I’m Confused by DA on the 7/8th of May

Here’s where you ask the questions that need answering.

Update: A couple of my queries have already been answered; not these few, though:

28, 24 down: Contrary source described old admirer’s locale? (5, 4)
So, what’s the answer?

14 down: Do Mem Fox panto with fake curtains? (4, 6)
I think there’s a joke here I’m missing.

23 thoughts on “I’m Confused by DA on the 7/8th of May

  1. Quite a quick completion today, except for 8D, which I am baffled by. I have half the letters, but just don’t get it. Any clues would be appreciated. Although what am I supposed to do on a Saturday afternoon if I do get it? DA normally takes me the whole weekend on and off

  2. 8D is fairly straightforward in terms of wordplay, though the answer is a slightly unusual word which I hadn’t heard of. I reckon you’ll get it with a bit of perseverance.

    I’ve got no idea about the wordplay on 26D. Any help?

  3. 8D: Marsupial, so it’s an Aussie; the word is well known in central Australia.
    26D: Mmmm, what might ‘trailers’ indicate?

  4. As always, I have a couple of wordplay queries/whinges.

    16A: “reserve” seems inapplicable here for TOME. Or am I misreading?
    3D: I can’t account for one of the A’s near the end.
    21A/25D: Only a vague idea what might be happening here. Letters of REVIEWERS minus V are at the front, except for one R … WITHERS are near the neck of a horse … ??? …

  5. Thanks Peter. AG, think about ‘battery’ and I’m sure you’ll come up with an explanation for the two A’s near the end of 3D. Re 21A/25D: I think you are right re the savaged letters of REVIEWERS minus V, which ‘choke’ THE, followed by SPOON for ‘neck’ – presumably in the sense of kiss/cuddle … unless there’s some other way of equating neck with spoon …

    I share your question/reserve-ation about 16A …

  6. Not too difficult; got it all out bar one.

    The one is 27A. Is it ILK, INK or IRK?


    4D: HUG from “couple” is dubious, even with DA’s get-out-of-jail question mark.

    16A: Assuming the answer is THE OMEN, does the clue work courtesy of MO backwards in THE END without the D?

    29A: How does “Yes, in mushrooms” give MORAY EELS?

    15D: Was Drake’s distraction infamous? Famous, more like. I mean, apart from the fact that it didn’t actually happen.

  7. 16A – I read it the same, I think, as AG, in that keeping HE (man) in TOME (reserve) which doesn’t seem quite right. Is it perhaps TO ME – reserve? before rotten finale (N)

    29 Morels are mushrooms, with ‘aye’ inside.

  8. Yep, I think a spelling mistake tripped you up, Tony.

    And I think I’m gonna be resurrecting DA Bullshit this week.

  9. 14 d Mem Fox is a children’s author, best known for her book “Possum Magic”, so “do Mex Fox panto” would be to ‘play’ it. To play possum is to fake being dead(curtains)

  10. 28a 24 d, I’ve got as Stage Door, mainly because it fits in, and it could be the locale of an old admirer, but I can’t explain the contrary source.

  11. JD,

    28A, 24D

    “contrary source” = ROOTS backwards.

    AGED is “old”.

    ST _ AGED _ OOR

    Which is the “admirer’s locale”.

  12. Thanks, jnrj – the Reese W construction is actually quite nice, now that i can see it.

    I think there are now no outstanding queries on this thread except for 16A, for which I’ve seen no convincing explanation. New alternative: can anyone see TOM as reserve?

    Also: the ‘registered’ as a sounds-like signifier for 13D is a stretch.

  13. Tony, re 3D I read “couple opening 3D” as “OO”, which then translates into “HUG-O” – the hug part coming from the same usage as in the XXX OOO XXX which will no doubt appear on lots of Mother’s Day cards tomorrow… :)

  14. I got to 28A, 24D by a different root – “staged” meaning contrary as in fake, and “source described” ORE becoming OOR.

    4D. HUG meaning COUPLE was obvious to me

  15. Great to read such robust debate every week. And while I’m reluctant to make regular posts – this site belongs to solvers – I do visit often to see how puzzles have been received.

    On JD’s request, I have a spot of explaining to do.

    28A,24D, the clue for STAGE DOOR, is a container clue with twist of reversal: Contrary [less common signpost to reverse] source [ROOTS backwards = STOOR] described [signpost to contain] old [AGED] admirer’s locale? [def]

    The reference here is a STAGE DOOR JOHNNY, that doting theatregoer awaiting the actress after the show with bouquet and false hope. (Tony was on the money.)

    Meanwhile 16A, the clue for THE OMEN, holds a blunder. At first draft, I’d used the word ‘book’ in the clue, which hampered surface sense. As proof phase, I thought ‘reserve’ read far better, however ‘reserve’ may signal BOOK, but never TOME. A sloppy conflation. My apologies. Feel free to file under Bullshit.

    If I had my time over, my salvaged clue would read: Horror film keeping bloke in work until production’s end (3,4). But that raven has flown.

    Keep up the inspired discussions – fond or furious – and I’ll do my best to keep up my end of the bargain.

  16. Thanks for the feedback feedback, DA. I think it’s fair to say that the solvers’ community regards the contribution as a favour and not to be expected. Thanks in particular for the explanation of how the TOME thing happened. In a funny kind of way, it’s now understandable.

  17. Re 8D: Even with Google, Larapinta was hard to nail down. The 223 km trail in Central Australia seems to be quite famous; the marsupial much less so.

  18. Sadly, DA is not treated with much love over there.

    They don’t like DA’s tricks so much over there, whereas I think it’s safe to say that we revel in them over here, at least most of the time.

  19. Disagree, AS. I think their (mostly, Ian’s) analysis is pretty dispassionate and fair. While most DAs contain at least one clue sparkling with brilliance, one must admit that he is equally prone to the odd clue that must be taken with more than a small grain of salt. Fair enough … I’ll (grumpily :-) work my way through the roughies, just so I can enjoy the smooth.

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