Inquisitor 1575 The Gas Man Cometh by Ifor

January 9, 2019

Well, I’m sure he does, but the preamble? Nope, not making much sense. Except that something’s got to be turned up, and something else mangled. Perhaps I’ve just lost the ability to reason having spent the afternoon at the panto. We’ve had the gas man here too, but that was to plug the leak by the meter pretty sharpish. Such fun, but I don’t think that’ll help.

So let’s get solving. Normal clues it would seem. 13ac – unlucky for some but not for us – OPALED. A few friendly anagrams. ARYL at 18d, except… First hitch. The wordplay for 26ac is clearly an anagram of “some” followed by L, giving MOSEL, which won’t fit. Now if only you’d paid more attention to the preamble, I hear you cry. But I didn’t. Not until later when I ran into similar problems with 28ac – clearly THROW, but that’s not going to fit with any likely looking contenders for 23d which any fool can see is JAWLINE. We’ve got a couple of checking letters, so we can work out what will fit. WORTH. And if, finally paying attention to the preamble we turn LOOKS upside down to give SKOOL, MOSEL turns to MOLES. Our author?

Well, Google to the rescue, there is Nigel Molesworth, who I’d not heard of. Similar jiggery-pokery with 15ac giving NIGEL. His friend also mentioned? That would be PEASON, who we can untangle at 36ac.

No idea about this Gas Man lark though. A character in the books? Apparently not.

AV?O?GAD?R?O across the top row. No idea about the other letters. Chambers can’t help. Clearly we’ve got to replace with AS ANY FULE KNO, that is if Wikipedia is to be trusted. But the original, and is he mentioned elsewhere in the grid and thus needing to “leave at some point” apart from the top row?

Another 24 hours later…

Ok, it’s just Avogadro. Not heard of him. And is it cheating to have those blank cells? I’ll leave that to others more qualified than me to comment. I’m just pleased to finish with something that looks sensible and seems to meet all the requirements of the preamble.

I think. But what do I know? Job done, anyway, under par for time excluding those 24 hours, top marks for enjoyment value. Onward into the new year.

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