DA Confusion for the 23rd of October, 2020

Have your confusions sorted for this week’s Grand Final DA.

(Tigers by 27 points, Jason Castagna for Norm Smith Medal).

59 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 23rd of October, 2020

  1. Wow. All out and understood. I found it quite a challenge.
    First in was 9D.
    Didn’t get 5A / 28A until about a third through – and after I had a couple of the 15 special clues.
    And some wordplays are still quite complicated I think – but I guess typical Friday DA.
    Hope all enjoy.

  2. Very similar to DAJunkie, 9d was first in, followed by 16a, 15d and 24a. (Which gave me a big hint for the 5a/28a clued answers) 17d then confirmed.
    A good puzzle and like a naughty schoolboy laughed at 28d.

  3. I don’t get letters 4-7 of 5a. I know it’s early, but any nudge would be appreciated.

  4. Probably harder than usual today, but good fun. I got the bottom half out first, then moved north. 23d brought a smile (is that what you meant by 28d, AndyW?). Easy starters? Probably 9d (no knowledge of literature required), 8d, 15d (none of these “themed”).

  5. Must be close to a fastest time for me. First ones 1a,3d,4d,18a,8d,15d. Got a few of the themed clues and hence deduced the theme and 5a/23a and then worked out the wordplay for it. LOI 29A.

    Favourite 10a, and nice to see 11a and 24a as uncommon but likeable words that I must try to work into more conversations.

    All in all, one to 13a 27a.

  6. Well, 9D is all I have so far, I hope I have it right. Looks very confronting to me.

  7. I really struggled to get going, ended up finished the SE corner then working upwards. Completed in just over my average time in the end. It didn’t help that the theme notes were not present in the iPad edition, I had to check the physical paper facsimile when I realised there was something wrong.

    FOI 27A 22A, LOI 8D, 5A/28A (actually guessed 28A quite early, but not sure I’ve seen 5a/28A much as a phrase before).

  8. As always having trouble with a themed puzzle. I have an answer to 15D but it seems too general, ie could be a fitting in many other types of buildings, not just homes. Am I missing something? No idea of 9D despite it being described as a good starter.

  9. GeoffD – it sounds like you probably has 15D correct.
    9D is a similar type of clue

  10. 15d is too general GeoffD. You’ve most likely got the required (correct) answer. 9d is a word that’s been in much use in 2020, and no it’s not coronaviruses..

  11. Well, I’ve just discovered this was themed! iPad version didn’t mention that… got it out but was wondering why I couldn’t parse so many clues

  12. Helen, if you go to Today’s Paper in the iPad app and the puzzle section there, you can see the theme text.

  13. How it was ‘fastest time’ for Tim C is beyond me. Took me the whole morning, but the sense of achievement for such a tough puzzle was great.
    Happy solving next time folks.
    bbOZ

  14. I have the theme, and all answers except 29 across. Any help please.
    I would also like to know if cryptic crossword books are to be found offline, with the difficulty being in the same orbit as DA. I have been doing the Times on the weekend, but the paper has just increased to $4.50, and I don’t want to outlay that every week as well as getting the Herald for the DA.

  15. bbOz… maybe just one of those days when the brain was firing on all cylinders maybe. I sort of guessed the theme after my third one solved. That helped a lot.

  16. Ken Davis – not sure what you mean by “I can’t justify 13A”. If you mean wordplay, “Green” gives a FLW and “Mile for trick ending” swaps a letter.

  17. happy chappy 29A is themed. But maybe you knew that already by finding the other 14.

    I spotted how the theme affects answers quite early on – and 5A/28A were almost the last solutions I found, with 9D the last!

  18. happy chappy: the Guardian has unlimited free puzzles online, and I believe also sell books of them.

  19. Thanks Mike.
    Andrew T, thanks for the Guardian info. Does the free online cryptic have a support group like the DA Trippers?

  20. happy chappy, The Times also produces books of their crosswords. Google is your friend. Also, if you want harder than DA, there is “The Times Listener Crossword Book” which may be out of print but you may be able to pick one up second hand.

  21. Hello again Tim C, are you off your rocker?? I grow more grey hairs every DA moment…I couldn’t possibly pretend to want a cryptic harder than his are! At my age the friends are getting scarce on the ground so it is good to know that google is my friend. Thank you again for answering …have a good week.
    Neanderthal, I’ve made a note of the site you gave me ( literally, pen and paper sort ) . Thank you.

  22. Happychappy, the Guardian has excellent cryptics from a big range of compilers. They range in level of challenge but none are as poor as some of the worst ones in the Herald/Age during the week (full of awfully contrived anagrams, etc). And there are comments below each that operate very like this site. I keep a list of compilers I like and those that I often find too hard. Occasionally we Aussies are at a bit of a disadvantage when knowledge of specific places or “Britishisms” is required. You can do their puzzles online or print them.

    They’re great “exercise” during the week between DAs!

  23. Graham M, that sounds good. I know the feeling of doing British puzzles, and some of their expressions. When I complete the Times cryptic I feel very pleased with myself, and can picture Morse saying “it’s the Times Lewis “. I know …bizarre…but it feels good!
    There is no need for me to name the paper, I haven’t bought the particular one for about 40 years, but their cryptics were almost always nothing more than simple anagrams or taking letters from one word and joining them to the next. Hideous. The DA is absolutely my favourite, and I truly value the help from the trippers. It is a joy to see normal people happy to help and guide other solvers. Have a good week.

  24. Finally got it out. The electronic IPad version was missing the theme instruction; no wonder I was having so much trouble doing the word play.

    I had to look at the online printed version to find it.

  25. DA Junkie.
    That’s exactly what i needed/.
    I was focused on the letters of mile not a definition of green
    thanks

  26. Thanks billyboyOz, you restored my self-esteem; nice to know it wasn’t just me who found this really tough going.
    Re 16A, is the definition OK? I thought it should have been followed by another short word.

  27. I thought this week’s was straightforward, but I can’t figure out the wordplay for 20A (Anwar Sadat) from last week. The clue was ‘One conflict (WAR) down (SAD)? That’s essentially done by Nobel Peace laureate!) I can’t figure out how the wordplay for letters 1,2,9 and 10 work. Help would be appreciated, thanks.

  28. David, “One” gives 1-2, “conflict down” is as you say 3-8, and “that’s essentially” gives 9,10 was my take on it. Looking back on my reasoning, I’m not totally happy with it for a couple of reasons. Is ‘at’ the essence of that or that’s? Also ‘done by’ seems to be redundant.
    Interested to hear other takes.

  29. Thanks Tim C. That’s the best reasoning I could come up with too, but I suspect we’re both missing something. I’d also be interested to hear other opinions. I’m surprised it didn’t come up in last week’s thread.

  30. Happy Chappy, I cancelled my Fairfax Age subscription (as I was finding it hard to support it’s drift towards Murdochracy) after a Tripper told me I could likely access the Friday DA via a Library subscription.

    I managed to join City of Melbourne Libraries on line (without leaving home!), and can now access the Age online (and a large number of other good things, including Choice magazine).

    Not sure what the options are in your neck of the woods, but you may want to check

  31. LJ, thank you for that. I am a library member in Sydney, and have just rung them. Consider yourself fortunate. I was told that the only way to access the DA was to go to the library. I will ring them again on Monday and hopefully speak to someone who will be able to set me on the right path.

  32. David and Tim,
    Re Anwar Sadat, I think that’s essentially is a, although if one expanded it to ‘that is”, we get our at. That’s a bit of a stretch (haha), even for DA. I prefer the a, in which case perhaps “done” could give the t, as in done to a T… maybe.
    I noticed the clue also stumped ZinZan, which is unusual.

  33. Just finished it was the tester I’ve been expecting over the past few weeks. FOI 27A
    consulted trippers yesterday pm and felt like throwing in the towel. Then like many made progress in the SE and twigged to the themed construction w/ o 5a/ 28a and 9d which came to me overnight loi 26a. I was pleased to finish DA’s themed puzzles are my nemesis.
    Re last week’s 20a I agree with TimC ‘at’ from essentially that’s. I vaguely recall a clue a couple of weeks ago that caused trouble and Margaret’s advice was read carefully and it required expansion of the the text in the clue.

  34. Just a thought… “just essentially done” could be ‘on’ which is a synonym for ‘at’, or it could be ‘apt’ as a synonym for ‘just’ and ‘essentially done’ meaning remove the essence of ‘apt’ to give at. I guess we won’t know for sure.

  35. Thanks Tim C. I’m wondering if there’s any chance that ‘green’ could actually mean ‘learner’, so that the ‘l’ gets swapped for the last letter of ‘trick’?

  36. Alright, alright, cleverclogses :-) …
    Can someone give me the wordplay for the it-seems-near-universally-FOI, 9d. “D’oh!” is locked n loaded…
    A quibble on 13a: Without a ‘swapping’ verb, wouldn’t “…Mile for trick ending” put “Mile” in place of “trick ending”, rather than the intended vice versa?

  37. By the way, all, this DA prompts me to draw your attentions to the edition of the South Gippsland Sentinel Times due out on Tuesday 3 November :-) …

  38. 9d, novel is an anagrind. Anagram of ‘cuter, open-ended’ without the ‘o’ (loveless)

  39. johnno2,
    I’ve had this discussion elsewhere about ‘for’.
    IMO it is too vague as it could equally imply ‘for replacement by’ and ‘for replacement of’.
    Any setter should be precise, especially when the letter is a crossing letter.

  40. Consider yourself added, Frank, and welcome.

    I don’t think there’s any formality to join us — if there is, I must be a gatecrasher …

  41. Thanks Graham M, Im stuck on 1a, 8d and 19d, got the theme for others after four or five clues! Would appreciate any help, also that nt in croissant.

  42. Frank …

    1a takes the letters from the second half of “warped” and “mass” and mixes them to create a synonym for “jerky”.

    8d is an anagram of “UK yes no” and the first three words are the definition. Think oxen.

    19d has the first two words as definition. It begins with a five-letter word for “critical” missing its final letter, then a three-letter word for “loose”.

    “Crossiant” was in a puzzle a week or two back, wasn’t it? I’m afraid I don’t remember the clue.

  43. I’ve just dug into the archives and can answer your crossiant query. Take the letters of “three” from the letters of “thirteen” and mix them with the letters of “across”.

  44. For those looking to do crosswords in print (my absolute preference) but don’t want to pay for financial or ideological reasons, I recommend promote the puzzle page from a cafe’s ownership to yours. I asked my priest and he said it’s fine provided you buy something.

    Although this week’s DA was miles better than any other SMH/Age setter could manage, I am not a big fan of themed crosswords where part of the answer is not included in the wordplay (as with this week, and a recent 10CC grid). Part of what makes a DA so special are his elegant clues, and eliding part of the solution destroys that. Furthermore, when there are 15 instances of the unclued letters, then it makes too much of the crossword too easy. Doublefurthermore, when the theme is too easy to crack, as I found this week (I backsolved it when I instasolved 29a (my FOI), which had an obvious definition), a large part of the thrill is extinguished.

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