Listen With Others

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Called to Order by Vismut

Posted by shirleycurran on 24 Sep 2021

We were initially puzzled about how we were going to enter our solutions when ‘some answers must be entered at another number’ and even when we had understood that the orders (to be sorted out) were ROUNDS, QUEENS, JOKERS, PRIORY, KENNET, and ROLL-UP, we failed to use that information to see where to place our answers.

Indeed, that was after we had ‘cold solved’ all but four of the clues and had managed to fill the top half of the grid by inverting a couple of clues (EROTIC and CANADA) to fit with RECUSE, A RAVIR and DONING and found, putatively, HIGHLIGHT RINGER OF CHANGES in the unclued answers and assumed that bell-ringing was the theme. That, of course, gave us the placing of our remaining solutions and spelled out the ones we still needed (ACHAGE, ULITIS, MESSES and AGNAME). So our solve really was back to front and it was only afterwards that the Internet told me the order of ROLL-UP, for example (543216) and showed me why I had entered the clues in that set in the order 25, 24, 23, 22, 21, 26. So it was a tough solve for us.

I know nothing at all about bell-ringing but the endgame gave us less trouble. An Internet list had shown us that ARCHERS was an order, so it was easy to see that the R of RINGER had to be inserted into ARCHES and be replaced by its alphabetic neighbour to give SINGER – and who was the singer of CHANGES? (coincidentally my son took his three-year old to Brixton yesterday, and was telling me about the adulation still accorded to their hero DAVID BOWIE).

What a clever compilation, Vismut. Oh, and the Listener Setters’ Toping Elite? No doubt at all that she qualifies: ‘Entertained by drink, Ian or Angela cried “Good health” in Maori (6)’. KIAORA was hidden in there with an extra N. ‘Nancy’s night included casual drink with dope (6)’: the dope was a NITWIT and we extracted a U from NUIT and added W(ith) IT. So “Kiaora, Vismut!”

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