Times Quick Cryptic 1306 by Teazel

I struggled in the top half, so quite quickly dropped down to the bottom where progress was easier. Having built up the base, the two long down clues (3 and 8) then helped with checkers to piece the top half together – finishing on 2dn. That sounds like a struggle but I came in 2 seconds under 8 minutes – another fast finish for me.


1. DRAWBACK – disadvantage. Brilliant clue to kick us off – the word play is ‘of ward?’. The question mark tells us something odd is going on – ‘ward’ = (DRAW BACK)-wards.
5. HALF – a session of football (commonly referred to as a game of two halves). Henry (H) up against Alfred (ALF).
9. SHINY – gleaming. Modest (SHY) about home (IN – are they in/home?).
10. LOOK OUT – take care. Good King Wenceslas looked out…
11. COINCIDENTAL – chance. ‘Accidentally’ really didn’t work here, no matter how hard I tried. Anagram (work) of AT ICE COLD INN.
13. LUSTRE – renown. Anagram (remarkable) of RESULT.
15. AT BEST – under most favourable circumstances. Second grade (B) inside an exam (A TEST).
17. HARD CURRENCY – money that keeps value. Coins rather than notes – cryptic clue – notes are softer – even these new plastic ones.
20. BRAILLE – cryptic clue. In order to read Braille, one feels/touches it.
21. IGLOO – northern home. One (I), almost dark (GLOO)m.
22. TWEE – sentimentally sweet. Message that’s short (TWEE)t.
23. PLAY BALL – cooperate. To act (PLAY a role) and a dance (BALL).


1. DISH – double definition. To ruin/dish one’s chances, a meal.
2. AMIGO – friend. A (A), Russian fighter plane (MIG), old (O) a (A). I recently attended the very moving fly past for the USAAF B-17 Flying Fortress Mi Amigo which crashed, killing all on board, because they avoided some children playing in the park they were trying to make an emergency landing on.
3. BEYOND RECALL – double definition.
4. COLLIE – dog. Run (R) taken away from miner (COLLIE)r.
6. APOSTLE – Paul, for one. Job (POST) length (L) inside (A)&(E).
7. FUTILITY – uselessness. Quiz question – name a word containing 5 S’s? Water company, for one (UTILITY) after (F)reeze.
8. MORE’S THE PITY – alas. Anagram (off) of POETRY SET HIM.
12. ALPHABET – all the letters. Not quite two letters – (ALPHA), (BET)a.
14. SURFACE – bob up. Wave foam (SURF), fantastic (ACE). I thought that surfing on waves is the more usual definition but the first in Collins is the mass of white bubbles that is formed by waves as they fall upon the shore.
16. ORDEAL – severe test. Gold (OR), transaction (DEAL).
18. CELIA – girl. Spies (CIA) have trapped (E)motiona(L).
19. FOWL – duck or chicken perhaps. Following (F), wise bird (OWL).

49 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic 1306 by Teazel”

  1. I didn’t know what good King W did, so had to wait for a checker or two. And I assumed without checking that ‘at ice-cold inn’ had the anagrist for COINCIDENTAL; although I did wait until I had all the checkers, making it my LOI. 4:22.
  2. 9 minutes with COINCIDENTAL as LOI by a long way – I needed all the checkers then had to write out the remaining letters of the anagrist before the answer dawned on me.

    Chris, you have the heading DOWN at the top of the Across section.

    Edited at 2019-03-12 05:23 am (UTC)

  3. 16 minutes, held up by beyond recall and surface.

    I thought it was:
    Good king Wenceslas (wenslass) last looked down!
    Have seen the draw back clue a few times now.

    Possesses possesses etc

    Cod alphabet.

    Edited at 2019-03-12 07:08 am (UTC)

  4. Made heavy weather of this one. Last three were IGLOO, SURFACE and MORES THE PITY – the first two I was wrong footed by the clue and the other I just couldn’t see. So over 20m with a feeling that I must have missed out on a fast time.
  5. Certainly feels as though I’ve seen a good few of these before (Drawback, Twee, Braille being the 3 prime suspects).

    MORES THE PITY and COINCIDENTAL last 2 in, anagram radar not functioning well this morning clearly, as these took a bit of time to unpick, which pushed my time out to 4.02

  6. Wow – I managed to write them all in in order, except for 17ac, where I thought it might be “gold standard” and so did 12dn to check the first letter; ALPHABET (nice clue) then gave me HARD CURRENCY and the rest followed. I don’t think I’m ever going to do it faster than that in terms of raw time (about 5:30). Not my top score on the Kevinometer though; about 1.25 Kevins and so a Very Good Day.

    COD jointly to DRAWBACK and ALPHABET.

    Thanks Teazel and Chris.


  7. I idiotically didn’t read the clue fully at 8 down not seeing the (5,3,4) and therefore was looking for a 12 letter word meaning alas for 10 minutes before giving up with a DNF after 25 mins and coming here to see what happened.

    I almost wish I hadn’t now……

    I enjoyed the rest of the puzzle but am left with a feeling of frustration (not for the first time) at my own incompetence.

  8. 16m and outside of my target, or a bit less than 4 x Kevins. I think we saw COLLIEr yesterday, and DISH quite recently. Thanks to Teazel and Chris. Chris, I think you have an error with the final letter of AMIGO.

    Edited at 2019-03-12 09:35 am (UTC)

  9. Well, I am an early SCC poster. Teazel is back to his usual ways for those of us whose brain and memory do not allow us to manage single figure times every day. 29.37 for me after a long jog around the grid. I found the NW tougher than it should have been and there was plenty to chew over elsewhere, e.g. COINCIDENTAL and FUTILITY which didn’t drop out for me. My CODs were ALPHABET and SURFACE. A good workout – thanks to Teazel and to Chris for the blog which resolved little issues like HALF – a write-in but I wanted HAL & F (??). John M.
    1. Ditto, though I did creep under 20 with 19.02. SURFACE, MORES THE PITY, PLAY BALL and FOWL held me up. The latter was simpler than it looked – the sneaky “Duck or chicken” was hard to see as the definition. One of those clues where there seem to be far too many words!
    2. Thank you, SCC, for your posts. I appreciate them a lot. They’re a welcome balance to the F1S (formula 1 set – but I don’t think that one has caught on) and I think that there are many people out there (lurkers) who gain confidence from them – hopefully enough to post themselves.
  10. ….although FOWL play is not suspected. I took a while to crack the anagram on my LOI MORE’S THE PITY (quite apt really), and I failed to spot DRAWBACK, so my FOI was HALF. CELIA (or Cecilia) has left me with a Simon and Garfunkel earworm this morning.

    I think COINCIDENTAL is a fine example of the anagram, but COD for me is LOOK OUT (replace earworm with The Ying Tong Song !)

    TIME : 4:51

    Yesterday’s old favourite clue (This cylinder is jammed) gives the answer SWISS ROLL.

    1. That’s a great clue.
      Which reminds me of another good one…”Postman’s exhausted”.
  11. Nice easy solve, everything flowed nicely and just had a a slight hold up on 8. A little outside best at 16 hours 42 minutes and 8 seconds but a good start to the day.
    1. Smile…. i think I have seen earlier posts from you. It doesn’t do any harm to balance the posters who apologise for taking under 5 mins!
    2. I presume you’ve seen the SCC posts above. Thanks for posting. When I started, I timed myself using a calendar rather than a clock.
  12. A challenging puzzle today, in a good way. I finally crossed the line in 9:13. COD to Drawback and LOI to Beyond Recall, which I stared at for ages. Thanks to Teazel and Chris.


  13. I find another coincidence in your blog… Were you at the Sheffield flypast or the American Cemetery in Madingly? I was on a walk from Cambridge to St. Ives at the time and the F-15s flew across our route about 1/2 mile in front of us. Is it happens, I live very close to one of the airfields from which the Flying Fortesses flew. There is a new housing estate even closer to the airfield which has interesting road names (like Shackeroo, Kismet, Ol Casey Jones, Esky and Janey) – all named after B-17s that were based there.
    1. I was at the park in Sheffield. I guess it didn’t take the F-15s long to get from one to the other. Very moving missing man manoeuvre – the US rather than RAF version,
    2. I was at the park in Sheffield. I guess it didn’t take the F-15s long to get from one to the other. Very moving missing man manoeuvre – the US rather than RAF version,
  14. 21 mins today, near the quicker end of my scale (15 mins is lightening for me). Good sprinkling of genuine cryptics here, which was fun. Not sure I know of any circumstances in which ‘following’ is abbreviated to ‘F’, except for ‘following on’ (F/O) in cricket. Especially enjoyed DRAWBACK and ALPHABET.
    LOI COINCIDENTAL (didn’t bother to look at it until had all the checkers.
    1. Collins has
      f. is an abbreviation for ‘following’. It iswritten after a page or line number toindicate that you are referring to both the page or line mentioned and the one after it. You use ff. when you are referring to the page or line mentioned and two or more pages or lines after it.
  15. I was slow to get a foothold in this and once AMIGO and SHINY were in I had to dot around the grid looking for crumbs to get me going. Eventually the SE yielded and MORES THE PITY gave me some crossers to work with. The SW then came together and BEYOND RECALL allowed me to complete the NW. FUTILITY was my LOI at just over my target 10 minutes but I spent a bit of time proof reading before submitting. 11:04. Thanks Teazel and Chris.
  16. Oh. The crossword. I liked the 11a pairing of ice-cold inn and my COD, IGLOO. 06:02.
  17. A more approachable QC (for me) today. Probably under 60 mins but in a few sessions. I managed all without using aids, apart from 11ac, where I didn’t really believe it was an anagram.

    No problem with 8dn, once I got the I and T checkers.

    Still don’t understand 1ac, despite the blog. I see back goes with wards but how do we get tge draw bit?

  18. bluestocking
    I did today’s QC in 13 minutes, a record for me. My COD was 1a which I hadn’t come across before but we had the collie/collier clue the other day and apostle quite recently. I took a while to get 3d and 8d but my LOI was 20a as I was thinking of reading palms or possibly tea leaves. Thank you Teazel for a satisfying puzzle.
    1. Unspammed. For once I can see no reason why your message was treated as ‘suspicious’ by Live Journal.
  19. For 18d: isn’t CILLA a better fit? It accounts for ‘extremely’ and emotiona(l) gir(l).
    1. If you use the l from girl, you no longer have a definition in the clue. In this clue, extremely refers to each end(extreme) of EmotionaL, giving you the EL in CIA to make a girl.
  20. As I write the weather seems to have perked up at Cheltenham; we were rained off the golf course after 14 holes this morning. A brave attempt.
    Re the puzzle, FOI was APOSTLE and LOI was COINCIDENTAL(and COD). No time recorded.
    A good puzzle and coincidental that a dish was provided for the collie. It does help to try lots of puzzles.
  21. One of these puzzles when speed depends on getting the long answers quickly. Slow to solve 8 d but otherwise quick for us at 18m. Thanks to Teazle and blog.
  22. On the limit of my ability- about 2+ hours
    Biffed quite a few – including DRAWBACK
    Very clever but don’t think my brain will ever be able to see such cunning!
    Very enjoyable
  23. I found this at the easier end of the scale, finishing in 9.01 with 11a where I needed all the of the checkers to work out the anagram. I thought SURFACE and BRAILLE were very good.
    Thanks for the blog
  24. A most satisfying QC which I managed to complete in 15 minutes (good for a member of the SCC!). I was even able to enjoy all the wordplay as I completed it. Thank you, Teazel and thanks to Chris too for the blog.
    FOI: HALF (I think)
    LOI: DISH (because I had forgotten to go back to it!)
    CsOD: Am I allowed 2? ALPHABET and BRAILLE…. but there were so many great clues today.
  25. I’m another member of the SCC, and offer my encouragement to all the slower solvers out there. I finished in a wall-clock time of 1 hour this evening, though with a 25 minute break in the middle to help look after various family members. Pleased to have finished so promptly, and enjoyed many of the clues. Some came quickly (BRAILLE, LOOK OUT, APOSTLE), others didn’t. LOI was SURFACE, which would vie for my COD with DRAWBACK.
  26. Only in cryptic crosswords is dish used as a synonym for ruin. Definitely today’s PIC.

    Other clues were reasonable, though.

  27. Coincidental has an important meaning in logic, accidental is a good synonym. Current example is MMR vaccine given at 4 years old and diagnosis of autism also usually at 4. The gullible think that there must be a link if you have both, whereas the only link is that they happen at the same time (the true meaning of coincidental). Such things that are proveably not related but happen at the same time are called accidental. Another example of QC’s total lack of anything technical or scientific.
    1. Definition at 11ac is ‘chance’ with the answer coincidental. Having looked at the letters I had at the time I quickly thought of ‘accidentally’ as it could fit but then realised this was not the answer.
  28. Managed to get through most of this in less than an hour but got stuck on a few in the SW corner. So I left it for a day and then found the last ones quickly.
    Perhaps I have graduated from newbie to Slow Coach Club now! (Is it still worth posting a day later than everyone else?!)
    LOI 22A – TWEE
    4D was easy after seeing COLLIERS on Monday!
    Thanks Teazel, Chris and commenters!
    1. Yes, it’s always worth posting. An email alert goes to the blogger – and anyone you reply to (if they have a livejournal account). I’m always interested to hear of people’s progress and am happy to help with any struggles. Sounds like you’re getting there – a bit of practice goes a long way. An hour or so is definitely SCC – there are no time limits – simply the frame of mind that, whilst it may take some (hopefully enjoyable) time, you’ll get there in the end.

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