Listen With Others

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Listener No. 4407: Ad Nauseam by Chalicea

Posted by Dave Hennings on 5 Aug 2016

Chalicea’s last Listener (no. 4343, Bear, Bear, Bearing) was based on The Soldier by Rupert Brooke. There have been a number of WWI themed puzzles recently, and, from the title, I thought this might be another. Here we had some clashes to be resolved by discarding the name of a visionary, but the clues themselves were straightforward. But first…

Listener 4407Knowing Chalicea’s penchant for alcoholic beverages, I scanned the clues for evidence of her insobriety. I was not surprised to find that, out of 48 clues, 26 of them contained a G&T. Indeed, nearly a third of them contained two, and 18ac an outrageous three. It’s a miracle the clues made any sense at all!

At the start, I didn’t know whether this would be one of Chalicea’s gentle puzzles or a slightly trickier one. After a quick scan of the across clues, with only seven inked in, I thought it might be a bit of a toughie. I was pleased that I got one of the three 13-letter entries with 23ac BRAKE CALIPERS across the middle of the grid.

The downs were slightly easier, with nearly half of them solved on my first pass, and after 45 minutes, things looked rosy. However, none involved a clash with a crossing entry. 1ac TSADDIKIM came next, and after that, the remainder of the grid was fairly straightforward.

The clashes were fairly slow in coming, but that was hardly surprising since there were only four: IMP/NAAM, LIVERY COMPANY/SNACK, SEDAN/ORPHAN and OCH/SUDAMEN. This gave N/M, E/A, S/R and H/A, and NASH, Ogden was soon identified. With a quick scan of the grid, it didn’t take me long to spot the BILLBOARD across the centre as the Ogden Nashian word, although I needed my ODQ to identify the full verse:

Listener 4407 My Entry

I think that I shall never see
A billboard lovely as a tree.
Perhaps, unless the billboards fall,
I’ll never see a tree at all.

With the BILLBOARD dropping, and being consigned to the SCRAPYARD, “six examples of the ensuing loveliness” were revealed in the form of six trees: ALDER, GEAN, TI, BO, PINE and ABIES, all to be highlit.

ODQ references Trees, a work by Joyce Kilmer which starts:

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

…and ends…

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

Thanks to Chalicea for a chance to delve into the mind of Ogden Nash. I look forward to her next puzzle, based on

Is dandy
But liquor
Is quicker.


3 Responses to “Listener No. 4407: Ad Nauseam by Chalicea”

  1. m.bascher said

    i have a letter from a mark moshin portland usa. supply address to send it to. or collect from 66 green lane st albans

  2. Roger Phillips said

    M Mascher, I’ve just realised what you meant – sorry to take so long! The letter is intended for Mr J E Green of 63 Green Lane. If you can’t drop it through his door, I’ll ask him to collect it (hoping you still have it). Thanks.

  3. Roger Phillips said

    (Sorry – Bascher, not Mascher.)

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