Times 28185 – just follow the instructions, like an IKEA flatpack but easier.

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic
One of those crosswords which took me a few minutes to get into and then the answers flowed quickly without a problem. Lots of ‘insert this into that’ and a few anagrams and you’re sorted. No definitions to take issue with, except the ‘building material’ which is these days not; you need a specialist to un-build it if you have some to remove. 25 minutes and no trouble with the parsing.

1 On the mend leaving hospital somewhere in London (6)
EALING – HEALING (on the mend) loses H.
5 They command outer garments to cover underwear (3,5)
TOP BRASS – insert BRAS into TOPS.
9 One arriving to secure position as server, say (8)
COMPUTER – insert PUT into COMER.
10 Hearing about British having a partisan mentality (6)
TRIBAL – insert B for British into TRIAL = hearing.
11 Host penning song, greeting Latin musician (8)
MARIACHI – insert ARIA (song) into MC (host, add HI (greeting).
12 Material that’s down, note, in the market (6)
ANGORA – insert N for note into AGORA = market.
13 One really invigorating kind of drink (8)
ISOTONIC – I (one) SO (really) TONIC (invigorating).
15 Vocal style in musical with moving ending (4)
SCAT – CATS (a musical) moves its ending to the front.
17 On island, young animal hasn’t left foot (4)
19 Building material in East London obtains top rating (8)
ASBESTOS – ‘AS (obtains, as spoken in East End) BEST (top) OS (rating, ordinary seaman).
20 Getting by with fix for breaking tooth (6)
COPING – PIN (fix) inside COG (tooth).
21 Serving man sides with gangster in early years (8)
GIRLHOOD – GI (serving man) R L (sides) HOOD (gangster).
22 Clasp a small amount of cash, extremely little (6)
BUCKLE – BUCK (dollar) L E (outside letters of little).
23 Spray last of soda in direction of person who’s near (8)
ATOMISER – A (end of soda) TO MISER (near person, where near means mean).
24 In transit, seeing red caviar boxes a dull experience (4,4)
ROAD RAGE – ROE (caviar) has A DRAG (a dull experience) inside.
25 Factor of climate change disseminated on-line (2,4)

2 A nameless, passionate person with a bouquet (8)
3 Understood criminal’s exchanged pounds for politician (8)
IMPLICIT – ILLICIT changes L for MP.
4 Communicate what errors do? (3,6)
GET ACROSS – errors would be marked with A CROSS.
5 One mustn’t be quick to take umbrage so? (4,2,4,5)
TURN IN ONES GRAVE – cryptic definition, where quick means alive.
6 Alluringly moody, wry leader getting ousted by Times (7)
BYRONIC – I the leader of IRONIC (wry) is deleted and BY (times) added.
7 Male relative tucking into the Orient’s amazing food (8)
AMBROSIA – M (male) BRO (relative) is inserted into ASIA.
8 Dessert course unfinished by bachelor (8)
14 Reptile on ground is to prove invasive (9)
15 Small pub defending step which keeps characters apart (5,3)
SPACE BAR – insert PACE (step) into S BAR (small pub).
16 Having no locks, bound to get caught by a group spying (8)
ALOPECIA – LOPE (bound) goes inside A CIA (a group spying).
17 Hitman is running from a part of Greece (8)
ISTHMIAN – (HITMAN IS)*. From the region of the Isthmus of Corinth.
18 Instrument this person left by theatre (8)
MELODEON – ME (this person) L (left) ODEON (theatre).
19 Scrap a finale in Wagner like The Ring (7)
ANNULAR – ANNUL (scrap) A R (last letter of Wagner).

75 comments on “Times 28185 – just follow the instructions, like an IKEA flatpack but easier.”

      1. I warm up for the QC by doing the 15×15 first, but don’t read the blog or check the snitch until both are done. I wonder what order most of us do them in?
        1. I do the 15×15 then enter my comment on the blog. Then the QC and ditto. Then I have breakfast ,followed by a lie down in front of Anderson Cooper! Finally into my studio at ten to check-out my e-mails and start the day’s work, which today was a piece on Errett Cord’s missing years, 1934-1936.
          1. ….and then back to TfTT to comment on the comments? 🙂

            Edited at 2022-01-12 08:54 am (UTC)

        2. 15×15 at 7 a.m. with coffee and a piece of cake, then start the working day. Occasionally do the QC, but not that often. Never do the concise.
      2. TBH I can’t recall every instance that mentioning level of difficulty of another puzzle has been discussed and what exactly has been said, so my comment may inadvertently have gone against something that has been written before.

        But rarely a week goes by without a 15×15 solver recommending an easier puzzle to the QC forum so I don’t believe there is a hard and fast rule on weekdays. I may be wrong in which case no doubt one of the other site maintainers will advise me.

        The things I know are out in this regard are giving away answers in current puzzles other than the one under discussion and mentioning the level of difficulty of a current weekend prize puzzle when discussing last week’s.

        Anyway I note you had a pleasant surprise when tackling today’s QC.

        Edited at 2022-01-12 07:02 am (UTC)

      I don’t always do the QC or the concise but when I saw your comment I tried both and completely failed to finish either!
  1. Because 5dn was not quite as per Lord Vinyl, it was almost my last one in! I realised that ‘quick’ referred to living from the off! I also struggled with 21ac GIRLHOOD, which I never had in the first place!

    FOI 4dn GET ACROSS – goddit!




    Yesterday we had Baked Alaska, today’s pud was a gorgeous SYLLABUB. Guy, I wonder if tomorrow it will be Windmill pudding!?

    Time: let’s not talk about that!

    1. A desultory Google search turned up nothing, so I am in the dark concerning this supposed delicacy.

      Edited at 2022-01-12 04:03 am (UTC)

      1. At school when asked what was for ‘afters’, the cooks used to chorus, “Windmill Pudding!” which basically meant, “Piss-off! We’re busy — you’ll get pud if there’s enough to go round!” In those Dickensian days the were no choices or seconds.
        1. Ha. That reminds of my mother’s similarly titled “Wait and See Pudding”. It usually turned out to be rice pudding, with which it eventually and inevitably became synonymous.
  2. 28 minutes. Crossers and wordplay came to the rescue for a few not very common words such as ISTHMIAN and BYRONIC. Enjoyed working out GIRLHOOD and the ‘In transit, seeing red’ def for ROAD RAGE.

    Interesting to see BUCK described as ‘a small amount of cash’. Not when I was a youngster.

  3. LOI SYLLABUB, a word I know only from working these and which I hadn’t seen for ages.
    POI ISTHMIAN. Was glad I repressed my itchy trigger finger and didn’t biff “assassin” before realizing it was an anagram.
  4. I had to do this on my laptop, as my desktop is not internettable at the moment, and everything looked tiny. But I moved along at a pretty good pace, but cheated on ALOPECIA; I was thinking atopicia, with the Japanese *atopii-* sort of in mind, and I checked in ODE. Liked GIRLHOOD, ROAD RAGE inter alia.

    Edited at 2022-01-12 06:00 am (UTC)

  5. I agree with Pip’s first sentence. It took me a while to get going then it all seemed to fall into place.
    Thanks, Pip, for COPING, ANNULAR and BYRONIC.
    COD to TURN IN ONES GRAVE. The Quick and the Dead!
    I see the ISTHMIAN League in England is still going.
  6. … The World, which at the worst’s a glorious blunder

    How Byronic.
    25 mins pre-brekker, once I worked out Annular was two Ns, not two Ls. I liked it, mostly Asbestos, Road Rage and Atomiser.
    Thanks setter and Pip.

  7. I felt to be well on the wavelength today resulting in a very quick time by my standards. It was nice to see (H)EALING clued without reference to Cockneys or the East End!
  8. I do the concise in bed with the first coffee then the cryptic with a check on SNITCH and a read of TftT, leaving the QC for last thing at night as a soporific; all done on my iPhone.
  9. 7:31. I also found this slow to get into, with few acrosses going in at first time of asking, but a few checkers got me going and then it all went in without problems.
    I was a bit puzzled by EL NINO, thinking it’s nothing to do with climate change. But then I realised that climate change isn’t necessarily Climate Change, and EL NINO is undoubtedly a climate change.
  10. 29 minutes with LOI ROAD RAGE. COD to TURN IN ONES GRAVE. I must confess to loving Ella Fitzgerald but disliking SCAT. I guess that makes me a square square. Nice middle-of-the-road puzzle too. Thank you Pip,and setter.
      1. Mary Ford doesn’t scat (in any of her multiple vocal tracks) on her version with Les Paul, whose blazing guitar work and innovative recording techniques made it historic.
        1. It’s the Ella version I was initially referring too, perhaps her most famous scat, one of many minutes. Emmylou doesn’t scat either.
          1. Yes, I assumed Ella’s was the version Jackkt was thinking of and thought he might like the Les Paul and Mary Ford version better (I haven’t heard the Emmy-Lou).
  11. 10:29 finishing slowly with BYRONIC and TRIBAL after starting slowly and then accelerating. Like Pip I frowned at ASBESTOS as a building material; mesothelioma cases are on a rise. Thank you Pip and setter.
  12. After a PB on Monday, a second sub-20 in a week! Very on wavelength today with many answers resolving instantly on first read of clue. COD to the clever ASBESTOS despite the dated definition. Thanks setter and Pip.
  13. Standard fare for me today. 39mins. LOI BYRONIC after TOP BRASS. Got tripped up by GIRLHOOD recently but got it this time.

    I liked ROAD RAGE, ATOMISER And EALING. Good fun.

    Thanks Pip and setter.

  14. Not too many problems here, though I didn’t parse COPING, had to trust that BYRONIC is a word and tried to fit ‘Mellotron’ into 18d before seeing MELODEON. I’ll always associate ISTHMIAN with football rather than Greece, no matter what sponsor’s name the league may bear.

    FOI Top brass
    LOI Aromatic
    COD Girlhood

  15. [Please note that today’s avatar does not accurately reflect my mood. I was reprimanded yesterday for displaying a smiling face whilst declaring myself glum – I feel rather chipper today, but am restoring the kozmik karma of the universe.]

    Started this one off feeling like I’d never make significant progress, but the INTERLOPER / GIRLHOOD crossing got me going, and the bottom half was soon complete. Plugged away at the rest of it, and was 3 NE corner clues away at 32m, with no further progress when I took the morning walk with a friend. I don’t normally discuss the details of remaining clues whilst chatting, but on this occasion I asked for the name of a dessert fitting S-L—-B and immediately got the correct answer (I always imagined that SYLLABUB word was a flower).

    Arriving home, I resumed, entered 8d, and immediately realised BYRONIC was a good definition for “alluringly moody”, then saw that ANGORA fitted the remaining grid space. I popped that in with a devil-may-care flourish – and my recklessness was suitably rewarded. Who needs rigorous decodes? Thanks Pip and setter

      1. Perhaps horryd’s eminence grise gravitas led me to to misinterpret…

        …or maybe I misinterpreted for fun. Happy to be kept in check by horryd and the community.

  16. I do the 15×15 first then the QC, usually immediately after. When the QC was launched I started using it as a warm-up for the big puzzle but often found it had put me in the “wrong” mindset.
  17. Bah, fat finger today. This was both nice and easy – ATOMISER was delightful – and I was done in under 5 mins, but unfortunately with ASNESTOS.
  18. ….than my completion time suggested. I thought ‘building material’ was a little loose, but otherwise a decent puzzle.

    TIME 7:53

  19. Fairly straightforward, my only mer was at asbestos, which is a building material in much the same way that arsenic is used to improve one’s complexion..
  20. Unlike some above I made a quick start, and thought it was going to be similar to Monday’s, but I became stuck near the end. BYRONIC, GIRLHOOD, ROAD RAGE and TURN IN ONE’S GRAVE were all slow to emerge, the last with a question mark as I didn’t appreciate the significance of ‘quick’.

    So, in the end, harder than Monday’s, and more interesting clues. 27 minutes.

  21. A curious experience in which the grid semi-froze at the three quarter mark, and after much fruitless prodding of keys I elected to restart. so my time of 19.55 is probably out by around 6 minutes (or should I claim 12 and a frustrated PB?).
    Not much amused by the long CD, which sort of defeats the purpose. But some engaging spelling challenges, especially ISTHMIAN enlivened an otherwise routine grid.
    I haven’t done the QC in awhile, and almost never attempt the concise: having only one route to the answer strikes me as rather daunting. Years ago, I used to try to fill in the concise grid with wrong but justifiable answers, a diversion I can recommend.
    1. I do try the concise fairly often, but fail to finish far more often than on any cryptic. That’s partly why I do it: I figure it must be good for my vocab.
    2. I never do the concise, but I use the grids as the template for my Weekend Quick Crosswords.
  22. Not exactly slow but a little sluggish against my usual benchmarks, but all good in the end. I spent a while wondering what LO-NINE might mean, of course, which didn’t help.
  23. Thanks for the parse on BYRONIC Pip. Quite a familiar word from the Georgette Heyer oeuvre. No other hold-ups except for taking a while to twig OS=rating (nicely hidden with the “top” that) in the controversial building material. Some neat ones today. My husband still loves AMBROSIA rice pudding. 14.23
  24. 23:20, with the same reservation as our blogger on the cluing of asbestos as a building material. I suppose it once was, which is good enough, but unlike all the past building materials which we no longer use, asbestos couldn’t be used today even if it was desirable. An excellent example of overthinking a perfectly passable clue, I suspect.
  25. 43 minutes, but in retrospect I can’t see why I took so long. Never understood how ASBESTOS worked, for some reason thinking that it was best in asos and thinking that perhaps it was referring to South Africa, with asos a South African word. The explanation of Byronic also defeated me, for no good reason. Asbestos is hardly a building material now, and the Orient is surely only part of Asia?
  26. Nho MARIACHI, but straightforward. Really liked BYRONIC.

    LOI ANGORA, but that was only the second time I read it. ‘Agora’ is a film, about Hypatia, well worth watching — it won awards in Spain but was never released in Italy. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agora_(film)

    16′ 16″, thanks pip and setter.

    Edited at 2022-01-12 01:07 pm (UTC)

    1. I knew it from the classic Tom Lehrer song In Old Mexico

      The mariachis would serenade,
      And they would not shut up till they were paid.
      We ate, we drank, and we were merry,
      And we got typhoid and dysentery.

      All in the best possible taste, of course!

  27. 14.36. This was a pleasant, straightforward solve with some nice bits of vocab strewn about the grid. Coping was the only I didn’t quite parse during the solve.
  28. I got off to a reasonable start with GET ACROSS as FOI, then COMPUTER, ISOTONIC and IMPLICIT followed in short order. I slowed down after that, but still made reasonable progress. TOP BRASS was a good starter for the NE, SPACE BAR helped with the SW and IAMB and MELODEON kick started the SE where I finished with ATOMISER. EL NINO allowed me to put the final MIAN in the unknown ISTHMIAN. Crept in under the half hour at 29:24. Thanks setter and Pip.
  29. I don’t really understand the objection to ASBESTOS: a building material remains a building material after the building is built, surely. ‘What building material is this thing made from?’ ‘Oh it’s not made from a building material, it’s made from asbestos.’
  30. I had a very similar experience to Pip. Slow but steady progress throughout. COD ATOMISER

    I’m another who always connects the word ISTHMIAN with the football league of that name. Aptly enough, the Corinthian Casuals play in it.

    Thanks to Pip and the Setter.

    1. Dulwich Hamlets, Walthamstow Avenue, Tooting and Mitcham, Wycombe Wanderers, Leytonstone – what memories of Amateur Football at its finest. Also the Amateur Cup Final at Wembley with Bishop Auckland, Crook Town and Pegasus in the mix. The later was the Oxbridge Eleven.

      FA Cup 4th Round Qualifying Replay, Wednesday 22nd November 1922 – Dulwich Hamlet 8 St Albans City 7 – Billie Minter scored all seven St. Albans goals. Thems were the days!

      1. Somewhere in an attic either here or in my daughter’s house in London I have an amateur cup final programme featuring Pegasus. Against Bishop Auckland if I remember rightly. Before my time, but I was an avid programme collector as a schoolboy.
  31. A minute over my target of 28m (Snitch 76).

    Appalling start saw only one answer from the first pass. Picked up a few on the second round, and then was on my way — the left hand side went in pretty quickly after that, then picked off bits and pieces on the right, completing with INTERLOPER, ATOMISER, GIRLHOOD and the NHO MELODEON.

    Failed to parse COPING and BYRONIC.

  32. Having woken up, I discovered I was left with what turned out to be ANGORA and BYRONIC. I desperately tried to fit FEDORA in despite there being only one market and a fedora being a hat. The other market then became apparent and BYRONIC was my LOI.
  33. 17.28 so just over half the time it took me yesterday and almost three times my time on Monday. How’s that for variation !

    All three have been good fun. Today’s FOI Ealing and LOI turn in ones grave, one I recognised from previous failure- atomiser . Liked isthmian but COD to mariachi.

    Thx setter and blogger.

  34. Like Olivia’s husband I simply adore this pud – best straight from the tin so no one else can share – with a long spoon. Eating with the devil-style! My WOD.
    Was it not Dr. Spooner who suffered Alopecia? We too have all suffered since! My COD.
    Lots to admire here. My Time 12.32 mins.

    Edited at 2022-01-12 04:16 pm (UTC)

  35. About 45 minutes and fortunately I am not quite suffering from ALIPACIA (or was that ALOPECIA?), so I can tear out my hair for apparently being the only solver not to know this everyday term. COD to ASBESTOS, which unfortunately was a building material when many buildings now being renovated were built.
  36. Wrecked by a stupid misprint – roar rage!

    Ok here’s a question. Alopecia comes from the Greek word for fox. But why?

  37. Successfully finished in 24 minutes, which is better than I managed on today’s QC on both counts!

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