Times Cryptic Jumbo 1670 – 27 April 2024. Teddy Bears’ Picnic

Hi everyone.  Despite the title of this blog (inspired by 58a) this was not a picnic for me.  I recorded a total time of 75 minutes, although a large chunk of that was on the train, not the best puzzling environment.  A non-finish anyway, as I had a couple of vowels transposed in 44a.

It was quite a tricky one to blog too, especially as I try as much as possible to retain the structure of the clue in my explanations.  I also got a bit tired of typing “definition plus literal interpretation” – and now I have just gone and typed it again, voluntarily!

I didn’t make any notes about enjoyment when I solved, so in the absence of evidence to the contrary I will assume I enjoyed it.  Thanks setter!

Definitions are underlined in the clues below.  In the explanations, quoted indicators are in italics, specified [deletions] are in square brackets, and I’ve capitalised and emboldened letters which appear in the ANSWER.  For clarity, I omit most link words and some juxtaposition indicators.

 

Across

1a    Make quite clear what to do at end of holiday? (5,4)
DRIVE HOME
Two indications: a definition plus a literal interpretation of the answer

6a    Vegetables, with lots of people in line for them, we hear; mind them? (2,3,2)
PS AND QS
PEAS (vegetables) AND (with) QUEUES (lots of people in line); soundalike (we hear)

10a   Radiant with Russian girl returning (5)
AGLOW
W (with) and OLGA (Russian girl) going backwards (returning)

13a   Cold, simple chemical substance losing one electron at first becomes mild (7)
CLEMENT
C (cold) + [e]LEMENT (simple chemical substance) losing an E, specifically the first one (one Electron at first)

14a   Cries aloud for the country (5)
WALES
WAILS (cries) as heard (aloud)

15a   Put name into small newspaper article, curving along the edges (9)
SCALLOPED
Insert (put) CALL (name) into S (small) and OPED (newspaper article)

16a   Lifelong description of how “rock-a-bye-baby” fell to its death? (4,3,6,2,3,5)
FROM THE CRADLE TO THE GRAVE
Definition plus literal interpretation, referencing the song Rock-a-bye Baby

17a   Singular taxi-driver making a crust (6)
SCABBY
S (singular) + CABBY (taxi-driver)

18a   This is me at college, before being covered in flour etc (8)
MEUNIÈRE
The answer is ME + UNI (college) + ERE (before)

19a   Reminder to collect protective gear held up (7)
PROPPED
PROD (reminder) containing (to collect) PPE (protective gear)

22a   Figure Noah went swimming? Seems reasonable (4,6)
FAIR ENOUGH
FIGURE NOAH anagrammed (went swimming)

23a   Almost attractive at first not before time (6,6)
PRETTY NEARLY
PRETTY (attractive) + at first Not + EARLY (before time)

27a   Like to hear detective who lived in Mexico (5)
AZTEC
AZ sounds like (… to hear) AS (like) + TEC (detective)

29a   Recipe for astringent to be put on back (7)
FORMULA
FOR with ALUM (astringent) added (to be put on) in reverse (back)

30a   Great desire of Yankee as a salaryman? (8)
YEARNING
Y (Yankee) + EARNING (as a salaryman?)

32a   O my! — missing from holy book is the nucleus (8)
DEUTERON
O MY is missing from DEUTERON[omy] (holy book).  An isotope of hydrogen; the nucleus of deuterium (heavy hydrogen)

34a   Overdo it regularly with friend of a parricide (7)
OEDIPAL
OvErDo It regularly with PAL (friend)

36a   Loves meeting in the street? Go ahead (5)
TRYST
ST (street) with TRY (go) first (ahead)

39a   Create storm to find necessary cash (5,3,4)
RAISE THE WIND
Two indications.  The first is another literal interpretation of the answer, the second an idiom I’m not familiar with

41a   Tiny policeman is ineffective (3,4,3)
NOT MUCH COP
NOT MUCH (tiny) COP (policeman).  I’ve just discovered It’s a Fair Cop on BBC R4, and the episodes I’ve listened to so far have been excellent

44a   Loiters uncertainly in luxury resort (7)
ESTORIL
LOITERS anagrammed (uncertainly)

46a   Quietly leaves with order to remove underwear? (5,3)
SLIPS OFF
Another definition plus literal interpretation

48a   Hostility as I am surrounded by a group of students (6)
ANIMUS
IM (I am) surrounded by A and NUS (group of students)

50a   Hate run-of-the-mill BBC type messing up patriotic song (6,4,2,3,8)
BATTLE HYMN OF THE REPUBLIC
HATE RUN-OF-THE-MILL BBC TYPE anagrammed (messing up)

53a   Universal train and air travel in the country one imagined (9)
RURITANIA
An anagram of (… travel) U (universal) TRAIN and AIR

54a   A minor honour (5)
AWARD
A + WARD (minor)

55a   Cooking us one nice stew (7)
CUISINE
An anagram (stew) of US I (one) NICE

56a   Parking vehicle first, go for long walk (5)
TRAMP
P (parking),with TRAM (vehicle) first

57a   In nervous state, throw coconut perhaps at head (7)
SHYNESS
SHY (throw coconut perhaps) + NESS (head)

58a   Considered odd, having been eaten by a bear? (9)
RUMINATED
RUM (odd) + IN A TED (having been eaten by a bear?)

 

Down

1d    Unaware about cold drink (5)
DECAF
DEAF (unaware) around (about) C (cold)

2d    I can’t stand up straight to deliver patter song (3,3,1,6,4)
IVE GOT A LITTLE LIST
Another straight reading of the answer plus a definition: the “little list” song from The Mikado

3d    Delightful daughter missing: with prospect of being returned? (9)
ELECTABLE
[d]ELECTABLE (delightful) with D (daughter) missing

4d    Beginning two terms of tennis (6)
OUTSET
Two tennis terms, or terms of tennis, are OUT and SET

5d    Degas perhaps broken by conflict with key enigmatic man (6,5)
EDWARD ELGAR
EDGAR (Degas perhaps) interrupted by (broken by) WAR (conflict) and DEL (key)

6d    Knights taking great care to protect youngster (8)
PALADINS
[taking] PAINS (great care) surrounding (to protect) LAD (youngster)

7d    A part of Ireland, removing large English grave (7)
AUSTERE
A + U[l]STER (part of Ireland) removing L (large) + E (English)

8d    Not truly attractive, one way the dawning of love must break in (11)
DISHONESTLY
DISHY (attractive) into which ONE, ST (way) and the first letter of (dawning of) Love is inserted (must break in)

9d    Reckless with the cosmetics? (4-5)
SLAP-HAPPY
An alternative literal interpretation of the answer with a precise definition embedded

10d   Without leader, orchestra try to keep right tempo (7)
ALLEGRO
Missing the first letter (without leader), [h]ALLÉ (orchestra) + GO (try) containing (to keep) R (right)

11d   Slept again, concealing some small old coins (5)
LEPTA
sLEPT Again concealing the answer

12d   Regular occasions when being married, say, ends in confusion (10)
WEDNESDAYS
WED (married) + an anagram of (… in confusion) SAY, ENDS

17d   Capital assembled in very short order (5)
SOFIA
SO (very) + short FIAt (order)

20d   Importantly, no cops interfered with this publication (8,9)
PORTNOY’S COMPLAINT
IMPORTANTLY, NO COPS anagrammed (interfered with).  A 1969 novel by Philip Roth.  This rang a faint bell but took a lot of letter shuffling to uncover!

21d   Chest: one heard having trouble with it? (6)
COFFER
Sounds like (heard) COUGHER (one having trouble with [chest])

24d   Country golf club welcoming wife (6)
RWANDA
R AND A (R&A: golf club) taking in (welcoming) W (wife)

25d   Formerly holding name Max? (5)
ERNST
ERST (formerly) holding N (name)

26d   Illegally induce son, delivered by hairpin? (6)
SUBORN
S (son) + BORN (delivered) by U (hairpin? – bend)

28d   Smart person wiping chlorine from part of fingernail (5)
CUTIE
We are removing (wiping) CL (chlorine) from CUTI[cl]E (part of fingernail)

31d   A fine fabric, very red (6)
AFLAME
A + F (fine) + LAMÉ (fabric)

33d   Briefing about problem, my answer’s complicated (4,7)
NEWS SUMMARY
Around (about) SUM (problem), MY ANSWER is anagrammed (complicated)

35d   Galley slave toiling through passages in literal pursuit? (11)
PROOFREADER
Cryptic definition

37d   Signal for bed, when eating a series of snacks (5)
TAPAS
TAPS (signal for bed) around (eating) A

38d   Commando in protected area out of line calling in engineers (5,5)
GREEN BERET
GREEN BE[l]T (protected area) missing (out of) L (line) taking in (calling in) RE (engineers)

40d   Hospital people who are experienced get together affectionately (4,5)
HOLD HANDS
H (hospital) + OLD HANDS (people who are experienced)

42d   Very old Roman soldier? (9)
CENTURION
Cryptic / double definition

43d   A missing pet’s hard to catch, having fouled dishes (8)
ASHTRAYS
A + STRAYS (missing pet’s) taking in (… to catch) H (hard)

45d   Sort of desk surface: light lunch on it? (4-3)
ROLL-TOP
TOP (surface) with ROLL (light lunch…?) on it

47d   Take apart one section of roof: nothing in it (7)
ISOLATE
I (one) + SLATE (section of roof) with O (nothing) in it

49d   Trap eccentric viewer (6)
WEBCAM
WEB (trap) + CAM (eccentric)

51d   Time on boat for rescuing a creature in river (5)
TARKA
T (time) + ARK (boat for rescuing) + A

52d   One might believe this Indian died (5)
CREED
CREE (Indian) + D (died)

 

9 comments on “Times Cryptic Jumbo 1670 – 27 April 2024. Teddy Bears’ Picnic”

  1. DNK DEUTERON. DNK RAISE THE WIND, which isn’t in ODE (but is in my English-Japanese dictionary, which marks it as ‘dated’). 50ac is an impressive anagram; but I was able to biff it from the B and L.

  2. I had this noted as ‘quite easy’ but for all that I had an error, at least according to the published answer – how about PENCAM as an alternative answer at 49dn based on pen / enclose / trap?

    I needed aids for 32ac although I might have got it from ‘Deuteronomy’ if I’d tried a bit harder.

    Thanks for the blog, Kitty. I was reminded last Saturday that writing a Jumbo blog can sometimes be harder than the puzzle itself.

    1. Thanks Jackkt. Yes, the Jumbo is my least favourite blogging gig, especially with my habit of leaving blogs until the last minute. This is semi-deliberate, as if I allow longer it tends to take longer – and with a Jumbo it seems to take forever in the first place!

      I would certainly give PENCAM the green light. I doubt many people would think of it before WEBCAM but at least one person (you) did.

  3. Why ‘order’ in 46a? It adds nothing to the clue that I can see.

    I had COFFIN instead of COFFER in 21d. It nearly works …

    Didn’t like TED=’bear’ in 58a. Teddy yes, Ted no.

    1. ‘Order’ implies the answer is an instruction, ‘Slips off!’, not likely ever to be given, but ‘Hats off!’ is a more plausible example that demonstrates the construction.

    1. Thanks Branch. Not sure where the EL went, but appreciate you taking the trouble to point it out so I can correct the error, which I’ll do now.

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