Listen With Others

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Listener No 4562: My Nap by Mr E

Posted by Dave Hennings on 26 July 2019

Two years ago, Mr E gave us Nostrum, with Alice, The Mad Hatter, a Raven and a Writing Desk. That had a lot going on, and came close to tripping me up. This week, a puzzle that looked likely to reflect part of my day during hot summer weather.

Here, we had a few normal clues — well, thanks. Unfortunately, they had to be entered all jumbly in accordance with a quotation found “several times in a work”. The remaining clues had an extra word to be removed with their initial letters spelling out the quotation (minus the title) and the writer’s name.

In fact, the clues started off being quite straightforward, with 1ac [Weary] flyer to get going again around beginning of December (8) giving REDSTART and 7ac Pervert [hates] wife — and all others (5) for WREST, although the pervert meaning was new to me.

With but a rotor as an anagram for OBTURATOR, the top was looking good. Unfortunately, my solving speed began to look less good as there were some interesting clues to unravel but some entertaining surface readings. I particularly liked 14ac Flower from tree in Penny Lane [neighbourhood] (7) (PRIMULA — RIMU in P + LA) and Chemical engineer in Sweden [discussing] the best source of tungsten (9) (SCHEELITE — CHE in S + ELITE). 10dn A bit of rainfall [looming], he drops out of the running (5) (TRACE) describes me when it comes to playing golf.

The normal clues led to GENERIC, SUCKER, MUSTELINE, WIRE and PROPENSE. Three of these could easily be entered as there was only one unch: NCIERGE, CKSURE and WRIE.

Eventually, I had the titleless quotation and author given by What an addition to that would be. Beckett. Unfortunately, my ODQ revealed nothing that could come to the rescue. However, with NCIERGE and CKSURE across the middle of the grid, CONCIERGE and COCKSURE stuck out like a sore thumb and with CO + MY NAP giving COMPANY, I was on the right track. [CO]WRIE was at 7dn.

My ODQ still didn’t help, so it appeared that this was a puzzle where a couple of ducks were required. (I’ve changed my search engine to duckduckgo!). Company is a novella by Beckett in which “… what an addition to company that would be…” appears several times.

So, just finishing off those two ambiguous entries, gave us [CO]NTUMELIES and [CO]PPERNOSE. I think I owe thanks to Mr E for having the cocksure concierge across the middle of the grid as I am not sure that I would have made the connection quite so quickly if they had been downs.

Thanks for an enjoyable puzzle, Mr E.
 

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