DA on the 10/11th of December, 2010

DA’s worried about this one: it’s meant to be a doozie.

Be warned, be patient, enjoy.

(No spoilers on this particular thread until Monday)

Update: One for the ages — an absolute rip-snorter and, I would say, an undisputed Pantheon member.

For posterity (and for those who mucked up their grid early), here’s DA’s peculiar, blank grid as printed in the SMH thanks to David H:

And here, thanks to Jonathan, is the filled-in grid:

I worked out the theme pretty quickly and had very nearly locked in LOOPY for what turned out to be RINGS. And that was pretty much typical of my efforts on this beauty over the weekend: while the penny dropped early on, I still stuggled with the answers to the clues themselves.

I did manage to pull it off, though, but I did cheat on one clue: I was having trouble working out that cutter and is an anagram of TRUNCATED so I resorted to (horror of horrors) an anagram solver to get me going early in the piece.

And a note: Cristóbal Colón is how Christopher Columbus is known in the Spanish-speaking world. DA has spent a fair whack of time in Spain and speaks at least some Spanish, so I’m betting he would have known this. And just as Matthew Flinders circumnavigated the island of Australia, Christopher Columbus circumnavigated the island of Hispaniola, and COLON I reckon DA inserted into his cryptic as a cross-language circumnavigation reference.

23 thoughts on “DA on the 10/11th of December, 2010

  1. I’m loving it so far. Just wish I could just stop work to do it! The theme is fun and is referenced in a few different ways. Looks like the actual crossword had to done in a different software programme – I expect a normal crossword software wouldn’t let DA leave numbers out?

  2. Yes, much better than last week’s. I suspect it wasn’t done with the usual software, or if it was, then it’s been tweaked by the printer; probably output to pdf, and use Illustrator or something push the numbers around. This would have not worked as a .puz file!

    Out of interest, does anyone know whether DA uses any particular software to do his thing?

  3. Have got nigh on half of this thing done but can’t quite come to grips with the misplaced number clues. Ians post of a gimmicky theme has me intrigued.

    I’ll 22A

  4. This one took a glass of wine and a shot of whisky to get out, Friday evening. I liked the way most of the themed clues were not indicated as such.

  5. Much more enjoyable than last week! Only a couple of unexplainable clues: 8A and 18D.

  6. 8a: ALBATROSS: dd. A reference to The Ancient Mariner and to golf
    18d: ORBITAL ROTATION: bit C(al)M rot in oration

  7. I must admit I got so frustrated by it that I ripped out the crossword page, scrunched it up into a ball, aimed it at the wastepaper basket and then solved it.

  8. Best for a while. Quite easy, I thought, but a lot of fun and some super clues, including 15A, 17A, 10D, 18D. I have a couple of minor wordplay queries in other thread.

  9. Eventually a good one, but I made such a mess of the first grid, I had to go out and buy a second paper – so congratulations to DA for boosting sales :) Guessed 15d and 8a, but not sure on the wordplay… off to the other thread.

  10. Really enjoyed this one. My immediate reaction was that it must be a misprint! Quickly realised it was just DA messing with our minds again. Initially thought there should have been one of his instructional notes we have seen before – but not needed for this one. All part of the cryptic journey!

    Thought the best clues were 4D and 15A.

  11. Unusually, the first half took ages but the second half just fell out. I liked 15A, 22A, 10D.

  12. This one clearly is up for the Pantheon. So what will we call it – the Wrap-Around Crossword?

  13. “Come in spinner” – I was certainly duped on the first attempt! Or as NC pointed out on the other thread – the torus.


    I battled with this for a few hours on friday with mixed results.
    I knew 5D had to be rings, I didn’t pencil it in and didn’t know how a rings theme could give me two 15 letter words (18d and 24a) ending in I.

    The misplaced number clues had me flummoxed.

    It must have been weighing heavy on my mind. I sat up bolt upright in bed at 3 AM with the realisation that the answer started from the number. They were in the right place.

    It only took me about another twenty minutes to knock the rest of it off, treating it basically as a quick and ignoring the cryptic elements.

    I couldn’t get back to sleep :)

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