Times Cryptic Jumbo No 1322 – 7th May

Posted on Categories Jumbo Cryptic
A fairly gentle Jumbo for the Bank Holiday Monday after the rather trickier Saturday pachyderm. Nothing too difficult or obscure today – I even knew the ice skating twizzle at 1d, but one or two clues are nicely devious. It helps to know your Shakespeare plots to parse 32a and the phrase at 21d may be unknown to some, but the wordplay is helpful. A good half dozen clues have a tick of approval on my paper copy. I liked the transformation of CONSOLATION at 35d and the SCOOTER, but my COD goes to BOW LEGS for the cheeky defintion that reminds me that I haven’t been 10-pin bowling with the family for a while. A post-exam treat in a few weeks time, perhaps…. Yes it’s GCSE and ‘A’ levels in the Interred household this month and next! Thanks to our setter for an entertaining and satisfying puzzle. How did you all find it?

Definitions underlined in italics, (ABC)* indicating anagram of ABC, {} deletions and [] other indicators.

1 Matter of position on warship (9)
SUBSTANCE – You take your STANCE on a SUB to get something that occupies space.
6 A short month back, being sick — a sign of softness? (7)
CEDILLA – DEC{ember} is the month + ILL + A, to get the softening accent as used in, e.g. façade.
10 Problem about beryllium put back in natural lubricant (5)
SEBUM – SUM (problem) with BE back inside. It’s the secretion that lubricates your skin and hair.
13 Deny top claims represented a concern for investors (6,7)
LISTED COMPANY – (Deny top claims)* [represented]. Yes. I’ve invested in a few of these.
14 Reversed across, and regretted letting learner in (9)
OVERRULED – OVER (across) + RUED (regretted) with an L in it. It’s time my number 2 daughter learnt to drive.
15 Note about groups backing entertainer (7)
HOSTESS – The note is SOH (a needle pulling thread). You insert SETS and reverse. Entertainer is not the first synonym to come to mind, but I am reminded of the little dance the air hostesses do to accompany the safety announcement.
16 Ruin poem for the beginning of time in retirement (7)
TORPEDO – Another reversal. Here it’s ODE + PRO + T{ime}. Well I hope no-one ruins my time in retirement. As of this month I am working only 2 days a week. Yippee!
17 Curved pins, say, used in game (3,4)
BOW LEGS – A bit of a cheeky definition. The game is BOWLS. Insert E.G. (say). With a neat allusion to 10-pin bowling in the definition. This one made me chuckle.
18 Herb stew liar perhaps made out to be cheese dish (5,7)
WELSH RAREBIT – (Herb stew liar)*. The herb stew will be a Ghormeh sabzi, I guess. The Persian or the Welsh dish, which do you prefer? Personally I’m not that keen on mustard in my cheese on toast.
20 Unpredictable philosopher grasps moral, mostly (10)
STOCHASTIC – The STOIC philosopher has CHAST{e} inside. A term familiar from physics – like the decay of radioactive nuclei, for example. Or am I getting too scientistic for you here? (pace my fellow blogger Ulaca).
23 Gathering to occupy both sides of river (5)
FRILL – FILL (occupy) on both sides of R. Before you ask, no I do not wear frilly underwear.
24 Reportedly devastated to tell fibs about new girth (9)
WAISTLINE – WAIST, sounds like waste, + LIE about N. Hmm. but wouldn’t devasted be wasted? This looks slightly dodgy to me. but have I missed something?
25 Result analysed that’s bearing fruit (7)
SULTANA – Hidden in {Re}SULT ANA{lysed}. The royalty among raisins.
26 Conservative crane erector limits height gain (5-6)
RIGHT-WINGER – This is a bit trickier… The crane erector is a RIGGER. Insert HT (height) + WIN (gain). I suppose if you are lifting a heavy weight you might want to avoid lifting it too high in case the crane topples over.
28 For each fine romance is shaky the first night, perhaps (11)
PERFORMANCE – PER (For each) + F (fine) + (romance)* [shaky]. Premiere stuff.
30 Overlooking previous sin if reforming (11)
SUPERVISION – (previous sin)*. Or the powers of observation of Clark Kent, perhaps?
32 What King Lear suffered in Florence, perhaps (11)
NIGHTINGALE – In Act III, King Lear is out in a storm at night… a NIGHT IN (a) GALE. And a reference to the lady with the lamp.
34 Impressive magazine endlessly redistributed (7)
AMAZING – (magazin)*{e}. Which magazine do you share around? My son likes to read my copy of Private Eye when I get it….
36 Witness short ghost appearing around bastion regularly (9)
SPECTATOR – …or is this our setter’s favourite magazine? SPECTR{e} around bAsTiOn.
38 Meat company caught by prohibition (5)
BACON – CO in BAN. No meat ban in our house. They all like bacon.
39 Row followed by high anger in danger zone (4,2,4)
LINE OF FIRE – LINE + OFF (high as in smelling rotten) + IRE. I’d keep out of it if I were you.
41 Banishing war criminal for process of re-education (12)
BRAINWASHING – (Banishing war)*. Nice surface. Yes I think I’d banish a brainwasher.
45 Old couple pierced by English November out of doors (4-3)
OPEN-AIR – O + PAIR include E{nglish} and N (November in NATO phonetic alphabet). It’s the season to start getting out of doors more. Well I am, anyway.
46 Real information I encountered in French cardinal (7)
GENUINE – GEN (information) + I in UNE (the first cardinal number en francais). Unlike fake news. Make some of your own here!
47 Song needing to have repose (3,4)
LIE DOWN – LIED (song) + OWN (have). I’ll need to do this once I’ve finished this blog. These Jumbos go on forever!
49 Cross about bird leading posh daughter’s crowd (9)
MULTITUDE – MULE (cross) outside TIT + U + D. Two’s company, but three’s a multitude.
50 Unlimited nature? Spring has not so much point (13)
BOUNDLESSNESS – BOUND (Spring) + LESS (not so much) + NESS (point). Like the universe? Did it have a beginning or not? Alas Stephen Hawking is no longer around to explain.
52 Champion name for bird (5)
HERON – HERO + N. Watch out for these if you have fish in your garden pond.
53 Bleak wind from the south and east (7)
AUSTERE – AUSTER (wind from the soiuth) + E. I didn’t actually know it the wind, but it seemed a reasonable guess. If you live in some parts of Australia a wind from the south-east could well be bleak.
54 What’s obsessive fad for pre-stereo sound? (9)
MONOMANIA – MONO + MANIA. I’m not sure I have any Mono recordings at all these days.

1 A lot of preservative put on food, turn on ice (7)
SALCHOW – SAL{t} + CHOW. Learn how to do one here. Who else remembers Torvill and Dean?
2 Very popular footballer going on the market (4-7)
BEST-SELLING – (George) BEST + SELLING. I wonder what a transfer fee for him would be today?
3 Soothing word from girl giving out sex appeal (5)
THERE – THERE{sa} (sex appeal). As in “There, there“. Pass the butter, please.
4 Capital I invested in dodgy casino (7)
NICOSIA – (casino + I)*. Is there a dodgy casion in Cyprus, I wonder?
5 Steering wheel wanting hard wood (3)
ELM – {h}ELM. The tree sadly decimated in numbers by a nasty fungus.
6 Elevator I installed in awfully rich flat (9)
CHAIRLIFT – (I + rich flat)*. The awfully rich might install a voice-recognition controlled one… unless they were Scottish.
7 Study under boring playwright (6)
DRYDEN – DRY (boring) + DEN (study). Are his plays boring? I’ve never been to one.
8 Be hopeful, heading for buoy in focus to starboard (4,2,3,6,4)
LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE – B{uoy} in LOOK (focus) + ON THE RIGHT SIDE (to starboard). All together now.. Always look on the bright side of life.
9 Bitter maple initially brought into Canada (7)
ACERBIC – A maple is an ACER. Add Brought Into Canada.The maple leaf, of course, being the national symbol of Canada.
10 Eccentric American group involved in southern dance (9)
SCREWBALL – CREW in S BALL. Who is the most famous eccentric American. How about Howard Hughes?
11 Shockingly little urban transport in Japan (6,5)
BULLET TRAIN – (little urban)*. They are high-speed, not little.
12 Not entirely chaste ways (5)
16 Book journey on the Mayflower? (3,8,8)
THE PILGRIMS PROGRESS – Double definition. The famous book is by John Bunyan (but I’ve not read it).
19 What helps one pack with vacations going over half of winter (7)
HOLSTER – As in pack a gun. HOLS + {win}TER. Hmm. <grump>The “going over” is a taking a bit of a liberty, I think, as you might infer a containment wordplay </grump>.
21 Lizard in Ceylon, perhaps, existing on energy in fruit (9)
CHAMELEON – Ceylon tea (CHA) on E (energy) in MELON. Do chameleons eat melons? No, I think our setter is wrong. “Chameleons generally eat insects, but larger species, such as the common chameleon, may also take other lizards and young birds“.
22 Just beat one third of pineapple and apple (6)
PIPPIN – PIP (just beat) + PIN{eapple} to get an apple variety. I think this cocktail recipe is incomplete. What about adding some rum?
23 Prevent fluorine minerals being piled up high (9)
FORESTALL – F (flourine) + ORES + TALL. Of course if it was a mineral it would be a fluoride. Oops.. I’m being scientistic again.
24 Lamenting what some hunters are doing at sea, reportedly (7)
WAILING – Homophone of WHALING. And wailing like Greenpeace.
25 Child’s toy duck containing what looks like an egg (7)
SCOOTER – SCOTER (duck) including O (letter that looks like an egg). If you don’t know of the bird, look here.
27 Suspect racehorse and call on Queen (6)
RINGER – RING + ER. Would she enter a dodgy racehorse? Surely not.
29 Disadvantage about one British vehicle (7)
MINIBUS – I B{ritish} in MINUS.
31 One who’s open but unlikely to sell milk or white chocolate? (5,6)
PLAIN DEALER – Plain being the other sort of chocolate. My favourite, so I would shop there.
33 Taco and rice can get cooked in cold water (6,5)
ARCTIC OCEAN – (Taco + rice can)*. I don’t know about you, but I don’t cook my tacos in water.
35 Solace, one replacing prisoner’s loneliness (9)
ISOLATION – Solace is CONSOLATION. Replace the CON with an I and put in solitary confinement.
37 Time leading uranium mine in dirty corruption (9)
TURPITUDE – T + U + PIT in RUDE. Nice word. I’ve only ever seen it used in combination with “moral”.
40 Baby milk aimed at mum going a bit short, see! (7)
FORMULA – FOR (aimed at) MU{m} + LA… “chiefly dialectal used for emphasis or expressing surprise“. Or is there a diocese of Los Angeles? Yes, there is!
42 Will contracted actor James like an Oscar? (7)
WILDEAN – WIL{l} + (James) DEAN, like the witticism “There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.
43 Flowering shrub information is provided by volunteers (7)
GENISTA – GEN + IS + TA. A genus of yellow-flowered plants including broom.
44 Powerless and impossible to operate without us (6)
45 Vitality of the sound of low brass out of key (5)
48 Racecourse succeeded amid rising misery (5)
EPSOM – S (succeeded) inside MOPE going upwards. Do they ever find a 27a here?
51 Hold back a lot of moisture (3)
DAM – DAM{p}. A neat one to finish. There’s generally a lot of moisture in a reservoir!

5 comments on “Times Cryptic Jumbo No 1322 – 7th May”

  1. I didn’t notice this at the time, but I suppose ‘lay waste to’ would fill the bill?
  2. For some reason–failure to think the clue through suggests itself–I put in ‘shooter’ at 25d. DNK GENISTA, had no idea how 26ac worked, and couldn’t figure out what to do with LA at 40d. The Japanese, by the way, don’t refer to the trains as ‘bullet trains’, either in translation or transliteration. ‘Existing on’ at 21d is, I think, simply saying that CHA is on MEL(E)ON.

    Edited at 2018-05-19 07:14 am (UTC)

    1. When I said I thought the setter was wrong, I didn’t mean there was a problem with the wordplay at 21d. I was just jesting about the lizard’s diet.
  3. COD BOW LEGS. LOI WILDEAN. Liked the jocularity in this setter’s clues.

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