i Cryptic Crossword 2667 Kairos

August 26, 2019

So Bank Holiday Monday, the sun is shining, and I seem to have a free day. The plan is puzzles this morning, a walk down by the river later, followed by a barbecue. Though not, unfortunately for my speed solving this IoS offering from Kairos, using a 25ac which was one of several today to slow me down somewhat. In fact, my overall summary would be suspiciously similar to NealH’s back in 2014 – of medium difficulty, spoiled a little by a couple of obscurities at 15ac (which I did sort of know), 16ac (which most of us will have guessed correctly, but still), and the aforementioned 25ac which required a dictionary check because, while it was going to be little else from the checking letters, was somewhat obscure in both answer and wordplay.

I’m experimenting at the moment with starting in the far SE corner to test the old theory that setters run out of ideas by that point. I also suspect it may sharpen the mind by doing something a little different. The upshot being that my FOI was 21d having failed on the last two downs, LOI 16ac, finish time under par for the i but sluggish for an IoS reprint. And since I’ve started this experiment? It seems to have got me out of a patch of pretty poor form, I’m going to say.

Enjoy the day, and do have a go at yesterday’s guest puzzle if you haven’t already.

COD? In particular I liked 8d – “How to get larks into ark in part of London! (9)”.

To December 2014 for all the answers and parsing of the clues: http://www.fifteensquared.net/2014/12/08/independent-8783-by-kairos/

10 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 2667 Kairos”

  1. dtw42 said

    Re 15ac: I could see the sort of thing Kairos was aiming at, but just didn’t know the word; so with no subsidiary wordplay I just had to wait till 7, 8 and 15 were in, and then look up likely-sounding bunches of letters. Was held up for too long on 15dn because I’d spelt 23ac with an A (can’t have been the only one to do that, surely). I was fine with the ‘old waitress’ bit of 16ac (Lyons Tea House girls in their black and white pinnies) but didn’t know it could mean niggardly. 25ac was familiar, so fine. Last in was 6ac, ’cos I didn’t get the wordplay.

    I’ll second 8dn as COD – that was a nice one.

    • Cornick said

      A straightforward puzzle for the most part, but with a nasty sting in the tale.
      I didn’t know Amah, Hibachi, Chi-chi, Nippy as niggardly OR as an old waitress, so was glad to have a dictionary handy for those. Bit of a fail on the jolly old Arachne ruling there.
      LOI was PITON though – took me a while to see the wordplay.

  2. batarde said

    And I shall third it. Everything seems to work fine, but it turned out to be sneakier and more of a challenge than expected. Thoroughly enjoyable.

  3. Topsy said

    My first one in was 10a and things went a bit awry because I mixed up 2d with 7d and put “canteen”….. It worked in my head! I did recover eventually but got stuck with 15a. I had an alphabetic malfunction with 3d which held me up with 13a but got there in the end. On a different note, am I alone in finding the red headings on the puzzle pages to be a distraction?

  4. Michaelatcobblerscottage said

    I too loved 8d. But PEPPERONI amused me a lot as well. PATRONISE gets my vote, though; I decided (rightly) that it was an anagram of “pains tore” but was looking for a word that meant “frequent” as in “often”. I couldn’t find one so decided it wasn’t an anagram, and looked for something else that meant “often”. Then, when I got some crossing letters in I decided it must be an anagram after all. Finally, the penny dropped! Great misdirection.

    A few unknowns for me today: the barbecue and NIPPY as meaning niggardly (I’d heard about the waitresses at my grandmother’s knee). I failed to get the word-play for BOOKSTALL. A little uncomfortable (why, I’m not sure) about “arab” being clued by “saracen”.

    Not a bad way to spend an hour in the sun on a bank holiday.

  5. Cornick said

    Isn’t 15a PITON? A piton is a supporter for a mountaineer, PI = ecclesiastical and TON = host, as in a large amount?
    Well, that’s what I thought!

    • jonofwales said

      There’s a good case to be made for an alternative answer. I checked, though, and the official answer is PATEN (courtesy of the check button on the i App).

      • Cornick said

        Ah. Okay. That IS a rubbish clue!

      • Cornick said

        Because ‘ecclesiastical host’s supporter’ isn’t cryptic, it’s just a description. Plus without wordplay it’s ungettable without the GK. Plus the piton thing.

  6. Chris Cox said

    Early on I confidently entered ‘Angel’ for 15A (One of a heavenly (ecclesiastical?) host plus a supporter of a new stage production. Not surprisingly I could not get the down clues to fit! Also Piton seems a reasonable answer. Not my favourite kind of clue!

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