Times 28495 – Our audiophile Congress

Time: 19 minutes

Music: Delius, North Country Sketches, Groves/RPO

This one was a bit of a biff-fest for me, so I’ll need to figure out the cryptics as I write the blog.    As it turns out, there was nothing too difficult, so this puzzle might well be suitable for the Quickie crowd to try their hand on.  Bohea is the only word some solvers might not know, so I would expect to see some pretty fast times.

1 Puts down a force during exercise to avoid risk (4,4)
5 A pig died being transported? (6)
10 Rigorous working out I run over in large chapter (5)
LOGIC – L(I GO backwards)C.
11 Vegetarian food — way to live during embargo (5,4)
12 A reversal in function makes us gloomy (9)
13 Distinguished academic receiving alien back (5)
NOTED – D(E.T)ON, all backwards.
14 Travelling elite carrying National Trust permit (7)
ENTITLE – Anagram of ELITE around NT.
16 Warship expected to conquer (6)
18 Left brown furniture items in store (6)
LUMBER – L + UMBER, the UK meaning.
20 Tweeter, perhaps one MP’s must heed (7)
SPEAKER –  Double definition.
22 Czech region banning motorway drink (5)
BOHEA – BOHE[mi]A, a drink common in 18th century verse.
23 Tea after test game’s ending (9)
25 Overflowing with Cape wine almost entirely (5-4)
26 Most of tax is on a gold vessel (5)
AORTA – A + OR + TA[x]
27 Speak about fool’s ability to think straight (6)
28 Note bird and rabbit (8)
1 Column I covered in pargeting (8)
2 Jargon central to photography in one way? (5)
ARGOT –  Backwards hidden in [pho]TOGRA[phy].
3 Bond perhaps needs cover for official crackdown (8,7)
SECURITY BLANKET – SECURITY + BLANKET, not one for Linus, evidently.
4 Get upset after month’s hot (7)
6 See bad bank draft ruined guest house (3,3,9)
7 Amazed, getting a point before scrum (9)
8 Uncover American guy carrying English name (6)
9 Lots sleep on ends of nails (6)
DOZENS – DOZE + N[ail]S.
15 Feel feathers could be alight (5,4)
17 Something made café tart peculiar (8)
19 Win back concerning company before period of success (6)
20 Flying latest hot type of military plane (7)
STEALTH – Anagram of LATEST.
21 Means of calculating account in a computer system (6)
24 Oh, no! Overturned mercury runs all around initially (5)
AARGH – HG + R + A[ll] A[round] upside down.

74 comments on “Times 28495 – Our audiophile Congress”

  1. 40 mins. All green. Agree, one for the QC crowd like me.

    Needed a few attempts to spell AARGH right, making AORTA the last one in. AU for gold was the misdirection there.

    I had to look up pargeting, it’s rare to have a NHO in the clue. Used to dealing with NHOs in the answer, like BOHEA, generously clued.

    Thought our vegetarian food would be BREAD something. Did not know bird=chat.


  2. FEBRILE was my guess from wordplay. Everything else went in at a first or second glance, 5:29

  3. Yeah, pretty easy! ARRGH was spelled with one R in today’s Sunday New York Times crossword.
    “Pargeting” was a NHO for me also. But an easy clue aside from that.
    I also did not know the definition here for SECURITY BLANKET, only its original sense… which reminds me of course of Linus Van Pelt, whom I had occasion to mention in a tangential remark about a clue in the Xmas Jumbo I just blogged, and also of our old team member zabadak (Ian Richardson), who had Linus with the blanket for an avatar and from whom we haven’t heard since Bastille Day… I don’t know if Jonathan’s had any news.
    BROAD BEAN was my Antepenultimate One In, before DOZENS and SUBDUE, both very easy. BOHEA must be the most obscure answer here, and I was just so happy to know it. Nice clue too.

  4. I didn’t know either bohea or pargeting (though when I looked it up post-solve the photos looked familiar, so more than likely we’ve had it and I just forgot), but the clear cluing meant it didn’t hold me up much.

    I guess I have to say the same thing about Aargh – I’m on long-term record as not really liking words which approximate sounds and which can be, and are, spelled a dozen different ways. “Same thing” meaning that clear cluing today also got me right past the internal groan. Arghh

    thx vinyl

  5. 15 minutes. BOHEA turned out to be an unknown but the crossers helped. Remembered ‘pargeting’ from a previous appearance. Held up most by 26a , for which as usual I didn’t see the correct sense for ‘vessel’. Favourite was the surface for BROAD BEAN; it’s the only time you’d catch me eating one.

  6. 22 minutes. BOHEA might have been troublesome but I remembered the word and knew it was drink-related whilst not recalling exactly how. No problem with ‘pargeting’ as I listened to The Archers for many years in which ‘Pargeter’ is the name of one of the village families and from time to time the origin of their surname was mentioned.

    1. Gosh! You learn something new every day! I used to listen to the Archers as well but never knew that a Pargeter was also a tradesman as well as a cast member!

      1. Their ancestors did well for themselves over the generations climbing the social scale somehow from artisans to local Squirarchy!

        I just noticed that the family in The Archers was spelt Pargetter with two Ts, but both spellings are valid for a plasterer.

        1. There is plenty of pargeting here in Suffolk, the most well-known, perhaps, being the Ancient House in Clare, but there are plenty of examples in the more local (to me) village of Hesset.

          1. Thanks! I had not heard the term before but, following your link, and others, I think pargeting is attractive. I lived in mid- to north Essex for a while but don’t recall seeing any examples. I do remember a lot of pink wash and thatch.

    2. Yes; I also knew that one through the late lamented Nigel Pargeter, as well as having only yesterday heard BOHEA as Bertie was drinking it in Stephen Fry’s reading of a Jeeves and Wooster story. The benefits of a classical education!

  7. 13:31
    DNK pargeting, but assumed it had to do with plaster (just now looked it up). LOI BROAD BEAN; I needed DOZENS to give up on BREAD something. Fortunately a recent puzzle caused me to look up Mercury and learn that it’s HG.

  8. No pushover, I thought, as it’s decades since I listened to Nigel Pargeter and co. LOI AORTA also cost me a couple of minutes. However, this was a 22:30 fail – because carelessly typed in BOHIA even though I’d solved the cryptic correctly. Grrrr!

  9. DNF. I managed to put ARRGH instead of AARGH, wrongly taking “runs” to be RR. Fiddlesticks.

  10. 30m 37s. I thought there were some lovely surface readings today. My COD goes to TOUCH DOWN for the clever use of ‘alight’.
    Fortunately I remember coming across BOHEA in the cryptic before.
    AARGH! I figured it had to be ARGOT but I didn’t spot the reverse hidden.
    Note to setter: 7d: In rugby, a RUCK is not the same as a SCRUM.
    Thank you, vinyl.

  11. All the heaped Autumn’s wealth,
    With a still, mysterious stealth:

    20 mins pre-brekker. NHO Bohea or Pargeting.
    Thanks setter and V.

  12. Good morning y’all. Here’s the news
    This is CHOCK-FULL of biffable clues
    The last one is CHIT-CHAT
    It’s half-bird: don’t like that
    But TOUCHDOWN and CHECKMATE – you can’t lose

  13. 14 minutes, and I took a while to get going until I reached the down clues. So all was finished in one cup of tea, although there were two more in the puzzle. LOI was LUMBER. COD to CHOCK-FULL and SECURITY BLANKET jointly. Nice Monday fare. Thank you V and setter.

  14. 45 mins or so with interruptions. Another who DNK pargeting but remembered PILASTER as a column.

    Not only does the setter like his/her tea, they clearly had an excess of Us to use! I counted 8.

    Also agree that a scrum is not a ruck. I liked TOUCH DOWN and AARGH which I managed to spell correctly.

    Thanks v and setter.

  15. Took a short while to get on the wavelength, but all fine in 14’11”. Nho BOHEA, but recently had a short break in Prague, which helped.

    Thanks vinyl and setter.

  16. DNF

    Another silly typo, ABACAS for me.

    I’m surprised at so many claiming not to know BOHEA. It has come up several times in the daily cryptic, most recently in 2019, and as gothick has pointed out it’s a staple of Jeeves & Wooster.

  17. 10:59. I took a little while to get going on this, but got quicker. I failed to spot ARGOT was a reverse hidden and discovered I didn’t really know what FEBRILE meant, knowing only the second meaning in the dictionary. But I least I didn’t have to say AARGH when I checked my answers. Thanks vinyl and setter.

  18. 15 minutes or so. SATURNINE was figured out from wordplay without previously knowing that it means gloomy, and like a few others I hadn’t heard of the BOHEA drink. I tried to fit ‘baked bean’ into 11a, but before too long I saw that it wouldn’t parse and that it had to be BROAD BEAN. Thanks setter and blogger.

    FOI Aargh
    LOI Chitchat
    COD Entitle

    1. Same here- didn’t know the meaning of pargeting so guessed-wrongly unfortunately!

  19. Enjoyed this. I rather think there is a missing AN in the clue for the tasty 11a Broad Bean, and in 20d we need the H(ot) in the anagrist.

    1. I don’t think you need ‘hot’ as the anagrist. ‘Hot’ is simply the last part of the cryptic, so the H goes on the end of STEALT. And the AN in 11A is part of the containment ‘BAN’ (embargo).

  20. Easy peasy, despite not knowing pargeting or BOHEA. Managed to type ARRGH instead of AARGH, which led me to say it out loud when I saw the pink square. COD SATURNINE.

    Mention of Nigel Pargeter reminded me of my love-hate relationship with The Archers. Every now and then, I’d get quite in to it, particularly when the storyline involved someone, usually Brian Archer, going astray. Then, a few weeks later, I’d suddenly find myself saying “What the **** am I doing, listening to this twaddle” and that would be it for months . Haven’t been back since moving to France.

    Thanks to vinyl and the setter.

  21. Goodness knows why I was so slow to see ns as ends of nails, but that, and one or two others, like sub as a warship, held me up at the end after a start that was fast by my standards, so eventually I took 31 minutes. I seem to have seen the answer to 6dn more than once recently. MER at pargeting = plaster: the former is the ornamentation of plaster, isn’t it? But now I look in Chambers I see that it’s OK.

    1. Given Everton’s current disasters, I should resist posting Stevenage2, but I can’t. Hope things improve for both of us

  22. 15:20. A nice mix of guessable definitions and parsable wordplay. NHO pargeting and tbh I couldn’t have confidently said PILASTER was a word but it seemed likely enough. As with many BOHEA was NHO but clear from wordplay. I thought “makes us” was a bit hefty as a link phrase in SATURNINE. Thanks S&V.

  23. 13 mins, possible PB but don’t keep a record. LOI DOZENS, was trying my hardest to make it OODLES, but the clue and SATURNINE put an end to that.

  24. Very quick today. No problem with pargetting ( quite a lot of it in Maidstone) and none of the Heyer crowd will have a problem with bohea..

  25. Pretty easy, as others have noted. The long entry at 6d was immediately biffable, so that was a good starting point. BOHEA was vaguely familiar, but I didn’t get it until I had most of the checkers. I was also slow to see SECURITY for the first part of 4d.
    21 minutes.

  26. 21:22. I knew pargeting – I have stayed in Johninterred’s Ancient House, it’s a holiday let – but not BOHEA. Slightly surprised afterwards to find both AARGH and SECURITY BLANKET (in the non-Linus sense) in the dictionary. But there they were. LOI AWESTRUCK

  27. A pleasant and gentle start to the week. LOGIC started the proceedings and I finished with AARGH. pargeting unknown, but I knew the column. Needed the wordplay and checkers to get BOHEA, but it rang a bell once it was in place. 15:18. Thanks setter and Vinyl.

  28. Pargeter is the name of the family renting a Tuscan villa in John Mortimer’s Summer’s Lease so they’ve come a long way like the other tradesmen/artisans of yore such as fletchers and lorimers. I think of Dr. Johnson taking a “dish”of BOHEA (when tea was new and expensive) with Mr. Boswell. 14.53

  29. 5:38. The top half of this was quicker than the bottom. Not much quicker, obviously, but definitely a puzzle of two halves for me. I vaguely remembered parget from its previous outing. No problem with BOHEA, and I thought it had appeared more regularly than it actually has.
    ‘Vegetarian food’ is a bit of an odd way to define ‘vegetable’ but I suppose it helps the surface a little bit.

  30. 16:21. Same unknowns as others but the answers were only briefly in doubt. No particular problem with the conflation of RUCK and SCRUM and I can’t see much – if any – distinction in Chambers, but then these things tend to be subtle for those in the know.

  31. Like others no problem with BOHEA as I’ve seen it in crosswords before, but had to correct AARGH when I initially put in two Rs. For once I carefully checked the clue to arrive at the required spelling.
    I finished in 21.32 which is certainly speedy for me, but would have been comfortably sub twenty if it hadn’t been for four in the nw corner which held me up. After PLAYSAFE came to mind the rest followed quickly.

  32. About 35m today. I was bemused by the apostrophe in 20 across as one MP’s must take heed didn’t seem to make sense. I know there is licence for setters to confuse us with punctuation, but usually I think the clue still makes some sense. Maybe I’m missing something? Otherwise enjoyable puzzle. Thamks for the explanations, V

    1. Greengrocer’s apostrophe. Probably should be MPs, although some people say that when it’s confusing without the apostrophe one has licence to put one in, as in PS and PS’s. But it’s not confusing to say MPs.

      1. As you say, it’s probably not needed here but it’s a matter of judgement and I don’t feel strongly enough to object to it.

  33. Straightforward enough Monday fare, though my LOI caused a little late head scratching.

    TIME 6:29

  34. A bit more beefy than a usual Monday, but no problems, 21 minutes. Broad beans in cheese sauce – yummy. Had to guess what a pargeter was but it made sense.

  35. Can’t say I liked PILASTER- column seems pretty obscure and you had to know “pargeting” to confirm what it might be among other plausible places to put vowels.

  36. I had to look up Pargeter to get 1d- otherwise straightforward. AORTA held me up a bit, as it always does.
    Nice start to the week.

  37. 20:02 but…

    …gripes and grumbles around argh repeated here. Personally I’d spell it with only one A and one R. think the parsing here for an unchecked letter should have been much clearer.

    Apart from that, I’d sausage-fingered an E on the end of PILASTER. Darn and blast etc.

  38. A gentle start to the week. I only know one area of Czechoslovakia, so no problem with 22a.

  39. 16’04” . Straightforward fare, though when I see the Snitch at just 59 I begin to think I should have been a lot quicker. Didn’t feel like a 59 to me. Or maybe it’s that I’ve just had lunch.

  40. A biff-fest indeed with a few checkers required for BOHEA, PILASTER ( NHO pargeting (and apple auto correct hasn’t either – it defaults to “parleying”) and AARGH but ended with a pink square of cRock instead of CHOCK…and should have known there’s no ‘rock’ wine but couldn’t help myself…oops (or should that be “aargh”?) getting my “chock full”s mixed up with my “crocks of sh*t”.

    Finished over various sessions in c.40mins I guess.

    Thanks setter and Vinyl1

  41. 22:47, I hadn’t heard of MATE as being a sort of tea, and 23ac was my LOI. Enjoyed this as a gentle start to the week. For 25ac, shouldn’t that be FULL(y) in the wordplay, or am I missing something / being over picky again? Thanks setter & vinyl.

    1. Yes, you’re right, but just a slip, I assume. I didn’t actually notice it was missing till you mentioned it.

  42. Same as Square Leg – with the checkers it had to be Bohemia, so no problem with the drink, even though I’ve never knowingly heard of it before (despite having read some Heyer in the past!) Pargeter rang a faint bell, but PILASTER was known, so no problem there, likewise with SATURNINE (especially since I was looking for Sine). I was pretty quick by my standards with this one, polishing it off between exam invigilation sessions, so I can well believe it has a low Snitch. I have to say I didn’t know LUMBER referred expressly to furniture items – but now I do.

  43. 30 minutes to solve, one more to proofread. BOHEA and pargeting both unknowns, but the other half of the corresponding clues was clear enough. And I agree with all the comments about AARGH, even though a different spelling never occurred to me and it is the spelling given in my online OED, with ARGH (but not ARRGH) as the only alternative. Still, this is a word one might expect in a comic strip and not one which really should have an “official” spelling.

  44. Pretty straightforward, with no major issues, all done and dusted within 30 mins. Agree with others’ comments on AARGH. It could be avoided altogether if 26ac was ARENA and 24dn ALEPH.
    COD – a toss up between CHITCHAT and TOUCH DOWN.

  45. Have been wondering whether to count this as a DNF, having had to look up what pargeter meant. Unusual to have a clue word I haven’t seen before.

  46. All filled in correctly but BOHEA was a guess and I couldn’t parse CHECKMATE beyond guessing MATE was somehow TEA. Also presumed CHAT was a shortened form of whinchat or stonechat. I’m not a fan of computing terms in these crosswords, they are almost always wrong. A BUS is a communications channel in a computing system, not the computing system itself. Thanks for the blog!

Comments are closed.