Listen With Others

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Listener No 4619: Artistic Licence by Serpent

Posted by Dave Hennings on 28 Aug 2020

This was Serpent’s fourth Listener, following on from last year’s subject of Tina (courtesy Maggie Thatcher) and Androgenic Alopecia in 2017. Here we had an extra letter or word that needed to be removed before solving which would give a comment and most of its context.

The clues came together steadily and it seemed that most of them simply yielded an extra letter rather than word. The acrosses seemed to reveal something to do with Celtic, so I assumed that we were dealing with a football theme. The first extra word I got was United in 26dn followed immediately by States in 27dn. That made football unlikely but not out of the question.

Perhaps the extra v in 29dn (vindicated becoming indicated) should have given me a clue that we were dealing with some US legal situation, but it didn’t. Eventually, the extras gave His locale was Celtic and his season spring. United States v one book called…. Talk about leaving you (me) dangling… not to mentioned confused!

Meanwhile, there were some entertaining clues. 6ac Said you must leave married circuit judge (6) where married became marred [(CIRCUIT – U)*] to give CRITIC, and 11ac Sailor’s stopped hostilities only to treat lovers (6, two words) (lovers becoming overs) for HOVE TO [HO + VET + O]. My favourite was probably 8dn Point one brightens the display (5) with the s of brightens departing to give TENTH [(brigh)TEN TH(e)] and a neatly devious definition. (I have to say that I thought displays should have been the hidden indicator.)

I first tried the ODQ to see if that helped track down what was going on, but it didn’t, so googling came to the rescue to give part of the summing up by one Judge Woolsey on whether Ulysess should be allowed to be published in the States back in 1933. It was.

Finding the three entries that needed to be changed to relevant names wasn’t too taxing as JOYCE, ULYSSES and WOOLSEY seemed likely candidates. They were slotted in at 25a, 23ac and 12ac respectively.

Not too stressful a week so thanks, Serpent.


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