Asynchronous DA (on the 2nd/3rd of October)

The Age continues to publish DS on Friday, while I’m assuming DA is safely ensconced in Friday’s arms in the SMH. I’m not sure what the deal is — I might go ask DA over on his blog — but it looks like DA might be a permanent feature of Saturday’s Age.

Come what may, here’s where you can start chatting away on this week’s crossword.

Update: It’s done!

DA vanquished on a Saturday

I completed about half of this one in a cafe in Elwood whose name eludes me before taking it home and destroying it. Some career-highlight clues in this one, but also some unwieldy disappointments — very patchy indeed!

And a question: has DS surpassed DA in difficulty? I grabbed the Friday paper thinking I’d find DA, but when I found DS instead I thought I’d have a crack anyway. What surprised me, though, is that I had a hard time going about answering the clues, more so in fact than I did for the DA yesterday.

Granted, DS’s clues aren’t as fun, but has this blog aided my DA-vanquishing skills so much that he’s become a lot easier to solve while other difficult compilers become more difficult because of a lack of exposure?

20 thoughts on “Asynchronous DA (on the 2nd/3rd of October)

  1. My favourites this week were 21a, 26a, 2d, 6+7d, 14d, 17d.

    I don’t quite get the logic of why 22a works, so if someone could clarify (after tomorrow, for the sake of Melbournians) that would be great.

  2. It’s another of those where you have to pick a certain letter out of each word in the clue, in this case the last.
    So, can you tell me how 18a works?

  3. Have to agree Rob. Lots to like (and laugh) about in this weeks crossie. 18A is super sneaky and very clever.

  4. i’m still struggling with 18A, think i have the answer, but need to justify the last two letters. can ‘affected’ mean speak a cockney manner?

    16D: don’t get why ‘capital’ is there, unless ‘capital supply’ is the second word of the answer, and it’s just two crpytic clues and no literal ones

    14D: confused. if the ‘cliff’ is ‘climbing’, then its not part of the anagram (as in the world for cliff isn’t just thrown into the rearranged letters), but then where’s the containment indicator?

  5. Back from holiday and nice to see DA back on Friday (in Sydney at least). And all out by Sunday morning.

    I liked: 2d, 4d, 6d, 7d, 14d, 16d, 15a, 18a and 26a (some more for their amusement rather than cryptic gold)

    NB: spoilers follow for MF, so if you don’t want to know the score, look away now! (Moderators, feel free to delete/move to separate thread)

    MF: the cliff is indeed climbing, and I took “skipping me for” as meaning “remove me and replace with”. For 16D: I took capital to be there as part of “blessed capital” – ie the part of Rome where HHTP resides.

  6. Re 16d: Used on one’s head when being baptized, hence”blessed capital supply.”

  7. haiku, ian: thanks for the capital explanations. i wonder which was intended. both?

    haiku: that’s how i read 14D, but i’m still confused. the best i can think is that it’s holiday, with da replaced by garc, and then put into an anagram where garc is meant to stay together in that order. otherwise the climbing is redundant. But the partially conservative anagram thing seem odd

    Alternatively, it is an anagram of holiy, with garc inside, and i’m missing a containment indicator

  8. Re 14d: I think you anagram HOLIDAY into OLIDAHY (“out” being the indicator), then replace DA with GARC. Then you don’t need a containment indicator. it is a bit of a stretch, and DA is playing at the edges of what’s acceptable, but I think he gets away with it because of the minimal change from the anagramming—only one letter changes position.

  9. I reckon that’s exactly right, Ian, but I don’t know why you would call that a stretch.

    That seemed perfectly fine even if it was a little difficult.

  10. Ian, AL: I think I’m missing why 18a works. I can’t explain IE. Spill the beans AL!

  11. Ah – I just read it explained in the next post. Very clever subterfuge.

  12. Letterman as the talk-show host is a brilliant red herring.

    A letterman is also a postie. Change an intro and you’ve got a hostie.

  13. Like MF, I thought there was something not absolutely right with 14D. I agree with Ian that:
    you anagram HOLIDAY into OLIDAHY (”out” being the indicator), then replace DA with GARC
    The trouble is that OLIDAHY is not a real word, but just a transitional rearrangement of the letters so that when DA is replaced by GARC we get OLIGARCHY. Like Ian, I reckon that’s playing at the edges of what’s acceptable, but the direct clue was so accurate (“where few rule”) that I, for one, will forgive him!

  14. Yes, you’re right. Funny that last week’s PEACENIK did not trouble me, yet this week’s OLIGARCHY did. I think it’s because there was some confusion (as MF pointed out above) about which comes first: the anagram process or the replacement process.

    I decided in the end that we were supposed to do the anagram of “holiday” first, whilst keeping the letters DA intact so that they could then be “skipped” for GARC (“cliff climbing”). The alternative would have been to do the GARC substitution first and then do the anagram, but that would have made the “climbing” bit redundant.

  15. AS, I’ve come up with a new theory to explain why this OLIGARCHY clue caused concern for me, Ian, and MF. Let’s see if it holds a bit more water than my last theory!

    What is it about this clue that makes it different from, for instance, your PEACENIK example? I reckon it’s the fact that, after anagramming HOLIDAY into OLIDAHY, you then have to replace DA with GARC. That is, some of the anagram fodder (DA) is jettisoned (and replaced) after, not before, the anagram process.

    Have we seen this sort of clue before? I’m sure you’ll find it, AS, if we have! Note I’m not (now) saying there’s anything wrong with this technique – just that I think it’s unusual. Now prove me wrong! Again!

  16. It wouldn’t matter if the replacement happened before or after making the anagram. HOLIDAY has DA in it just as OLIDAHY does, so it doesn’t matter if you start with HOLIGARCY and make OLIGARCHY or if you make OLIDAHY and then replace DA with GARC.

    I did have a look, though, for a clue that replaces letters after an anagram has been formed but I didn’t actually find one. Maybe DA hasn’t made a clue like that after all.

  17. I think it does matter! If you do the replacement before the anagram, then the word “climbing” loses its significance, and becomes redundant. And I think I really would have a legitimate whinge then!

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