DA Confusion for the 5th of July, 2013

Here’s where you can sort out any DA confusions you might have.

81 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 5th of July, 2013

  1. A theme but not too sticky. Love the misdirections in 9/25. Only got it after getting a couple of the acrosses.

  2. Just a couple to go in the NE and SE corner, one of which by elimination I’m guessing is the themed Down clue. Hints please? The computer technician is coming in a couple of hours and I’ll be off line.
    Some wordplay still to solve too. eg5D
    14A was good. 15A contains another dodgy homophone.

  3. I have 1D. Had never heard of it, Google had. But that is all, busy day coming up, puzzle looks hopeless at present. Will look again after lunch.

  4. I meant NW and SE. Think I have 1D but it’s not only chicken is it? I thought it was the spice or spicey cuisine. Ah, had 2D wrong!
    Hellooooo Trippers! Looks like a game of solitaire this morning. : (

  5. Gayle, I’m all done but for the SE corner, so may not be able to help you. I’m confused on the wordplay for 5D, too: where do the first two letters come from?

  6. Hi Rupert. I just have 24D and 26A left. You too?
    Haven’t figured out 5D yet either. Have tried parsing 5D with different combinations of the short wave, eg letters 3,4,5,6 or 3,4,5 but no luck yet.

  7. Hi Gayle. not going out till0900, so had another look. 11A could get you wound up, I thought. Have also added 3D, so small progress.

  8. Here here for 11A discussion, Arthur C. We’re in the groove! ..and not too old to remember :)
    I now have what I think is the right 24D which makes my original 24A wrong which is a shame. It was a good one.

  9. If 24A is what I think it is it is a howler of a homophone. No wonder we got stuck on it.

  10. 19D I overthought, but it’s a straight two-part clue, 1-3 and 4-7, abbreviated.

  11. Yes, 24a is a howler of a homophone. Sometimes you wonder what sort of accent DA must have to come up with them, but I’ve heard him on the radio (he does fill-ins on 3RRR) and he has a standard educated Australian accent

  12. Much more interesting this week. For 24A, I can only think of one word that fits the theme but cannot tie it into the clue. If it is a ‘howler of a homphone’ as Gayle says, it certainly escapes my English accent.

  13. 24A: I have it as a 9/25 relating to weaponry, which is a homophone for an unestablished religion if you ignore the vowel.

  14. Thanks, Rupert. I could only think of cola and what I now see as the correct answer. Maybe Martin Ferguson pronounces them the same, but I certainly don’t!

  15. Got most of the right side and have the theme from the first couple of across clues I somehow mangled to get from wordplay. Have no idea how the clue for 9/25 works and thanks to Ian’s hint I have 24a, but again, no idea how that clue works. Can’t see any bad homophone here even if I try to pronounce it with an “educated Australian accent” (which would appear to be an oxymoron!)

  16. Scrap that, it is 26a I got thanks to Ian’s hint, not 24a, which I don’t have. Can’t see how 26a works and have just got 14a from the cross letters but can’t see how that clue works either. Don’t appear to be on DA’s wavelength today.

  17. Right side completely done, left side completely blank (apart from 25a). Getting absolutely nowhere at the moment.

  18. 9/25: “Rocky star” gives letters 1, 2, 3, 10. The rest is a country with “champion ultimately” removed.
    26A: 1st word is the definition. Officer gives letters 1 – 3.

  19. Gah. Ignore that 26A – it’s actually 24D.

    26A: “Fix” gives letters 1 – 3; “doctor” letters 4 and 5; “leg” letters 6 and 7; the last letter is “gripe” with a deletion.

  20. Having returned to the fray (briefly after-dinner nap coming up), have now eight. Have only three acrosses, but not seeing a common theme yet. Tried to put FILO at 15A, but no such word in my pooter. Probably not going to finish this one, have to see neurologist later this afternoon. Liked 12A when I finally saw it. Much work still to do.

  21. Thanks Rupert, 9/25a is clever, 26a a bit too convoluted for my liking, although the clueing of the last letter is very good.
    Have three words on the left side now, liked 3d when I finally got it. Still very slow progress compared to the right side

  22. All done now, quite a battle with the themed entries, there are just so many possibilities. Still pondering some wordplays but have to go out so will leave them until later

  23. Thanks for your 11.50 explanation, Rupert. I can sometimes get DA out but never would have got that one.

  24. Despite desperate cheating, I’m struggling to finish even though I got the theme quite quickly (screwed myself for a while because I got 25A wrong – same meaning but different word) – still need 8A – looks like a floor covering but can’t figure the workplay, 2D, if it is a floor covering, then the only thing I can find is a kind of toucan which is not a parrot, 24A – so many possibilities, an inflatable mattress, a soft drink, a bedtime drink, a mint with a hole in it, and 24D. Any extra clues?

  25. 8A: Yes, it’s flooring. Wordplay is the guts of the last five words.
    2D: I think this is the Down 9/25, so there’s no definition. “parrot” means repeat.
    24D: 1st word is the definition. Officer gives letters 1 – 3.

  26. Thanks also Rupert have finally worked out the theme, which should be a big help

  27. Thanks, Rupert – 8A is devilish even for DA. Now got 24D, and, I guess, 24A which we’ve heard is a dreadful homophone but I still don’t get it. Still working on 2D.

  28. Long nap today. Finally found 15A, had never heard of them. Not a business type! Beginning to get an idea of theme, but only four acrosses so far. Is there a Caledonian connection to 23A? If so, I can’t find the second word. Any clues?

  29. Got 2D now – had to go through the alphabet and almost got to the end!

  30. Arthur, yes, about the Caledonian connection, cheers is showing gratitude and the rest is more like exercise than sport.

  31. Thanks, Prufrock, just returned after seeing, finally, what the 9A, 25A is. So maybe can make a bit more progress now.

  32. 15 A letters 5-7 is another homophone that isn’t.
    De-Aze … a kill-ease heal!?

    Yes, ArthurC. 23 A Caledonian. It was the one that gave me the theme. Known by various names in different countries, and generations. Sticky one, that!

  33. Right, Gayle. yes, onto the theme now, twelve clues still to solve, maybe thirteen. Is there a remote connection between bangers and the dog in 6D?

  34. Go them all, but I agree that 24A is a roughie. What’s more, I don’t get the wordplay for 8A.

  35. Jack, no wordplay. If words had intestines, you’d find those of last five words of clue.

  36. Finally realised that one of my first answers was wrong, although on the right track … sort of. 3d is not TELLER.

  37. Geoff, a particular scientist responsible for a particular counter.

  38. Geoff, you’re right it isn’t Teller, but it surely could be from the clue. Wonder if DA spotted the possibility…

  39. Geoff, in a way 3d fits the theme, yet is clued.

    Think of the counter as a measuring instrument!
    btw I’m not too keen on anagrind in 20 ac.

    Loved 18 d v timely with release of relevant movie last week (I’m a big fan of the actor in that role!!!) Will we have a LR clue next week?

    If still around, Arthur, 2:30 q re. 6d: yes!

    All done … up up & away …

  40. If anyone still around I’m not sure of the answer to 17 across.
    If someone could parse the clue for me it would be most appreciated!

    btw My answer is a snack food in a cylindrical package!

  41. Gil – 17A – How I got there – “Backed a captain’s diary” give letters 7, 6,5,1. “bound” = container. “published” – letters 2,3,4.

  42. Thanks Ray I had “Pringle” but I can see now that the answer is clancy of the mat …
    Clancy of the mat? Damn voice input I said “crunchier than that”!

  43. While on the subject of voice input I just tried it with the alleged homophone for 24 ac.
    In every instance of a string of such it perceived it as the 9/25 version. Weird!

  44. Yes, I had the beverage mentioned by Barry as the answer for 24a. Remember the er…, I’ll euphemistically refer to it as an “event”, in the Guyanan jungle in the late 70’s or early 80’s?

  45. Thanks for all your help, folks. A late start this week meant I wasn’t able to ask the questions, but the above enabled me to finish, especially Rupert’s help with 9/25a. I did need a word finder on 19d though.
    Can’t agree about the homophone in 24a. That’s how I say it. I am wondering if it could be one of those Sydney/Melbourne pronunciation differences, like ‘castle’?

  46. Re 24A, with the “solution” in today’s Age in front of me, and 20 years of residency in marvus Melbur complete with having harkened to the Collingwood Fanatics and my Blues tragic rellies, I am still discombobulated. Can anyone give me a hint, please, as to what it is that might be followed?

  47. Mike,
    Think religious sect rather than the religion of Victoria. A word with a different vowel to the answer, and apparently pronounced very differently in Melbourne, but quite similarly where DA and I are from.

  48. Mike and Sandy
    Which is not a homophone of COLT.
    MOLL/MULL , DOLE/DULL, long vowel/diphthong versus short vowel , and not the same vowel!
    And in my view FACTS/FAX is equally as bad.
    As much as we might enjoy DA’s other talents, I think homophones that aren’t are unfair to the solver.

  49. Many thanks Sandy and Gale.
    Re 24A, as so often my problem was one of parsing. I was working on “Declaration by….” when I should have bracketed “fanatic followers”.

  50. Gayle, as I said, I pronounce cult and colt fairly similarly. And I grew up in the same part if Sydney as DA. There are variations in the Australian accent.
    Facts and fax come out pretty much the same to me too. Homophones are never meant to be exact anyway

  51. @Sandy “Homophones are never meant to be exact anyway”. My understanding of the word, backed up by every dictionary I’ve consulted, is that they do sound exactly the same. Their, they’re and there are homophones, colt and cult are not, even if in some parts of Sydney they sound similar. Similar isn’t identical. If DA is going to use dodgy homophones, perhaps he could indicate such with a question mark or something in the wordplay that suggests you need a Sydney accent for it to work, in a similar way that dropping an h is clued as Cockney. For example hone and own could be Cockney homophones, but they aren’t to the rest of us. I guess we could have sex, sucks and six as Kiwi homophones too :-)

  52. Thanks all for the help with 24A. No wonder I struggled with it… “colt” and “cult” aren’t homophones to my ear. But more importantly, I don’t think “colt” is a current generic trademark – apparently it was so in the 19th century but that’s hardly common knowledge.

  53. @ Chris B, the instructions at the top said all of the themed entries BEGAN life as 9/25A, not that they are current. I think there are probably a few others that are no longer so, such as 10a, 11a, 12A, 20a and 26a, although I could be wrong on some of these, they may still be current, but the legalities are largely ignored.

  54. Melburnian here and I must admit I pronounce the disputed 24a homophone very similarly. Very interesting to learn others don’t.

    Now if you’ll excuse me I’m off to watch the aerial 26a.

  55. Chris B – I came in to make the same point. I can’t find any evidence of revolvers being referred to simply as “Colts”. For a few years after Sam put his invention on the market it was certainly the only brand available but was very soon in competition with Smith and Wesson et al.

  56. About the only good thing to be said for the NZ Herald crossword setters is that they generally avoid homophones, probably for just the reason that @nn suggested.

    In Manurewa, shouted mate a beer (4)

    … would be hard as!

  57. Rupert you’ve got me intrigued. Is it the Mate brewery in NZ? Have been round the world and back again on Wiki. (off work with an injury and way too much time on my hands)

    Or is it something else to do with the pronunciation of ‘beer’, which in some Australian variants can be more like ‘beee’ or ‘beya’

    Then there’s mate, a South American drink, but Wiki warns against what they call a ‘hypercorrection’ to ‘maté’ which means killing in Spanish.

    Which reminded me of my faux pas when visiting relatives in Germany with my brother, a butcher in Oz. The German rellies killed, processed and served their own meat in their restaurant. They asked how many head of sheep my brother killed per week. And I translated how many *shepherds* he killed. Aussie barbarians! At least that’s what they heard, while the whole Gasthaus cracked up laughing, because of a little old umlaut on the vowel.

    Then there’s the story told by a friend about her experience when buying chicken in Spain. Spanish speakers will guess her mistake with the l/ double ll.

    And we were both language teachers. Homophone rules, OK?!

  58. @Gayle, answer was BREW, homophone of BRO, the way it is pronounced by some around here (I picked Manurewa, a low-decile suburb in South Auckland, for blatantly classist reasons).

  59. Why all the fuss about ‘homophones’? Did DA ever call them homophones? It’s all good fun. I’m all done (after a very slow start, and with help from above) except for 3d.

  60. @sb “Did DA ever call them homophones?” er, yes.

    Read section covered by chapters 15, 16 and 17 in DA’s “Puzzled”, entitled “Homophones”.


  61. Here’s a link to a section on homophones on Alan Connor’s Guardian Crossword Blog: http://www.guardian.co.uk/crosswords/crossword-blog/2011/dec/08/cryptic-crosswords-for-beginners-soundalikes

    He points out that these types of clues can be a little controversial because ‘… a single word can be pronounced differently according to region, class or eccentricity.’

    For what it’s worth, I pronounce COLT and CULT the same way. And though I have no problem accepting that others pronounce it differently (and possibly more correctly) I think it’s just as common to hear it pronounced ‘my’ way and find it surprising that others are unfamiliar with it.

    When solving a homophone clue, I think it can be unhelpful to think of it in terms of how the word is ‘correctly’ pronounced and better to think more in terms of how it could be commonly pronounced.

    I bristled at FACTS = FAX but then thought, there are plenty of people who do say them the same way.

  62. Can’t agree RK. A solver always needs to be able check that their solution is correct by some kind of reference. How can they know how “it could be commonly pronounced”? Far too loose to be useful. Dictionaries carry information on pronounciations and they should be used by setters and solvers alike for confirmation. It’s absolutely helpful to think in terms of how a word “is ‘correctly’ pronounced” as it’s documented for all to reference.


  63. I’m with you Stig. Even if we accept ones according to how they are commonly pronounced, from the discussion above, Colt and Cult are only commonly pronounced in a few areas of OZ. For the rest of us they sound very different to the point where we would never have got the reference. As such being common in some places doesn’t make them common elsewhere. DA should remember that the crossword goes to other parts of Australia (and overseas) than just some areas of Sydney and needs to be solvable by all.

  64. I’ll happily accept a loose homophone if there’s a “loose homophone” indicator.

    Vaguely heard Simpson dial 4 for example (9)

  65. Well I’d have to be nearly the last to finish… Just before the next DA cruelty lands on my lawn. I did lose it in the laundry last Saturday and found it yesterday.
    I liked that one. It was very tough. I had filo but I say it feelo, so fylofax didn’t register.
    I liked Geiger but its interesting that Teller works.
    I had past it before I found the theme…
    Only a few hours till I’m bamboozled again. Thanks for the help trippers !

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