DA Confusion for the 16th of July, 2021

Have your confusions sorted out for this week’s DA.

Go on, deconfusify.

56 thoughts on “DA Confusion for the 16th of July, 2021

  1. Morning Trippers. Hope you’re all safe and well.
    1A and 1D went in first. The SE corner last with 17D LOI, the full parsing coming later with a flash of inspiration. Quite a few cryptic definitions and wordplay as indicated by the ?s and some that possibly should have also had a question mark. Several entertaining clues brought chuckles and groans. A pretty fair and typical DA I found. Just what the doctor ordered.
    Liked 14A, 30A, 9/21D, 18D, and 22D

  2. Started off fast. Got all the NE and most of the SW within 10 minutes. Then stalled.
    Eventually got SE and ended in NW.
    Sounds nearly reverse of Gayle. Funny how we pick up clues.
    FOI 7D.
    LOI 4D.
    12A and 27A/8D were my picks.
    And agree on 14A, 18D and 22D.

  3. Bit of a struggle for me as well in the SE after a fairly quick start. First pass gave 13a,23a,27a/8d. LOI 18d. Thought 8d should have been a different (more common?) word, and got misdirected by the wrong island in 18d.
    Agree 14a was good.
    In the end it all 15d.

  4. Just curious Tim C, what word did you expect at 8D? The one I have is pretty common. But then maybe there is a more common word starting with “T”???

  5. Pleasantly satisfying today. The SW quarter came easily. I hadn’t heard of 18d and can find no reference to it on the web. I’m used to spelling 11a differently, and as a single word, although I’mm aware that it’s often spelt this way. 12a was my only “Huh?” this week, but I just figured it out. And I’m introduced to another American television show, thanks David.

    My first one in and an easy starter was 23a.

  6. I too got a fast start then bogged right down, especially in the SE. Ended up around my usual time though.

    FOI 1A, 5A; LOI 18D, 20A. Other good starters might be 14A, 16A, 19D, 11A, 4D, 1D.

    Took me a long time to parse 20A!

  7. Graham M – did not even know it was a TV show – I only ever knew the movie it was in.

  8. DAJ, I only had the last letter of 8d when I was thinking of the word starting with “T”.

    GrahamM I get loads of hits with 18d.

    Yes, AndrewT, it took me a while also to spot the good old crossword staple for ‘wine’ in 20a.

  9. For 19d Brond, I did wonder about 4-6 being clued as ‘live’ but managed to convince myself in the end.

  10. Brond – 10A/26D – “margins” = 1,6,7,8. “suffering more” = 2,3,4,5. “hesitation” = 9,10.

  11. Tim, I too had the wrong island — one which has had a very chequered history, which I thought may have rendered the phrase justifiable! Makes sense now I’ve corrected the island. I can think of one or two pop singers who have done much the same as the dame.

    Brond, 10a/26d breaks up into 1,6,7,8/2-5/9,10.
    19d 1,2,3,7/4-6.

  12. Well I struggled a bit – just 22D to go – and don’t quite understand 12A, or 24D, or 20A

  13. SB, 22d has the last word as a (loose) definition. The depleted sprite is 5,4,3,2. In 20a, the wine is the central four letters. In 12a, you need to apply “no-frills” to all subsequent words.

  14. I have no quibbles with today’s puzzle. However, I must admit that, despite having had five years of Latin, I had not heard the term 10/26 before. It seems to relate to the printing industry.

  15. Thanks Graham M and Tim C. All done and understood. I had stopped applying ‘no-frills’ after job brief. duh. Thanks again. And enjoy the lockdowns :)

  16. Enjoyed it even if it was a bit of a slog. Guess I was tired out by the Tormelais last night. Stuff to remember: the two clues with the definition being “in”, and O and O!

  17. Jack, I often desktop-publish documents. If I ever need to see how a block of text will appear on a page before I’ve actually got around to typing it in, most desktop publishing packages will offer to fill it with Latin “nonsense” text beginning with 10a/26d. Occasionally you’ll find such text on a hastily constructed website that hasn’t quite been finished.

  18. Thanks, Graham M. That is very interesting. I haven’t seen such a website, but now I’ll be on the lookout for it.

  19. Symbister, if you know another (5-letter) word for 19D, remove its middle letter (radio language for ‘whisky’) and replace it with a type of wine.

  20. I am nearly all done. Only 12a eludes me. I put all the crossers in a word finder and it finds nothing. Any clues out there?

  21. Sandy, it’s a fairly common word, so perhaps one of your intersecting answers is wrong. The first two words are the definition, then you need to apply “no-frills” to the following words.

  22. You haven’t got “air lunges” for 2d, have you? I did for a while!

  23. A DNF for me today – I missed 17D. Like Jack I struggled with 10A/26D until I remembered the default template text in popular presentation software. I also wasted time over-complicating the ellipsis clues. And lots of clues with question marks -are they really needed in 2D, 14A and 18D?

  24. Pleased to have got almost all, just missed out 10a, 26d. Funnily I still don’t get the parsing after looking up the answer.
    Any explanation welcome; also for 13a can’t figure the parsing.

  25. All done. 2A Cork carrier indeed! LOI: as an Emerald Islander I was truly misled. FOI 25A.

    Had the wrong word too for 8D. Enjoyed 3D and 28A. Getting 20A from 19D was a challenge so this for all the tips

    Keep well everyone.

  26. Phil, for 10a/26d, see DAJunkie’s post @11:38 am. For 13a, find a 5 letter word for “drudge” and misplace (move) the one letter from ‘laptop’.

  27. Thanks Graham M,
    Didn’t get back to it until this morning. Our daughter FaceTimed with our granddaughter about then. And then we had arranged Zoom pre-dinner drinks with my sister and her husband. So I got distracted. O the busy life if lockdown! :)
    And yes I did have Air Lunges. Google has confirmed it.

  28. At least I thought it had. I didn’t click through when it offered ‘air lunges airline’ as a possibility. I just did now and it went to Aer Lingus.

  29. I’m not sure whether it’s against the law to discuss Saturday’s cryptic here, but isn’t 14d lacking a definition?

  30. No, he means 14down, and there doesn’t appear to be a definition. Another example of where test-solving and a crossword editor would prevent errors.

  31. There is a crossword editor for the SMH/Age called Lynne Cairncross. She was mentioned in the article about DH a few weeks back.

  32. Oh dear. Pretty hard to miss if the time is taken to solve the crossword.

  33. Peter W. Agree about the need for test solvers. An editor is not necessarily going to do that.
    Maybe you could offer your services? I was wondering if there was a little code which some typesetter thought was a mistake and cut it out.

    Tim C thanks for the pointer to Lynne Cairncross and DH. She has a degree in linguistics as I do, so maybe that makes her a bit qualified, although from the studies I’ve read about crack solvers, they mostly come from the IT/engineering/domain.

    Interesting to see a comment on that article preferring DH (damned hard) to DA (don’t attempt).
    The thing they both have in common is they have the same mentor and intro to being published in (then Fairfax) crosswords LB.

  34. I agree with Graham M Re14D Saturday . No definition – a glaring omission.

  35. Gayle, if the crossword editor doesn’t solve the clues in some way, how do they check the clues? How do they assess difficulty and make sure there’s a good mixture of clues? There was a mistake last week in one of the crosswords where the non-word “theatratical ” was used. Looks like they don’t even use some kind of spell check. So what is actually being checked?
    Most regular cryptic solvers prefer crosswords they can solve. If you can’t solve DA, then you would prefer to solve everyone else.

  36. Gayle, if the crossword editor doesn’t solve the clues in some way, how do they check the clues? How do they assess difficulty and make sure there’s a good mixture of clues? There was a mistake last week in one of the crosswords where the non-word “theatratical ” was used. Looks like they don’t even use some kind of spell check. So what is actually being checked?
    Most regular cryptic solvers prefer crosswords they can solve. If you can’t solve DA, then you would prefer to solve everyone else.

  37. Agree Peter. If she’s the crossword editor and doesn’t edit, or doesn’t delegate that to a test solver, what is she doing? The quality of many of the Nine/Fairfax crosswords is pretty poor, sadly. They need some new blood.

  38. An enjoyable one this week. Still a few to go.
    Graham M, I had ‘air hinges’ for 2D! (Convinced myself they were a kind of screw…)
    And I too had no trouble with 10A-26D, having been a desktop publisher in a former life.

  39. A crossword editor in the UK, would accept, check, edit, suggest, return, rewrite . . . one or all of those.
    I think the Fairfax editor accepts the setter’s file, ensures it meets deadline and not a lot else. It’s probably one of their many roles.

  40. A general query please. What does it normally mean when there are a series of dots at the end and beginning of clues? Are the clues related in some way?
    And what about a question mark? Extra cryptic?

  41. Hello, Annie. Sometimes those ellipses (dots) mean there is a connection — perhaps with the wordplay of one clue into the other. But quite often they’re red herrings, and mean nothing.

    Our Mr Astle discusses question marks in his book “Rewording the Brain”. He describes it as “suggesting the wordplay has a playful result” or “a whimsy-warning” (p148).

  42. I put down this one unfinished on Friday because life crowded in, and my subconscious understands DA better than I do.
    Last night my son looked into the abyss and his 6D drew me back in.
    Now, done.

    My favourite gem 29A . Such an impenetrable thing protecting an easy easy target with only a few syllables.

    But, In my world, 8D has *never* been used in that phrase. Even though, I admit: the building I walk into to get this therapy or treatment is called a Dental …

    Google trends (imagine claiming that obscurity makes an answer unfair) has treatment strongly more popular than therapy and 8D is barely a puddin swoon.

  43. I thought I had 2D but I had the same mistake as Carol – (the fact they appear in google results didn’t help).

    I was just about to ask for a clue and it just hit me – I’ve even flown with them!

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