Times Quick Cryptic 2082 by Joker

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic


10:31, a slowdown after a string of faster times. It feels good to roll up the sleeves. Some nice tricky stuff in here — I enjoy being fooled by Joker. Commentary below.



1   Useful plant, one doing badly (6)
INDIGO = I + DOING anagrammed
Useful? I hadn’t known. Drugs.com says, “Chiefly a source of dye, indigo also has been used as a nematicide and treatment for a range of ills including scorpion bites and ovarian and stomach cancer.”.

4   Reported effect of traffic jam in Paris? Sad (6)
RUEFUL = homophone of RUE FULL
Tricky and cute.

8   Right result upset cattle thief (7)
RUSTLER = R + RESULT anagrammed
Had HUSTLER for awhile which held me up.

10   Great disappointment about English not on top (5)
BELOW = BLOW around E

11   Begin royal house when banishing first of usurpers (5)
START = STUART without U

12   Appealing victory by a few (7)

13   Feeling thrilled about November period (9)

17   Outline for dossier (7)

19   Put down and leave a jacket (5)
‘Put down and leave’ is an accurate, misleading definition!

20   Long for clubs with electronic dance music (5)
I was trying to get EDM in there somehow…

21   A fool chasing home counties bird (7)

22   Work persistently beside river with great intensity (6)
DEEPLY = PLY next to DEE

23   Second piece of pollen removed from another part of stamen (6)
ANTHER = remove O from ANOTHER
Biffed this one after much consternation, only to realize the answer was staring me in the face!


1   Result of implosion badly ruins hotel (6)
INRUSH = anagram of RUINS + H

2   Is ardent love during romantic meeting fair? (13)

3   Italian ice creams with new food ingredient (7)

5   Headgear but not the topper in town (5)
URBAN = TURBAN without first letter

6   Golfer’s action to succeed with first two of three below par? (6-7)
Quite tricky. Ultimately I biffed it.

7   Tom, perhaps needs pounds for second legal representative (6)
LAWYER = SAWYER with L for S

9   Eats surrounded by arguments and loud behaviour (9)

14   Clear up former flat (7)

15   Coming at intervals in spring crocuses exceed daffodils at first (6)
SPACED = SPA + C + E + D

16   Fashion to follow as an alternative (6)

18   I pine for perfection (5)

60 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic 2082 by Joker”

  1. I found this quite tricky and took nearly 15 minutes, although I don’t recall being held up for a long time on a couple of clues at the end, which sometimes happens. LOI was TAILOR. I just assumed INDIGO was “useful” for dying jeans, I had no idea it had medicinal uses.
  2. I’m not having a good day puzzle-wise. I needed 18 minutes for this one, taking me into my red zone (15+ minutes) for the first time since 12th January. Very few answers came immediately to mind on first-reading of the clues.

    Like others I was slightly puzzled by ‘useful’ at 1ac, and even given indigo’s medicinal properties ‘useful’ is too vague a description of these and proved to be more of a distraction than an aid to the solver. If the clue had been simply ‘Plant, one doing badly’ I’m sure I’d have solved it quicker. This is bearing in mind of course that this is a Quick Cryptic where setters really shouldn’t set out to be deliberately obstructive.

    At 13ac SENT for ‘thrilled’ is dated slang never particularly widely used in the first place.

    Edited at 2022-03-02 06:05 am (UTC)

  3. Very tough for me taking 40 minutes the longest I’ve taken in memory for a QC. The top half fell fairly quickly including the long downs, the bottom taking most of my time, particularly the SW corner with IDEAL my LOI. I couldn’t quite see the PINE/DEAL connection.
    ANTHER from wordplay
    COD: FOLLOW THROUGH even though I saw it quickly.
    1. As I understand it, deal is a term used to describe planks of sawn wood, often pine. Certainly when I was a child, deal furniture was regarded as pretty cheap and not great quality, but having looked it up just now, it seems to be rather more complicated than that! Isn’t it always 😅
  4. Clever and I enjoyed it but any tougher would have crossed a line for me in a QC.
  5. Tough

    Lots didn’t immediately spring to mind but kept moving around and the accumulation of checkers (and finally twigging INDIGO) helped

    Thanks Jeremy and Joker

  6. MiLES off the pace. Some dead ends: misspelled GELATTI, NHO ANTHER. still don’t see pine=deal, or sent=thrilled.

    Liked RUEFUL and LAWYER

    1. PINE and DEAL rang a bell with me but not sure why (possibly from past puzzles) so I googled it – Deal appears to be both the term for a pine plank (floorboard) and also a catch all term for some types of pine (or the other way round depending on which source you believe). Anyway, it appears that there’s definitely a crossword clue’s worth of connection between the two!
  7. Taking 49’20” This for me had more than a couple of clues that would have been worthy of a tough biggie.

    Was scrolling in my mind through town names before I saw URBAN, was stumped for a long time by RUEFUL (terrific clue) ANTHER and FOLLOW THROUGH.

    DEEPLY almost had me throwing in the towel – glad I persevered, it’s good to get beaten up every now and then and still come out the other side.

    Thanks Joker & Jeremy

  8. Interesting – I didn’t know Indigo was a plant so the ‘useful’ bit of the clue was what helped, not hindered, me as I was able to make a dyeing connection if not the medicinal one.
  9. Ruefully, this was not to my liking and just too cryptic so gave up after 45 minutes with a lot of gaps. Would normally have put this down and come back to it later but I know I will be too busy today. Biff fest.
    Thank you Jeremy for providing solutions to frustration and to Joker for setting the bar too high for me but giving me something to learn from. I don’t think I will be the only DNF today. No time to take my usual corner chair in the club, better luck tomorrow.
  10. puzzle, I thought it difficult, but it seems I wasn’t alone, and in the end I was only a couple of minutes over target.

    No problem with indigo being a “useful” plant as a dye.



  11. Agreed, definitely a toughie …
    … and I needed just over 17 minutes, much of it spent on the SW corner.

    Most of my stumbling blocks have already been mentioned — why “useful” in 1A Indigo, DK pine = deal in 18D Ideal or sent = thrilled in 13A Sentiment. Also thought rave for “electronic dance music” in 20A Crave was very questionable: I thought the rave was the party itself not the music played at it (but then what does my generation know of such things?). And finally, biffed but never parsed 6D Follow through.

    So, all a bit of a struggle. But eventually all green.

    Many thanks to Jeremy for the blog

    Edited at 2022-03-02 08:52 am (UTC)

  12. Only three on the first of acrosses and tough to the end. All green in 20. LOI was TAILOR when I was at the wrong end of the clue for the definition and had fashion as a noun for far too long. Loved RUEFUL and ANTHER when they finally arrived but it was a bit painful getting there and also throroughly misdirected by URBAN when I was looking for something like Beverley. My vocabulary was quite up to this so some ‘trusting the cryptic’ came into play. More fun in retrospect.
  13. hardest for a while, but a good work out.
    btw isn’t the parsing of 17a outline / pro (for) + file (dossier)
  14. Never heard of SENT = THRILLED, GULL = FOOL or PINE = DEAL.

    I’d only heard of Indigo as a colour too, not a plant. But that’s a general knowledge thing so fair enough.

    Shame because I loved RUEFUL and thought it was going to be an enjoyable one when I started, but it was not to be.

    Thanks for the explanations Jeremy.

  15. Another disaster for me — even worse than my pathetic effort at yesterday’s offering . My excuse then was that it was a very late start after a long day away (it took me firmly into the SCC) but no excuses today. No time today but I was SCC material again. Unfortunately, my ‘classic’ Times app is playing up again. I suppose I must finally embrace change and move to the newer format app.
    I’ll probably enjoy going over today’s many neat clues via Jeremy’s blog when I have settled down (there were some to enjoy, not least RUEFUL when it clicked together with SEAGULL; the misdirection in LAWYER and URBAN was subtle). However, this was too clever by half for a QC. I had no problem with ANTHER, DEAL, or INDIGO but I struggled generally and I didn’t enjoy it. I’m beginning to doubt the location of my marbles this week. John M.

    Edited at 2022-03-02 11:14 am (UTC)

  16. Bits to enjoy but I got fed up with this so didn’t stay with it. Not for the first time week the bloggers are saying that they haven’t heard of something. If it’s obscure for the experts it shouldn’t be in a quickie in my opinion.
    1. For me, it isn’t whether I’ve heard of it, but whether I can successfully work it out by parsing the clue.
      1. I think that’s fair to a point. I got fed up because too often this week I solved it by putting in a ridiculous answer and finding that it was correct!
  17. After cleaning out the multi-fuel stove and completing this tricky puzzle, I am worn out.
    FOI START, appropriately. LOI TAILOR.
    Some amusing clues from Joker inc RUEFUL, URBAN, PROFILE, WINSOME, PARKA. Some tricky though biffable like LAWYER and ANTHER and DISPASSIONATE. Also biffed FOLLOW THROUGH as soon as I got the F. Took ages to work out e.g. SPACED.
    Need more coffee now.
    Thanks vm, Jeremy.

    Edited at 2022-03-02 10:59 am (UTC)

  18. Not sure about this one. I finished it but GULL was a guess and ANTHER went in unparsed. My LOI in a relatively speedy 13:19 was PROFILE.
  19. DNF. SW corner just beyond me. Too hard for a QC. Hope for something more approachable tomorrow.
  20. I didn’t enjoy this one. As Jack said it seemed to set out to be obscure, and having got into that mindset, I crashed and burned by overthinking my LOI and Mombling a “period”, SENTINENT. (sentient(feeling) around november(N). Where thrilled went, I know not! Bah humbug. 13:42 WOE. Thanks Joker and Jeremy. More coffee needed before I tackle the 15×15!

    Edited at 2022-03-02 10:30 am (UTC)

  21. For I think the first time ever I was pushed close to 30 minutes on this puzzle, which I think was as hard as I’ve seen in the QC. My sympathies lie with the usual SCC brigade, and congratulations to all that finished it. I’ll read the blog and comments again, but I don’t think that I saw that anyone completed within their target from my quick scan through before commenting myself. Some very good clues that add together to make a stinker in my humble opinion. I’m glad I wasn’t duty blogger! Thanks both.
  22. Coo what a stinker. Hard yards today. One for those who are bilingual (ie also do the Biggie, which I do not).

    I had the most unfamiliar experience of not being able to parse several clues – SPACED, ANTHER and FOLLOW-THROUGH – and needing the blog to explain them (thanks Jezza).

    FOI INRUSH, LOI DEEPLY, COD RUEFUL, time 16:36 for an Awful Day.


  23. Could quite easily have been a Dnf, but I persisted and was surprised to get to the end.

    DNK 23ac “Anther”, nor “sent” = thrilled or “deal” = pine, but they were obtainable from the clues. At some point I will have to go back and parse 6dn “Follow Through”.

    Might be in the minority, but although I found this challenging, I also thought it fair.

    FOI — 3dn “Gelatin”
    LOI — 22ac “Deeply”
    COD — 4ac “Rueful”

    Thanks as usual!

    Edited at 2022-03-02 12:28 pm (UTC)

  24. ….was “You Send Me”. It’s been covered a good few times since then — I used to have it by Aretha Franklin.

    This was definitely tricky, and took me past my target for the second time this week, but it’s well worth spending the time to look at Joker’s well written clues. As a training exercise for those who wish to progress as solvers, it was first rate.

    TIME 5:44

    1. I don’t think it was “unfair”, Mr Chairman. It was just rather difficult.
  25. SCC for me today at about 20 minutes. I put pliant as my FOI (plant+I) until I realised it seemed too easy and was also wrong! Ironically, I suppose 23a was that process in reverse.
    Unfortunately, I didn’t erase that I at the beginning of 2d so absolutely could not see what was going on when I tackled that one. It had been slow progress anyway – sorting that little mess out added several minutes to the whole thing 😅 Just as well it’s a horrible day and I didn’t have any plans this morning.
    Despite that, I enjoyed this a lot. Joker’s clues are very witty – I liked WINSOME, URBAN and EXPLAIN a lot, but there were many other crackers. Only one got a smiley though!
    FOI Gelatin
    LOI Indigo
    COD Rueful
    Thanks Joker and Jeremy
  26. But DNF. I just ran out of steam after 45 minutes. Probably should have left it and come back….
    Not completed were 4a and 5d. And 15d and 22a.

    But I buckled in and enjoyed the challenge. I thought Follow Through was very tough and a bit disappointing as with Sentiment (thrilled = sent very obscure to me) and I hesitated for a long time over deal for pine…

    COD probably 23a Anther just for the confusion yet simplicity

    Thanks all

    Edited at 2022-03-02 01:07 pm (UTC)

  27. Strange goings-on at the Random’s, today. Having thrown in the towel twice, each time taking a half-hour break, I came storming back and finished all correct … in just 96 minutes (!). Naturally, Mrs R would make mincemeat of my time … but no, she conceded defeat after 88 minutes, still with 9 (yes, NINE) clues unsolved. I’m afraid that was Mrs Random’s worst ever performance (and I hope for her sake it’s never repeated) and, by some margin, my slowest ever solve.

    I can’t really debate any of the clues, as 22 of them remained unsolved after 20 minutes and two full passes through the grid. That triggered my first unscheduled pause. RUSTLER was my FOI and INRUSH was my only other pre-pause success. My second unscheduled pause came after 75 minutes, when I still had seven gaps and a couple of question marks in the grid. However, DISPASSIONATE appeared immediately after my return and I somehow managed to grind it out to the finish just over 20 minutes later.

    My LOI was TAILOR, and I still had question marks on SENTIMENT, IDEAL and SEAGULL when I finally put down my pencil for the third and final time. Let’s hope tomorrow brings some lighter relief.

    Many thanks to Joker and Jeremy.

    Edited at 2022-03-02 01:16 pm (UTC)

  28. Cor, that was tough. After commenting several times that we weren’t on Joker’s wavelength today we eventually struggled over the line in 24.09. Some lovely clues though….


    Thanks Jeremy and Joker.

  29. Bottom of the class today. I thought this was a cryptic rather than a QC in difficulty, but perhaps I just wasn’t on the wavelength. Not that I didn’t enjoy the puzzle, I quite like a good ruminate, but this one nearly did for me. FOI rustler, five on first pass, then upped it to the dreaded thirteen. Left it for a bit, then got a couple more. Then, blow it, stuck it in the grid and finished off by trial and error. Two sessions, half an hour each. Thanks, Jeremy, and Joker.
  30. Chewy indeed and it turned into a slog by the end. Had similar hold ups to those already mentioned plus an extra one from biffing gelatos, which made SENTIMENT even harder.
    Finished in 16.04 with LOI TAILOR.
    Thanks to Jeremy
  31. …that so many of you found this tricky too! I gave up after 45 mins with TAILOR and DEEPLY still unsolved and several queries: DNK ‘deal’ for ‘pine’ or ‘sent’ for ‘thrilled’ but guessed correctly. Loved RUEFUL. Thanks Jeremy and Joker (I think). Very tricky but glad not just me 😁
  32. Shouldn’t the definition for 5 Down be “in town” and not just “town”? That is, the “in” should be underlined too?
  33. Although seagull exists as a word, technically there isn’t a bird called a “seagull”, nor a grouping under this name. There are gulls, and many different kinds of them, but no seagulls. And more and more of them now live a long way from the sea anyway.
  34. Needed aids to get to the end of this one. A number of clues defeated us, eg deeply, spaced. Thanks for instructive blog.
  35. Looked at this after golf earlier today. It was hard. No time to report. Managed to work it all out in the end. DNK ANTHER or INDIGO as a useful plant.
  36. Gave this a full 30mins this morning but then had to go out with half a dozen still to do. Second sitting produced Sentiment (sent = thrilled???), Seagull and Tailor, but gave up with Ideal and Deeply unsolved having wrongly rejected the former because pine/deal made no sense. While Rueful was an excellent clue, overall Joker (RR?) seems to have lost the plot as far as QCs go. Invariant
  37. Well, that was a struggle and a half. Had GELLATO for Italian ice cream and then couldn’t get SENTIMENT. All topped off with a failure on DEEPLY.
  38. on the MOHS scale runs from Talc (least hard) to Diamond (hardest of all). Well I didn’t have a diamond of a time doing today’s clues, nor Topaz (third hardest) which sounds much too jolly. Corundum, second only to diamond hardness, was the one for me. Enigma wrapped in a riddle inside a Conundrum (sic) just about gets there. Still, I’m ready for tomorrow! Well done Blog.
  39. I was dreading coming on here and being told it was easy, so I’m reassured by your comments as I found this tough. Almost got there but had gelatos for 3dn and only found out my mistake when using a checker. A few months ago this would have been way beyond me, so it’s progress of a sort. Very few write ins so tough to get going, but a good — if long — mental workout.

    Gary A

    1. Clearly not just ‘progress of a sort’ but making great strides 😊 I hope you don’t really dread coming here. One of the things I like about the Quickie blog is how honest and supportive people are. Keep going!
  40. The first time I have not solved a single clue. So nothing to get me going. I gather many would agree. Roll on tomorrow! Rosemary
  41. Not quite bucking the trend as I did find this challenging, but I finished just about within target in 24:49. NHO sent meaning thrilled, but other than that none of Joker’s tricks were too devious I thought. Interested to learn of the medicinal properties of my FOI INDIGO, so thanks for that, and thanks also to Jeremy and Joker.
  42. Needed aids to get through this. Therefore a clear DNF, but I wasn’t going to be completely defeated as I wanted to know how the clues worked and start afresh tomorrow. It took me a couple of hours even with the aids. I can see it’s all there in the clues but I must have been well below par in my thinking today. Roll on tomorrow!
  43. I was wondering if this great Duke Ellington piece would be referred to in the comments. I think if Horryd were present it might well have been- so I’ll do it instead in his honour!

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