Listen With Others

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin

Diamond by Karla

Posted by shirleycurran on 13 May 2022

With three different sets of seven to find (extra words in seven across and seven down clues, and seven letters omitted from wordplay) we had a few coloured pencils working and soon had two rather strange sets of words that didn’t say much to us (jumps, dog, fruit, fish, burst, evening, and sign, with early, absolute, stool, master, pop, sheet and concrete).

We had a full grid, as Karla’s clues were generous, before TWINKLE appeared in alternate columns reading across the grid and that could only say one thing to us (of course, the ‘Little Star’ was ‘like a diamond in the sky’) At that point, the other Numpty, who had left me with the endgame and headed downstairs to cook the dinner – yes, a modern man! – commented “The letters of TWINKLE are in alternate columns aren’t they, but the rows must be significant – Notes? They must be in the positions of the notes of ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star'”

Now those sets of extra words made sense – dogstar, star fruit, star jumps, star sign, evening star, starfish, starburst – music master, sheet music, pop music etc. – one set for STAR and one for MUSIC and we realized that we would have to consult Wiki to be sure that we were selecting the right letters of I WONDER to give the second line of the tune.

Good fun, just right for a Friday evening though we were now faced with a bit of a dilemma. Do we put two rows of notes or two rows of stars (or even one of stars and one of music to match those two sets of seven?) I opted for stars with serious misgivings.

Well, the stars are prettier aren’t they?

Did I forget something? Of course! Karla has set a Listener puzzle in the past – that one about the perfect snooker score – but does he retain a place amongst the Listener Setters’ Oenophile Elite? Oh dear! It was a bit of a watery do ‘One fruit is infusing must-have cordial (7)’ We put IS into A NEED and removed the fruit, giving ANISEED. ‘Liquid X burst on short pier (6)’ We used MOL(e) and TEN for the X, removing the burst, to give MOLTEN. There was a drop of hope with PIMENT (spiced, sweetened wine) but it turned into PIMENTO – just wood.

However, my problem is resolved. Take a look at the photos of the Listener dinner at Stirling.

There is Karla, holding his glass in the fourth photograph – Cheers!


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