Listen With Others

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Cool Places Only by Ares

Posted by shirleycurran on 4 Dec 2020

When we are told that ‘The title crypticlly represents the theme’ we, of course, anagram the title and TEA obligingly told us that ‘Cool Places Only’ anagrams to ‘Colony Collapse’. What a fine hint! I wasn’t given much time to check that Ares retains his seat or place at the bar with the Listener Setters’ Oenophile Outfit, as the other Numpty was racing ahead and had already removed those poor bees from the first six clues and was filling the grid.

But then came ‘Dream of cocktail following major broad (7)’ We downed yet another poor bee and put a major road, AI, in front of SLING (the cocktail) and produced AISLING = a dream. I liked the next clue where ‘Terrier runs to hide in cabin (5)’ but yet another poor bee hit the dust and the R in CAIN gave us our CAIRN terrier. Then Ares earned his ticket with not just a cocktail, ‘Going west, sailor opening wine hamper (4)’ We removed the B from our AB (sailor) and put him into the RED (wine) – a whole ‘hamper’ of it! A drunken sailor? Ah well – the ‘hamper’ turned out to be DEBAR with the B removed but cheers, anyway, Ares.

There was a hopeful sign later on too: ‘Innings bordered local marker (7, two words)’ One more bee had to go and we ‘ordered’ or anagrammed theINNINGS to get the local marker we were looking for, INN SIGN. Nice one!

It was all rather sad for the bees but there were some amusing manipulations when they were removed. We smiled at BRAINSTORM becoming RAINSTORM, and SEBBAT/SEAT. When EDALE was the only word that would complete 4d we head-scratched to produce BEDABBLE (wet) and the Del (or NABLA ‘upraised’ producing ALBAN or ALAN with the poor bee eliminated) nicely completed our grid.

The resulting thematic group that we had to highlight after changing one letter had to be the APIS that appeared (surprisingly considering the rate at which we had been eliminating them) when we changed the R of LARIS to a P but we were halfway through dinner before we realised that those four letters appear in that order in ‘colony collAPse dISorder’. A gentle but enjoyable compilation on a sad subject. Thank you Ares.



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