DA Confusion for the 7th of August, 2020

Have your confusions sorted out — get help from people further than 5 kilometres away from yourself.

87 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 7th of August, 2020

  1. Found this DA, very slow to get going. Overall tough.
    Some good starters might be 25a, 1a, 12a, 22d, 27a and 5a.
    For many of my answers, I had to guess the definition and then reverse engineer the word play.

  2. Is the answer to 16A a real word? It is certainly not part of my vocabulary.

    I agree with you, Andy; several times I guessed the answer before parsing the clue.

  3. My heart sank when I read Andy W’s comment. But 1A, 4D, 9D leapt out, followed by 10A. However, there it stands at the moment.

  4. After over an hour, I’ve only managed eight. I have three options …

    (1) Give up, and try again next week.
    (2) Give up, and try again later after a good long walk.
    (3) Cheat.

  5. Normally I really struggle, but I found this one too hard. I wonder how much of this is down to the difficulty of the puzzle, and how much is due to our state of mind on the day? Would like to understand wordplay on 14a and 24a.

  6. Clark, I can help you with 24a. The first word is the definition. Then reverse “myrtle” and remove another tree.

  7. It must have been something I ate, but, for me, this was the easiest one in ages. I can’t untangle the wordplay on 25A though.

    Don’t give up Arthur … is it still snowing where you are?

  8. Thanks Geoff M, but I’m struggling to understand how ‘try’ or ‘yrt’ is another tree.

  9. You’re absolutely right, AG. No wonder I was having trouble with 17d & 20d. Sorry for the bum steer, Clark!

  10. Definitely harder than usual today, methinks. Some very convoluted wordplays. I’m ashamed to admit that I cheated for a couple. My favourite today was 15d. First ones in 1a, 5a, 18a, 9d, 27a. Still don’t get the wordplay for 25a. And I agree, Peter, 16a is hardly a word.

  11. Geoff M, difficult to explain 25A without spoiling. Treat “parade enthrall you beyond venue” as a sequence.

  12. It felt hard but the clock says I wasn’t especially slow.
    I don’t get the wordplay for 7D, including whether “vintage” is part of the definition.
    Loved 12A , which leads to 22D and thereby help with others.

  13. Hi Mike,

    I think the vintage anchor is a reference to a former journo/anchor of a popular current affairs program.

    The wordplay is that is sounds like an “outlet”. The pronunciation is not the way is looks (as in, the first letter)

  14. Mike, yes, my understanding is that “vintage” is part of the wordplay in 7d. You are pronouncing the “w” as “v”, aren’t you?

  15. Interesting that different people find different clues easier or harder. I found the whole left hand side fell out, but haven’t made the same impression on the right hand side yet!

  16. It’s getting to the stage where everyone on this board is a Geoff. So I’m going to leave you.

    I must confess, I’m not really Geoff at all. He’s my alter ego that I use on a number of fora. So, to help reduce the overabundance of Geoffs, hereafter I shall use my real name. I won’t reveal what it is, but no doubt you’ll figure it out. (Assuming you’re the least bit interested!)

  17. Easier starts for me were 5A,12A,25A,4D,1A. Then I struggled for a while until the bottom half fell into place. LOI 9D.
    16A is in Chambers, but I found ‘outlet’ in 7D a bit dodgy.

  18. I have a couple of sheep synonyms in mind but they don’t seem to match the wordplay 🙁

  19. Clark, for 14a “district” gives 3,4,5,6, in “middle” with its leader ousted

  20. Finally finished.
    FOI – 16a
    LOI – 7d (that held out for a long time). I think it as a touch obscure with both meanings.

  21. Mike says:
    7 Aug 2020 at 12:06 pm
    “I don’t get the wordplay for 7D, including whether “vintage” is part of the definition.”

    Not sure how you could solve it without knowing that? Besides guessing the non cross letters and checking if answer correct (on app).

    On another note…I started the xword whilst in bed before falling asleep…then left it to continue on paper which I get on Fridays. Filled in the ones I already had from memory. For some reason I struggled with 25A, until I saw the hint here and realised I already had it last night as one of first …doh!!
    It’s interesting how in one frame of mind something is dead easy, then in another it is difficult. Often a good idea to leave it if you struggle and come back later.

  22. Agree a bit of a red herring as far as solving goes. But is all linked by farm / animal theme.

  23. Hi Cokes

    Have you seen DA’s book Rewording The Brain. The first section goes into which parts of the brain are triggered by puzzles. And how the Mind keeps mulling things over when the brain sleeps. Quite edifying.

    And for newbies (and old hands) pt 2 is a how-to for unpacking cretics.

    Part 3 has 50 puzzles from easy to tough, with solutions and parsings provided.

    Worth having a look

  24. Cokes,
    I often find that with cryptic crosswords. If I get stuck, I put the crossword down and when I come back later things jump out at me. I get “intuition” feelings on the answer then work backwards on the justification.

  25. That’s right Margaret, the other thing is to explain the clue to someone else – even to a non-cryptic person. Often the answer jumps out once you’re forced to properly parse the clue!

  26. I find if I get stuck, that it might be because I’ve one of the other clues a bit wrong.

  27. That one was Monday to Thursday standard, ‘Graham’. To misquote Seinfeld , ‘we’ve never had a Graham’.

  28. Parsing for 2D anyone, please? I’ve only got part of it (maybe not even that?!)

    Regarding 11A/12A ellipses, DA generally -and cleverly – manages to have the parsing of one clue draw on the other. However, failing that, they can function just to make one or both ‘ungrammatic’ surfaces into a single ‘grammatic’ surface, I think.

    Xmgjim (3:12 yesterday): In this case ‘autoINcorrect!?’ Where did it get “cretics” from?!

  29. Johnno2, 2d …

    “Poisoner” definition.
    “One unmasked” 4,5.
    “Laptop” 6.
    “Sport” 1-3.
    “Online” 7-9.

  30. Good point, Johnno2:

    When one blunders, blame the machine! I can’t generate it (though cretic is a word).

    Put it down to illness!

    For those who do the DA quick: the “answer” to 16A is just wrong!

  31. Finally done have to agree with AndyW
    I came to a complete halt after solving 5 clues. In desperation consulted Trippers at 11:30pm last night this helped with 7D
    Using Margaret’s approach went to bed and had 5 left after breakfast.
    Still can’t figure wordplay on a few especially 8D portion of 13A/8D
    Liked 6D and 28A/21A and had not heard of 16A
    Until next Friday’s joust keep well

  32. Ian S,
    The passage is “alley” where the “l” does double duty.

    Glad the “sleep on it” worked for you. I’m amazed how many “impossible” ones resolve with fresh eyes.

    If you get stuck for the breakdown then Google “ZinZan crossword”, he usually has breakdowns for The Age crosswords. I only go there if I’ve abandoned all hope of resolving it myself.

    See you next week.

    See you next week.

  33. Hi All,
    Did no one else have trouble with 17d, 20d, 15d, 26a or 4d? I am still stumped. I have a could of answers but no clue on word play.

  34. Just looked at the solution in todays paper. I wasn’t helped by someone back there saying ‘Go’ was the definition of 24a. So I had that clue back to front – gave as answer the bit i should have removed. But I an still none the wiser fo the wordplay of much of what I just asked about.

  35. Sandy, that’s a long list, let me help you with a couple …

    26a You’ll need a 7-letter word for “more”, then remove the last three letters (“that woman”).

    4d The track heading north is 3, 2, 1. “Chic” is 4,5.

    In 20d, letters 4-7 are a synonym of “chose” with its “ball” missing.

  36. Thanks Graham, I have applied my mind and got all but 26a which you have now helpfully explained

  37. Xmgjim, I always thought there were eight bits in a byte, which is why bytes can have values from 0 to 255. I used to do a fair bit of programming back in the mists of time. However, if you’re a computer scientist, I shall gladly take your word for it …

  38. And having just consulted Wikipedia I find that bytes can have various numbers of bits. However, it does say …

    The modern de facto standard of eight bits, as documented in ISO/IEC 2382-1:1993,

  39. Xmgjim, Graham M; the overwhelmingly accepted number of bits in a byte is indeed 8; older architectures might have had something different, but nowadays when you say byte without qualification, it means 8 bits.

  40. Slow one, though not as tricky as some. Got it all out with a bit of cheating from here and the internets. Still can’t fully parse 10A, 26A, 17D or 20D

  41. Sorry; parsed 20D and 26A after looking back through this thread. Still don’t have wordplay for 10A or 17D

  42. Askvictor
    10a
    Sounds right
    1-4 “to Twist” and 5-9 homophone for“broadcast”. Although I think it would be better if they were both homophones.

    17d
    Old Aztec – answer
    1-5 – certainty. As in “it was a …..”
    6-9 – homophone for a person who uses a platform that lot of us are using to communicate at the moment.

  43. I’m a relative 9B; average time – although this will be a lot slower than most contributors – and difficulty for me with one fail (7D) and a couple I couldn’t parse. Liked 10A.

    Re the comments about ellipsis clues, can one of the experts please summarise the various ways that these can work. As far I can tell i) they always occur in pairs with one clue following another, ii) sometimes the ellipses are complete completely superfluous ie. you should just read the clue without the ellipsis, iii) sometimes the first clue extends into the second clue and vice versa and iv) sometimes (as noted) the ellipses are added so the 2 clues make a grammatically correct single clue but the clues should be considered separately. In today’s puzzle they look like red herrings. I’m not a big fan of these clues but maybe an explanation of them will change my opinion!

  44. SlowA
    All of the above. :-) Trust yourself. Sounds like you’re pretty cryptic savvy. Today they were red herrings,as you say, but as was said earlier, there was some sort of connection, but not important for the solve.

  45. Thanks Margaret ; I don’t feel too bad for not getting them, pretty tenuous ones in there IMHO.

  46. Thanks Margaret 2:22pm
    I’ve been working through the parsing of Friday’s DA and the penny dropped for 8D
    I then consulted ZinZan Xero for 15D & 22D. He’s very good I’ll file that site for future reference.

  47. Finally finished with some clues from above – many thanks.

    It was almost the first one I got but I still can’t parse 15D.

    Shouldn’t 26A have an “er” on the end?

  48. Margaret, askvictor – in 10A I think they are both homophones, think a silent “w”

  49. Adam, 15d is my favourite clue. “Reviewed first day” gives 4,3,2,1. “Not sure” gives 5-8.

  50. Adam, I agree that would be best but I don’t see the homophone indicator for the first word.

  51. Margaret, I Didn’t think he needed two indicators; “twist broadcast” I viewed as a phrase with “for audience” as being the homophone indicator for the phrase as a whole. Otherwise I can’t see how you get “ring” from “twist”

  52. Can somebody please confirm my parsing of 23d, 1d? I see how ‘loads’ can be the definition, but how does the wordplay work? I can only assume it is split as ‘small for tune’, as in a small version of an instrument for playing tunes. This would explain the question mark.
    Just surprised it wasn’t mentioned in the comments above.
    Adam, I interpreted 10a the same way as you.

  53. Just to clarify, grand piano is a small version of an instrument for playing tunes, hence ‘small for tune’. That’s how I read it anyway. But confirmation would be appreciated.

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