Times Quick Cryptic No 2073 by Teazel

An uncommon diagonally symmetric grid this morning from Teazel, with an unusual number of double definition clues (5 of them, all in the down clues).  I blasted through this in 11 minutes, which is at the faster end of the Rotterometer, and was lucky to see the DDs and anagrams fairly quickly.

1a was FOI, WOD to 17a, although I have to admit to a partiality for a 14d or two. I think 7d was LOI.  Many thanks to Teazel for an enjoyable and doable puzzle, with a few tricks and treats in the devices used.


Trespassers assert charge to be out of order (12)
GATECRASHERS – Anagram (to be out of order) of [ASSERT CHARGE].
Very fond of a party, call (7)
ADORING – A (a) DO (party) and RING (call).
9  The bar is back:  have a great time (5)
REVEL – LEVER (the bar) reversed (is back) to give REVEL.
10  From returning US soldiers, mother getting foreign letter (5)
SIGMA – GIs (US soldiers) reversed (returning) to give SIG and MA (mother).
11 Stricken by illness, I’d allow for new treatment (4,3)
LAID LOW – Anagram (for new treatment) of [I’D ALLOW].
12  Concerned with sight, squint finally through old film (5)
OPTIC – {squin}T (finally) in / through O{ld} and PIC (film).
14  Opening cocktail mixer, one becomes more unsteady (7)
SHAKIER – I (one) inside (opening) SHAKER (cocktail mixer).
15  Turning to place flags, make a speech and disappear (9)
EVAPORATE – PAVE (i.e. place flags or flagstones in a patio or pavement, for instance) reversed (turning) to give EVAP and then ORATE (make a speech).
17  Mangy poodle’s internal pain (3)
GYP – Hidden inside (internal) {man}GY P{oodle}.  GYP is an unusual word for pain or torture, which my Chambers tells me originates from ‘gee up’.
19 Decrepit canon takes a tumble, being this (8-5)
ACCIDENT-PRONE – Anagram (takes a tumble) of [DECREPIT CANON].
21 Start to fill clothes-horse, weather so improved? (6)
FAIRER – F{ill} (start to) and AIRER (clothes-horse).  If the weather is FAIRER, it can be said to have improved.
22  Extra-singular customs (5)
MORES – MORE (extra) and S{ingular}.


1  Happy with jewel secure in case (9,3)
GLADSTONE BAG – GLAD (happy) with STONE (jewel) and BAG (secure). I’m sure that I remember Ernest being discovered in a GLADSTONE BAG in Oscar Wilde’s play, but I couldn’t swear to it.
Idea showing consideration (7)
THOUGHT – Double definition
3  Feature of a dinner service (5)
CHINA – CHIN (facial feature) and A (a).
A nurse of spirit (5)
ANGEL – Double definition.
5 Place of retreat three magi rebuilt (9)
HERMITAGE – Anagram (rebuilt) of [THREE MAGI].
6 Having got in, this spinner could get you out straightaway (9,4)
REVOLVING DOOR – Good cryptic clue with cricketing misdirection.
Scowl from one looking healthy (6)
GLOWER – Double definition, the second cryptic – if one is healthy, one may be glowing.
13  Cold, and how, the German soup (7)
CHOWDER – C{old} HOW (how) and DER (the in German).
14  Tool for workmen making a bridge (7)
SPANNER – Another double definition.
16  A capital city, really African: just the tops? (5)
ACCRA – Initial letters (just the tops) of A Capital City: Really African.
18  Crowd of reporters(5)
PRESS – Double definition.
20  Half a woolly ball for little dog (3)
POM – the woolly ball is a POMPOM, half of which is POM, an informal term for a Pomeranian dog.

47 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 2073 by Teazel”

  1. 12 minutes for me, meaning I found it harder than normal (10 minutes is my par). SHAKIER was my LOI taking longer than it should have to see it.
    1. I think it was probably a Gladstone Bag — I know handbags come in most sizes, but few of them could contain a baby.

      A good morning, I enjoyed the double definitions. Thank you, Teazel and Rotter.


  2. I started off thinking this was going to be quick after FOI: GATECRASHERS but ended up finishing in 26 minutes needing a little more thought towards the end with GLOWER and SHAKIER.
    MORES went in on WP helped with the M from POM.
    LOI: SHAKIER which I BIFD only seeing the parsing post-solve.

    Edited at 2022-02-17 05:58 am (UTC)

  3. Only three on the first pass of acrosses and a good deal of bewilderment. The downs were a bit kinder and I built from the bottom up to finsh all green in a surpisingly fast 13. The willpower shown in stopping myself bunging in elaborate before I saw EVAPORATE suggests I could achieve great things today.
  4. Couldn’t make head or tail of either of the 1s on first visit which deprived me of lots of useful starting letters. But FOI ADORING opened up the NW and it was plain sailing from then on.
    I remember getting very stuck on GLADSTONE BAG when I first came across it in a QC, but as a result it has now stuck in the memory. 17a reminded me of my grandfather talking about his ‘gyppy knee’ and therefore is my COD, but there was a lot to enjoy throughout the puzzle.
    Finished in 7.08 with LOI EVAPORATE, where I showed similar self-restraint to Mendesest in resisting the call to bif elaborate.
    Thanks to Rotter and Teazel
  5. … and my LOI 20D Pom put in very much on a wing and a prayer, as all of Pam, Pem, Pim, Pum or Pym seemed even less likely. Earlier on, before I had found 22A Mores, I also wondered about Pug, Pup, and any number of other possibilities.

    That apart, a very nice puzzle with some good misdirection — did anyone else read the clue for 14A “Opening cocktail …” and try to make the answer start with a C? But the long anagrams, while getable, slowed me down considerably and led to a 16 minute solve in all.

    Many thanks to Rotter for the blog.

  6. … to jumping round the living room in joy.

    Found it really tough. Barely six answers done after half an hour. Only had top right diagonal side done after 1hr30. Somehow it all pulled together.

    FOI GYP (that’s how far down I got before anything)
    LOI GLADSTONE BAG (took a leap of faith based on the “case” clue)
    COD I don’t have one – they were all horrible !!!

    Add-on: back in the days of newspaper dating ads where you paid by the word; I once used THOUGHTful to describe myself as both full of ideas and consideration. Didn’t get many replies though.

    Edited at 2022-02-17 10:27 am (UTC)

    1. Very well done, Mr Plates! I think it was a tough one today, so a completion in any time is an achievement.
      1. The avatar upgrade has improved your performance! As I said it would,
        I wish a few others would follow suit! Well done matey:
      2. I agree. I found it tricky so well done for sticking at it. I know only too well how it feels when the answers won’t come!


  7. It took me a while to get going and my FOI was GYP. I then moved around the grid looking for ways in.
    In the end my last two were REVEL and REVOLVING DOOR. In contrast to yesterday, everything was a bit of a struggle but I finished all correct in 12:54.
    Excellent puzzle but a MER at POM.

      1. Thinking about dog breeds, Pomeranian occurred to me, as did POM POM. But I don’t think I’ve ever seen the single word POM. The dictionaries confirm it, so no problem at that level.
        1. Pom …
          Gives a whole new insight into the traditional Aussie insult. Who knew they thought of us as whining little dogs?
  8. 9:58 for a rare sub-ten. The two 1’s went in quickly, which sets up a rapid time. LOI SHAKIER, COD OPTIC.

    MER at GYP, was thinking it might be GIP. Also thought the etymology might be from “gyppy tummy”, where “gyppy” means Egyptian—”gypsy” comes from the same derogatory slang.

  9. Zipped through the top half, slowed a bit down under but should’ve proof read. GLADSTONE BAB anyone? 7:51 WOE is me. Thanks Teazel and Rotter.
  10. Took too long pondering clues instead of moving on, but I did get most of the clues first time round. Wasted several minutes in total trying to work out the case that Gladstone had, but it took a second alphabet trawl before the penny dropped with 23:37 on the clock. CsOD to GLOWER and EVAPORATE. Thanks to Teazel and Rotter.
  11. But very happy to have completed an often tricksy Teazel puzzle in 25 minutes. FOI ADORING, LOI REVEL (flummoxed by the ‘the’ before bar?). COD EVAPORATE. Thanks Rotter and Teazel.
  12. Couldn’t do 1a or 1d at first. FOsI SIGMA and LAID LOW, OPTIC. PDM with REVOLVING DOOR helped along with ADORING. I’m afraid there was much writing out of crossers and anagram letters today.
    Yes, my mother would talk of a ‘gyppy tummy’.
    Failed to see DD in GLOWER.
    MORES came before POM (which I then parsed). LOI EVAPORATE.
    Thanks all, esp Rotter.
  13. Spent a long time thrashing about not getting anywhere. Then slowly but with increasing speed, the answers started arriving. Just missed my ten minutes though by a few seconds. Accident prone then spanner were the last. Enjoyable puzzle, thanks all.
    1. The mental image of you “thrashing about and not getting anywhere” made me smile — it’s something that could be applied to a number of things I’ve done recently.
  14. Getting going took a bit of time, but once I had 1a and 1d it all flowed fairly steadily. 20 minutes interrupted by a ‘chat bot’ conversation with the utility provider- have we had ‘chat bot’ yet in any of the puzzles?
    Thanks for the blog, and I hope everyone has managed to get through Storm Dudley without any damage being incurred. We await ‘Eunice’ with some trepidation
    1. Just bunged out some washing on the line in the hope Eunice will dry or evaporate it before it becomes fairer

      Edited at 2022-02-17 03:18 pm (UTC)

  15. I briefly looked at the 1s but neither came to mind. My FOI was ADORING. After a few more checkers GLADSTONE BAG arrived and then GATECRASHERS. I got stuck in the SE corner with my last two MORES and POM (not Pug and Pet then). Loved the REVOLVING DOOR but my COD goes to EVAPORATE for the story. 9:28

    Edited at 2022-02-17 11:55 am (UTC)

  16. Steady rather than fast today with all completed and parsed in 18 mins. Really nice xwd from Teazel with nothing too abstruse and all fairly clued.

    FOI – 8ac ADORING
    COD – 19ac ACCIDENT PRONE for the wonderful mental image conjured up by the surface.

    Thanks to Teazel and Rotter.

  17. Quite a few I didn’t know today, but all generously clued so came in at 19 mins.

    Took one look at 1ac and 1dn and moved swiftly onto the rest of the grid, by which time I had enough checkers to biff them both fairly easily.

    Main hold up was 6dn “Revolving Door” and 14ac “Shakier”.

    FOI — 2dn “Thought”
    LOI — 14ac “Shakier”
    COD — 15ac “Evaporate”, but 6dn was a close second

    Thanks as usual!

  18. Must have been on the wavelength. Eight minutes. Only six on first pass of across clues, but the downs went in very quickly (for me). FOI Gatecrashers, which was a great help. LOI revolving door. Didn’t bother with it until all the checkers were in as I couldn’t see it at first read. Thanks, Rotter, and Teazel.
  19. We saw the anagrams and double definitions quickly today and finished in 6 minutes (our second fastest time ever). A nice change — it feels like we’ve been slowing down lately.


    Thanks Teazel and Rotter.

    Edited at 2022-02-17 02:05 pm (UTC)

  20. This was a comparative quick solve helped enormously by seeing the long anagrams and remembering GLADSTONE BAG from a previous crossword. Pretty sure we have had Accra quite recently but it may have been in the concise. I think setters like it for the A’s at both ends of the word.

    COD Spanner which made me smile
    LOI Fairer

    22 minutes dead

    Thanks to all

  21. Finished in 25m which is good for us. Two of the long anagrams, 6d and 19a went in quickly but we needed the crosscheckers to get the other two. Pleasant puzzle.
  22. I am surprised that so many contributors here found this puzzle relatively gentle. Mrs R completed it in 27 minutes earlier this morning, but warned me that I may struggle when it was my turn – and indeed I did.

    My first few in were SIGMA, LAID LOW and OPTIC, but I solved only eight on the first pass through the grid and only six more on my second pass. 25 minutes had elapsed by this stage (my passes through the grid are usually quite slow), but a further 10 minutes ten passed before my next breakthrough (REVOLVING DOOR), which was my first of the four really long clues. This seemed to be the catalyst, as I picked up pace again, and once I had solved GATECRASHERS and GLADSTONE BAG the remaining clues simply flew in. In the end, I crossed the line all correct in 41 minutes with feelings of relief and satisfaction.

    Many thanks to Teazel and Rotter.

    1. I’d say it was particularly difficult without 1A & 1D as they give so many of the starting letters for others.

      Certainly getting GATECRASHERS was the beginning of the end (so to speak) for me.

  23. All but POM and MORES in 8 minutes, then a shock at 15 when I finally gave up and realised biffing PUP was a mistake. Oh dear…
  24. Far better today than the last two!
    Did like revolvingdoor and Gladstone bag
    Now discussing derivation of pom for English in oz land
  25. I thought this was quite tough, especially when I made no progress with the ‘1’s (or the NW in general). I clawed my way through and appreciated Teazel’s imagination as I built up the grid but finished with a sigh on the cusp of the SCC. A late start again for me after another very full day away. I wonder if that was a factor since I normally approach crosswords early in the day.
    I’m sure if the 1 clues had clicked earlier, I would have been a lot quicker.
    Anyway, it was a good puzzle. Thanks to Teazel and to Rotter for confirming all my parsing in his good blog. John M.

    Edited at 2022-02-17 07:09 pm (UTC)

  26. A woolly ball is a ball of wool, that’s the way I saw it, fancy there being a simple word I’ve known all my life I needed to remember. Though the leap from pom(pom) to Pomeranian would have passed me by anyway, I just stuck with Pug, slightly more likely than Pup. Oh, and extra-singular left me in the dark as well, I couldn’t get Unique to go in anywhere nor Plural! 34 min and stuck. Admirations for Clues and Blog, all thanks.
  27. I was on the 12:30 flight from ACCRA to CHINA

    FOI 17@c GYP

    LOI 9ac REVEL


    WOD 1ac GLADSTONE BAG — an handbag!

    Friday is upon us.

  28. A great puzzle and an illuminating blog, particularly the parsing of 15ac. Thankfully I got 1ac and 1dn relatively quickly. Probably still in the SCC, but very enjoyable.

    Gary A

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