DA Confusion for the 20th/21st of April, 2012

Have your DA confusions sorted out right about now.

Ask and ye shall receive.

105 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 20th/21st of April, 2012

  1. Got the RHS done, struggling a bit with the left.

    I liked 12A and 27A so far. I think I like 1A but don’t understand how the first word gives the first letter.

  2. Re 1a I agree with Flexicon. All spaces filled but can’t explain 26a. Have an answer that can be described by first two words of the clue.

  3. 1A: Flexicon: I read your post as “sounds bizarre” which wasn’t very helpful. This sort of inattentive reading that probably explains why I’ve been struggling so much with DA lately.

  4. Re13A: (the drink, as in ocean surrounding 3- letter word for pub)backwards plus quite minus some letters. Ignore reeling. 1st word in clue is definition.
    Re4A: descriptive of some ceiling material as well as a state of inebriation.
    Hope this helps!

  5. Re9A: Shooter is a tree commonly flowering around 11/11. 1st 4 letters sound like Aussie VC winner from WW1. Plus 3 letter word for managed plus 2 letter plug backwards.

  6. Time for an MRI, I think. I used to be able to do DA, and I failed again this week (most of the SW corner).

    I don’t get 11A. What has it to do with hip-pockets?

  7. Thankyou MIKE H! Had you not told me that I could have stared at 9A for ever, completely helpless. Thanks.

  8. Late start today,and little progress. Have solved only five, but Mike H’s tip above confirmed my 9A is correct. Looks like a long hard struggle.

  9. And getting nowhere. 1A would help, can’t make sense of clue or hints above. May have to abandon this one, only seven solved, looking for inspiration. Must be getting denser as I get older.

  10. Only some in the RH lower corner left but stumped by 5D – we have A-A for the first word. Also, 14D is a puzzlement – we have Q-U-F for the beginning. Don’t seem to be in error for the crossing answers. Any help, please?

  11. First time entry on DA site and am a novice with his cryptics but am now addicted. Victor, I think your ‘U’may be incorrect 19A I thought tripped is an anagram indicator

  12. Chamollie – 19A is an anagram and I’m sure we have the answer right – the 3 letter word begins with A. I confused things with my mistake with 14D – we have Q-A-F – I put the U in the wrong place in the previous. Obviously it follows the Q. More befuddlement!

  13. Have seven of them after an hour or so. (plus a couple of bits from the wordplay)
    I also have QUA_F for 14d but can’t come up with any word that fits the spaces never mind the clue. Chamollie’s clue didn’t help.
    Re 9a, even with Mike H’s hint I still have no idea. In which part of the world does it flower at that time, Northern or Southern Hemisphere?

  14. nn – 9a – wiki together with Mike H’s hint helped me with the Gallipoli hero; “switch plug” could’ve equally been, eg, “setter”
    Don’t get word play for 11a or 1d or “sap” in 3d; need help for 28a, 18d

  15. Thanks JJ, got it now. Why is it a shooter? Can see the other bits of the wordplay thanks to Mike’s explanation, although I would never have connected the first 4 letters with a VC winner.

  16. As happens occasionally, ripped it to shreds in frustration, then, some time later, restored it with sticky tape. Flood of words came, now have most of bottom half and fair bit of top. But still no 1A, now unsure if I have 1D correct, though I was thinking Louisiana?
    nn, I’m interested in your 14D, as to how ypou arrived at the QUA-F, I’m sure you are able to finish the word.
    Can’t find a word in my wordfinder that fits 13A. Is it the name of a drink? As a non-drinker, not familiar with such (but healthier)! Still at least seven short.

  17. Just found 5D, urgent need for clue to 13A. A Middle-East sounding dance would fit therte? Can see no connection with clue, however.

  18. @Arthur def in 13A is the first word, think dancing movement. Rest of it is just convoluted wordplay. The answer gave me the first letter of 14d and am assuming second letter must be a a U. I have the A from the first letter of 15a and the F from last letter of 21A. Have tried a wordfinder with those letters but it comes up with no words at all.
    Am not at all happy with 9A. It flowers later than 11/11 down here and the festival mentioned above is over by then. Still no idea on the shooter. Clue is just far too obscure for my liking, was not far behind you in ripping it up!

  19. Arthur I think you have the answer to 13A. Letters 1, 4 and 5 are “the drink” backwards. Letters 2,3 4 are the pub backwards. Rest of it is given by “quite out of it”, although technically “it out of quite” would be more accurate.

  20. @sb, now that I have 9a I have managed to complete the rest of the NW corner (except 3d, despite having all cross letters)
    1d The delta is the Mississippi, the answer is a name for people who live there, you’ve probably heard it in connection with cooking. Wordplay is letters 1, 2 and 5 are the gaol, letters 3 and 4 are the the jury losing track. Track is two letters, an abbreviation for a common type of track, he often uses this.
    Can’t help you with 28A I don’t have it. I think the answer for 21d is a word meaning the first word in the clue, but the wordplay escapes me.

  21. thanks nn – I can see the wordplay for 1d now.
    Still don’t have 28a or 18d; I’m ok with answer for 3d but don’t get unspoonerised “sap”

  22. @sb I have just got 26A revealing that my answer to 18d is wrong and I’ve probably messed you right up with my previous comment! I wrote 21d when I meant 18d, but my answer is wrong anyway. I’m getting really muddled now, despite having made a reasonable start (by my lowly standards!)

  23. Got 18d now. Def is the first word as I thought, but I was on the wrong track with this. This type is one I’m going to have a glass or two of when I finish! (and it isn’t Greek, that’s part of the word play).
    I think I have 28a, assuming first word is the def, although regularly would be more accurate. Don’t get the wordplay though.

  24. nn – just got 28a – nice! “bank” is letters 1, 7,8,9; letters 3-5 are contrary directions.
    I’ll work on 18d with your help thanks

  25. thanks sb, that confirms I have right answer for 28a and now I get the worplay. Was looking for contrary compass directions! Although “bank on” would be closer to those letters, but probably ruins the surface reading.
    I still can’t get 14d despite using half a dozen internet word finders , ditto 3d (and most of the right hand side!)

  26. and finally got 18d – thanks nn for glass or two clue – need to brush up on my greek alphabet!
    So. Done. Ciao for niao

  27. You are way ahead of me sb. I’m still missing every down and about half of the across answers on the right hand side (and still can’t get 3d)
    I’m going to shred it if I haven’t got any further by the time I’ve finished my cuppa

  28. Will have to abandon this for rest of today. Five (1A, 24A, 3D, 13D, 25D), no idea. Have entered words in 26 & 28A, but cannot see connection with clues. Will seek out the pool table, at least the balls behave according to the rules of physics.

  29. Only just joining in – having a busy day today so started late. I thought at first it was just me, but I see others are finding it difficult too!
    sb, if you haven’t already cracked the sap in 3, think Three Kings.
    No time for deep thought – still busy; may have to leave it to tomorrow to decide whether to join the shredders or not.

  30. I gave up too Arthur and went over to crossword club. Have all the answers and would never have got some of them without that. As usual some dodgy anagram indicators, some definitions that are more than a bit off, at least one word I’d never heard of that doesn’t appear in a dictionary and an author I’d never heard of (at least I assume that’s what the answer means)
    But lots of good one’s too.

  31. Nearly there but still baffled by 5D and 14D. Nothing in the dictionaries I have helps with the latter. I need a strong hint.

  32. Victor, 5D is the point in time when you (supposedly) say a three-letter equivalent of “Eureka!” Sort of like when you twig to a tricky DA clue. The poor player also has three letters, but only two of them coincide. For 14D think of something liquid.

  33. Thanks, Dave R – have 5D now and it raises a rueful smile. As for 14D the first letters I have – Q-A-F – suggest to drink heartily, but the only extension I know has only 8 letters, not the 9 required. I have E for the last letter. The answer must be a drink I’ve never heard of, perhaps.

  34. Victor, if you have 18d, it could be described by 14d (assuming you like 18d). You will find an 8 letter word with the same root in most dictionaries, but ending in “ing”. The answer is a nine letter word with an ending that means adequate.

  35. Sorry, cross post Victor, yes you are on the right track with 14d, just change the extension to make it an adjective rather than a verb.

  36. OK, I give in! I think I’ve got 14d – got it tentatively quite early on, actually. But there’s no way I can then get anything from the letters I’ve got for 27a. Is this a pom-excuding thing again?

  37. Mary I think 27a might even be a Queensland thing (they are even further removed from dear old England than the rest of Oz). You won’t find it in a dictionary and I still have no idea what it means.

  38. Mary, I agree with you that nothing seems to fit for the letters I have in 27a and all I need is two of them! No-one else seems to have mentioned this one, so what are we missing? Thanks to those who helped with 9a.

  39. Thanks, nn, but the word does not appear in Chambers or the Oxford – assuming that the last 4 letters mean ready and willing.
    All complete now except for 27A. I assume it refers to a native of a Queensland town.

  40. OK, now I have 27A and I think’s unfair. A Queensland blogger who is a non-meat eater is too obscure.

  41. You learn something new every day in this crossword lark, don’t you! Not sure how easy it will be to work 27 into normal everyday Mornington conversation, though.
    I’ve still painted myself into the bottom RH corner. Anyone with hints for 25 and 29?

  42. Mary, you need to ‘abridge’ a word for a boyfriend(or a girlfriend) for 29a. I’m not sure of the wordplay for 25a but you want a feature of a falcon. I am afraid I have not learnt anything from Victor’s suggestion.

  43. @Victor 14 doesn’t appear in any dictionary that I consulted either, but I guess it is ok, yes the last 4 letters mean ready and willing.
    Agree with above that 27A is more than a little unfair. It completely ruined my attempts to get the bottom left corner out as the only thing that I could come up with had BANER as the last 5 letters, which made sense in the terms of the Queensland urbanite (BANITE was my first take on it, but that didn’t fit). I couldn’t see how this fitted the rest of the clue though. It eventually forced me to give up on the rest of the crossword and I sought answers over at crossword club.

    Mary 29 is an Australian author. Not sure which one as I found two on Google, a Christina and an Elizabeth. I’ve never heard of either of them, although have heard the title of one of Christina’s books. I guess she is reasonably well known, but without knowing her you would have little hope of getting this out from the wordplay unless you had all the cross letters. I had none of the cross letters as I didn’t have any of the three down answers due to the problem with the grossly unfair 27A as mentioned above.

    25 is a part of a falcon (and any other bird of prey). Once you “come to grips” with this, google your answer and the phrase “card game” to see how it applies to the rest of the wordplay.

  44. Mary if Anne’s hint for 29 A about the boyfriend/girlfriend doesn’t help, keep your nerve, don’t tremble.

  45. Thanks, both, but I’d got the falcon bit – it’s 25d I’m stuck with. I can find an abridged boyfriend for 29, but googling only gives me a medical journalist to go with it, not a novelist. Ho hum – haven’t exactly enjoyed this!

  46. Anne the last 5 letters of 27A are a word for someone who doesn’t eat meat (or use any sort of animal product), a more extreme (for want of a better word) form of vegetarianism. If you google it you will find it is the name of some Queensland blogger.

  47. Mary, if you still don’t have 29A, the boyfriend bit is along the lines of when you go out with someone on a regulare basis you are going _ _ _ _ _ _. Then remove the last letter to get this author. If that doesn’t work, consider an antonym of shaky.

    For 25d the def is spotty (as in pimples). The answer is an adjective, Snake is another one of DA’s (dodgy) anagram indicators, dance is the fodder.

  48. nn, I had the last 5 letters (and the first and third) for 27a but even though I googled I still couldn’t come up with the blogger you mentioned. I agree with others that this seems an unfair clue.

  49. Re 27A: I just assumed Brisvegan was a term for a person from Brisbane. Along the lines of Peruvian, Taswegian, Glaswegian. But I can’t really find confirmation by googling. The blogger explanation, apart from being too obscure, doesn’t fit the clue as well as my (admittedly still obscure) explanation.

  50. RB. I’d always called them Brisbanites, never heard of a Brisvegan in that sense. Your explanation is certainly a better fit to the clue, but is Brisvegan a word?

  51. RB if it follows that pattern of the other cities it would be Briswegian wouldn’t it?

  52. Well, Peruvian is almost there. And there are other strange formations eg Novocastrian (which must be from Latin). Of greater concern to me is that I can’t find any support on Google, so even if my hunch is correct it’s still very obscure.

  53. If you’re from Bris-Vegas (a term in very common usage in Brisbane), you’re a Brisvegan (I don’t believe I’ve heard that derivation very often at all).

  54. Ah yes, I can find support for that on Google – apparently it’s an “ironic yet affectionate term for the city of Brisbane”.

  55. Thanks Henson, not familiar with Bris-Vegas, will google. Given that us Mexicans don’t know much about Bris-Vegas and given that even up there, the Brisvegan derivation isn’t heard very often, it makes the clue pretty unfair IMHO.

  56. Hi All,
    This is my first post and I really enjoy this website, but only after completing the whole crossword, (which I have again ) or have been stuck for at least 2 days.
    I have been doing DA crosswords for over a year now, and they are getting easier.
    So I thought the RULE was NO SPOILERS UNTIL MONDAY.
    Any thoughts ?
    regards DArat

  57. Yes, I have to agree with you, nn. It was my last clue solved. I’d never heard of “bris” either (for circumcision) so that made it even more difficult for me.

  58. The official rule about spoilers only applies to the “other” thread. You enter the confusions thread at your peril. However, I agree it’s become customary to try to be oblique, wherever possible, even in this thread.

  59. Had heard of bris which gave me the first few letters but didn’t help with the rest. Last week we had castration, now cirucmcision, hope this isn’t DA’s latest idée fixe!

    Regarding spoilers, agree with RB, no rules on this thread but protocol seems to be
    First query give hint without giving anything away to anyone else reading it. If this doesn’t help then give a bit more. As the weekend progresses, hints become less obscure and as we all get it, discussion moves to whether or not the clue is a good one and explanation of the wordplay. But there are no hard and fast rules on this thread. As RB says enter at your peril, we come here for help and discussion.

  60. Been out for the evening, which has eased my grumpiness somewhat – came back to helpful hints here, for which many thanks. My troublesome corner is now filled. Don’t like 25d much – an ugly word, and not in my dictionary. I’d half convinced myself the novelist should be Sweet, from sweetheart as the boyfriend, which didn’t help.

  61. I agree, Mary, about 25D’s ugliness (but at least you can find the word by googling). I learned long ago that DA is not constrained by dictionaries (except on the Letters and Numbers show). He revels in slang and made-up words. And I felt that 21A was quite ugly too.

  62. Filled in the missing letters over breakfast, kicking myself that I hadn’t recognised the ‘Greek finalist’. And 25D. What a clot. Then came 1A and 3D, as I remembered that cat. 13D is just a guess, never heard the term, but I note it is on Google. Still not understanding clues for 26 & 28A, but my answers fit. Awaiting tomorrows paper. Best wishes to all.

  63. In my schoolyears in Brisbane I saw a Tshirt showing a frame of balloons, streamers & party lights surrounding a completely black rectangle. The caption was “Brisbane by Night!”. Hence Brisvegas, I presume…

  64. Having dutifully googled, I now suspect that the vegan blogger is not actually the intended reference to the answer but a distraction. I see nothing wrong with the straightforward derivation of Brisvegan from Brisvegas, once that name (indeed ironic) was established. The blogger then presumably jumped on the chance to grab the name as relevant. Does anyone happen to know whether people from Las Vegas are referred to as Las Vegans?

  65. Arthur @28A, If you “bank” on something, you can rely on it, @ 26A, google “talon card game” – and congratulations on giving it another go. We often find that on the second / third attempt we get a break-through.
    NEVER GIVE UP!!

  66. Doug & Gwyn. Eureka! I was thinking of the contrary directions as being the E & N, it is now clear and my answer is correct. Had never heard of that card game term, haven’t played cards much since I married in ’56, except with the kids (long ago). We used in many games call the remaining cards ‘kitty’ and people who made irresponsible bids in 500 ‘guts grabbers’.

  67. Once again I have joined too late to make a real contribution, after finally solving my last (13d with the help of a word finder; and then 28a, having missed earlier clue as it said contrary directions was letters 3-5, when it was actually 2-6.
    Worked out the connection with Brisbane and Las Vegas early and was frustrated reading the above to late to put in a word of clarity. That Brisbane blogger will be pleased by the extra hits I suppose!
    Definitely a tough one this week. But isn’t the reason we love DA the challenge?

  68. Over here we have Rotovegas, though I’ve never heard of people from there being Rotovegans. I thought the clue was actually a bit too easy, though if you’ve never heard that nickname for the city in QLD, I suppose it would be next to impossible.

    P.S. Just finished Puck in today’s Guardian. I don’t think I’m losing my touch at cryptics, I’m just not on DA’s wavelength any more. Puck did include Graeme Garden, Thomas Arnold and morris dancer, so as heavy on the English references as DA is on the Australian ones.

  69. Going back to early discussion on 1A, would radio = CB, and describes be a containment indicator?

  70. Really struggled with this one. Lulled into a false sense of erudition by the ease of the puzzles of the last few weeks. Felt DA was back to his best/most sadistic as I attempted this. A couple a obscure answers thrown in to make things extra challenging.

  71. I’ve just looked at 8D again. I thought my reasoning was OK when I solved it, but just now in trying to explain it to someone else I’ve realised my explanation is not quite right. I originally thought that “dirty” was the definition, “dirty look” gave last four letters, “dance spot” gave first five letters. But that means “dirty” is doing double duty. So now I’m thinking the whole clue is just a cryptic/oblique definition, and there isn’t a formal definition as such – it’s just coincidence that the first word of the clue happens to supply a reasonable definition. How do others see this clue?

    13D was a clue with hidden depths. It was only when I was pondering why DA used the plural “phony acts” instead of the singular “phony act” that I twigged what DA was alluding to. The “we hear” really is a homophone indicator!

  72. All OK! Once more, victory snatched from the jaws of defeat, etc. As the Japanese would say ‘Ichiban! Mata raishu’.

  73. RB, I’ll buy you take on 8D. I had dirty as the definition, dance spot gave me disco, look gave me lo but i couldn’t work out where the UR came from. Looks a little messy, I agree, but I threw the towel in and moved on.

    I can now add lour to my vocabulary but my chances of using it are slim.

  74. I’m surprised nobody else has commented on 13D, which I think is pure DA magic. The significance of “phony acts” did not immediately occur to me, but when it did (acts -> axe -> guitar) it was a real “aha moment”! I fear DA’s magic in this clue may have gone unrecognised.

  75. Thanks RB re 13D, thought it was just a convoluted double definition until I read your post. Not sure all the same that “acts” is strictly a homophone of “axe”. Re 8D I thought that “dirty” (verb) was the definition; lour could be just a look perhaps and not necessarily a dirty look but I take your point about the double use of dirty.

    Regarding the crossword as a whole we did find it particularly difficult (got the last few -aha moments – in the middle of sodden Melbourne traffic jams only yesterday). I love DA & am pretty tolerant of his inventiveness but I do think that “snake” as an anagrind and the containment indicator in 1a (“describes” from memory) are very unfair.

    Finally, Brisvegan was the first clue I got and it is the one that made me smile the most which just shows we all bring different perspectives & background knowledge to DA each week.

  76. JK, I agree “acts” and “axe” are not quite perfect homophones, but DA has had plenty worse than that!

    As for anagrinds, I agree “snake” was woeful. And “badger” wasn’t much better.

    I’m pretty sure DA has used “describes” as a containment indicator before. Not sure that excuses it, but it does make it a bit easier to spot!

  77. RB re 13D, perhaps most of us have never heard of a guitar referred to as an axe? But I do like your explanation, it makes much more sense of the clue than anything I could come up with.

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