DA Confusions for the 11/12th of November, 2011

Confused? Bemused? Perhaps even unamused?

Sort out your confusements, bemusements and unamusements right here.

125 thoughts on “DA Confusions for the 11/12th of November, 2011

  1. Only 8 D to go if I’m right about 14A and 12 A and 7D. 14A looks awfully like an indirect anagram swapping only 2 letters around, but that can’t be right, and doesn’t explain ‘related to thing’. Not sure about 12 A as I can’t explain ‘eschewed’. Not sure of 7D either. Think I’ve got the ‘expert’ and the ‘imported’ but not the rest.
    A quick fill otherwise, no convoluted wordplays, a couple of nifty definitions and indicators.

  2. Rupert, you might need to google old (Australian) Holdens to confirm wordplay in 23 D. Leyland as you’d be aware is a British vehicle manufacturer but also Australian brothers who travelled around the outback and filmed their adventures. But all this information is just a distraction. ; -)

  3. Got the right 14A, 7D and 12 A now. All very good. All done. Just in time to go to work. No Rupert and RobT this morning?

  4. Thanks. There seems to be a lot of local colour in this one. I will try and finish it off over lunch. I didn’t help myself by writing the answer for 18A in the spaces for 14A. My habit of using pen has finally had the results you’d expect. I was thinking of printing out a fresh copy, but I’m almost done.

    I was pleased to get the Asian capital without googling, though I had to google it to find out which country it was the capital of!

  5. Got them all apart from 14A. Pretty sure I have all the cross letters. I thought I was pretty well up on metasyntactic variables, but none that I know fit this pattern.

  6. Dear DA Trippers,
    Late notice I know but David Astle’s interview on Conversations with Richard Fidler will be replayed today 11.11.11 on ABC Local Radio at 11am. You can find out how to listen online at our website http://www.abc.net.au/conversations.
    Thank you,
    Michelle Producer, Conversations with Richard Fidler

  7. Finding it tough today which is great! Got NW and SE but not a lot else. Anyhoo…

  8. 22A: I *know* DA has played enough rugby to know that this is not even remotely the same thing as being tackled!

  9. @ Rupert: yes, a devious reading of “apolo-gist”
    As for 14a, think of a food with lots of actual, literal charactes in it.

  10. Re 14a, think of alternate slang for “thingummy”. The first part of the answer is a two word answer to beat or thrash someone (as in at sport) together with word for a yesman

  11. Quite right, it was 18a is was hinting at. For 14a, it’s a word I grew up with, but it’s not in Chambers. I haven’t checked the Maquarie. Second half is the yes-man, and your cross letters are correct

  12. Having reread the clue the “related to” would obviously be the homophone indicator for the yesman

  13. It is very good today. I have it all out except I am clueless re 12A. Any hints without giving the game away, please?

  14. @Rupert I get your reference but had never heard of this word with or without your ‘prefix’. Good that I worked it out alone, with the usual revolutionary rule.

  15. 12A: Sorry, @RobT. I was trying to drop a hint without giving the game away.

    I’m giving up on 14A. I realise Ozisms are part of the DA package, but this is too obscure for me.

  16. 14A: Thanks, @RobT. No, I didn’t know it, and it’s hard to get a word you don’t know when the wordplay is a homophone. I had heard of the yesman, though.

  17. All over the shop today – I have NE and SW, but only scraps of the rest. Going to take it home and finish tonight. I hope……
    BTW, am I right in saying that the last two letters of 14A aren’t the dictionary spelling of the word clued? I’m doing badly enough already without DA making it harder…..

  18. Thanks – I just thought the ‘related’ referred to the answer being associated with thingummy. I’ll take it as read.
    Now have SW, only NE to go….

  19. @Rupert. 14A: Naaah I don’t buy that “yesman related” is a homophone indicator. In fact, I think it is pretty clear that the definition is “related to thingummy” because otherwise why would there be a “to” added? No, to my mind “yesman” is exatly what the last 6 letters represents, which is why I think it is a lame-o clue.
    Maybe the esrtwhile DA could send us u a puff of white smoke after the weekend.

  20. Re 14ac: ‘To’ is considered to be a legitimate linking word, as in the wordplay ‘leads to’ the definition. I think ‘related’ is a well disguised homophone indicator, plus the definition makes much more sense as just ‘thingummy’. So I think the clue is fine.

  21. Well, I obviously don’t have a lot of standing to argue 14A, since I’ve never seen the word before. But from what I’ve read, “thingummy” is a decent definition, and “related” is a homophone indicator I’ve seen before. “to” as a link word is OK, as RK points out.

    What would “related to thingummy” mean as a definition? I mean, beyond the obvious that it’s a synonym, in which case every clue would have it.

  22. I agree 14 across sucks vis a vis the spelling – otherwise fairly straightforward

  23. It’s a very good DA this week again. I put it in the achievable category but with possibly a couple of exceptions.
    For another Friday I managed to keep away from this site altogether but I had a look overnight after having given up on 14A and 12A.
    I think 14A is all fair and reasonable (apart from the last two letters as covered already!). DA would love a 12 letter word that beats the electronic ‘word finders’ I’m sure.
    I’m completely stumped by 12A though. RobT, you might let us know what the usual revolutionary rule is at some stage. Following Rupert’s hint I’ve got the musical direction but how does the wordplay work?

  24. Robin, I think DA might have given us some extra help in identifying the revolutionary as he’s playing around with 2 non English languages. The revolutionary is in the middle of the word ‘eschewed’. The instruction is to remove the revolutionary from a French pastry that ends with those 3 letters.

  25. That’s 3 different languages. The revolutionary, the pastry, and the definition which is Italian in origin and means liveliness.

  26. Thanks Gayle! I saw ‘the usual’ chap straight away yesterday (12A) as many would have done but could not see how he helped give us ‘life’. It might be better clued with a ‘by’ between ‘eschewed’ and ‘French’ perhaps?

  27. Agree with RK and Rupert on 14D. The spelling is valid, ‘related’ is fine as a homophone indicator, and ‘to’ is the link word. When watchamacallit didn’t fit, I fell into the trap of using an electronic wordfinder with the cross letters and came up with conservative and conversative. ‘Yesman’ and ‘gummy’? sent me down the wrong path in the NE.

    Thanks Rupert for a new word for me: metasyntactic variable. Google tells me in computing they use ‘blarg’ and ‘wibble’ in NZ. They didn’t list any Aussie MVs.

  28. Don’t think pastries can eschew. Maybe read an imaginary comma or pause after eschewed. I spent some time thinking DA was up to one of his tricks and I was looking for a word which could have had ‘es’ deleted or inserted.

  29. The other one with wordplay trouble for me is 7D. Hoping it will come to me as I ask for help….! Mindful that it is only Saturday morning in Melbourne…

  30. 7D is an + expert in medicine inside a word for create = a root used in magic potions. Didn’t know about it’s narcotic effect, though.

  31. 7D. Letters 2 to 5 are clued by the first four words. The rest is the instruction and the synoym for the remaining letters. ‘to’ could be a little deceptive. Hope that’s neither too vague not too explicit.

  32. Oops too slow. 7D used to be a common street name for an illicit narcotic. That’s when it was in to be down, and not up.

  33. Thank you both, Rupert and Gayle re 7D.
    Yes, the word ‘to’ was very deceptive! Your answer is what I’d call a ‘red faces’ reply which we have all felt from time to time. Otherwise known as a “Doh!”. (Gayle, your help with 12A earlier is not one of these.) So obvious once it’s pointed out.

  34. Good start, ten so far, liked the anagrams. They help. But baffled by 14A. Tried that as anagram of thrash yesman, but it can’t be that. Looked at every synonym for thingummy, but can’t find one that fits. Maybe one I’ve never heard of. Could begin with a ‘Herbert Hoover’?

  35. Thank you for the help (with 14A) to get me finished. The word is faintly remembered …. Really one out of the archives!

  36. Famous magician also mentioned as having supposed magical powers, way back in Genesis. Looking at 7D, the only substance I could find beginning with that letter. But how it fits the clue? Can’t fathom.

  37. Ooopps. A post disappeared. Finally, with help from Mrs C, got 14A. The ‘expert in medicine’ is just an ordinary (?) medic? But the rest makes no sense to me, however, it fits 5, 10, & 14A, so is probably correct. Time for my after-dinner nap. Still 11 to go, I think.

  38. Arthur 7D agree, expert is probably stretching it a bit. For the wordplay put your medic and an and make the answer.
    nitpick with 10A if I have the right answer it is plural so should be slabs of time not slab of time?
    Have NE done but very few elsewhere. Thanks to everyone for hints for 14d, wouldn’t have ot it otherwise.
    Will press on with the rest for now

  39. @ Michelle regarding yesterday’s repeat of the Richard Fidler/David Astle interview. Thanks for the reminder and I did catch most of the conversation . I’d heard it before but I found that it was well worth hearing again. It might amuse some of this blog’s readers to see this sample:

    Richard Fidler: “There are overarching rules for a cryptic crossword, aren’t there? Rules that you feel obliged to obey 100% of the time or 99% of the time?”
    David Astle: “This is the point where I should probably fess up and say look, I do enjoy stretching and bending the rules, seeing how far they can go before they PING, a bit like a hamstring at the age of 40. But there are rules and in fact probably a better word to say is there is a code of etiquette and that etiquette entails such rules as
    – that every clue must contain a definition and a wordplay
    – that the link between the definition and the target answer is clear
    – that there is no word wasted – so every word in that clue is doing its job, otherwise it is a love handle and needs to be sweated off or pared
    – and there needs to be … a surface sense is very important in a crossword …………….
    …………… So it needs to have that seamless dovetailing between the two elements. If you get that right and you create that literalism, that idea that the reader or the callow solver reads that and goes off in this merry meadow which is the wrong direction and that is the pay-off for a compiler.”

    As a callow solver myself I have enjoyed wandering in so many meadows these last few months thanks to DA’s ingenuity, and the pay-off for me is now beginning as I sometimes am able to see right through the deception …. (I did say ‘sometimes’!)

  40. I have the answer for 12A and get most of the wordplay but can someone explain to me how eschewed means to remove those three letters (that I see in eschewed)?

  41. nn, have a look back to when Gayle and I discussed 12A this morning; I think it was the first post of the day. You should be OK after that.

  42. 1d westies is a bit unfair. In Melbourne a lot of them live in other directions from the city, bit hard for anyone outside of Sydney.

  43. Robin, I get what he means by movers, but think it is pretty weak.
    Regarding your earlier discussions about our revolutionary, they were what confused me in the first place! As our revolutionary appears in the word eschewed and Gayle said something about the word revolutionary giving us an extra hint I was trying to work out what told us to remove three letters that were contained in the middle of “eschewed” but ignoring the first word in the clue!! Was analysing this one a bit too deeply!
    thanks again

  44. thanks Robin, obvious now! Was thinking it was an indicator for another slightly dodgy DA homophone and was trying to fit another brand of car in! Nice deception.

  45. nn, 12A, sorry, I thought it was not like you not to have looked back at previous comments!

    Have you got 12A now? It was the hardest one for me this week. I think it is just a little bit of DA mischief that the revolutionary is actually in the word used as a deletion indicator. The clue could, I suppose, be “Revolutionary dropped French pastry for life (4)” couldn’t it?

  46. Just looking at a few others, I am a bit vague on the letters 1-3 of 5D.
    I take it letters 4-5 are the ‘vegetables’ but ‘Sauce tipped…”? I can think of a 5 letter word with letters 1 and 5 missing…?

  47. Sorry about the confusion nn.
    Robin, 5D first 3 letters is reversal of another colloquial synonym for ‘sauce’ as in cheek, sassiness.

  48. Thanks Robin and Gayle, I had the answer for 12A ages ago, just got myself tied in knots with the wordplay. As I said earlier I think I’m overanalysing DA a bit too much this week!
    Agree 23D is clever deception
    25A like the close to turbo campervan bit, but the rest of the wordplay is a bit convoluted (I get it all, it is just that the wordplay of the first four words is a bit messy and doesn’t really do anything for the surface reading, unlike that of the last four words)
    Quite liked 5a, although it took me a while to put in (although it was the first thing I thought of) as I had stupidly tried to put it into 5D instead of 5A!
    13d quite good too.

  49. Some excellent (and tricky) clues today. Not quite as good as last week’s – and tougher too – a bit more googling required.
    A few points (some already raised by nn and others):
    10A: Answer is plural, def singular. Only a nitpick.
    11A: “Movers” is just plain woeful!
    21A: I loved this clue when I finally got it, but why the “perhaps”?
    4D: Woeful surface. Not keen on the use of possessive to indicate containment. Don’t like the def either.
    7D: I know DA needed a word to follow “an”, but “expert”? Not the ones I’ve seen recently.
    24D: I google to verify the answer to mean “gun”. Couldn’t find it, but I did see several refences to a very risque (and new to me) meaning!

  50. Thanks Gayle, you know I saw that 3 letter word (reversed) but the brain didn’t make me think of sauce. I was thinking tip, lip, edge, not ‘we’ll have no more of your …’

  51. nn, you’ve explained a bit of 25A I’d missed! I had ‘turbo’ as an adjective describing campervan; the O I had as the close to ‘to’ …

  52. Got almost all done in bits of time over busy two days. But still struggling with two of the short ones. 21a (the dodgy apologist?), and 24 (I even looked through a very long list of guns on Wikipedia. Any help anyone?
    BTW I agree that 14a is a bit dodgy. Put me off 8d for ages as I had the wrong cross letter at the end of 14 a.

  53. Had a thought. Could 21a be just two letters in a very common expression that is spelt out with the 4 letters which could be what an ‘aplogist’ might say. That would explain the talkback, but not the rest.

  54. I think apologist should be read as apolo gist, i.e. the gist or central part of apolo.

  55. Yeah, nn, Ian had hinted at that way earlier. But I have no idea what it means. An abbreviation for someone who argues a lot?

  56. The penny clicked. The def is fine! The apolo-gist plus talk back! Got it!

  57. Doah! Just got 24d. Both gun and truck really need more on the answer to be same. It is in a sense only ‘half’ the answer.

  58. nn, I’m tipping that DA thought of a peppermint Polo for 21A’s first letter, then ‘apologist’. What do you reckon? Might explain the ‘perhaps’!

  59. Down to last four, after spending the afternoon on wasteful activities (watching golf, ladies soccer). But baffled by 12A, 23D, also 22A, 19D. Would a list of french pastries help with 12A? What does Mafia code mean? OOOPS! Just saw 23 down, remembered the model number of early Holden. So, just three now.

  60. For 22A, is this the offence rugby commentators call a high shot? If I’m correct, only two needed now, 12A and 19D.

  61. Finally tracked down the Mafia code, clue might have better said: ‘Cockney poet THANKS Mafia code’. Only 12A to go, will leave till tomorrow.

  62. I have completed it all except for the NE corner. That’s all of them: 1A, 9A, 11A plus 2D. I just can’t get into it. I’ve read help for the ‘Westies” but it still baffles me.
    BUT, I can’t help heving a bit of a brag about last weeks’. I was immured on a remote part of an island in Bass Straight with no interne, no help from all of you folk or even a dictionary , just my brain and TIME, and I was able to solve all of the DA crossword involving all those varieties of DEANS!! I was quite chuffed.
    I have put in what I think is the correct solution for 22A [ a rigid body part?] but, if I am correct, I can’t work out how the clue works at all.

  63. agree Arthur 19d THANKS would have been much better, CHEERS is quite a stretch.
    22a I think you are correct, certainly a dangerous thing to do with a high tackle.
    12A the pastry is what I’ve heard that Marie Antoinette actually said when told the peasants had no bread. She told them to eat this (not cake as is usually quoted)
    Robin you could be right about the Polo. I’m interpreting the word perhaps to suggest that there is something tricky about the word before it, in fact a typical DA trick.
    Sandy I agree the Gun truck thing is a bit poor

  64. Conny 22a is a rigid body part. Split the answer into 4,6 and read the first word backwards (returned).
    Westies is apparently a Sydney term for members of the lower classes who are somewhat backward. I think they live out in the western suburbs. In Victoria the image is of beer swilling moccasin wearing people who live in various cheaper arears around Melbourne. (not going to name any suburbs or towns through desire not to offend).
    1A personal ink is the def
    9A think boring as in drilling, although the def is a bit off as the answer isn’t quite boring. Folding back gives the first letter, the rest is a type of skin.
    2D the def is the last word. A word for trendy is in a word for bothers
    11A retiring remark is the def, but not in the sense of retiring from a job. In speech is a homonym indicator, we have all quibbled about “movers”, I think riders or nobles would be better.

  65. thanks nn for your help.
    I can see how 22A works now and also 9A. I am still beavering away on the others.

  66. Now I’ve worked out the rest. Thanks nn.
    I agree with you that “movers” is not good. I can’t even see what DA meant by it.
    I agree that riders or nobles would be much better.
    The rest were really fine once I got a clue or two to help.
    I really liked 14A and 25A and 12A reminds me of a musical instruction ” Wacko con —-”
    which indicated a certain liveliness!

  67. Conny, the best we can come up with for what DA means by movers is in reference to the chess piece, but it is pretty weak

  68. Conny, congratulations on an electronic free completion last week – sensational effort. Odense was a great get .
    Had to google the mafia code , and would never have got 12a in a squillion years. Had the this gummy but agree the spelling is open to discussion . Some marvelous misdirection, but also some well below par…agree with nn, movers and gun trucks were not classics. Also preferred Arthurs gluing for the mafia code.
    Recovering from surgery today – awful wait hoping the paper seller was going to make an appearance in the ward!

  69. You’re right, nn, but, like many DA clues, it just about works if you try very hard! (Whether we should have to do this is another issue).
    Think of “eschewed” as the past participle in the passive sense (hope I’ve got that right). As in “Revolutionary was eschewed”. Then put in an imaginary comma to separate the two parts of the wordplay, so we now have “Revolutionary (was) eschewed (,) French pastry”. If you’re prepared to think this way, then it works. If you’re not, then it doesn’t.

  70. Also, nn, I have a slightly different take on 9A. I reckon it’s boring=tedious, not boring=drilling. And the answer is not the literal meaning of xxxxx but the figurative meaning, as in “the daily xxxxx”.

  71. I agree, RB. The definition for 9A is ‘boring routine’ and it is definitely the tedious type of bore.

    nn, you’re obviously with me on the pastry! Gayle didn’t think a pastry could eschew a revolutionary though but that is what happens isn’t it? I’d still like ‘by’ in there! But RB is right too when saying that if you look at it long enough you find it works just as it is (or do we just give in?)! All good fun anyway.

  72. Conny, re BRD’s congratulations for last week, hear hear! What a great effort! That must be recognised in the Poolroom surely? Well Done.

  73. RB and Robin, I agree boring routine is the def. I looked at that at first and thought that DA was up to his usual tricks. I was determined not to fall for that and went with the drilling interpretation. In a roundabout way I got to the answer!
    As for the pastry, yes it sort of works the way it is written but a comma or a “by” would have made much more sense. That one was hard enough to work out without slightly suspect wordplay and I only got it from the cross letters suggesting the pastry, then dictionary for the actual word to confirm. Perhaps “spirit of Italian revolutionary eschewed by French pastry” would have been a better clue and, while giving us a better hint about the answer, might also have sent us off on a wild goose chase wondering how to fit Garibaldi into it.
    Anyway, I learnt a new word from this one.

  74. Thanks BRD and Robin for your congrats.
    Re 12A, DA didn’t have to say ‘ eschewed”. He could have easily put abandoned or something like that. It’s just an extra hint I suppose. Whatever, the revolutionary still has to leave the French pastry to make ‘life’.

  75. but the way 12a is written (without comma or “by”) the French pastry is leaving the revolutionary.

  76. I agree, Rupert. Here’s my take on the subject. Not only do you take the setter’s punctuation with a pinch of salt, but also you must add your own punctuation to make the clue work. The purpose of the setter’s punctuation is to improve the surface (and mislead the solver!). Clearly, revolutionary eschewing pastry makes more surface sense than pastry eschewing revolutionary.

  77. I beg to differ with everybody, but I think the one who leaves eschews the one they leave as much as the other way around.

  78. Finished without having to check this site. First time ever so I am feeling pretty pleased with myself BUT can anybody explain 16 D to me. I don’t get the word play at all.

  79. Triumph! Victory snatched from the jaws of defeat. At around 0300 this morning, a word came into my mind. Brioche! No recollection of seeing it before, I don’t think it was on the list of French pastries I googled yesterday. But I thought, if I take the revolutionary off that, I’ll have a word that fits 12A. Then, out of the labyranthine depths of my memory, came con brio. I don’t read music, but somewhere back in the past I must have seen that term on a shet of music. So, to make a long story a bit shorter, when I got up at 0530, I wrote in the B and I to make brio. Sumimashita! More next weekend.

  80. Yes, Rob, and I note I had a spelling error there, something I am always picking on others for. Labyrinthine, isn’t it? Pool is normally around 1430-1500. We have two tables side-by-side here in the Village, but they are only occasionally both in use at same time.

  81. Yes the L-word is now correct. Two tables would contemporaneously be in use for trick shots?

  82. Hi,
    Sorry running late again this week. Just wondering if someone can help me with the wordplay for the clue: “Moss (model) … mink top”. The answer is sphagnum but I have no idea how to get there.
    Thanks & regards,

  83. “model” is the anagram indicator for “hangs up”. And “mink top” is first letter of “mink”.

  84. pls the answer to 22A? tackle? no idea and i refuse to by monday paper ever $2.70 is enough

  85. Probs with 1A and therefore NE corner. But almost there wth unfortunately a little help from a US website…very craft clue-age in some of these today.

  86. Jack…it’s not cool to give answers prior to Sunday. Spoilers don’t please Melbournites one little bit.

  87. @RobT, this is last week’s thread. I don’t think the Melbournites will mind.

    @jack, the answer to 22A is STIFF ARMED. It’s not a tackle, and DA should know better.

  88. well thanks but maybe it is in AFL…….the only clue I couldnt get my head around and yes I do calenders but my heads like a colander

  89. I watch a bit of rugby (union) but I’m no expert, so I offer this explanation with some trepidation. I believe DA is not referring to a hand off (which is a tactic employed by the ball carrier and is therefore not a tackle), but is referring to a stiff-arm tackle, which is dangerous play and therefore illegal. So that’s why DA has clued “stiff-armed” as “harshly tackled”. The clue might have been better with “dangerously” instead of “harshly”.

  90. Found it (or a reference to it): “A stiff arm tackle is where the tackler tries to knock the player with the ball over using a stiff arm action instead of wrapping his arm around the player’s body as required by the laws.”

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