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Posts Tagged ‘Get weaving’

Listener No 4649: Get Weaving by Paddock

Posted by Dave Hennings on 26 Mar 2021

This was Paddock’s fourth Listener with the previous one being just over a year ago with No 4577, The Gaudy and its Inspector Morse theme. This week we had something that I’d never seen before — two clues interwoven! Luckily answers were entered normally, unlike the normal down clues where it was the two answers that were interwoven.

Listener 4649Starting with the acrosses, it soon became obvious that, unless a definition really stood out, I was pretty much stuffed. In 1ac Hated sham spending cuts following number one rule in such charged circumstances (7;5) for example Hated could be LOATHED, but no amount of trying the clue helped. The next obvious thing was that it was better to start with the down clues.

1 Confirm man leaving horse muck prepared earth in spring looked as though the first part could have some manure-y context but no joy. So 2 next Conservative serene about rejecting nuclear weapon bill — requirement for junket arising and CREESE/TENNER got me up and running.

3 passed me by, but 4 and 5 gave STAINS/MUSSES and EDDIES/ADHERE. No luck with 6 and 7, but 8 Selfie-taking device reached top of rankings, a stylish screen securing second place looked like CAMERA/something with that sneaky a belonging to the first clue no the second.

A bit more concentration on 1dn gave ASSURE (I was right about the manure)/BOUNED. From there, it seemed that letter patterns were the way to go as the across clues were still totally intractable. Thus 1ac started A/B+C/T with AC••M•• or AC••S•• being most likely. With the help of Mrs B’s cursed under hated I eventually got ACCUSED [ACCURSED – R] with the clue being Hated spending rule charged leaving Sham cuts following number one in such circumstances giving FACTS [ACT in (F + S(uch))]. So not only were the clues interwoven, it looked as though they were pretty difficult when disentangled!

Down the left-hand side of the grid, across the top and down the right and all was done. Not quite the quickest solve of the year — in fact pretty tough. I found it thoroughly enjoyable separating out the two across clues.

Not for the first time recently, I came across that sitcom priest TED in 7b plus a bit of off-the-wall humour in 9a What be that at rear of guardhouse? Mate, perhaps with ’TIS AN E and mate³ for the definition. It will come as no surprise to you that my favourite clue was 21ac Endless bonking injures aged duke drinking partner served drugged bubbly obscuring taste of Viagra (5;7) for DERES [clue here in bold, SERVED* – V(iagra)] and SEDATED [(SE(x) + D) around DATE].

The endgame required us to identify the names of two competitors, one on each side of the grid and then replace six letters of one to “reflect the outcome of the contest”. It didn’t take long to identify ARACHNE on the left and MINERVA on the right. The former then had six letters replaced to reveal A SPIDER.

Thanks for all this, Paddock. Very enjoyable with a fun clueing gimmick that made some clues tougher than disentangling Christmas tree lights.

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L4649: ‘Get Weaving’ by Paddock

Posted by Encota on 26 Mar 2021

My thanks to Paddock for an excellent puzzle – just the right level of difficulty, I felt.

I had the grid filled by end of Saturday, with a few question marks here and there where I hadn’t quite parsed the clue-pair as yet.  After a day of rest (ok, other puzzling) I polished off the last few parsings on Monday morning, with all done by 9:10.

One of my last three to sort was (with one of the interwoven clues shown in bold):

1. Hated sham spending cuts following number one rule in such charged circumstances

It was interesting to me how hard I found it to be certain precisely which words were in each clue-half.  For example, “number one in such” for S seemed to take me an age to spot.  Yet it seems so obvious after the event!

Another was:

16. Top fragrance EU had withdrawn left leader wanting standards for non-flammability revised

For some reason my mind went blank associating ‘fragrance’ with AROMA.  I had AMORAL pencilled in the grid and it still didn’t jump out at me.  Again, once highlighted as above, it seems so obvious!  I guess the crossword clue as a one-way function would make quite a good discussion topic.  One to save for when we all next meet at a face-to-face Listener Quarterly, perhaps.  Oh, and the WP for the letter N above made me smile – not perhaps the obvious choice of word from which to derive it!  Aside: I wonder if anyone has used antidisestablishmentarianism in a clue to derive a letter A yet – if not, then maybe I’ll be the first!

And the third was:

14. African predicant declines priest’s cape conceding over case for stalls and initially
          expensive pews.

I had DOMINEE as an almost-certain in the Grid and could see DOMIN(o) but there seemed to be so many possible Container&Contents_indicators (over; case for; stalls) to put the A in SETS vs picking the EE from E(xpensiv)E  that it took me ages to see ‘stalls’=installs.  Once I had that and SETS for ‘declines’ then all finally fell into place.

What I also loved about this puzzle was the mild assist one got from the checkers.  From the solved Down entries sometimes it would narrow down to two options, sometimes more – but they were enough to give a gentle assist to the clues in the other direction.  And then a few Acrosses in place nailed some checkers into place, so allowing other uncertain cell options to be narrowed down further.  This process was very satisfying, I felt.

Oh, and I bet I wasn’t the only one to celebrate my first letter in the grid – in the top right, an S as the first letter of STOLID or SHEKEL.  That took about 20 mintues, I think!  Colouring the Down entries helped a lot – see diagram.

Finally, the theme was, of course, impeccable!  Arachne, the weaver and Minerva, battling it out.

Thanks again to Paddock. A beautiful puzzle!!

Cheers & stay safe,

Tim / Encota

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