Times Quick Cryptic – 91 by Teazel

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic
If you are having problems accessing today’s puzzle, it’s here now:
Please also see my reply to Anon below

This one took me 11 minutes but I thought it was going to be a lot longer than that because I had to read at least seven or eight clues before I was able to make a start. Fortunately with some checkers in place the answers then flowed in quite nicely. Definitions are underlined


1 Pass food through it, or drink down it? (5)
HATCH – Double definition as in a food serving hatch and the toast “down the hatch”
4 Fuss with Dad wanting special sort of bread (7)
PALAVER – PA (Dad), LAVER (special sort of bread, popular in Wales and made with seaweed)
8 Poison scare spread round Northern Ireland (7)
ARSENIC – Anagram [spread] of SCARE goes round NI (Northern Ireland)
9 What it does if it never rains? (5)
POURS – Completes the saying “it never rains but it _____”
10 In workshop after meal I did well (10)
FLOURISHED – FLOUR (meal), I, SHED (workshop)
14 Bad-tempered taxi-driver crosses river (6)
CRABBY – R (river) inside CABBY (taxi-driver)
15 We hear aristocrat is unable to produce an heir (6)
BARREN – Sounds like [we hear] “Baron” (aristocrat)
17 Lotion men use – save father, strangely (10)
AFTERSHAVE – Anagram [strangely] of SAVE FATHER
20 Be grateful for B minus (5)
BLESS – B, LESS (minus). At the moment I can’t think of a context in which this means ‘be grateful for’ but it’s listed in Chambers. Perhaps someone out there can give me an example?
22 Food at football matches getting great media attention (7)
FANFARE – Food laid on at football matches might be said to be FAN, FARE. I don’t much care for this clue as I feel it needs a question mark (or “perhaps”) to indicate the somewhat fanciful secondary definition. I was also a bit dubious about media involvement in the primary definition but COED mentions it as a factor.
23 Mouth   a sort of English (7)
ESTUARY – Two definitions. Firstly the mouth of a river and secondly the dialect that’s spoken in some quarters along the shores of the Thames estuary.
24 Order used in the dictionary (5)
EDICT – Hidden in thE DICTionary

1 Passion to have swindler executed (4)
HEATcHEAT (swindler executed)
2 To call for silence is nonsense (4)
TOSH – TO, SH (call for silence)
3 Deal with restriction: it’s on your bike! (9)
HANDLEBAR – HANDLE (deal with), BAR (restriction)
4 Collect small van (6)
PICKUP – Two definitions though the first would be two words. The second is hyphenated according to Chambers and Collins, but the newer Oxfords have it as one word.
5 Look – power cut (3)
LOP – LO (look), P (power)
6 Swapped over such coupons (8)
VOUCHERS – Anagram [swapped] of OVER SUCH
7 Householder‘s payment divided by team (8)
RESIDENT – SIDE (team) inside RENT (payment)
11 Can invade, moving ahead of time (2,7)
IN ADVANCE – Anagram [moving] of CAN INVADE
12 Be in undignified hurry   to cook eggs? (8)
SCRAMBLE – Two definitions
13 Abuse whisky and tear off (8)
MALTREAT – MALT (whisky), anagram [off] of TEAR
16 Deceitful and nervous – put one foot in it (6)
SHIFTY – I (one) + FT (foot) inside SHY (nervous)
18 I party over holiday island (4)
BALI – I + LAB (party, i.e. the Labour Party) all reversed [over]
19 Cried quietly in the rain? (4)
WEPT – P (quietly, music) inside WET (rain, perhaps as in the expression “going out in the wet”)
21 Notice sound is an arm of the ocean (3)
SEA – Sounds like “SEE” (notice)

30 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic – 91 by Teazel”

  1. god morning; will you please give the URL for this puzzle as once again the same old difficulty on a monday morning!
    1. Unfortunately I can’t help you at the moment. The button at the Times is pointing to the correct url for today’s puzzle but the page it opens is mysteriously blank. I know it’s the correct url because I was able to access it via the back door last Friday when I printed off my copy for solving and blogging.

      The facsimile edition of the Times has not yet rolled over from Saturday’s paper, but when it does I shall put up the puzzle on my LJ page so you can see it there unless on-line access has been restored by then. I can’t scan my printed copy I’m afraid as it’s been filled in and the clues are covered in scribble where I marked them up for blogging.

      Edited at 2014-07-14 05:15 am (UTC)

          1. Ah, that explains it. At 1125BST that is still the case. the final / is missing still. Once again, Jack, you deserve medal for fortitude in the face of flipping’ inadequacy.
            1. Thanks for your support, Martin. Nothing had changed on the Times site by 16:00 so I posted this in a new thread in the General forum there in an attempt to attract some attention. I have a feeling I’m wasting my proverbial breath though:


              I find it utterly disgraceful that you have still not corrected the link on the button to today’s Quick Cryptic (#91 by Teazel). I pointed out the problem in a message timed at 6:01 this morning and at 08:50 I updated the message with details of the amendement required to put things right (i.e. add / to the end of the url), but still you have done nothing about it.

              You seem to be determined to kill off interest in your new Quick puzzle by making it difficult to access e.g. every Monday or Tuesday for the past 18 weeks there has been a problem accessing it on line, and many glitches on other days too.

              Somebody recently coined the name SNAFU Central to describe your on-line crossword operation and I think that errs somewhat on the polite side of what you actually deserve. In case you have forgotten we are subscribers paying a minimum of £100 pa for this appalling ‘service’.

              1. I know, because he often posts, that there is at least one person at News UK who monitors the Forum. One can only hope that there is some response before banging your head against a brick wall gives you a real headache.The second paragraph of your General comment, Jack, is particularly apposite.
  2. Under 20 minutes to complete all bar 13d which I could not get, principally because I was convinced the answer would begin with w. In the end cheated to get it . Liked HEAT.

    As for 20a a phrase I have heard is count one’s blessings.

    1. Well done, but it’s so much nicer if you have an identity and are not Anonymous!
  3. Interesting that you can acquire the crossword a day early, Jack.. I’ve done tomorrows already 🙂
    How I would love to be able to do that with the cryptics!
      1. done the next four days, now.. 🙂
        Ideally they would publish the crossword online one day before it appears in the paper. That would scupper most of the neutrinos.
  4. Signal failure at Reading so masses of time today and managed all but four. Didn’t get fanfare and never would have done. Thanks for another great blog.
    1. Bit early for “leaves on the line at Swindon” I suppose 🙂 In case you are not the same anonymous as the earlier one, it makes it so much nicer to be able to refer to an ‘identity’ rather than to ‘Anon’.

      Edited at 2014-07-14 10:30 am (UTC)

  5. 4 mins, although like Jack I started slowly and didn’t get an answer until CRABBY, and the C checker led me to SCRAMBLED. The rest of the answers flowed out from there and I went anticlockwise around the grid and ended up back in the NW with TOSH and HEAT my last two in. I didn’t bother to parse FLOURISHED until after I’d finished, and I thought it was a good clue in an enjoyable puzzle.
  6. Similar experience to all the above. Seemed hard on first skim through – very few write ins – then it all seemed to flow OK.

    Struggled a bit to justify Estuary (albeit was not in much doubt it was the correct solution), as I thought the sort of English referred to was Estuarine – but I’m probably mixing up my nouns and adjectives…

    Anyway, nice puzzle and thanks for the blog Jack. Re. BLESS, I seem to recall my Grandmother saying things such as “I’ll bless the day when that rag time crew next door move out…” – as in “be most grateful”. That said, the lovely old girl was a hardcore old school Devonian and not exactly Fowler on legs. But maybe a pointer.

    1. Thanks for the example, Nick, which absolutely fits the bill. Can’t think why I didn’t think of it for myself.
  7. 15 mins but took ages to ‘see’ the use of party = lab, which is, after all, a standard Times ploy. Re bless, my mother used to say things like, ‘bless their little cotton socks’. Quite why and in what circumstance, I can’t remember.

    Edited at 2014-07-14 10:31 am (UTC)

  8. Thanks very much for the link and blog Jack. I thought the clue for FANFARE was just great.
  9. Managed to complete eventually but with rather heavy use of phone app. I would recommend this app for struggling newbies. You tap in the letters and spaces and it gives you all the words that fit. Husband says this is cheating but it is a good learning tool as it can break an impasse and enable you to figure out the rest of the word plays etc.
    JC (not anon)
    1. I’ve been using ‘cheats’ methods too. It does make a huge difference for struggling beginners. The blogs are great too and I’m sure we will one day master the crosswords without help
  10. We have been having a go at these new puzzles from the start. We are getting better and better, thanks for your terrific help.
  11. Finally completed this during the signal failure coming the other way. Must be some sort of management school course on being as useless as possible that both FGW and The Times people went on.

    Over 30 mins in the end, but I can only move the fingers on one hand at the moment, due to my being prepared to spend only a quarter of my income on a train ticket, rather than three.

    Thanks jakkt for ESTUARY and BALI, both of which went in without full understanding. I rather liked FANFARE, though I suppose an exclamation mark wouldn’t hurt.

    Thanks again.

  12. Now I’m back from gallivanting I was delighted to finish most of today’s puzzle in under an hour. The last three took me another 20 minutes or so: MALTREAT, WEPT, but I put in MAUI instead of BALI. I can’t quite remember my reasoning for MAUI but I can see now it doesn’t parse. Nevertheless, a nice, accessible crossword for us Newbies.
  13. I’m another who’s started these puzzles from the beginning. This is the first one I’ve finished for weeks, – must be an easy one. LOI Bali – didn’t see the reverse. Best method for me is to have 3 different goes during the day (on the print version) and only allow myself to read this blog after 10pm. Has fitted in quite well with the football! Huge thanks to all the bloggers here – biggest single reason for improving and not giving up.

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