DA Confusion for the 22nd of January, 2021

Have your confusions sorted out for this week’s glorious DA — hopefully easier than last week’s!

54 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 22nd of January, 2021

  1. Good morning all,
    One of the easiest DA crosswords, in recent memory, that I have done.
    NW corner was completed very quickly. 1a and 10a were easy starters. Many others made the overall solve easy.
    Good starters are 1a, 10a, 22d, 26a, 4d, 2d, 18a,…
    Happy solving.

  2. Morning all.
    Done but not fully understood.
    I did not find as easy as AndyW.
    My FOI was 1A. LOI was 19D.
    Don’t understand 1D wordplay. Help appreciated.

  3. Easier than last week for sure, but I didn’t find it all that easy at the time. S’pose it depends on your wavelength. AndyW says that 1A is a good starter but it didn’t come until after getting 1D. Not being much of a television watcher I’m wary of DA’s sitcom clues. How old is old? NW in first for me too.
    Got a sense of DA’s delight in the tease today, with some clues registering on the chuckle-meter.
    The surfaces were pretty good too, except for 25A. Had me looking up the formula for carbon chloride. Well, it could have worked.
    Favs 13, 14 and 22 across, and 9, 15 and 17 down .

  4. Ah, should have refreshed. DAJ and AndyW on DA’s wavelength re 1A.
    DAJ – 1D , you’ll probably get it by the time I’ve typed. a way = 3 letters feeding a word for ticks off.
    Don’t want to say too much more at this stage. I was tickled when I got it.

  5. Still banging on about 1A. I never thought of that as a sitcom but something much more profound. That’s one I was very familiar with, but then maybe I’m ‘old’. Got an earworm now.

  6. Yes, more achievable than last week’s nightmare! Not finished yet, but not tearing my hair out! Easy starters that leapt out on first scan were 1a, 10a, 26a & 22d.

  7. Yes, I agree, at least today I have some biro on the page. Can you help with 17D, unless I have 24A wrong, there is only one answer I can get and it doesn’t look good. While I’m here, what about help with 19, 20, 22D.

  8. I’ve got 22D…often the way isn’t it , that it hits you as soon as you finish begging for help

  9. hc – 17D – hard without giving away. Unusual word for answer. Defn is first 2 words.
    19D – homophone.
    20D – defn last 2 words.
    22D – think any hint will give too much away.
    And 24A – defn = “Book”.

    Hope helps.

  10. As others above found, much easier than last week’s! Done in about my average time today, got stuck on 17D (understandably) and 25A for some reason so they are my LOI.

    FOI 5D and 8D.

  11. Good one today, enjoyable, out in average time. Funny we both enjoyed last week’s w, clearly not everyone did. Humorous wordplays 14a, 17d, 6d. Thanks DA for getting Friday off to a good start

  12. A Goldilocks puzzle today — not too easy nor too hard — with a liberal sprinkling of smiles. 17d took a while. Favourites include 14a & 22a. Still working on the wordplay for 15d.

  13. Graham M , I don’t know if it helps but I turned 15 d upside down and every which way, before seeing that was straight forward. The first 4 words clue the first 3 letters of the answer. Then you’ll have to look very closely at the rest of the clue.

  14. Close to finishing, only three left. But I disagree strongly with what appears to be the answer for 20 D. The only stand-alone consonant in Japanese is N. I suspect in the original Japanese there is another letter, possibly a U, which is often silent in Japanese, eg matsuda from which Mazda is derived.

  15. Missed the struggle with last week’s W. Fairly average today with a few I struggled with at the end, funnily enough in the NW corner which others found easier.
    First pass through the clues gave me 1A, 10A, 13A, 18A, 26A , 17D, 20D, 22D, more than my usual quota. LOI 7D.. Favourites 11A, 24A, 13D and 22D.
    I did wonder if 2D should be “Acidic” but then I’m one of those 14As

  16. Arthur C: I bow to your knowledge of Japanese, but the 20D answer as printed is how the item is spelt in English, the stuff is everywhere now.

  17. Thanks, Andrew T, I had no idea, had never heard of it. But it is obviously a modification, such as my quoted Matsuda becoming Mazda (no Z in Japanese) the given answer is impossible to write in Japanese.

  18. Well I struggled with 9d for a while. That was because I had another nautical command that fitted well into 21a, but it had a different last letter.
    Still need help with NE. 3a, 11a, 7d anyone?

  19. 3A: Gangleader = 1-3, 10. Deficient composer = 4-9

    11A: Bondage = 1-5, article = 6,7

    7D: hot =1,2 ; nurse = 3-6

  20. Thanks Jack. Kept working and got them all before coming back to check.

  21. Arthur C, the “t” in matcha represents a long consonant and in hiragana/katakana a small “tsu” is used.

    Arthur C, the “t” in matcha represents a long consonant, as does, for example, the “p” in Nippon or the “k” in Nikko (or Nikka Whisky if you like). A lomg consonant is represented in hiragana/katakana by a small “tsu”. According to Wikipedia maccha is a nonstandard and uncommon spelling..

  22. Brond@1:07. Were they the ones with carpet on the ceiling and the walls? I heard them referred to by a different name. :-)

  23. Nice one today, Goldilocks style as someone observed above.

    15D would be a little neater if the Age/SMH sub had observed an Australian rather than US punctuation convention.

  24. Very late start due to non-delivery of paper. Not finding it as easy as some but certainly better than last week’s stinker. Making steady progress. Too early for hints but stumped by 12A. Like Gayle I think 1A is a long way from a sitcom.

  25. @Jack. My first thoughts were Grimm’s Hansel and Gretchen, ‘cos that was definitely ‘crumby’. but it was Hans Christian Andersen .

  26. And I’d never have got the association with ‘crumby’. Think that’s crummy. :-)

  27. One thought I had: Sandman’s name was William Baker in the comics. Perhaps a baker is associated with crumbs.

  28. GeoffD, the first couple of seasons were pretty sitcomic. But it certainly developed into something much more.
    Tim C, I think acid can be an adjective as well, when used in that way.

  29. I mean, you could well be right. DA’s into that stuff too, Can’t comment, just don’t know. Visual arts is not my thing. Husband points out clever things, comics, clever ads, I just don’t ‘see’ them.

  30. The sandman comes and puts “sleep” (crumbs of eye discharge) into little children’s eyes, to send them off:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandman

    Geoff D, I hope it’s not still too early for hints for 12A: def is first word of clue. The next two words give letters 1-5. ‘Seconds’ gives letters 6-8, and the last three words of clue give letter 9.

  31. Carol @4:06 pm, of course you are correct. I’ve just looked it up. That’ll teach me to be a 14A.

  32. I didn’t know 21A and 20D (and had to confirm 24A) so a non-finish for me. I must be missing something obvious, but how does the first letter of 22D fit with the wordplay? And what is ‘acquires’ doing in 9D? Thanks in advance for any help.

  33. SlowA: I wonder if you have the right answer for 22d. What did DA do in this clue? (Which is also a kind of grain?)

  34. Thanks Carol. I did have the right answer but if I ever knew the other definition of the word before, I’ve forgotten it – no excuse, I should have checked before posting. I got stuck on r-a-i-n corresponding to 2-5.

  35. Interesting article by DA in today’s paper about semi colons. Dot commers (and dot commas) get a mention as does Moby-Dick (see 1D last week), complete with the hyphen as per the original book title (although not in the name of the whale).

  36. In 15d are the books 2,3? I can’t justify the letter for 1, even though I have the overall answer. 4-9 were cute!

  37. richard, yes, good clue, and as Tim C mentioned, DA’s Wordplay is also worth a read.

    Right to uphold > the righthand letter of uphold. At least that’s the way I read it.

  38. Hi Gayle. Many thanks- I’m sure you are right. Don’t know how I missed that! R

  39. Tim C: I don’t have access to that article, but I’ll definitely track it down tomorrow. I wonder if he mentioned that case of the criminal who was caught because of a semicolon.

  40. SlowA: Ah, the treachery of the almost-right parsing. It has led me down many a blind alley.

  41. Carol, can I ask how you do the crossword if you don’t have access to the newspaper, or do you not get Saturday’s edition?
    I don’t know about the criminal who was caught because of the semicolon but he mentions a semicolon in Massachusetts law which caused a lot of legal argument. It’s really a sort of book review of Cecelia Watson’s “Semicolon”.

  42. Tim C: I have an arrangement with someone who lets me have the crossword page ;)

    I heard about the criminal caught by his semicolon about 30 years ago. I wish I could remember all the details – all I can recall now is that the police were stumped until they found something he’d written. One of the investigators noticed that he’d used a semicolon correctly, and they deduced that he must be reasonably well-educated. They had been looking for an uneducated person, and because they changed their focus, they found him.

  43. Got it all out, but only understood word play for 17D after reading through above comments. Very clever!! I think I just about always get caught by DA’s punctuation mark tricks. They’re either redundant, or extremely important.
    SlowA, ‘acquires’ in 9D does seem to be the wrong word. Requires would be much better.

  44. Viv, can you explain 17d to me? I finally broke down and looked up the answer and I’m glad I did because I was never going to get that.
    Still can’t parse it.

  45. Carol, “all about” is the anagrind for sauciness with “cheer-leader” having been shaken, i.e. removed (I guess like shaking a fruit from a tree)

  46. p.s. Am I mistaken or don’t answers have to be actual words? (But no one else seemed to have a problem with it, so I guess I too am a 14A.)

  47. I had the same thought when I got it, although I could see how it could be a word so I didn’t check at the time. I’ve just had a look and It’s not in Chambers but does appear in (mainly) American dictionaries if you do a search.

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