27 thoughts on “DA Retrospectively: 11th March, 2005

  1. Thanks for posting. I’ll try not to spoil here.

    More evidence here that the old DAs were a bit easier (and less frequently iffy, clue-wise). I enjoyed this one, especially the ingenious major ten-word clue, which I saw only from its appearance after getting enough letters about halfway through. It would have been nice to have a few more clues on the theme of its second word to make it more apposite.

    My only real reservation was the trick used in 15A. And I’d like a wordplay explanation for 19D.

  2. My confusions:

    1D: is it snuffled? as in seized air?

    14D: is wag obedience school somehow?

    15A: how is ‘eclipses’ working here? is it somehow suggesting X should replace the P in AN PIETY?

    24A: What is Boise doing here?

    Complaint: 24A: 3D’s God = DEO seems dodgy. With Latin, i would expect the answer to be in the nominative case. If the dative/ablative case is required, i would expect some indication of that

  3. Thanks, mic. I 19D I was looking at EURO leaving SISN…

    1D: SNAFFLED = Sn + (b)affled

    14D: It’s kind of a &lit., I suppose – dogs wag tails, so wagging is particularly apt to shirking obedience school. Sounds kind of lame when you spell it out, but I’m happy enough with it.

    15A: That’s how I read it, and didn’t really like it either.

    24A: I suppose he needed a signifier for the U.S. usage, and decided to go for alliteration. It does come across as a bit arbitrary.

    Re your complaint (for 24D): yes, it is dodgy, and well spotted – didn’t strike me at the time.

  4. I had heard of this crossword, but had never seen it before, so it was a pleasure to do it, especially when the 9,17,31A penny dropped.

    15A: I thought this was fine, with eclipse meaning to overshadow or cover the face of something.

  5. 1D: aah, baffled not ruffled!
    14D: still don’t quite get it
    15A: I like this better now i realise that eclipses is working on just PIETY, not ANPIETY, thus replacing the first letter. Though to eclipse is to “cover the face” (as Peter put it), not to REPLACE the face
    24A: Fair enough, I just thought there might have been an ingredient i missed

  6. Yes, I’d seen the recent refences to this crossword, and as soon as I saw (2,6,3,4,6,3,6,2,4,9) I realised this was it! As well as that clue, I particularly liked 13A LOWDOWN.

    I found the bottom left corner a bit hard to crack, and I have a few queries there.

    I too thought 15A a bit dodgy. Not the eclipse meaning per se, but the rather arbitrary nature of the letter to be eclipsed. We have to skate over the first word “an”, and then choose the first letter of “piety”.

    24A seemed a bit desperate to me, with its references to an American film, an Egyptian snake, and an obscure American city.

    6D: “Almost” to signify the last TWO letters are missing?

    20D: “barrel” = DECK?

    24D: I agree with mic about “god” = DEO.

    27D: “morning snack” = RECESS? I thought “recess” just meant a break. Sure you might have a snack then, but you might also go to the toilet, or pick your nose, or……

  7. 2 cents:
    Can someone explain how 16D is supposed to work?

    Apart from that:
    * loved 9/17/31A
    * disliked 13A
    * agree re. 15A & 6D & 14D & 27D
    * liked 24A
    * liked 19D
    * loved 23D

  8. MF and mic: you don’t say why you disliked 13A. I reckon it’s the best double def I’ve seen for a long time. Normally the double def type of clue is not one of my favourites but I thought this particular example was ingenious, consisting of only two words (data and base), which go together so well that the hyphen could (and should, IMO) have been omitted to make an even more succinct and cute clue. What’s not to like?

    mic, are you OK now with 14D?

    I’m still not OK with 20D – I’m assuming the answer is TAPE DECK – as I said earlier, I can’t see the connection between “barrel” and “deck”.

  9. RB, the reason i dislike 13A is because data and lowdown seem only remotely synonymous. Both are synonyms for information, but information would have a different meaning in each case

    14D: yeah, i get it now. thanks!

    20D: oh yeah! when i had the same problem doing the crossword, i assumed it was because of some colloquial meaning(s) of barrel and/or deck, and i meant to look them up later. Now i don’t know how barrel = deck

  10. I thought:
    data = information = the lowdown on something
    to barrel someone is to bowl them over or deck them.

  11. Yep, Peter, I think that’s the intended interpretation. It didn’t worry me that much at the time, but barrel == deck is a bit dodge. In my part of the world, to “deck” someone implies punching them and thereby knock them to the ground, whereas “barrel” means to bodily charge into someone e.g. shirtfront them (and falling to the ground is not a guaranteed outcome). So while both are physical assaults, they are not synonyms.

    RB, I think you are right. 13A is okay.

    Ta for the NITs. :-)

    (BTW, I liked the reference in 1D to 16-down = TIN => SN. Neat.)

  12. OK, the explanation for barrel = deck matches what I first thought (but discarded because it was too awful to contemplate). My objections are: firstly, as stated by MF above; secondly, this is yet another one of those horrible transitive/intransitive mismatches that feature too often in DA’s crosswords. I couldn’t find any dictionary or google support for “barrel” used transitively in this way. You don’t barrel someone, you barrel INTO them, maybe (or maybe not) knocking them over. To “barrel” is “to move at a high speed”. To “deck” is “to knock down”. I vote this one of DA’s more execrable synonyms!

    Re 13A: the point you make, mic, is a good one. I agree data and lowdown are different types of information. But, IMO, this is one of DA’s less objectionable synonyms.

  13. Out here in the bush, we don’t barrell into someone politely like you city-slickers do, we just barrell ’em; similarly, we would say ‘I got barrelled’ !

  14. Crikey Peter, where do you live? I can’t find any support, online or otherwise, for your use of “barrel”. Apparently, when used transitively, it means “to put or pack in a barrel”. What you say seems reasonable – I just can’t find any support for it!

  15. RB, I’ve lived in all over Melbourne, inner & outer, and I reckon :-) that is Peter is not just reasonable, but spot on. “Barrel” is very commonly used as a transitive verb just as Peter describes.

  16. So why can’t I find this definition online? Is that a reflection on my googling ability? Can you find this definition online?

  17. My quick look at google found getting barrelled in football (rugby league), getting barrelled by a large wave, and getting barrelled by a large woman. It is certainly common usage out here (about 600km NW of Sydney). Google also showed American ‘get barreled’ (one l) meaning to be inside a tube / wave while surfing, but on the north coast of NSW ‘get barrelled’ means to be dumped by the wave.

  18. Wow! I just googled “barrelled by a large woman” and got something I didn’t expect! I also googled “barrelled in rugby league” and found references to scraping the barrel; lock, stock and barrel; even Donald Barrell, a Saracens Rugby Union player! Please tell me precisely what to google.

  19. I’m not trying to be difficult, honestly! But when I try what you suggest I get the sort of stuff I described earlier. My Google seems to work differently to yours.

    However I did try your link and found, under Newcastle Knights, “…scraped into the finals and got barreled”. Is that the reference you intended to give me?

  20. RB, I think you are right about what Google indexes.
    RB, almost all of Google search results for “I barrel[l]ed” or “he barel[l]ed” indeed DO show it being used intransitively. However, I can assure you that in at least some Australian circles that it is common for e.g. “Dave barrelled Phil” to be used synonymously for “Dave barrelled into Phil”.

    … the Web/Google does not capture 100% of all knowledge about/by humans! Quelle surprise!! Next someone will claim that not everything in wikipedia is 100% kosher. :-)

  21. What you say in your last para is true, of course, but it is surprising not to find that particular definition of “barrel” in the usual suspects that Google regularly throws up, such as thefreedictionary.com, wiktionary.org, wordnet.princeton.edu, answers.com, yourdictionary.com, etc etc.

    I have lost count of the number of times recently that I have been unable to find a particular meaning of a word (as used by DA) in any of my hardcopy dictionaries, but I have been able to find it online. I can only assume that this particular usage of “barrel” is quite rare. I failed to find it in Aussie slang sites too.

  22. Yes RB, that was it – here got barrelled = got thrashed = got flattened = got decked. Must be a country thing.

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