Times 28252 – check your submissions well!

Time taken: 9:55, but with one error.

Own silly fault – I had an entry that I knew was incorrect because I had to change a crossing letter, but didn’t fix it up right away, thinking I would get back to it when I had finished the grid. Of course with the changed letter what was in there was a word, so I didn’t bother checking the clue again.  Whoopsy!

Fairly straightforward puzzle with a few tricky ones. Hope you enjoyed it!

Away we go…

1 Cats maybe fight Melody Maker in case (7,3)
MUSICAL BOXCats is a MUSICAL, then BOX(fight)
6 Echoing submarine captain’s signal (4)
OMEN – reversal of captain NEMO
9 Fried cakes group returned after game (10)
CROQUETTES – SET(group) reversed after CROQUET(game)
10 Crow runs into trap? (4)
BRAG – R(runs) inside BAG(trap)
12 He impedes outside broadcast furore, one blocking streets (14)
OBSTRUCTIONIST – OB(outside broadcase), then RUCTION(furore), I(one) inside two ST’s(streets)
14 Queen right to take time in finding one of her victims? (6)
MARTYR – Queen MARY and R(right) containing T(time)
15 Playful sketch this, after edit (8)
SKITTISH – SKIT(theatrical sketch) then an anagram of THIS
17 Better men succeeded in the Open (8)
OUTDOORS – OUTDO(better), OR(men), S(succeeded)
19 Con tearaway? (3-3)
RIP-OFF – double definition
22 Possibly needing a shawl cut? (4-10)
COLD-SHOULDERED – the cold shoulders could use something to cover them up
24 Company perhaps regularly ruins city centre (4)
UNIT – alternating letters in rUiNs, then the middle letters in cITy
25 Berlin quartet worried about possible source of mutton roast (10)
VITUPERATE – VIER(German for four), and ATE(worried) containing TUP(possible source of mutton)
26 Superiority claimed by landed gentry (4)
EDGE – hidden inside landED GEntry
27 A large enclosure with standard support for climber (10)
ALPENSTOCK – A, L(large), PEN(enclosure) and STOCK(standard)
1 Send up topless overall (4)
MOCK – remove the first letter from SMOCK(overall)
2 Slaver‘s keener to acquire second of plantations (7)
SLOBBER – SOBBER(crier, keener) containing the second letter of pLantations
3 Property of nobleman with rosy hue, blitzed? (7,5)
COUNTRY HOUSE – COUNT(nobleman) and an anagram of ROSY,HUE
4 Books and letters providing material for test (6)
LITMUS – LIT(literature, books) and Greek letter MUS
5 Pass completed scene in film? (8)
OVERTAKE – OVER(completed) and TAKE(scene in film)
7 Caribbean island exports what French drink (7)
MARTINI – the island is MARTINIQUE, remove QUE(what, in French)
8 Workers in the dark altered fittings around first hotel, later hospital (5,5)
NIGHT SHIFT – anagram of FITTINGS surrounding one H(hotel) and another H(hospital)
11 Regret one voting against dull head (12)
CONTRITENESS – CON(one voting against), TRITE(dull), NESS(head)
13 Medic that’s sore in French river mouth (10)
EMBOUCHURE – MB(medic) OUCH(that’s sore) inside the French river EURE. Not a river I knew, had to look it up for the blog
16 One stops weapon test to do with bearings (8)
ARMORIAL – I(one) inside ARM(weapon), ORAL(test)
18 Impressive tango by pianist who’s lost weight (7)
TELLING – T(tango) and the pianist is Duke ELLINGTON missing TON(weight)
20 Old ass, upset, leaves in stew? (7)
OREGANO – O(old) then ONAGER(ass) reversed
21 Produce trousers left for rider perhaps (6)
CLAUSE – CAUSE(produce) containing L(left)
23 Dealer uses this floor (4)
DECK – double definition, the first being a DECK of cards

64 comments on “Times 28252 – check your submissions well!”

  1. After doing the crossword and reading the blog, I am left with another puzzle. What word can be changed by a letter and still make another word which could have been inserted in error by our blogger? Would that be telling?

    Edited at 2022-03-31 01:08 am (UTC)

    1. It was the one that has already been mentioned before – GRIN becoming GRIG and as I was checking my grid, it didn’t register that I needed to check it. Should have fixed it on the spot.
  2. My pianist was Weller; but correct result nevertheless. Perhaps we had pianist clueing (Fats) Waller once, dropping the W? Otherwise a regulation crossword, meaning pretty enjoyable. Ddidn’t know the Eure, or armorial or bearing as being heraldic, so a couple in on a wing and a prayer. Liked the definition for night shift. Last 2 in were the long ones, cold-shouldered and contriteness; just couldn’t see them.
    COD croquettes, seemed unlikely to be (game)tes.
  3. This was the latest instalment in a series of failures for me. Today the problem was choosing the first letter of _MBOUCHURE.

    Otherwise completed in 14:28, with VITUPERATE producing the final aha! moment.

    Thanks George and setter.

    Edited at 2022-03-31 01:22 am (UTC)

        1. Careful G, I think Not Liking Flanders and Swann may be grounds for expulsion here…
          1. Ha! No, it was just a bit of fun vis a vis Ulaca’s comment yesterday.

            Goodness no. Flanders and Swann, I mean come on, who doesn’t…actually now that you mention it, they’re really not my cup of tea!

            1. Sorry, but they’re certainly mine. I knew the song from the record absolutely by heart and I think it was used for the YouTube clip. I’ve often heard the real music but never heard a performance where the cadenza is as here.
            2. I think they are wonderful … might be an age thing. I’m so old I like comedians who are creative, clever and don’t swear much…
              1. I like them to be creative, clever and funny. Don’t really give a $%#@ how much they swear.
      1. Who was it who said that a gentleman can be defined as someone who can play the French Horn but doesn’t?
    1. I knew it from a failed effort to learn to play the flute. I couldn’t form an effective one!
  4. Threw in the towel after an hour with no vituperate, cold-shouldered,or embouchure. I knew German for four and right sense of roast but couldn’t see it. I guess knowing tup would have helped. I thought for cold-shouldered there would also be a reference in clue to the rebuffing or ignoring sense of cold-shoulder? Oh, on rereading I see there is -cut.Enjoyed litmus and slobber.Thanks, blogger, for clearing up my three misses plus many other things I didn’t see.
    1. Look up “Our Yorkshire Farm,” a Ch5 series available on catch-up. It will teach you everything you need to know about tups, yows, wethers, tegs and so forth .. not to mention how to cope with 9 children. Magic stuff
  5. Slowed down by Night Staff; I need to reread my note to self about paying attention to the clue. I liked this. It seemed every clue had one important word used in an unusual sense, but one just inside my scope of knowledge, so I felt clever left and right as pennies dropped.
  6. 39 minutes. I knew EMBOUCHURE had something to do with playing the trumpet (though had forgotten it in the F&S song ulaca has kindly given the link for), so extrapolated that to ‘mouth’, but hadn’t heard of the EURE before. Some good definitions eg ‘leaves in stew?’ for 20d and ‘rider perhaps’ for 21d and some interesting words such as VITUPERATIVE made this very enjoyable. “Alpenhorn” has been getting quite an airing in various places lately, so good to see a variation on a theme here.

    Thanks to George and setter

  7. Like others I struggled with EMBOUCHURE, which was my LOI. I didn’t know the word or the river, so went with what sounded right to me. With some fortune it happened to be correct!
  8. 35 minutes with one error and slowed towards the end by several clues in the SW. I’m another who fell into the GRIN trap although it was pencilled in lightly as I wasn’t wholly convinced by it.

    My error was a combination of not knowing the French river at 13dn or the correct spelling of answer. I had OMBOUCHURE, which now I stop to think about it looks wrong anyway and I should have spotted it. I had come across the word only in its musical context and had no idea that it also means the mouth of a river, which makes the definition in the clue much more satisfactory than I had thought when solving.

  9. Unfortunately I went the wrong way on the 13d, with AURE sounding just about right for the unknown river and only Eddie Izzard’s pronunciation of EMBOUCHURE from an early sketch of his to go on. I have seen the word written down since, once I think, but only here. 40m on this DNF. Hard when you don’t know the wordplay or the definition…

    Edited at 2022-03-31 06:23 am (UTC)

  10. I chipped away at this in a couple of waiting rooms, then over lunch, and managed to get everything but VITUPERATE & CLAUSE. I was thinking the German was FIER (it’s pronounced that way, but), which got me nowhere; and does ‘vier’ mean ‘quartet’? Never got the parsing of CLAUSE (hence never got CLAUSE); and thought ARMOR stops weapon, leaving me with IAL.
    1. To us fier sounds like vier, but not to a German I’m afraid. It does however mean quartet, but only in the sense of “We need you to make up a four/quartet at cards ..
  11. … we shall this day light such a candle, by God’s grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out.

    25 mins pre-brekker. What a beauty. Great clueing, I thought. No question marks, no crosses and several ticks.
    Only hold up was inventing the Eure as a possible French river at the end.
    Thanks setter and G.

  12. 23 minutes with LOI ARMORIAL. I happened on EMBOUCHURE by accident with all crossers in place and trying to fit BOUCHE for a French mouth in. I then managed to see the right parsing. VITUPERATE was a construction project that overran too. COD to COLD-SHOULDERED. Nice puzzle. Thank you George and setter.

    Edited at 2022-03-31 06:56 am (UTC)

  13. This was one of those days when I was on the right wavelength so words like VITUPERATIVE, ARMORIAL and EMBOUCHURE went in very quickly. I lived a couple of départements away from EURE for several years, so that didn’t present a problem.
    It must count as a good day for me when I have no queries over the parsing.
    1. [Tangentially off-topic. Yesterday on the Crossword Club leaderboard – MartinP: Crosswords completed 28, Total incorrect 0. For some reason today you’re down as Crosswords completed 29, Total incorrect 1. I don’t know where that pesky 1 incorrect puzzle came from, but anyway, very impressive, so well done.]
  14. Good start & top half reasonably straightforward – though CROQUETTES took far longer than it should have. But down below I found this a real slog, with hold -ups including inability to parse OREGANO, and thinking German 4 = FIER.

    Finally quit without having solved EMBOUCHURE or ARMORIAL – I may have bagged the latter with a few more minutes, former no chance when dependent NHO French river.

    A full week of failures so far for me (though Monday was due to a desperate grasp for a PB). My first wipe-out week in recent memory looms….

  15. Just short of the hour with last ones in EMBOUCHURE (I did know the river luckily) COLD SHOULDERED TELLING and VITUPERATE. Pretty tricky today and pleased to have finished. Lots to like and enjoyable.

    Thanks George and setter.

  16. 17:04. I had the feeling I was making heavy weather of this and so it proved. The bottom half was particularly slow.
    I knew EMBOUCHURE as a musical term thanks to assorted wind- and brass-playing progeny, but not the river meaning.
    I wondered who the pianist WELLING was. I’m pretty sure I’ve made exactly the same mistake with the same wordplay in the past.
    25ac reminds me of my favourite joke (which doesn’t work written down but): according to Freud, what comes between fear and sex? Funf.

    Edited at 2022-03-31 07:46 am (UTC)

  17. Just over 18 minutes, double checking TELLING, and assuming that my alphabet trawl produced WELLING was a (not very) famous pianist. Wrong, but still right.
    I was happy to stay with EMBOUCHURE in the context I knew it, with trombone players and the like, even if mouth as a definition was a bit sketchy. River’s part of the wordplay, not the definition, after all.
    A long ago catholic priest of my acquaintance would have blown a fuse over the MARTYR clue, loudly insisting that Elizabeth’s tally of martyrs was way higher than Mary’s. Such is history.
    Enjoyed this one, despite (because of?) the quirky words.
    1. I neglected to mention I have vodka too. but everyone has that in their cupboards, don’t they?
        1. I have a very old half litre of Bison Grass Vodka in my drinks cabinet. I think the bison had a tummy problem!
  18. A lot to like in this. I found the South West quite tricky with EMBOUCHURE and ARMORIAL the LOIs. Not helped by assuming “that’s sore” meant OW and “test” meant TRIAL.

    There’s something pleasing about the way that the building blocks fall neatly into place in clues like ALPENSTOCK, CONTRITENESS and (COD) VITUPERATE.

    Thanks to g and the setter.

    1. Yes, the Flanders Swann take on the Mozart horn concerto was a help with 13d. We’ve been getting a fair bit of French lately – no complaints mind you. My one hold-up was the definition of VITUPERATE which seems much nastier than a roasting (which is more akin to teasing whether good-natured or not) but on reflection I believe “roast” may have acquired a slightly different meaning in the US. There’s a comedy club called the Friar’s in NYC that stages an annual “roast” of a famous person who is invited to be part of the entertainment. Nice puzzle. 17.52
  19. 18:12 LOI EMBOUCHURE unparsed not knowing the river, but I did know the word from attempting to play saxophone. I’m reminded by 14A that it’s a while since I had a Bloody Mary, but I have some tomato juice in the cupboard.
  20. Shouldn’t have taken so long, really, with the loi EMBOUCHURE; I’d never heard of the river Eure, and had to use aids for this, taking my time up to just over the hour. But a good crossword, nice clues.
  21. Not sure how I came to post my comment as a reply to Michel rather than on its own. Apologies.
  22. Thought this was going to be really tough but after struggling for ages it all fell into place. Since I thought it was an embruchure (that’s how I pronounce it anyway) I had the clue upside down and was looking for a medic. In fact I could say that about several other clues, eg OUTDOORS I was looking for a better as the meaning. Clever crossword, well done the setter
  23. 26:47. A classy, solid MOR offering with no particular hold-outs. I feel I should have been a tad faster but that seems like the hallmark of a good puzzle.
  24. An enjoyable puzzle with lots of answers dropping neatly out of the wordplay. I didn’t know the river Eure, but did know the musical expression. I laughed out loud when SLOBBER materialised, as I’d been looking for transporter of or dealer in slaves. MOCK was FOI and LITMUS brought proceedings to a close. 27:13. Thanks setter and George.
  25. … following yesterday’s noun made from an adjective made from a noun to find CONTRITENESS turning up today. What is wrong with ‘contrition’, a perfectly functional noun from which ‘contrite’ comes as an adjective leading to the ugly and unnecessary alternative noun in today’s puzzle? My displeasedness increases …
    1. Speaking of ugly and unnecessary, I have always disliked the word ‘proactive’ and today for the first time I heard someone use ‘to proact’ as a verb. Awful.
  26. High marks to COLD-SHOULDERED and SLOBBER.
    Like Norm, I wanted CONTRITION but that was too short and felt much the same as yesterday when I had to put in ANGRINESS.
    LOI ARMORIAL. I had another “word” there, too ridiculous to mention.

    Edited at 2022-03-31 01:50 pm (UTC)

  27. Early effort for me rather than doing last thing at night, half-asleep

    Liked it a lot. Great clues; smooth surfaces and a couple of PDMs

    Rather liked VITUPERATE as one of a few good un’s

    Thanks George and Setter

  28. Nice and smooth. Glad to see that I wasn’t the only one who knew EMBOUCHURE but not the river.
  29. 21.10. Some interesting vocabulary made this an enjoyable challenge. I was a little hesitant over embouchure, I was pretty sure that was the word, just wasn’t sure about the French river.
  30. Held up on LOI Vituperate with 5 vowels in place! Eventually TUP gave the entry point, but I was another who forgot that VIER is written not as pronounced and was looking for an F for far too long.
  31. 24.46. But undone by embouchure. This type of clue is one of my bug bears. NHO the word but plugged away and got the mb and ouch components but the only French river I could come up with that fitted was the Aude. Unfortunately, the correct one was the Eure. There’s no way to fill the clue properly unless possessing the general knowledge on the river. Isn’t this supposed to be a cryptic challenge?

    As to the rest, good fun so a qualified Thanks Setter. Please take note of my Pointer!

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