Times Quick Cryptic No 2009 by Rodney

This was fun. A rare appearance, only his third as far as I can see, for today’s setter Rodney. Lots of smooth surfaces and witty clues. I was held up only by the SW corner where I had to remember the fabric. LOI 18D. I liked 20D best. All finished in 5:46 so not as easy for me as yesterday’s or the day before’s. As I started on the blog I began to wonder if there is a theme of sorts. Is there? Click the “What I found” link below to see what I think it’s about. Thank-you Rodney! How did you all get on?

[What I found]

The (potential) football references, PLAY, TOE, ON THE BALL, TEAM (in wordplay) and the clubs FULHAM and CARLISLE (spread across two answers) prompted me to look up “Rodney Fulham Carlise”, which led me to the footballer Rodney McAree who scored a famous goal for Fulham against Carlisle in 1997 which won Fulham promotion from the old third division. He also played for and then managed the Dungannon Swifts.. is that why we have LILLIPUT? But who are LEN and SANDRA? Can anyone add anything to this? Or am I barking up a wrong tree?

Fortnightly Weekend Quick Cryptic. This time it is my turn to provide the extra weekend entertainment. You can find the latest crossword here. Enjoy! And if anyone is interested in our previous offerings you can find an index to them here.

Definitions underlined in bold italics, (Abc)* indicating anagram of Abc, deletions and “” other indicators.

1 Quietly, set for recreation (4)
PLAYP (quietly) LAY (set… the table).
3 We hear flower placed where there was a small population (8)
LILLIPUTLILLI, sounds like, “we hear” LILY (flower) PUT (placed).
9 Side hugging Aussie skipper in cafe (7)
TEAROOMTEAM (side) “hugging” ROO (aussie skipper).
10 Head going around left piece of crockery (5)
PLATEPATE (head) “going around” L (left)
11 Love of French poetry (3)
ODEO (0, love) DE (of in French).
12 Alert, showing leg before the dance (2,3,4)
ON THE BALLON (leg, side of the field in cricket) THE BALL (dance).
14 Chap wandering around yonder (6)
RODNEY – “Wandering around” (yonder)*
16 Football team taking some frightful hammering (6)
FULHAM – Hidden in, “some”, frightFUL HAMmering.
19 Kind heart turning ignorant (2,3,4)
IN THE DARK – (Kind heart)* “turning”.
21 Moan when end falls off auto (3)
CARCARp (moan) without the last letter, “when the end falls off”.
22 I sell new cotton fabric (5)
LISLE – (I sell)* “new”. I’m not good on fabrics, but remember this from previous crosswords.
23 Large number nabbed by detectives. returning with powerful force (7)
DYNAMICMANY (large number) inside, “nabbed by”, CID (detectives), all reversed, “returning”.
24 Takes pen to rewrite online language? (8)
NETSPEAK – (Takes pen)* “to rewrite”.
25 Regrettably, a girl can only be heard (4)
ALASA LAS, sounds like, “can only be heard”, LASS (girl).
1 Moved up prior to creating miscellany (9)
POTPOURRI – “Moved” (up prior to)*.
2 A king, in dread, unable to sleep? (5)
AWAKEA K (king) “in” AWE (dread).
4 Prisoner at home with companion (6)
INMATEIN (at home), MATE (companion).
5 Slip from circuit, set incomplete (5)
LAPSELAP (circuit), SEt “incomplete”.
6 Ancient king’s even-handed letter read out? (7)
PHARAOH – Sounds like, “read out” FAIR (even handed) O (the letter).
7 Periodically stroke part of foot (3)
TOE – Alternate letters, “periodically” of sTrOkE.
8 Doctor got up in a bad mood (6)
MOROSEM.O. (doctor) ROSE (got up).
13 Green piles of hay in lots of five lines? (9)
LIMERICKSLIME (green) RICKS (piles of hay).
15 State ad must be prepared for computer file (4,3)
DATA SET – (state ad)* “must be prepared”.
17 Cruel keeping some chipmunk indoors (6)
UNKIND – Hidden, “keeping some” in chipmUNK INDoors.
18 Polish artist is a female (6)
SANDRASAND (polish) R.A. (Royal Academician, artist).
20 Ogle nice boy, one you clasp, finally (3,2)
EYE UP – Last letters, “finally” of nicE boY onE yoU clasP.
21 Approached large creature in desert? (5)
CAMELCAME (approached) L (large).
22 Boy’s fast, but failing to finish (3)
LENLENt (fast) “failing to finish”.

78 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 2009 by Rodney”

  1. This ‘stopper’ went via 16ac FULHAM, who are 12ac at the moment- that 0-7 away win at Blackburn was a bit special! MY COD.

    FOI 1ac PLAY

    LOI 10 ac PLATE

    WOD 3ac LILIPUTIAN as per my auto spellchecker!

    So that’s Friday done and dusted. The Biggie was tough!

    On edit: John — Rodney Marsh was the superstar who played at Craven Cottage. So did Bestie! Johnny Haynes was the all time Fulham hero, and ‘On the Ball’ with Chairman Jimmy Hill was a thing! My youngest son worked on the show for years. Some very funny stories about JH!

    Edited at 2021-11-19 03:03 am (UTC)

    1. Rodney Marsh was the first name to come to mind, but I couldn’t connect to Carlisle, and yes, I remember On The Ball and JH. Those were the days.
      1. Sky produced ‘On the Ball’ and they went as far as building a stage set of Jim’s kitchen, an exact replica of his one at home. The viewers simply had no idea it was a set on a lot in Isleworth.
        Fine until one Saturday morning when there was a terrible prang on the M1 and Jimmy was held-up in the tail-backs for a considerable time. His guests were assembled as usual in ‘his kitchen’. They all had to pretend that Jimmy was still in bed – upstairs. And no sign of his wife! The producers and crew were having a full ninety minute nightmare, which ended when the star of the show finally came downstairs – ‘having overslept’! Phew!

        Edited at 2021-11-19 03:38 pm (UTC)

  2. Since I never know who the setter is, I didn’t notice RODNEY at 14ac, or anything else for that matter. A steady solve as I recall. [On edit] POTPOURRI did take me a while to remember; all I could think of was PATCHOULI. 6:16.
    What horryd said about the 15×15.

    Edited at 2021-11-19 03:49 am (UTC)

  3. Slowest for a while for me at 21m. Held up in the south and the SW in particular. The LEN and NETSPEAK crossers especially — NHO NETSPEAK and needed LEN to sort the anagrist — but I was very slow on LEN, perhaps because of ‘boy’ not ‘man’ in clue — ONS says there were 213 baby Leonards in 2020 not to mention the 424 new Lennys and Lennies — so that’s two demonstrations of me being out of touch in one morning. Also slow on SANDRA — I think sand for polish has done me in before. Liked LILLIPUT and DYNAMIC — in fact I liked lots of it. Thanks Rodney!

    Edited at 2021-11-19 07:01 am (UTC)

  4. 12 minutes, possibly distracted by looking for a theme because Rodney used one on his last outing almost exactly a year ago. As you say, John, this is only his third outing and so far he has appeared only on Fridays, the last two falling on curarist’s turn rather than yours.

    Quite apart from the now obvious main theme I wondered if, given the setter’s signature appearing at 14ac, there might be an ‘Only Fool’s and Horses’ thing going on. It’s a bit tenuous but LEN could be a reference to Lennard Pearce who played Rodney’s & Delboy’s Grandad, and Rodney was engaged at one time to a policewoman called SANDRA.

    Perhaps the setter would visit us later to clarify exactly what was in his mind?

    Note: We’ve now heard from Rodney if you scroll down…

    Edited at 2021-11-19 11:09 am (UTC)

  5. 12:42 without many alarms. LOI MOROSE as I had initially rejected it as I thought morose meant “sad”.

    I count myself as a Fulham fan, and you’ll see me in the Johnny Haynes stand a few times a season.

    Is NETSPEAK really a thing? I work in the IT business and have never really come across it. It seems as dated as puns about BYTE and the sound modems make. Pshhhkkkkkkrrrrkakingkakingkakingtshchchchchchchchcch*ding*ding*ding.
    Listen to more at the Museum of Endangered sounds. http://savethesounds.info/

    1. I think it is still alive in the world of Instant Messaging. Thanks for the endangered sounds. That reminds em… I must get myself to the Computing History Museum some day.

      Edited at 2021-11-19 09:08 am (UTC)

  6. Slow going for me this morning. It all started so well at the top but I struggled with the bottom, and must have spent at least 5 minutes on my last 3: Sandra, dynamic and limericks. I hadn’t heard of ricks for hay, was looking for bales. I was also a bit slow on the Len/netspeak corner, trying to fit Java in somewhere.
    Anyway a frustrating week for me with 3 SCC and a report marked could do better.
    Thanks Rodney & John

    FOI play
    LOI limericks
    COD awake for reminding me of Henry IV speech “uneasy is the head that wears the crown” – recently paraphrased by Stormzy as heavy is the head

  7. Failed! I spelt PHARAOH wrong and had a crossing O at 12, which stumped me! Doh! More coffee and a shower needed.
    Hoping for a better start next week.
  8. … with our setter today getting his actual name into the grid! I’m not sure I’ve ever done a puzzle by Rodney before, and a very pleasant 10 minutes or so it was too. LOI was 18D Sandra where I had completely the wrong end of the stick, looking for a word meaning Polish that started with RA for artist.

    Rodney Marsh did indeed play for Fulham at the start of his career, but he spent rather longer playing just up the road from them at Queens Park Rangers, where the cry of “Rodneeee…” echoed from the terraces in the late 1960s. It’s interesting to note he was transferred from QPR to Manchester City in 1972 for £200,000, then considered a huge sum — these days football transfer fees can be 500 times that!

    Much enjoyed the Museum of Endangered Sounds — thank you Merlin for pointing us at that!

    Many thanks to John for the blog, and I look forward to the Saturday Special. A good weekend to all

    1. I was at City for his first game Maine Road, I think it was against Chelsea. He wasn’t match fit. At first ‘Rodneeeee’ rang round the stadium – then the United fans gave him a terrible seeing to! “Rodney Marsh, Superstar who the blank do you think you are!? Dennis Law, Dennis Law..” ad infinitum.
      Funny old game.
  9. A completion for me today, and though I did not actively time it, I noted that it had taken me 40 minutes to do so.

    Most of the clues went in relatively quickly, though 14a and 8d held me up for much of the time.

    Initially I had spelled Pharaoh incorrectly, having mixed up the O and A, which held up my 12a momentarily.

    Candy store here I come!

  10. 16 minutes, and one over target, but it was all worth it, despite a few random names being included (although maybe not random). I have no time to research deeper into the theme today — off to the golf club for past-captain’s day. Have a great weekend all.
  11. Twelve minutes, so not quite as easy as yesterday, but maybe I was just taking time to enjoy it. FOI play, 19 on first pass, then had to think a bit more. LOI Sandra. Sand isn’t really polish, but that’s carping. COD dynamic, something that seems as though it might be a chestnut but it struck me as quite a clever one, if it is. My clue for lisle isn’t the same as the one in the blog. I gained some nuances in the parsing from the blog, but managed most. Needed a friend called Rodney to solve Rodney, despite the setter.
    Doh! Thanks, John, and Rodney.
  12. I wasn’t sure whether Rodders was a brand new setter, not keeping detailed records.

    Aaanyway. A different “style” I thought, but I liked it.

    Several contenders for COD — my LOI PHARAOH nicked it, but I was glad to have all the checkers, a bit of an achilles heel for me in terms of spelling.

    Average kind of time for a thoroughly decent QC.


  13. Started well but got bogged down in the SE. Slow to see LEN and SANDRA but not happy with sand = polish (we have visited this before). Sand is rough and, when attached to cloth or paper is abrasive. Polishing needs much finer materials than sand — such as crocus cloth or ultra-fine powdered materials like rouge (mainly ferric oxide) or similar. Someone who has actually used sandpaper would not describe it as a polishing agent.
    I strayed over target by a couple of minutes. Some good clues. Thanks, both. John M.
    A bit grumpy this morning. I updated my iPad to IOS 15 and Outlook won’t open so I can’t access my emails without using my laptop or my fiddly iPhone. A common problem, apparently, but the simple ‘fixes’ don’t work. Grr.
    Note. Re-installation of outlook seems to have worked. Has anyone else had a problem with the IOS 15 update?

    Edited at 2021-11-19 05:41 pm (UTC)

  14. 57 mins, so within my target hour. I rarely biff so Len took me a while to parse as I was thinking fast = speed.
  15. …to make or become smooth and shiny by rubbing, esp with wax or an abrasive.

    I think that covers sand.

    1. Not to those people who use polish as a finish it isn’t.
      This had come up before
      Would you polish your car with sand

      DNF by the way

        1. Oops. That was me. Ruddy IOS update led to me being logged off.
          Smooth and polish are not synonymous. John.

          Edited at 2021-11-20 12:34 am (UTC)

      1. No. But would you use Mr Sheen to polish a rough diamond or stainless steel? The dictionary says “Sand (verb) smooth or polish with sandpaper or a mechanical sander”, so I have to side with the setter on this. Also see here, for example “You can definitely polish metal with sandpaper, but like many things in life, you have to know what you’re doing so you don’t damage what you’re working on. Many sandpaper manufacturers sell finishing paper specifically designed for polishing metal. “
  16. Some super surfaces and witty clues. FOI Potpourri. LOI +COD Lime ricks. Netspeak may be dated, but so are Pharaoahs. Didn’t spot the theme as usual, and congrats to those who have explained it, until when I had thought the setter was a litle presumptuous to include his name. There may yet be more to the theme. Rodney Marsh did indeed wander from Craven Cottage to Loftus Rd and elsewhere.. Now who was the guy once behind the stumps Down Under?
  17. John is nine tenths of the way there with “What I found”

    Modesty fails to prevent me from pointing out that in keeping with the chants of Fulham fans, “I put the ball in …”

    And Mr Putin has stopped me putting in a link to the excellent Gareth Hanna and his article in the Belfast Telegraph on the subject …

  18. ….but still a proper QC from Rodney. NHO NETSPEAK, but it was obvious enough.

    TIME 3:48

  19. Nice puzzle, which I was sailing steadily through until getting stuck in the mud with NETSPEAK, DYNAMIC and SANDRA, my last 3 in. Those 3 held me up for a couple of minutes, taking me over my target to 10:50. Spotted some of the theme. Thanks Rodney and John.
  20. Excellent puzzle, we really enjoyed solving it. We were all done in 10 minutes.


    Thanks to John and Rodney.

  21. Slow again — coming in at 28 mins — but it was enjoyable and there were some nice clues.

    Think I’ve argued the sand/polish debate before and lost, so I won’t bother this time. Not sure about “Netspeak” — it kind of rings a vague bell, but it’s not widely used imo.

    Like many I also spelt Pharaoh wrong the first time around. Main hold up was sorting out 13dn “Limericks”, 18dn “Sandra” and 23ac “Dynamic”.

    FOI — 1ac “Play”
    LOI — 18dn “Sandra”
    COD — 6dn “Pharaoh”, although 3ac made me smile as well.

    Thanks as usual!

    Edited at 2021-11-19 11:45 am (UTC)

  22. Echoing Johninterred, this was fun. I got off to a fast start but slowed down a bit towards the end. I was looking for a theme, especially after RODNEY appeared but couldn’t see anything beyond Fulham.
    Tried to justify CRY at 21a; that held up LIMERICKS. And thought NETSPAKE (like Netscape) might be an IT language/thing and so spent ages on the Polish artist. Once SPEAK was considered LOI SANDRA appeared.
    That all took about 18 minutes and, as I said, it was fun.

  23. A welcome distraction to complete during a night sitting in attendance in A&E, so no rush and all ended well on all counts. Time to finish, 6 hrs! Suspected something afoot but as usual missed the NINA. Thanks to the eagle eyed cognoscenti and of course to Rodney.
    Have a good weekend. I look forward to catching up on sleep tonight and a country drive to admire nature’s colourfest.
  24. I mostly enjoyed this but as usual was undone by slowing down on the last two. And also as usual the solutions were not so hard once I saw them — I started at the wrong end of 6d as I had more checkers there and couldn’t find any suitable letter sound-alike. Of course, when I approached it more logically and saw ‘fair’, everything fell into place!
    Too much tech for me with DATA SET and NETSPEAK, but I liked DYNAMIC and LIMERICKS.
    It’s so interesting how setters can follow the same rules / guidelines and yet produce crosswords that feel very diffetent. I felt today was a prime example.
    FOI Play
    LOI Lilliput
    COD Camel
    13 minutes
    Thanks Rodney and John

    Edited at 2021-11-19 06:40 pm (UTC)

  25. Started quite quickly in the NW and then dotted around the grid picking up hiddens and filling in the blanks. Delayed by 18d Sandra, where I first thought it was a polish beginning Ra, but then remembered the previous sand/polish controversy. All that left me with a shot at a sub-20, but my last pair Pharaoh and CoD Lilliput ensured a seat in the SCC. Invariant
  26. Rodney Marsh at F’laam is slightly before my time but he was at Tampa, from memory, as manager? My COD to Phara-oh! I tire of Limericks these days – nobody really knows their derivation.

    Edited at 2021-11-19 04:40 pm (UTC)

  27. A fun puzzle to end the week where my last two in LILLIPUT (COD) and PHAROAH pulled me just over target, finishing in 10.23. Like others I’d not heard of NETSPEAK and LISLE had to be dragged from the depths.
    Thanks to John and Rodney
  28. … I mis-spelled it as PHAROAH – an error I think I have made before. As a consequence (and after 10-15 minutes of teeth gnashing), I entered ON THE BOIL, even though I have never heard the expression in connection with ‘alert’ and have never heard of a ‘dance’ called the BOIL. I think the reason I didn’t suspect an error somewhere was because ON THE BOIL immediately gave me LIMERICK, which in turn confirmed CAR – and I had finished at that point (47 minutes, for the record). You may imagine my reaction when I read johninterred’s blog. Suffice to say that I am not happy.

    Mrs Random is four QCs behind at the moment, but she has just started one and will catch up over the weekend.

    Many thanks to Rodney and johninterred.

    1. … Mrs Random cruised home in 37 minutes, but she very nearly made exactly the same mistakes as me. Luckily, she thought of ON THE BALL and ON THE BOIL, and the choice prompted her to revise her spelling of PHARAOH.

      We both know how to spell words like PHARAOH, but it’s easy to err when clued as a down clue.

      1. No, it doesn’t. But I just wrote it in incorrectly and didn’t notice that I had done so — possibly because it was written vertically.
  29. LISLE is a hidden word in ‘some wool is left’ not an anagram. Also lent is a period of time during which some people fast. You can’t say I’m going to lent this week or I’m going on a lent!
    1. The clue is an anagram clue, not as quoted.
      LENT is an example of a fast or period of fasting, so fair enough.
      1. This clue appears to have different wording in the printed paper and the online version. The online version has the clue John quotes, viz “I sell new cotton fabric”, but the printed paper has the clue “Cotton fabric — and some wool is left”. The first an anagram and the second, as jucrow says, a hidden.

        I’m not aware of ever seeing this before. It is asking our setters to work really hard if they have to provide alternative cluing for some of their clues!


        1. Well spotted, Cedric! Your revelation is truly staggering! I thought Mr. Jucrow was having a laugh – so I went back to read the anagram clue. It would seem (seen) that this is negligent editing, as has been noted recently.

          Edited at 2021-11-19 04:38 pm (UTC)

        2. Thanks, Cedric. I don’t get the printed paper so only had the online version to go on and was a bit bemused by the comments. I wonder which was the final edit?
      2. As anonymous said… From Collins: “Fast (noun) – an act or period of fasting. Lent (noun) – the period of forty weekdays lasting from Ash Wednesday to Holy Saturday, observed as a time of penance and fasting commemorating Jesus’ fasting in the wilderness”

        Edited at 2021-11-19 05:43 pm (UTC)

  30. Somewhat harder than the last couple of days imo – or maybe it’s just me slowing down at the end of the week. Anyway it took me 22 minutes today and I failed to parse PHARAOH and POTPOURRI. Thanks to John for providing some light on those two. As usual any theme completely passed over my head.

    FOI – 10ac PLATE
    LOI – 1ac PLAY (should have got this a lot quicker)
    COD – 18dn SANDRA

    Thanks to Rodney for an enjoyable QC

  31. Relied on luck to finish this one. Was it Ilsle and Ian or Lisle and Len. NHO the fabric and didn’t see how either name was Fast. Guessed right but had to come here for the explanation.
  32. Had NEWSPEAK which held up the SW a little but otherwise no problems here

    Is our Setter suggesting that he is the Rodney who scored the goal. Slightly lost track but it was certainly a great strike.

    Lived next to the Cottage in the 1991/1992 season. Even then the locals seemed to moan about the crowds every other Saturday. Suspect the stadium was there when they bought…

    Thanks Rodney and John

    1. I wondered what he meant by “Modesty does not quite prevent me from pointing out …” and the link. Is he that footballer? Or Kevin O’Callaghan who was interviewed? Whatever, we are being teased! Any other ideas? P.S. Of course our editor, Richard Rogan, is from Northern Ireland. Has he been setting for us under the pseudonym Rodney? It’s possible we may never know.

      Edited at 2021-11-19 06:34 pm (UTC)

  33. A bit on the tired side today, which slowed me up in the middle, but I finished in 27:37. Thanks to Rodney and John.
  34. I’m not Morose I am happy with times. It’s great to finish. Like Len I don’t go fast, and I mustn’t carp I didn’t parse Car. I have an idea, I’ll try it out and let you know. gn8

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