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Posts Tagged ‘MynoT’

‘ILAM’ by MynoT

Posted by Encota on 20 Apr 2018

I generated the phrase:

COLOUR A-TO-H GULES (red) I-TO-P OR (gold or yellow) REST VERT (green).

This was clearly an anagram: (anagrind= HURT) SOVIET OR SAGE COLOUR PLOTTER.

So, in order, using your Colour Plotter, you were supposed to colour the puzzle Soviet (Red), OR (as above, Gold or Yellow) and SAGE (Green).   And whoever says that The Listener puzzle instructions can sometimes be slightly convoluted?  Seemed obvious to me 😉

And, for those doubting me, of course you’ll all have spotted the blatant clue to which flag it was on Row 4, 11th cell: “21 s”, the old guinea in the UK being 21 shillings.  Now you can’t tell me that that’s coincidence, surely?

Back to reality: this is the FLAG OF GUINEA (which happens to be the flag of MALI in reverse, hence the Title).  But you knew that 🙂

Here is my solution attempt.


Joking apart, a beautiful puzzle – thanks MynoT!

Cheers all,

Tim / Encota


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ILAM by MynoT

Posted by shirleycurran on 20 Apr 2018

Oh dear, that word ‘Jumbles’ and that was not all. Wordplay in the clues was going to lead to an extra letter or an omitted letter – in 29 clues – and those letters were going to spell out an instruction to solvers. It sounded rather daunting but we started anyway.

Of course, I read through the clues to check that MynoT retains his place in the Listener Oenophiles’Outfit, and, of course he does – with a vengeance. ‘Ring in Italy for cocktail (7)’ gave us BELL + IN + I as a fine start. He moved onto a Goan spirit, ‘Stun Roman goddess with cut Goan spirit (6)’ giving us DEA + FENI with the I cut, so DEAFEN. Mixing drinks was clearly a mistake as ‘Hooligans sit round about drunkards (7)’ gave SIT< round SOTS, so TSOTSIS and soon after that ‘Addle drunk departed (4)’ ‘Drunk’ here had to be an anagram indicator and we extracted an L from ADDLE to give us DEAD or ‘departed. The tippling wasn’t quite over and MynoT seemed to have moved on to vodka as we found ‘Murmuring, drink to rise and fall of Russia? (8)’ What a fine clue! We found an extra P here as we had SU[P] + SUR and RUS giving us SUSURRUS. No lack of alcohol this week. Cheers MynoT!

We noticed fairly early on that there was an alphabetical separation of the letters that were going into the three divisions of the grid. All the words going into the down clues in the first five columns seemed to be variations of the letters from A to H (AHAB, FACE-ACHE, BAGGED, HEEDED), then OLIO, LOIN, MINI, KILN, MINION and ONION, for example fitted into the centre columns and those wonderful words between R and Y (URUS, SUSURRUS, XYSTUS, TUT-TUTS and TRUSTY for example) filled the third section of the grid, so we understood how the jumbled words had to ‘fit a pattern that must be deduced’, and my anxiety about the jumbles diminished. But what was it all about?

Fortunately we were given a hint by those six circled letters. FGAFOL spelled FLAG OF for us so our three stripes were going to be a flag. It couldn’t be MALI that appeared backwards in the title. I looked that up and found a lovely green, gold and red flag in the pan-African colours but MALI has only four letters. Could it be FRANCE? That has six letters. Obviously we had to tease out that message that was being spelled out for us by the extra or missing letters.

We found COLOUR A TO H GULES, I TO P OR, THE REST VERT. Flags of Africa told me that that was the flag of GUINEA and I understood why MALI was reversed at the head of the puzzle. Guinea’s flag is the reverse of the Mali flag – so out with the pencils. The puzzle was a lovely challenge and great fun. Many thanks, MynoT.

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Listener No 4496: ILAM by MynoT

Posted by Dave Hennings on 20 Apr 2018

Only nine months since MynoT’s last Listener based on the German phrase Keine Antwort ist auch eine Antwort meaning No answer is still an answer. Of course, it doesn’t indicate whether it’s the right answer or not, otherwise blank grids would flood the offices at St Albans.

This week, all the across answers had to be jumbled to fit a pattern to be deduced. I’m always wary of preambles that require my deductive skills to be put to the test. Luckily, however, it seemed that the down answers were to be entered normally, but 29 clues led to extra or missing wordplay letters leading to an instruction.

Starting with the downs, I managed to get a fair few dropping from the top row. DAH and FINAGLED came next in rows 2 and 3 and it immediately looked possible that the left side of the grid could contain the letters A–M and the right N–Z.

As usual with a MynoT puzzle, it was relatively tricky clue-wise. That led to it being relatively tricky grid-wise as well. It was only when the rather strange looking instruction became clear that some ambiguities could be disambiguated: Colour A to H Gules, I to P Or, rest Vert. So it wasn’t A–M and N–Z after all.

As a (somewhat superfluous) helpful hint, the circled cells could be unjumbled to give FLAG OF. I think gues, or and vert gave made that clear. Anyway, Google to the rescue, since I’m not an expert on flags of the world. It turned out to be the flag of GUINEA, not Mali. So the pattern was the flag — deduction success.

Thanks, MynoT.

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Listener No 4455: Silence by MynoT

Posted by Dave Hennings on 7 Jul 2017

MynoT’s last puzzle at the beginning of last year was the superb Stomach with its map of the solar system from Sun out to Neptune.This week’s puzzle made me think of the film Alien with its tagline “In space, no one can hear you scream”!

A carte blanche here, with a phrase running across the top and bottom rows. Unfortunately the tagline was a couple of letters short of filling the 30 squares. Two other unclued entries were explained by this phrase.

Now, MynoT can be one tricky cluesmith, but here they were fairly straightforward. At least, the down clues were. With only half a dozen acrosses solved in my first pass, most of the downs were cracked and enabled the top of the grid to look almost complete after only 25 minutes.

I felt somewhat smug, although that was tempered by my embarrassment at getting 18dn at first reading. Conceal call for attention in ’80s sitcom (6) led to HI-DE-HI, an 80’s sitcom that I loathed (and consequently rarely watched); I also loathed the one set in a railway station.

The clue across the centre of the grid Having different music throughout for Humperdinck to broadcast (but not loud) (15) was almost certainly an anagram of (FOR HUMPERDINCK TO – F) but my doodles failed to reveal anything sensible that was one word. It would eventually turn out to be DURCHKOMPONIERT. In hindsight, I wondered if this German word was deliberately chosen to give us a hint.

If only I had resorted to Tea to solve this anagram, perhaps all the following kerfuffle would have been avoided. As it was, after about 1½ hours of solving, I had BED in row 5 with AD REM running through it. I also had TRY in row 9, and eventually solved Heard au pair goes before pregnant by … (5, two words) for DUE TO (O with DUET before), and stifled a titter. Cry of protest perhaps heard at Billingsgate: “It’s a shellfish” (6, two words) also raised a smile (SEE ‘ERE).

When I finally got the central entry, it looked as though ADREM and IN KEY should both start one square lower, but that would mean that the first square of row 5 and its opposite would be unchecked.

I suppose I should have tried to solve the phrase in the top and bottom rows earlier than I did as that might have helped get me on the right track. WO appeared in both, and after wondering about WORD, WORT seemed a possibility. Without anything in the preamble to help, I tried the section on foreign phrases at the back of Chambers, and was rewarded with KEINE ANTWORT IST AUCH EINE ANTWORT — No answer is still an answer: silence gives consent.

So it looked as though the two 7-letter unchecked entries in row 6 and 8 had to remain blank. I briefly wondered whether SILENCE and/or CONSENT would fit to give new words for the four entries that crossed, but no.

All in all, an easier than normal MynoT puzzle, but still enjoyable — nicht wahr?

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Silence by MynoT

Posted by shirleycurran on 7 Jul 2017

Keine Antwort ist auch eine Antwort

Such a large carte blanche caused no real consternation, especially when we worked out that the two unclued lights were going to be symmetrical, probably at the beginning and ends of the two rows encompassing that centre 15-letter word. The clue for that word was astonishingly generous as Tea immediately gave us DURCHKOMPONIERT as an anagram of [f]OR HUMPERDINCK TO. How MynoT must have smiled when he spotted that! German too! I know that he is a fluent French speaker and we were, as yet, nowhere near the endgame and had spotted a few European references but hadn’t an inkling that our German was going to be needed. (My four-year old grandson is a fluent German speaker and his one-year old sister does pretty well so our German is tested regularly on Skype and we should have had less difficulty than we did with the endgame).

I leap ahead. Of course I had carefully scanned the clues to check that MynoT is maintaining his oenophile reputation and my consternation grew as no references to premier crus emerged from the clues but I shouldn’t have worried (like that Poat HARE, the evidence was in the preamble: ‘Bars must be entered.’ Well, there is a real order! Cheers’ Mynot – we’ll share a bottle!

With the grid started and so many generous clues (ONCOGEN and WORKSOP neatly dividing it into quarters) we were almost able to proceed as if the grid were numbered, and the first ten down clues were solved one after the other – a rare thing for us. Of course, we spotted all those European references. ‘Tribe putting idiot in charge of Greek money (8)’ giving MANEH around ASS. I once taught a member of the MANASSEH tribe who educated me about her origins). ‘Love studies about European nymphs in the Alps (7)’ O + READS around E producing OREADES. Then we had another clue with German in it, but this time to be removed in the form of D and G: ‘One way or another two members of Anura acquiring name, not German (8, three words)’ Those members were TOAD and FROG losing those Germans but absorbing N(ame) to give TO AND FRO. What a delightful clue!

Spain came next: ‘Whale found in the east of two Spanish islands (4)’ – we flew over MajORCA and MinORCA exactly a month ago and saw no whales but I like the clue. And so it went on, with an Irishman (EAMONN) – we were there last week to celebrate the newly acquired Irish passport –  a French name, Scotland, Spain again and Paris – and our grid was full except for some rather worrying unching that seemed to be appearing in those unclued lights and difficulty placing BED and TRY. We were muttering at Mynot at this point (about an hour after the start of our solve). How could we be expected to solve two unclued lights that had five unches in seven cells?

Then the first penny dropped with a mighty clang – well, a few letters did and a few went up too, as we realized that we could enter those four consecutive ‘5, two words‘ entries with gaps in the middle making those unclued lights seven consecutive empty cells and somehow, the top and bottom rows of the grid were going to tell us why. The bottom one looked like SUCH (or MUCH) FINE ARTWORK and I vainly Googled that, then took a break for supper and a glass of wine to clear the head (or the frustration!) – and it worked! A fresh look at that top line a good hour later suggested MEINE/ SEINE or DEINE ANTWORT IST and something rang a bell. Of course it is in Chambers: Keine Antwort ist auch eine Antwort. So we were given a couple of answers that, even if they were not answers, were also answers and Chambers explains the title, ‘Silence gives consent’. Lovely, thanks, MynoT.

Squatting hare

The HARES? They are getting everywhere – at least three in this grid but I took to the little one squatting in the lower left quadrant.

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