Times 28435 – I did the wrong puzzle!

Time: None, due to the circumstances

Music: Brahms Violin Concerto, Kogan/Kondrashin/PO


Well, started to do the wrong puzzle, anyway.   I printed off the correct puzzle, but failed to clip it to my clipboard, and sat down for a Sunday evening solving session.    The puzzle on my clipboard was actually Guardian 28,900 by Paul, but the clip covered up the title.   I was thinking gee, this is awfully hard for a Monday puzzle when I had gotten about halfway through, and had to get up to flip the LP.   Upon returning to my chair, I spotted the error and looked around for the correct printout.   I was hoping that the real Monday puzzle would be easy enough to finish in half an hour, but after 32 minutes I still had four unsolved and had to get supper out of the oven.

When I came back, I saw that I had a wrong answer, and managed to finish off the remaining clues.   As I will explain, there was nothing  that wrong with my wrong answer, other than it prevented me from finishing the puzzle.   I still suspect it was rather difficult for a Monday.

1 Sort of card introducing US city and Indian state capital (5)
SIMLA – SIM + LA, never heard of it, needed all the crossers.   For that matter, I’ve never head of Himachal Pradesh either.
4 Cleaning implement that in Paris say is used in court (8)
8 Crooked American printer disposing of a sidekick (7,2,5)
10 Abuse men installing a protective material (9)
11 Furore involving new art work (5)
TONDO – TO(N)DO, my FOI, this was a popular grid word about 12 to 15 years ago.   Something for your etagere in the estaminet.
12 Prescribed medication for PC, possibly? (6)
TABLET –  Double definition.   A tablet is not necessarily prescribed, but close enough.
14 Lawrence initially spilt the beans about hospital fund-raising programme (8)
TELETHON – T.E. [Lawrence} + LET (H) ON.  I biffed this,  and couldn’t parse it, so thanks and a hat tip to George H – texting is the blogger’s friend.
17 Interpret studies precisely (8)
18 Fish cook mostly served eagerly at first (6)
GRILSE – GRIL[l] + S[erved] E[agerly].   A fish I had only vaguely heard of.
20 Woven fabric wife introduced to farm (5)
22 After warning, throw out parasitic plant (9)
TOOTHWORT – TOOT + anagram of THROW.
24 Mischievous child’s prank finally made guardian aghast (6-8)
HORROR-STRICKEN – HORROR’S TRICK [mad]E [guardia]N.   I confidently put in terror-stricken, which does parse, but doesn’t quite mean aghast.   However, you’ll never get your marsupial this way.
25 Small chap manually catching fish, a particular type (8)
STICKLER – S + TICKLER, a practice I had never heard of, and had to research.   Look up trout tickler if puzzled.
26 I must wear grey, being doomed? (5)
1 Somehow its act disturbs a woman, a refined person (12)
SOPHISTICATE – SOPHI(anagram of ITS ACT)E, today’s random woman.
2 Possibly St Thomas’s fundamental values (5)
MORES – [St Thomas} More’s.   Mores are not really a set of values, but rather customary prudential behavior, often paired with manners.
3 Invalidation about to restrict north German city (9)
ANNULMENT – AN(N, ULM)ENT – not ca or re this time!
4 Malice surrounding river spirit (6)
SPRITE – SP(R)ITE, an escapee from the Quickie.
5 Flustered peacekeepers with compulsion to carry bible (8)
UNNERVED – U.N. + NE(R.V.)ED, the Revised Version.
6 Wading bird initially enjoying good soak (5)
EGRET – E[njoying] + G + RET.   The egrets send their regrets to you know who!
7 Ant biting foot of crown prince? Hard cheese! (9)
EMMENTHAL – EMME([crow]N)T + HAL.   I like the surface here.
9 Singer with sense to prop up bar (12)
13 Robber stifles cry of surprise, finding small marsupial (9)
BANDICOOT –  BANDI(COO)T, pretty easy if you have the right crossers, otherwise not.
15 Sci-fi character’s close shave, heading off across lake (9)
EARTHLING – [n]EAR TH(L)ING, a purely fictitious being, of course.
16 Like refined pursuits of sect on Russian river (8)
CULTURAL – CULT + URAL, a chestnut.
19 Tusked animal chewing edges of townee’s hat (6)
BOATER –  BOA(T[owne]E)R.
21 Words of song displayed by Sally Richards (5)
LYRIC – Hidden: [sal]LY RIC[ards].
23 Old man carrying article made of wood (5)
OAKEN – O(A) KEN, today’s random man, and not pa.

45 comments on “Times 28435 – I did the wrong puzzle!”

  1. Another TERROR holding up BANDICOOT. Otherwise a bit tricky – unknown cities in unknown Indian state, random names, NHO plants and fish. Quite liked STICKLER – pseudonym of the ex-setter in one of the Sydney newspapers.

  2. 22:21
    Where is everybody? I was very annoyed not to think of TABLET until the end, wasting time on what should have been an easy BANDICOOT, which made me change TERROR to HORROR. I had dithered between the two, but went for TERROR (should have left 3 squares blank) since we use ‘terror’ for a mischievous child but not ‘horror’. TELETHON took me ages, too, since I was thinking that L was the initial letter; never did get the TE. Somehow I ‘knew’ GRILSE & TOOTHWORT–I suppose they appeared here before sometime. I thought it was difficult for a Monday.

  3. Quite liked this. Not a pushover as is supposedly Monday-appropriate, but not so hard when graded on a wider curve. I didn’t know GRILSE before, nor that TOOTHWORT is a parasitic(!) plant. Chestnut it may be, but CULTURAL was my LOI! (I will definitely remember GRILSE, as I happen to have, on this evening when I first encounter it, some GRILled Salmon in the fridgE—in a lemon-mint couscous salad.)

  4. 46 minutes. Another solver delayed by TERROR-STRICKEN here but fortunately BANDICOOT leapt out at me once the B-checker from TABLET had arrived. Elsewhere I thought 4ac needed to end with a Y but I couldn’t parse it so I persevered and worked it our eventually. NHO SIMLA so that was my LOI. TOOTHWORT unknown, but it had to be. I’ve seen GRILSE in the small-print on a tin of salmon, otherwise I wouldn’t have known it. Quite hard work for a Monday.

  5. I found this typically Monday-ish and trotted home in 32 minutes. Lucky old Meldrew.

    FOI 1ac SIMLA – a good friend of mine’s grandfather ran the race course of the ‘Hill Station’ that was Simla. The British Raj spent their summers up there, to escape the infernal heat of The Plains.
    LOI 26ac GONER
    COD 15dn EARTHLING – another appeared last week, methink?

    The GRILSE is simply a young, returning Atlantic Salmon – and not a separate species! I believe the term derives from Ayrshire and is therefore not used on the far reaches of ‘the pond’.
    A ‘little horror’ is the name given to a badly behaved small boy in the UK. I am reminded of Richmal Crompton’s ‘Just William’. Bless!

  6. Up ‘early’ this morning after reversion to GMT, thought this harder than usual for a Monday. No big holdups, though. MORES made me think of the mixed record of Thomas More (read Hilary Mantel). ANNULMENT LOI after SIMLA, kept trying to fit Essen in.

    15’48”, thanks vinyl and setter.

  7. It’s interesting that the usual sources appear to be split on this when defining with reference to a child.

    Collins has ‘esp. a child’ under ‘terror’ but not under ‘horror’.
    Chambers has ‘esp. a child’ under ‘terror’ but not under ‘horror’.
    The Oxford Concise has ‘esp. a child’ under ‘horror’ but not under ‘terror’.
    Only the ODE has ‘esp. a child’ under both.

    I am quoting printed editions in all cases.

  8. 45m 39s
    I’m glad others found this harder than expected. I thought it was just me.
    I’ll join the merry band who started with terror-stricken.
    With 22ac I initially tried to concoct a word from cave (warning ) and an anagram of throw.

  9. 46m DNF. No across solutions on the first pass – quickly realised this was no pushover – but the downs got me going and I made reasonable headway. Towards the end, slowed progressivly to an eventual standstill where I ran out of available time (but also patience).

    Finishing sequence BANDICOOT – TABLET – TONDO, never managed COUNTERTENOR or (nho) GRILSE. Thanks V and setter

  10. My advice for beginners I’ll dish
    In the hopes of avoiding a bish:
    Any collection of letters
    Made up by the setters
    Like as not is the name of a fish.

  11. I solve crosswords upon a TABLET
    And ’tis with some MORE Sad rEGRET
    That I’ve spotted a bird
    Have the setters not heard?
    HORROR-STRICKEN I’d say, “No, not yet”

  12. 28 minutes with LOI GRILSE, which rang a bell, a clever thing for a fish to do. COD to TOOTHWORT, a weed I didn’t know but was fun to construct. I liked SQUEEGEE too. but I did know that. Good and not Mondayish. Thank you V and setter.

  13. 14:41. As the SNITCH confirms, a bit tricky for a Monday. I sort of knew SIMLA from Shimla Pinks, a name given to some Indian restaurants in the UK. I never knew where the name came from, but a quick search informs me “The original term, Shimla Pinks, was used to describe the bright young things of India.”.

  14. Teach us, Sprite or Bird,
    What sweet thoughts are thine …

    25 mins mid-brekker. Not really my cup of tea with Anent, Emmet, Simla, Grilse, Toothwort not being in my everyday vocabulary. Luckily I often talk about Bandicoots.
    Thanks setter and Vinyl.

    1. Back in the day worked on Barrow Island, an A-Class reserve teeming with bandicoots. The camp had a wet bar with a large concrete apron. Evening times, not much to do, we’d play bandicoot soccer. Not what it sounds – throw down a bread roll, hundreds of bandicoots would rush it, if they forced it off one end or the other: Goal! If it was just ripped up and eaten: start again. Yep, we were bored.

        1. Indeed; we were too wheelbarrowed to move off our seats. And it’s Driza-bone, the famous oilskin coat made in England (UK). Or maybe USA? It was sold overseas long ago.

          1. According to wiki it’s made in Australia, first thought of by a New Zealander in 1898. And very effective protection they provide.

            1. Is that right? It was one of those iconic brands that was sold off in the 1980s(?), I’d always thought i t was owned overseas nowadays.

  15. Gave up on the hour with the unknown TONDO just not appearing. Another TERROR here so BANDICOOT held out for ages. NHO GRISLE (I had GRILLE), TOOTHWORT or SIMLA. The latter two worked out from wp.

    Oh well.

    Thanks v and setter.

  16. 32 mins Fell into the terror/horror trap until I got bandicoot
    Got 3d but couldn’t parse it I’d heard of ulm but Anent was new to me
    Similar parse problem with 26a but should have got this!!

    1. I’ve never heard of “Anent” either. For a long time, I was trying to think of a 9-letter German city beginning with Ann….
      This was trickier than a typical Monday puzzle, methinks.

  17. A tricky offering for a Monday on which I’m still recovering from the York festivities! Had to construct the unknown SIMLA and TOOTHWORT, otherwise most answers were lurking somewhere in the depths (TONDO and GRILSE being in the deepest recesses). SPRITE and EGRET were first 2 in and ANNULMENT, unparsed, brought up the rear. A sluggish 34:47. Thanks setter and Vinyl.

  18. With 1d and 1a to begin, whizzed along to all but three done in 16 minutes, then stalled over the unknown TONDO and TOOTHWORT and then not impressed by COUNTERTENOR an unknown sort of singer – I was looking for a songbird. Definitely hard for a Monday. Must remember the BAR = COUNTER thing which we have seen before.

  19. I didn’t have much trouble with this (31 minutes) but experienced the same problems as others on terror/horror and therefore BANDICOOT. TOOTHWORT completely unknown and only entered once I had plenty of checkers.

    It was a bit of a surprise to me that I was as quick as I was (not of course that that’s very quick anyway) since I have shingles, I hope caught in time (how lucky to be able to ring up the surgery at the right time and get an urgent appointment that day, not have to fill in some dreadful electronic form as happens to people in some parts of England) so that the worst effects won’t appear. It has slowed me down and made me a bit weak and physically unbalanced, and I expected to be slower than usual on the crossword. But I heard of someone who had Alzheimer’s but could still cope with the Times crossword into their 90s. Perhaps the brainpower needed for crossword-solving is just a bit different from that needed to do the usual heavy-brain things.

    1. Not to be recommended as a way of improving one’s solving times! Good luck for a speedy recovery.

  20. 24 mins, but baffled at the end by St Thomas’s and the state capital, frustrating because I had heard of it. No problem with little HORRORS!

  21. I started this so slowly that I thought I was in for a really slow time, but after 15 minutes got my act together and speeded up, finishing in 41.30. I slowed a little at the end eventually getting SIMLA which allowed me to solve my LOI 2dn MORES, although I had reservations about the definition.
    My first thought for 24ac was HORROR as a description for mischievous child, as my own three sons were regularly described to me in those terms some thirty years ago! All are model citizens now I should say in their defence!

  22. Slow start but picked up speed. Grilse vaguely known but tempted at first by GRILLE as rosedeprovence.
    Was a bit foxed by COUNTERTENOR as not hyphenated (optional in my dictionary) and not convinced by TENOR = SENSE.

  23. 14:09. Another slow start, in fact I only got two or three answers from my first pass through the acrosses. The downs proved easier but not much.
    Lots of unfamiliar words, although the only out-and-out unknown for me was SIMLA, which was my last in after a long pause on MORES.

  24. 29 minutes. Harder than usual for a Monday. NHO GRILSE or TOOTHWORT. Vaguely remembered TONDO, which is probably what I said the last time it appeared. Like Meldrew, I associate SIMLA with the British Raj escaping the Indian summer heat, so that was my FOI. I liked working out the parsing of SQUEEGEE, ANNULMENT, BANDICOOT and COUNTERTENOR.

  25. 38:11

    TERROR first then HORROR. Think both are equally acceptable. Some nice pdms though got snarled up in the SE corner until COUNTERTENOR and EARTHLING showed the way.

    NHO TONDO nor TOOTHWORT (though from the final O, figured out the HWORT and bunged in the TOOT upfront.

    GRILSE – sure that’s been in a grid somewhere in the last few months, but I’d totally forgotten about it…. until now!

  26. Good to be on the wavelength of the setter ( only because I finished ) but also in agreement with other contributors.
    I had terror for horror at 24a for a while, then recalled bandicoot from a Richard Scarry book my son had, years ago.
    Yes, Meldrew , earthling appeared recently methinks too…

    I was taken to a concert by my father in the 1970s where one of the performers was a countertenor. I remember being completely baffled but was too afraid to make any observation.

    I liked 2d after I got rid of ‘ethos’ from my head, and 1a after getting playing cards out of my mind …

    Thank you as always to blogger, setter and contributors.

  27. I thought I was out of my depth with this one initially but kept coming back to it during the day and very pleased to finish, even if quite a lot of biffing required.
    COD TELETHON (thanks for the parsing)

  28. Very late to the party. Very relieved that my guesses were correct- fingers crossed for many such as toot for warning, coo for surprised expression, todo for furore etc.
    tricky for a Monday
    Thanks blogger and setter

  29. Slow to start but completed (hoorah, still unusual achievement for me) in two sessions. Didn’t fall into any of the traps but several unknowns constructed from wp ANENT, TONDO, TOOTHWORT. Didn’t know GR as an abbreviation for grey and still can’t see TENOR as sense or EMME as ant so needed checkers to enter confidently.

    Thanks setter and blogger

    1. My reservations exactly, Casey, and the same NHOs. Well off the wavelength here and came to the blog to get a bit of help – much needed for SIMLA, SQUEEGEE, TABLET ( still don’t get it!) and GONER. PARTNER IN CRIME first in, then the brakes came on until a guess that 22a ended with HWORT, making EARTHLING a write-in. Too many additions and subtractions for my liking, but nothing wrong with a chewy puzzle every now and then…

  30. For squeegee to work we must have “see” = court. “See” =diocese is routine but court?

  31. I didn’t have time to do this on Monday, but after a rapid solve of the Wednesday puzzle, I had spare time today. Tricky! however, all correct. So, that’s 3/3 this week.
    LOI was TELETHON- very neat!

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