeting larger body of water (5)
AESOP – The River PO meets the SEA, each reversed.

1 After broadcasting sarcastic item I must ignore defamatory methods (5,7)
SMEAR TACTICS – (SARCAST C ITEM)* an I being dropped for the anagram fodder.
2 Rather clever, providing opening for tourism in US city (5)
NIFTY – IF = providing, T = opening for tourism, inside NY city. What a nice word, nifty, we should use it more.
3 Welcoming information in part of UK investing in fuel (9)
CONGENIAL – GEN = info, NI being for now part of UK, all inside COAL fuel.
4 Shrewd, like student giving up English once (6)
ASTUTE – AS = like, TUTEE = student, loses one of its Es.
5 Rural river caught in tumult of Niagara (8)
6 Curl copper up round edge (5)
CRIMP – PC reversed around RIM.
7 Anger when lines are busy for us after one (3,6)
ILL HUMOUR – I = one, LL = lines, HUM = are busy, OUR = for us.
9 Places between flights on journey — this may be one (7-5)
LANDING-STRIP – LANDINGS are places between flights of stairs, TRIP = journey.
13 Items displayed by posters supporting this hobby (9)
PHILATELY – People who post things are ‘posters’, and they use stamps, and stamp collectors are into… as a hobby.
15 Mum with annoyance missing year attending a mystical retreat (7-2)
SHANGRI-LA – SH = mum, be quiet; ANGRILY = with annoyance, lose the Y, add A. It’s worth a read of the Wiki entry, to see how the concept and name roots existed before James Hilton’s 1933 novel Lost Horizon.
16 Room provider keen to have Queen about to occupy bed (8)
HOTELIER – HOT = keen, insert LIE = occupy bed, into ER the Queen.
19 Work on the Web to happen to involve arguments (6)
BROWSE – Insert ROWS into BE for happen.
21 American inventor leaving small item unfinished (5)
MORSE – MORSEL is unfinished.
23 Big figures try to pick up a lot of support (5)
OGRES – OG = GO (try) reversed, then RES(T) = a lot of support.

43 comments on “Times 27087 – Horryd please vote for 2d as word of the Day”

  1. Je ne suis pas d’accord sur 13. It was my LOI, I think, and I found it disappointing. The grammar seems off—the intended sense is “Items displayed by posters support this hobby.” But I guess the use of “supporting” instead is intentionally misleading: Are we looking for the items or the hobby?

    TRON was new to me too, as was REGIUS.

    Edited at 2018-07-11 04:12 pm (UTC)

  2. I can’t remember anything about this one already, other than that I didn’t know TRON either. I don’t see any problem with PHILATELY, although ‘support’ was possible as well.
  3. 13:12 … or about 2.1 verlaines, and I’m happy enough with that.

    Quite a bit of wordplay passed me by here, including almost everything in TRILLION. Thanks Pip, mon ami, for explaining that one (we seem to be trés French today, which is appropriate as Les Bleus have just reached the final of the old coupe du monde). French in the blog, French in the puzzle — ENFANT TERRIBLE, AU PAIR, PATRON — sacre bleu! Is the setter psychic?

    I always think of NIFTY as London geezer speak — it pops up in the lyrics of Squeeze and Ian Dury. But apparently it’s American. Fancy that.

    Nice enough puzzle, pretty nifty in fact

    1. FWIW, I saw that in Le Canard enchaîné last week. The palmipède is fond of expressions that have fallen into desuetude.

      Edited at 2018-07-11 04:17 pm (UTC)

  4. 25 minutes, so not quite a personal best, but close. Perhaps if I’d had my coffee first, or been late for work—that always helps my time!

    FOI 4a ANARCHIC, LOI the last bit of 7d ILL HUMOUR, not helping that PATRON was a bit late, too, as I didn’t know “tron”, either. That’s now added to The Big List Of Words That Probably Won’t Come Up Again Because I Wrote Them Down.

    Nothing terribly challenging. Liked 25a BY GEORGE and 1a SONIC.

    22a notable for me because I can remember exactly where I learned “egregious” (Yes, Minister—”the egregious Jim Hacker”) and about Regius Professors (Professor Urban Chronotis, “Reg”, is Regius Professor of Chronology in Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency.)

    Edited at 2018-07-11 06:25 am (UTC)

    1. Thank you so much for the Douglas Adams reference: the moment when Richard MacDuff discovers the true reality of Bach is, for me, the most emotionally profound moment in all literature [wipes away unbidden tear]. Fabulous.
      1. I was thinking about Douglas Adams yesterday, on account of BELGIUM being the rudest word in the universe.
  5. Whistled through this pretty quick, under 10 mins, as all the long ones were write-ins..
    Well done setter, for avoiding mentioning John Thaw et al in 21dn
  6. 35 mins with yoghurt and superfoods. Not tomato.
    Easier than I made it look. I worried too much about: what on earth is a Tron? Which bit of Trillion is an Eastern state? Can I think of a substitution test for ‘for us’=our? (No). Is that the best clue they could come up with for Ogres?
    Thanks setter and Pip.
  7. I can’t recall not knowing NIFTY as a word. I’ve just read that it might be a shortened ‘magnificat’ as used by theatrical types. Doesn’t sound too Lancastrian. 18 minutes, after paper hit the doormat on time. LOI AU PAIR. DNK TRON but it had to be. TRILLION took a while to parse also. I did know about REGIUS professors and COD therefore goes to EGREGIOUS, although I do have an old friend who is an Emeritus Professor, and she caused a few moments hesitation. I also liked ENFANT TERRIBLE (Balloon-shaped tomorrow? BY GEORGE, such EGREGIOUS, ANARCHIC SMEAR TACTICS!) and LANDING STRIP in this gentle puzzle. Thank you Pip and setter.
  8. 18:11. I seem to have found this much harder than others for some reason.
    Not that it slowed me down in the slightest, but it occurred to me when I finally saw what was going on with 25ac that it’s a bit odd, in that you can’t really shorten a nom de plume like ‘George Orwell’. In an informal context where you were just using first names you’d call him Eric.
    1. Well, in a crossword I think it passes muster. Not to mention, when he was out and about, buying feed for his chickens or whatever, and someone on the street recognised him from his latest profile + piccie in the Manchester Guardian by Cyril Connolly, you can just imagine them coming up to him and saying, ‘Loved your latest book, George. Mind if I trouble you for your autograph?’
      1. Oh I’m not objecting to the clue at all: I like it. It’s just an observation. Your example sort of proves the point: the person addressing him would be making a kind of error. There is no George.

        Edited at 2018-07-11 09:54 am (UTC)

        1. Do authors not sign their pen names though when signing autographs? Odd if they didn’t.
  9. A Wise Owl has demanded I elevate NIFTY to my WOD.

    And why not!? Short and sweet – unfortunately it describes Mr. Modric! I love 13dn PHILATELY being a FRPSL but NIFTY it is!

    40 mins



    COD the mainly Hitchcockovian 24ac REAR VIEW MIRROR.

    I did not like 10ac RHYMSTER as I was looking for a bone fide poet – and its IKEAN leanings.

    TRON KNEE is a previous Croatian manager.

    Edited at 2018-07-11 09:44 am (UTC)

        1. Ashen-faced, tight-lipped, aged 59, it was a hard call, but he didn’t wear a waistcoat.
  10. The SNITCH tells me that I should have found this easier, so clearly I am another who found himself on the wrong side of the wavelength today. I was certainly in the club who didn’t know TRON, though it didn’t really matter here; and my last in was BY GEORGE, largely because I’d convinced myself it must be MY something.
  11. My biffed NEAR SIDE MIRROR (without really looking at the clue) led me to stare at 19d blankly. In the end I had to come here to find the answer, which of course exposed my error. Note to self – always check the clue!
  12. 25 min – no problem with TRON as it’s a barred-puzzle regular. Didn’t parse 17ac – there are so many jokey -ILLION words that had to leave it till I’d sorted the anagram at 1dn. LOI 12ac – first thought there was IN HAND, so as that wouldn’t go, was trying to think of another employee to give –I-.
  13. So not Basil Fawlty.

    I made heavier weather of this than I should have done, and feel that 15:42 is at least 33% over what I should have managed.

    Another slow start before FOI CHARM

    DNK TRON but it seemed obvious. Biffed RHYMESTER and HOTELIER (thanks Pip), but also SMEAR CAMPAIGN (welcome to the UK Mr.President) which I corrected once TRILLION was cracked.

    LOI SONIC though I don’t see why it should have been.

    COD BY GEORGE, also enjoyed ENFANT TERRIBLE and the nifty NIFTY.

    1. Just wondering how you managed to biff SMEAR CAMPAIGN into the 12 spaces on the grid?


  14. 21’30. I agree with the first comment that ‘supporting’ is a tad iffy but one is won over by the wit. Not by the ‘providing’ of 2 though, even if usage is almost giving up on ‘provided’. And is not ‘I must ignore’ of 1 dn. also a little uncomfortable? I like the sly ‘for now part of the UK’ annotation.
  15. An enjoyable and not too taxing puzzle which took me 23:49 including a leisurely minute checking for typos, of which, unusually, I found none. Liked LANDING STRIP, BY GEORGE, TRILLION and many others. NIFTY led the way and PHILATELY brought up the rear. Thanks setter and Pip.
  16. Same as others on “tron” – I’d only heard it as a suffix of “jumbo” which is some sort of gigantic tv screen. NIFTY feels like old-fashioned Boston-Brahmin-speak. An old friend of ours of that ilk used to use it. I went looking for “neato” at first as something a bit similar. 14.03

  17. Made a proper dog’s breakfast of this, starting with 8ac. I mean, it could only be CANARD ENCHAINE couldn’t it? Well, er, no……

    After sorting out a few checkers, I then went for ENTENTE CORDIALE which, of course, doesn’t fit in.

    I do this on paper, so by then c’etait la guerre.

    Managed eventually to just about sort everything out, but it didn’t look pretty.

    Time: 40 minutes.

    MERCI to setter and blogger.


  18. Does seem to be a wavelength puzzle – 11:54 here, but it felt longer, I didn’t seem to be solving a bunch of clues in a row, had to think of definitions and work back through wordplay before putting them in. A little embarrassed to say that BY GEORGE was my last one in.
    TRON on the other hand, is paying a visit from Mephistoland, so no worries there.
  19. A tad under 16 minutes amid the snip snip of the stylist’s scissors and tales of holiday plans.
  20. I’m not sure that posting on a train is going to work, but I can try.

    I found this exceedingly easy, with half the puzzle going in in about five minutes. But of course I was held up towards the end. Didn’t know TRON, although it rang a very faint bell, needed the crossers for EGREGIOUS, and my LOI was PHILATELY after going through the alphabet and with great reluctance accepting the definition (with its strange grammar). But NIFTY is pretty nifty, innit?

  21. This was quite good value for money, since it kept me distracted for 40 minutes. I’d definitely heard of TRON, but only as the title of a wonderfully 1980s-esque science fiction film (from the 1980s, by coincidence). I therefore spent a long time not putting in PATRON. PHILATELY (will get you nowhere, mandatory pun) was also withheld for a long time, since I completely failed to spot the parsing and couldn’t see how it worked. Only when I got AU PAIR (my LOI) did I shrug and philatelize.

  22. No problems today, although like a lot of those here I didn’t know anything of TRON. Regards.
  23. 23:50 a nice gentle solve this morning, though feeling a bit flat now commenting after the football. On the upside I drew France in the office sweepstake a few weeks back so, allez les bleus. I didn’t know the tron bit of 18ac, I’ll try to remember it in future, that’ll be my tron legacy if you will (the daft punk soundtrack is decent if you like that kind of thing).

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