Listen With Others

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin

That’s Your Lot! by Ploy

Posted by shirleycurran on 9 Apr 2021

We knew we were going to download John Henderson’s Zoom Listener dinner quiz in exactly an hour and the team was poised, ready (and what a team – brilliant – it was almost as stimulating as the usual pre-dinner Friday evening gatherings in the pub!) so it was with some trepidation that we downloaded the Listener puzzle and we were delighted to see Ploy’s name at the head of it. That is always a guarantee of no great difficulty but lots of pleasure.

Ploy, of course organises the Listener gatherings every three months in Farringdon (though we haven’t been doing Zoom gatherings lately – obviously – how on earth would we fit them in with all the other crosswordy and quizzy Zooms?) so of course he remains in the Listener oenophile elite, but I did look for proof in his clues. It was fairly subtle: ‘Black uniform with zip further back (4)’ had to be SLOE (uniform = SOLE so the O goes further back to give SLOE) – so I suppose he was starting with the gin. ‘Married to Punch (3)’ No, it wasn’t RUM PUNCH – we opted for M + AT = MAT which Chambers tells us is ‘Punch’. ‘Each French lake has westbound canals (6)’. We know all about the wine lakes that occur in France now and again when the Brits aren’t driving over to export it in the boots of their cars but here we reversed EA (= each) and those LACS to give SCALAE.

By this time, we had “YEAH, THAT’S ENTROPY, MAN!” emerging from our extra letters in the down clues and were happily playing Flanders and Swann, so it wasn’t much of a surprise to find that Ploy was finishing by drinking that rum hot: ‘Purring for some hot drink, cat ultimately got ahead (5) H + RUM with (ca)T in front = THRUM. Cheers, Ploy!

With a full grid, we could see that HEAT had filled the spaces that weren’t unched in the bottom row of our grid and WORK had appeared between HOTTER and COOLER in our grid but Flanders and Swann tell us that “heat can’t pass from a cooler to a hotter (or a hotter to a cooler) without conduction, convection or radiation” so we had some manipulating to do. “HEAT is WORK and WORK is HEAT” so we switched those two, according to the first law, then to illustrate the second, we shifted that HEAT from the HOTTER to the COOLER, finally giving ourselves the alliterative PERFECT PEACE in time for a stimulating Zoom solve of John’s challenging very Listener-oriented quiz where (together with the newest Australian convert who is about to win the Roddy Forman trophy this evening and who was up in the middle of the night) we toured the country for previous Listener dinner sites.

Great fun, thank you Ploy.

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