DA Confusion for the 29th of January, 2021

All going well, I’ll be a father of twins this Friday — so I’ll have lots of questions and be very confused about plenty of things that aren’t crossword related.

But for your cryptic needs, ask questions right here and let the crossword doctors online lend you a hand.

69 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 29th of January, 2021

  1. All the best for the birth of your twins today AS!

    A pretty fair crossword to lead to the solution of the riddle. Got 14 and 26/16 out pretty early, and twigged to the trick, but it didn’t help to fill in the grid. The 14 acrosses are not my forte, but with a bit of help from google I’m better educated. Good work DA.

    FOIs the 14s, 20A and 9D. Last one to fully parse 21d, another deficit in my education.
    And learned a new word in 15D.

    Happy day AS and Trippers.

  2. All the best

    Woke up early, got it all out fairly easily but no idea about the five yet… don’t need to know theme to solve

  3. Have all out and understood – except for how 3,4,5 are produced in 27A.

    FOI was 23D. Got 26A/16A next. Did not get 14A until 3rd last. But as Gayle says, does not impact solving.

    Similar to Gayle for 15D and 21D.

    Found 19D and 6D quite tricky to parse.

    And all the best AS to you and your family.

  4. @DAJ I don’t think it matters how you pronounce letters 3,4,5 of 27A. It’s a visual thing which DA does a bit. It jars on me too, but apparently it’s acceptable in cryptics.
    You’ve just reminded me. I haven’t parsed 19D yet. I’m guessing there’s a subtraction indicator and an anagram indicator, and possibly the author is well known to us? Or am I totally off the mark?

  5. Oh dear. I wish we could edit our comments. Mea culpa.
    Please don’t comment on my mistake. It’ll make it worse.

  6. Gayle – thanks. Will just accept.

    19D – is built, 1+3+2. Hope helps.

  7. Only four in so far, just wondering – how should an AFL fan understand 9D? Technical term?

  8. My, the regulars were up early this morning! I found it easier than average today and quite enjoyable. Easy starters 7a, 12a, 29a, 1d, 4d, 9d, 23d. Favourites 18a, 22a, 6d. I haven’t worked out what is meant by the “theme”, and maybe that’s why I have a “Huh?” list of four — 17d, 8a, 25a & 19d. Referring to your hint for 19d above, DAJunkie, I’m trying to work out why letters 2-4 are skinny.

    Arthur, I have zero interest in sport and managed 9d — I’m sure you will too.

  9. Answered my own question, had tried to make anagram with final two words. About 60% in now.

  10. Graham M – 19D – I could give you the skinny on this, but sure your will figure it out.

  11. Thanks, DAJunkie. Apparently it’s another Americanism (according to OED) that I’m pleased to say hasn’t percolated my sheltered life!

  12. A bit over normal time for me today, have not yet identified any of the 14 acrosses.

    FOI 4D, 12A; LOI 25D, 21D, 27A.

    21D had me going for a while, was thinking of another shipwreck by the same 14A!

  13. I wish you and yours well AS…hope you have both caught up on any sleep in advance…ENJOY!

  14. First run through 1A,1D,2D,13D,14D. LOI 19D (wordplay was a struggle). Favourite 8A.
    Nice theme when you work it out (I was a Mile off for a while), but as others have said it’s not necessary to solve the crossword.

  15. Still two to go (8A, 6D). No hints yet, please. I think it’s a ripper – good mix of tough and easy clues, clever theme that revealed itself about halfway through but only provided a few bonus letters.

    As the grandfather of two-year-old twins, AS, I wish you all the best and great joy. Ours are just that, but they certainly add an extra dimension to single-child parenting!

  16. Being a bit of a philistine, I hadn’t heard of any of the 14-acrosses, let alone any link. Wikipedia didn’t enlighten. But thanks for the help, Nina.

  17. Ben, the information (2-4) on 19D can be found in a combo of earlier posts. For 25D, more than half the words in the clue are taken up with giving the last letter.

  18. Got them since, SB. I got 8A first, by thinking about options for what the definition might be.
    I’m bemused by the number of solvers who have 26/16 but aren’t seeing its significance. Remember the old Nike slogan?

  19. OMG – just twigged to the theme. Very clever!
    Which gives me one extra letter for 6D.
    Still thinking …

  20. Thanks TimC and DAJunkie – That fish is new to me. And no wonder I couldn’t parse 8A as I had the wrong answer. Done and dusted. Very enjoyable.

  21. The theme! I got a hint of it because 19D does not make sense to me without a 14A.

    But where do the other 4 appear? And how do they relate to a Nike slogan?

    Totally bemused

  22. 19D has nothing to do with the theme or the link between the five 14 acrosses Mike. Try just doing what 26A/16A says (as AG says) while looking at the crossword. Hope that isn’t too much of a hint at this stage. I was Dam Miles away from it until the penny dropped.

  23. Mike, Graham M’s comments have a special significance in cryptic crosswords. So you could google his comment + cryptic crosswords. And the origin is a great revelation.
    But without knowing that, with the answers for 14A and 26/16, look very closely at the grid, all of it. Only DA has added an extra dimension as they’re only partial, except for the first and last ones, which is what gave me the hypothesis which I tested on google and lo and behold, it was all revealed.

  24. Tim C and AG have no doubt got to the foot of the problem, but I have no idea what they’re talking about, even with google’s help.

  25. Thanks for the education Graham M and Gayle. Nina wasn’t one of my acquaintances until now.

  26. Tim C, you can return the favour by telling me more about Dam Miles. If it’s too early on Friday, at the appropriate juncture …

  27. Many thanks all for trying. Maybe my eyesight problems are the reason for my being unable to see anything like a Nina: it’s very hard to scan the grid.
    Worse still I’m too obsessive to try those URLs – yet.

  28. Graham M, I’ll post it sometime (maybe in the DA Reports thread with a link from here). It’s a hint (probably a poor one) not about the 14As as such but the link between them (and perhaps the Dam should be No Dam ;) ).

  29. Posting late. Got 50 percent reasonably easily, then struggled with the remainder. Sorted it with the help of all the tips. Got the 26A, 16A early on, but couldn’t see it. I was looking for a series of ways.

    DAJunkie: thanks, you’re spot on: 1, 3, 5, 7 and 15. And Tim C: frankly, being a Mile out was unclear at first, but the penny dropped.

    Agree, Melanie: clever, clever, clever – but by too half?

  30. @Matthew Murray. I think I have the 6 letter word. The first one could be 1,3,4 or 4,33?

  31. Yeay, Mike! Nina gets under your skin. You’ll probably start looking for her everywhere now.

  32. Can anyone explain 14a to me? I know the answer but no idea how the clue works cryptically. Thanks

  33. Gah! This is torture…
    Could someone give me a hand with 9D at least? I gather it’s not sport-related, but I still have no idea.

  34. Michael, it’s a messy one, in my opinion. Second word gives 1 and 3. Third and fourth words give 2, 4, 5, 6 (with the “you texted” letter moved back to 2). Hope that makes sense!

  35. Carol, it is sport related, but it’s a term everyone’s heard. It’s a straight anagram — “scraps” is the anagrind.

  36. Well, I think I’m going to bail on this one. Goodness knows I never find DA easy but this time getting answers is like pulling teeth. Till next time!

  37. I’m trying to 26A/16A
    I have a question for DA Junkie re yesterday’s post@ 12:58 pm
    Do the numbers refer to grid rows ?

  38. Finally cracked it, I’ve got the link between 14As very clever
    Numbers should be 1, 3, 7, 9 & 15 by my reckoning.

  39. Like you all, I have the answers, but unlike you all, I can’t for the life of me ‘see’ (read) them here except for one [3]. Thanks to your kind hints – what prize can I get you? – I know I’ve got the right set of 5, but where are the other 4?

  40. Clare, not sure about your comment. it’s Sunday night and time for the reveal. As DA Junkie and IanS said, they’re in lines 1,3,5,7,9 and 15 horizontally on the grid, except that the ones in lines 1 and 15 are the whole of the line, and the others are partial.
    What connects them all has also been hinted at above. Miles + Dam (think Tasmania) + 14acrosses. Does that help?

  41. Hi Claire and Gayle leave out line 5 which is not a 14A
    Certainly Tasmanian Wilderness and site of a well publicised environmental protest which resulted in no dam construction on the river which shares its name with a well known female Australian author with an award named in her honour.
    I should have said thank you to all Trippers for reaching the end of my journey.

  42. Long time lurker here! Came for the hints, stayed to wish AS and his family all the best on the birth of their twins. As a mother of twins who are now five, I know how intense things are going to get for you. Take good care of yourselves and enjoy the abundance of baby!

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