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Posts Tagged ‘Emu’

From Where I’m Standing by Emu

Posted by shirleycurran on 26 April 2019

We were happy to see a relatively short preamble (though the three points of view it refers to kept us head-scratching for quite a while after we had completed a relatively gentle grid fill). Yes, I saw that Emu’s retention of his membership in the Listener Setters Oenophile Elite Outfit is rather tentative as his alcohol was in a very early stage ‘Grape and guava peeled and pureed (3)’ gave us an anagram of (g)UAV(a) – just the pureed grape, but ‘Cheers’ anyway, Emu. Someone has to provide the strong coffee. ‘Stimulant shot concealed by athlete’s press officer (8)’. Indeed, we can’t approve of those illegal stimulant shots but we did like the hidden ESPRESSO. (We had ‘shot’ as a potential extra word at first but ultimately opted for ‘Letters reprinted on every visible face of blocks’).

We were lucky in that a convenient Z emerging from a corrected misprint in the first clue – giving Zany for Many, soon led to ZIGGURAT appearing in those corrected letters. ‘Tenderfeet returned to split zany rocks giving crucial warning to Buffalo driver (9)’. We returned CUBS and inserted them into ROCKS* giving CROSSBUCK and were amazed to find that, for a driver in Buffalo that is a cross-shaped warning placed at a level crossing.

Not long after that, more corrected misprints gave us FROM WEST, so, with a full grid, we knew that viewing the ZIGGURAT from the west (presumably the left hand side of the grid) would reveal the ‘title character’s ultimate destination’. We had been told that ‘The grid represents a type of structure’ so I kick myself that it took us so long to see that we had to be looking at it from above. Even then we struggled to find ‘endless realms of day’.

Of course Google stepped in now and told us that the poem was The Eagle by e e cummings, and we could see EAGLE on the north side of the Ziggurat and THE on the east side so our point of view must be from the north-east, where we could see both of those sides of the structure and both the Es, and there was e e cummings, the poet, beginning at the apex of the poem. Robert Lorimer, the setter Opsimath, sent me this superb little reconstruction of the Ziggurat – he says it took him back to math model making, aged 11.

Dilemma! The poet would have been annoyed if we had written his name in upper case letters (and, in fact, the quotation begins half way along a line so would begin with a lower case e) but do we fill just his name in in lower case, the entire quotation too or even the entire grid? (Dare I mention KOHb at this stage?)

Many thanks to Emu for a challenging puzzle.

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L4549: ‘From Where I’m Standing’ by Emu

Posted by Encota on 26 April 2019

I loved the 3-D nature of this puzzle!  A Ziggurat, eh!?


Pulling a few strings with Lego I quickly got them to issue ‘The Eagle’ special edition of their 2009 Ramses ziggurat set and I was away (Yeah, right.  Away with the fairies, more like.  Ed.).

The extra eight words spelt out: LETTERS REPRINTED ON EVERY VISIBLE FACE OF BLOCKS – I think  I have that right!

The misprints in order spelled the following phrase: ZIGGURAT FROM WEST.  Hmmm.

Now imagine the grid to be in 3-D as a stepped pyramid-like structure.  Made of Lego, perhaps?

Then view said 3-D structure from the West (left hand side of the grid) and it spells out, row-by-row from top towards the bottom: ENDLESS REALM OF DAY …

This, in turn, proves to be part of a poem entitled The Eagle, by eecummings, or is that E.E.Cummings, depending on how early in his career he wrote it!?

If you now view the top of the ziggurat from the North-East, doubling up each letter on its NE ‘ridge’ to reflect the fact that letters are printed on every open face and two faces are visible from that direction, then the puzzle cleverly spells out:


A bit like this:


What a great piece of work – that is a lot of information hiding in the one grid.  Great work, Emu.  The final highlighting might then be considered as the shadow of that bird on the ziggurat – Eagle, not Emu, of course 😉

Great fun – many thanks John!

Tim / Encota

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Listener No 4549: From Where I’m Standing by Emu

Posted by Dave Hennings on 26 April 2019

Emu’s last (and first) Listener was two years ago. Then we had One-man Band which was based on the Ealing comedy, Kind Hearts and Coronets. In case you didn’t know, last year’s Ealing comedy Listener was Doing a Sort; it was based on The Ladykillers and it won setter Elgin the Ascot Gold Cup.

This week’s puzzle had fairly forgiving clues and was finished in just over the hour… well, it was only an 11×11 grid. The correct letters for the misprints gave Ziggurat, from west and the extra words in eight clues gave Letters reprinted on every visible face of blocks.

In hindsight, I should have got there a bit sooner than I actually did. I was sidetracked by some famous novels by unknown writers, World Life and Espresso, and All Gaelic Chain Mail. My real red herring was seeing ANIMULA running down column 9 when looking at the grid from the west (left). It turned out to be a poem by TS Eliot, but I couldn’t see him, or any of the poem’s words, in the grid.

Eventually, I realised that a ziggurat could be a pyramid, rather than just a sort of cubic tomb or like the Tower of Babel. Redrawing the grid a bit more neatly enabled me to see what was going on… sort of! I had spotted THE/EAGLE fairly early on, and that was a poem by Tennyson. Like Eliot, I couldn’t track him down anywhere in the grid.

Luckily, a bit more research unearthed an Eagle poem by EE Cummings. Thus the western half of the grid revealed “Ever drifting, drifting away Into the endless realms of day“. But that wasn’t what needed highlighting. That was to be found when the pyramid was looked at from the northeast, with author and poem straddling the corner of the pyramid.

At last, the somewhat cryptic bit of the preamble, “… solvers must add an extra letter in each of three cells” became clear. The letters straddling the corner of the pyramid were enhanced to give EE CUMMINGS THE EAGLE. I’m not exactly sure whether we were meant to put Cummings in lower case, or tilt the letters to the northeast, but, rightly or wrongly, I decided that wasn’t necessary.

For me, this wasn’t an easy endgame by any means, but very satisfying to get there in the end. Thanks, Emu.

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One-man Band by Emu

Posted by shirleycurran on 18 March 2016

Hangman 002There is nothing too troubling in Emu’s preamble but we clearly have to fill the grid and spot that ‘interleaved’ line of poetry before it is going to mean very much to us.

Naturally I check that Emu has earned his place as a Listener oenophile and he doesn’t disappoint, in fact he almost exceeds the limit. He begins with ‘If turned away after closing time, a Scotsman produces a flask (6)’ (IF< + A SCOT [C]losing T[ime] giving FIASCO). Then we find ‘[M]orally turned the wrong way for whisky (3)’ (“Wry” heard giving RYE). Not satisfied with all that whisky we find ‘Not much to drink – one of Will’s cron[I]es has run out (3)’ (TROT less R[un] giving TOT).

The down clues continue the drinking – ‘Spirits perish in albatross sho[O]t (12, two words)’ (ALBATROSS* + DIES = ASTRAL BODIES) then ‘Doctor’s other half is pocketing a five[R] in the Bull (6)’ – A difficult clue that one HYDE [i]S(Jekyll’s other half) takes in A, giving ‘five in the Bull, which Wikipedia tells us is a constellation where the HYADES are five stars. I am not really surprised when clue 31 tells us ‘Tipsy old b[O]y I guided by the hand (5)’ (O + I + LED – indeed, Emu must have been pretty well OILED after all that tippling. Cheers, see you in the bar at Windsor, Emu!)

A lovely set of clues and our grid fills steadily until, with a few hiccups, we have a rather strange set of extra letters to decipher. It puzzles us for a while before we see words that we can feed into Wikipedia AND SIMPLE FAITH ….. BLOOD and, as usual, Wiki comes up trumps with a Tennyson poem I have never encountered before (and I am not really surprised – it is a rather vicious attack on the lady isn’t it, and not really her fault if she is of noble birth)

Trust me, Clara Vere de Vere,
  From yon blue heavens above us bent,         50
The gardener Adam and his wife
  Smile at the claims of long descent.
Howe’er it be, it seems to me,
  ’Tis only noble to be good.
Kind hearts are more than coronets,         55
  And simple faith than Norman blood.

Of course, line 55 is the prompt we need and we have to go back to Wiki to see who were the characters who had to be eliminated in Kind Hearts and Coronets. What a story! I find, of course, d’ASCOYNE, HENRY, the BANKER, LADY AGATHA, the ADMiral, the REVerend, the DUKE and  the GENERAL and drawing lines through all of those produces the game we used to play at school in those silly hours before the holidays – Hangman. Yes, I originally highlighted the first ADM(iral) I encountered and that produced a convincingly counterbalanced scaffold but I remember that the diagonal strut was part of the game and switch to that.

One thing left to do. Interleaved with that quotation were the words CIRCLE ONE VOWEL. I have a rather wonky Mazzini on the gallows with warped legs and the only convincing vowel to circle is that A, which provides him with an extremely small head but sobeit.  Thank you for the entertainment, Emu.

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