DA Confusion for the 21st of July, 2017

Get all your confusions sorted out for this week’s DA. Bring it.

50 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 21st of July, 2017

  1. Got 21D/2D fairly quickly. Then the rest comes pretty easily.
    All out and understood except for wordplay of 15A.

  2. Groan, my most unfavourite theme, but no doubt it will please others. Got 8D, before 21/2. Determined not to google. Haven’t got 15 yet Ray.

  3. Morning all, and yes Gayle, me too re theme. Just three outstanding, any gentle non-spoilers – for 1D, 12A, or 22A,- would be appreciated!

  4. An icy good morning to all, from Ballarat. just went to Coles on scooter, its -3 degrees. Appropriate, could only find three answers. Brain freeze!

  5. 1D – themed anagram.
    12A – defn = “resort”.
    22A – “sticks” is 1,5,6,7,8

  6. Thanks, Ray, still took ages on 22A, was chasing the wrong sticks, then still found myself chasing other wrong sticks, got really bogged down, until magically, hey presto, the answer descended like a beam from heaven, so I was able to reach shore, soggy but safely solved!

  7. Alice, in 4D, “Pixar’s alien” was a lonely robot, find him (?) at 1-4, 8. Remaining wordplay involves a 5-letter deletion. Defn is “marketplace”, a very famous one!

  8. Nice and easy. I’m seeking two explanations, please: for 18a, and the “sticks” bit of 22a which Ray and Gayle have still not made clear for me. Assuming my 1-5-6-7-8 is right … It’s not a word, and read in another way it still means nothing to me.

  9. AG re 22A
    Definition is “marsh”.
    England’s two openers @ 2 & 3
    End of spell @ 4
    “catching” a containment indicator

    Suspect “spell” also double duty to suggest the nature and purpose of the “sticks”? Toss some HP sauce into the cryptic cauldron (possibly ceramic?)! Enough hints!

  10. Phoebe, re 15A,
    Defn. “Light aircraft”
    “wheeled” reversal indicator for all components …
    “without” letters 7-4
    “flash” letters 3-1

  11. AG: like me, you may have an alternative word for 22A which answers the definition but can’t explain the ‘sticks’. Got it now! I found this difficult today as it took me ages to get the ‘theme’. It wasn’t until I got 5D that things started to make sense.

  12. Ann, at one stage I was looking for anyone surnamed Marsh with the nickname “ceilings”, kept turning up the almost universal “Swampy”.

  13. Hello Trippers, took a while, but solved. Clues 3D & 17A remain total mystery! Could someone please parse? Solved only by playing with possible definitions. Happy DAy!

  14. I feel like 21,2D is an important key in getting going! Can someone please help out this relative newbie!?

  15. Julia, re 3D, “now and then” tells you to remove alternate letters from the previous two words (hint: leave the evens) this gives you the letters of the answer, but not in order!

    17A Dali was one of the leading exemplardms of a major 20th century art movement! “dwarfish” is an instruction to shorten the 6-letter “county” to occupy the first five letters, and the balance gives you the “elite” (usually seen in the letter pattern “(1-4)”).

  16. 17A Defn=first word, depicted =container indicator, dwarfish clues 1-5 a county name (letters reduced),final word clues letters 6-10 a common description often seen as 1-4 hope this is ok

  17. Deplorable effort today, solved only five. Glad others found it easy, i found it impossible. sad. Will look a little further, but not hopeful.

  18. But then I found 5D, which gives me the theme, up to nine solved. Still looking. I think my 22A must be wrong, it has the right letters at 2,3, 4, but the rest is meaningless to me, even though it accords with marsh. Couldn’t locate the Pixar character, might have helped. But 18A just popped out, which gives me second half of 6D. Must Google for first part.

  19. Now all but first part of 4D filled in. Absolutely no idea how 3D , 9A, and a number of others are clued, but what I have seems to fit. A real struggle due to my obtuseness. At 88, my mind isn’t as nimble as it was.

  20. Arthur, I think your mind must be nimbler than my 67 year-old one as I have only four answers, needless to say none of the themed ones. 22,2D still eludes me.

  21. GeoffD re 21D/4D

    Note the clue’s pattern is 8, though split 4,4 in the grid. 21D is clued by “bankroll” and 4D by “gala”. “It can be political”, particularly say if your surname rhymes with “splatter”. Oh, enough spoilers!


  22. All out .took a while to get the themed clues,still not sure what the numbers in the themed clues mean,i.e 1d “15” . Re 21/2D its a compound word made up of 2 4letter words. “Political” is an adjective that can be put in front of the answer.

  23. numbers are how many it takes (a side) for each theme clue to be enacted

  24. Can anyone explain the wordplay for 18a & 23a?

    And help translating:
    10a quaintly confounding
    19a principal bypassing?

    It annoys me more when I get the crossword out and can’t understand it than when I can’t complete it.


  25. 18A -> definition = first word and the rest of the clue relates to the phonetic alphabet.
    and I’m just as confused about the rest of your annoyances.

  26. Pertinax

    18A alpha bravo charlie delta & next?

    23A if you’re “totally brilliant” you must be …?

    10A “quaintly confounded” e.g. drat, darn it, or letters 4-8 here!

    19A principal = MAIN
    “principal bypassing a” occupies letters 3,2,1

  27. The 10A quaintly confounded examples above should be dratted, darn, etc, i.e. quaint mild adjectival expletives!

  28. google says it is an old-fashioned euphemism.

    I understand all word play now except for the last three letters of 19A, the two As from 9A and the cat bit from 6D
    and I’m at a loss with the answer for 7A…
    Can anyone help!

  29. The cat in 6D is not a pussy but another type of cat- 4 letters and not a boat either. Re 7 A, definition is first two words, and “spiked” is an anagrind.

  30. Bianca,

    19A the retired writer occupies 6,5,4
    9A letters 1-4,8 constitute a word meaning “store” (a verb) “downsized” by 1 letter
    6D letters 7-10 is a cat (a whip)
    7A Maori name for white people, anagram of “a heap” and “beak’s tip”

    If you’re a newbie, get solution from tomorrow’s paper, and work through the answers, to see if you can understand the wordplay. Then ask the questions here for those you can’t! One of the best ways to learn!

  31. Thanks I got bloody from Google was thinking covered in blood, which didn’t help.

    9A Item is one “a”, the other is in a downsized store
    7A kiwi is a New Zealander; spiked is an anagram key for [a heap + beak’s tip]
    6D The cat has nine tails.

  32. Pertinax, re 9A

    “item sure off limits” gives letters 4-5 (from “item”) and 6-7 (from “sure”). Defn is “beginners”.

    The “downsized store” is at letters 1-3,8. In this instance, “store” is a verb, and its synonym provides both “a’s”.

  33. At 7:49 pm, replying to Bianca re 9A, I made an error: “letters 1-4,8” should have read “letters 1-3,8”. Apologies!

  34. Thank-you very much everyone!
    Even when i have the answers I still like to be able to understand the word play involved!

  35. Celia, thanks for your hint for 21/2D at 5:11pm. I’ve just worked out the answer !!!!

  36. Ann (12.45) and Arthur (3.45) obviously had the same alternative word as I did for 22a. Not a good result for DA to leave room for a word that is not only equally good for the definition but also for part (England’s two openers) of the cryptic section.

  37. AG
    FENLANDS? Or what?

    Harmonising the wordplay and definition weeds out answers that may satisfy the perceived definition and sometimes some of the wordplay, but not all, and hence are not what the compiler intended.

    Hell, I started with CEILINGS, because CLINGS=STICKS and the cross-letters fitted. What was your word? “England’s two openers” was ambiguous (EN or ET) also, leaving room for more possibilities!

  38. Sticks of the more the magical kind surround the openers if England and two with the final of spell

  39. Thank you, Jillian, had the answer 30 hours ago, but philosophising on that clue, not asking for help, but trying to find what the erroneous answer was that people were talking about.

  40. All out. Couldn’t spell 13d and can understand 23a but needed to lookup port name. The theme is not my area of expertise. I had fenland as well, to start with.

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