Tuesday, 31 March 2020

No 12897, Tuesday 31 Mar 2020, Incognito

Day 7 of 21 Stay safe at home

8   Left harbour (4) PORT [DD]
9   Unflappable Scot sails around island (5) STOIC {STO{I}C*}
10 Judge Bill (4) BEAK [DD]
11 Perry is worried about a plea (6) PRAYER {PR{A}YER*}
12 Nobleman’s tennis venue? That's right (8) COURTIER {COURT}{IE}{R}
13 Luftwaffe or RAF use this and broadcast prisoner of war note and sector at last (3,5) AIR POWER {AIR}{POW}{E}{s...oR}
15 Accept tailless donkey despatched (6) ASSENT {ASs}{SENT}
17 Animal that may be part hen (7) PANTHER*
19 Towed dinghy to some extent for marriage ceremony (7) WEDDING [T]
22 A mobile telephone component, with outgoing voice-calls at first, for sci-fi writer (6) ASIMOV {A}{SIM}{Ou...g}{Vo..e}
24 Large deficit in fuel (8) COLOSSAL {CO{LOSS}AL}
26 Spanish media get one round of coffee (8) ESPRESSO {ES}{PRESS}{O}
28 It may be used to construct or destroy moat around rear of manor by middle of March (6) MORTAR {MO{m..oR}TA*}{maRch}
30 Dr. No returns satellite? (4) MOON {MO}{NO<=}
31 Stick with its end cut-off is attached to ring with a bit of nickel to produce a tiny particle? (5) GLUON {GLUe}{O}{Ni...l}
32 Ogle endlessly, matinee idol (4) STAR STARe

1   In five, the number visible to a Roman (4) FOUR {fIVe}
2   Saint builds stupa around beginning of year and remains in same place (5,3) STAYS PUT {ST}{A{Year}SPUT*}
3   So crew is organised to create account to keep money in trust (6) ESCROW*
4   Study The European Organization for Nuclear Research for business enterprise (7) CONCERN {CON}{CERN}
5   Correct account by clergyman (8) ACCURATE {AC}{CURATE}
6   Sailor eats haphazardly and goes down (6) ABATES {AB}{EATS*}
7   To some extent, an American title (4) NAME [T]
14 Leaders of prayers set out aims around start of the month (5) IMAMS {IMA{Mo..h}S*}
16 Camouflaged assassin in Japan? (5) NINJA [T] &lit
18 Imagine English travel permit giving name at last (8) ENVISAGE {EN}{VISA}{g...nG}{namE}
20 Princess’s hair results in agony (8) DISTRESS {DI'S}{TRESS}
21 Executive committee record contains upper class Eastern poem (7) ECLOGUE {EC}{LOG}{U}{E}
23 Airman flies around 8 (6) MARINA*
25 Damaged melons and fruits (6) LEMONS*
27 Silence before rounds! Go away! (4) SHOO {SH}{OO}
29 Partly open one container (4) AJAR {A}{JAR}

Reference List
Island = I, Right = R, Note = E, Spanish = ES, Doctor = MO, Sailor = AB, English = EN, Princess = DI, Executive committee = EC, Upper class = U, Eastern = E

Dr RKE's TalePiece


Isaac was  the harbour master of the Chennai PORT (he still called it by its anglicised NAME,  Madras). His residence was a depressing brick and MORTAR quarters built during the British days. He had been in this house since his WEDDING and his wife was STOIC about STAYing PUT there till he retired, which was FOUR years away. The bond between them had been strong, as if they had been held together by some invisible  GLUONs. 

Though, of late, she preferred spending her time in PRAYER. No longer did she take a walk on the MARINA, gazing at the STARs and MOON, holding her husband's hand as she used to do in the past. No more of their evening outing to an eatery on the Beach Road, where he would have his ESPRESSO and she, her LEMON juice. Her CONCERN was the COLOSSAL loss she had made in her inexpert forays into stock market investments, something she had done without his ASSENT, falling for the sales pitch of the portfolio adviser from PANTHER investments. The so-called blue chip stocks the adviser had ENVISAGED had tumbled when the Sensex tanked by 5000 points in a single day. 

Her DISTRESS was hightened by the indifferent attitude of Isaac, who non-chalantly played NINJA warriors or read an ASIMOV sci-fi novel, whenever she tried pouring out her heart to him. An IMAM from the Saifee Mosque, a long time friend of the family, came during one such moment and heard them talking as the door was AJAR. The perspicacious Imam made an ACCURATE assessment of the situation and counseled them. Issac no longer SHOOed his wife away when she came to seek solace and she, on her part, became more mature in her investment decisions.  The bond which had threatened to ABATE became stronger and the spark was re-kindled.

Monday, 30 March 2020

No 12896, Monday 30 Mar 2020, Incognito

Day 6 of 21 Stay safe at home

8   Honey changes direction for getting agreement (4) DEAL DEA(-r+l)L
9   The police flew by Queen’s chopper (10) HELICOPTER {THE+POLICE}*{R}
10 Quarrel and put sub in reverse (4-2) BUST-UP<=
11 Unqualified sailors receive circular letter with instrument (8) ABSOLUTE {ABS}{O}{LUTE}
12 Idol loft renovated and saturated with light (8) FLOODLIT*
14 Old boy gets egg first for musician (6) OBOIST {OB}{O}{1ST}
16 Cast changed for parts of play (4) ACTS*
17 Scare several army-men to some extent (5) ALARM [T]
18 Utter, “Father takes final glance” (4) DEAD {D{g...cE}AD}
19 Green prune diced around one (6) UNRIPE {UNR{1}PE*}
21 Slap Rosa violently for getting umbrellas (8) PARASOLS*
23 “Rescue assistance? He's being chased by leaders of Labour Party/Left in England” (8) HELPLINE {HE}{La...r}{Pa..y}{L}{IN}{E}
26 Chinese city produces lustrous material (6) CHROME {CH}{ROME}
27 Assassin following father at home gets aspirin? (10) PAINKILLER {KILLER} after {PA}{IN}
28 Light meal for engineer having sex appeal (4) BITE {B{IT}E}

1   About the barman... He’s an American party man (10) REPUBLICAN {RE}{PUBLICAN}
2   Chinese force caricatures army units (8) PLATOONS {PLA}{TOONS}
3   Guy is next to the Spanish place of worship (6) CHAPEL {CHAP}{EL}
4   Insect’s foot is on pasture (4) FLEA {F}{LEA}
5   Sir, come around beginning of the blizzard (3,5) ICE STORM {SIR+COME}* over {The}
6   Vote during Athens Olympics, at first, for an extremely handsome man (6) APOLLO {At...s}{POLL}{Ol...s}
7   Model ward gets camping equipment (4) TENT {T}{ENT}
13 President drops uniform for a vagrant (5) TRAMP TR(-u+a)AMP
15 Steady partner — he works where horses are put up (6-4) STABLE-MATE {STABLE}{MATE}
17 A heavenly female returns it with initially fiery appetiser (8) APERITIF {A}{PERI}{IT<=}{Fi..y}
18 Sketch of French author (8) DESCRIBE {DE}{SCRIBE}
20 Threaten Devil and quit (6) IMPEND {IMP}{END}
22 Group of people get money for sprinters (6) RACERS {RACE}{RS}
24 Tail-less animal’s dash (4) ELAN ELANd
25 Creatures found in Lake Elsinore (4) EELS [T]

Reference List
Queen = R(Regina), Sailor = AB, Old boy = OB, Left = L, England = E, Chinese = CH, Father = PA, Home = IN, Sex appeal = IT, About = RE, The Spanish = EL, Foot = F, Model = T, Uniform = U, Of in French = DE

Sunday, 29 March 2020

Special, Sunday 29 Mar 2020, Jiyararajume

Day 5 of 21 Stay safe at home

Welcome to Jiyararajume. Comments and brickbats welcome.

Three answers per commenter as usual till 6 PM (Annotations compulsory)
Please submit all your answers in one comment.

1    A difficult walk I had, that's clear!  (6)
5    Something used in the lists, by many a knight (8)
9    Girlfriend embraces you, finally -- at regular intervals (8)
10 During match, turn over a new leaf, and tread very carefully (6)
11 Well fitted, be addressed, you idolater (8)
12 New Books, after ten years, rotting (8)
13  Boy meeting maiden, on the contrary! (7)
16 Invention created by US agents in a sudden burst of activity (7)
20 Does the traffic cop tell you to do this, if you wear one? (8)
22 They have a belief that is strange-- saintism (8)
23 One relocated from a South America region - this reptile! (6)
24 After entry of snake, went ahead and ran! (8)
25 Nervecentre of rogue organization found next to a hero! (8)
26 Some whippersnapper, scallywag-  from 25 across! (6)

2    Snub the region! (6)
3    Plant tree with land round (8)
4    Consignment of French uniform (8)
5    Still wearing the former outfit, the first one had! (7)
6    Find most of the country's heath frighteningly cold! (8)
7    Learned to repeat first line (8)
8    At sea, weed two tars used to keep afloat! (5,5)
12 Tug of war? No, cars setting off up a road, originally (4,6)
14 Without saying much, (like our Col ?) whip up island to revolution! (8)
15 Race in public (8)
17 I blacken Andamans, for instance! (8)
18 Convert so solemn and dark! (8)
19 First of 21, old records, I left on (7)
21 I have found!  recently in the news followed by this dusky actress, without a husband (6)

Across Lite version can be accessed at JIYARARAJUME 1


The Sunday Crossword No 3093, Sunday 29 Mar 2020

Day 5 of 21 Stay safe at home

1   Technocrat redesigned form of protection (6,4) TRENCH COAT*
6   Lost, wandering around Norman city (2,2) ST LO*
9   Article ensuring independence abandoned when changing side (3,7) THE GUNNERS {THE}{ENSURiNG*}
10 Suggestive banter, perhaps, revealed in regressive corporations (4) SMUT<=
11 French girl in beret attends dance (2,10) ST BERNADETTE {BERET+ATTENDS}*
15 ‘Poop a swear word?’ ‘Almost’ ‘That’s clear’ (2,5) IN FOCUS {INFO}{CUSs}
16 Think about taste? Oddly, it needs to be experienced (4-3) MUST-SEE {MUS{TaStE}E}
17 Embroils parents in strife (7) ENTRAPS*
19 Cool to reach number one, perhaps, for musician (3,4) ICE CUBE {ICE} {CUBE} Cube of 'one perhaps' is still 1
20 What’s blazing in zest, purée, etc? (5,7) CREPE SUZETTE* Semi&lit
23 Early on, a harpooner and boy? (4) AHAB Semi&lit
24 Evergreen Shakespearean killer, not half: 'Ides isn't tragic' (10) ASPIDISTRA {ASP}{IDes}{ISnt}{TRAgic}
25 African national? Not so: African nation (4) MALI soMALI
26 Old writers mentioned before, adopting eastern magic words (4,6) OPEN SESAME {O}{PENS}{SAME} over {E}

1   Archbishop's skirt (4) TUTU [DD]
2   PM of Sweden missing the point at first (4) EDEN swEDEN
3   Nobleman taking year to be concerned about lough in part of Ireland (6,5) COUNTY CLARE {COUNT}{Y}{C{L}ARE}
4   In ruins, discern evidence of blaze (7) CINDERS*
5   An associate member of Nato, perhaps (7) ACRONYM {A}{CRONY}{M}
7   Potato and mouse (once tail removed) cooked as comfort food (6,4) TOMATO SOUP {POTATO+MOUSe}*
8   Highest degree, English, old examination accepted, above board (2,3,5) ON THE LEVEL {NTH}{E} in {O-LEVEL}
12 Dinerssweet concoction? (7,4) DESSERT WINE* &lit
13 Prepare for Auld Lang Syne, with number going wonderfully (4,1,5) LIKE A CHARM {LInK EACH ARM}
14 How fell fat sort!? (3,3,4) OFF THE WALL* &lit
18 Gags and locks away (5,2) SHUTS UP [DD]
19 Cold, topless, in Spain and Portugal (7) IBERIAN sIBERIAN
21 Estonian regularly visited Italian hot spot (4) ETNA EsToNiAn
22 Art gallery's thank-you note (4) TATE {TA}{TE}

Reference List
Independence = I, Old = O, Eastern = E, Year = Y, Lough = Lake = L, Member = M, English = E, note = TE

Saturday, 28 March 2020

No 12895, Saturday 28 Mar 2020, Incognito

Day 4 of 21 Stay safe at home

8   Disreputable bar’s // urgent order for subs (4) DIVE (DD)
9   Money put into container with one pancake (5) BLINI {B{L}IN}{I}

10 Brewers vessel (4) EWER (T)
11 Shut near start of day (6) CLOSED {CLOSE}{Day}
12 Damaged van behind automobile carries international student to gala event (8) CARNIVAL {CAR}{VAN*} around {I}+{L}
13 The French pass English at game (8) LACROSSE {LA}{CROSS}{E}
15 Follow right in and make safe (6) ENSURE {ENSU{R}E}
17 Most merciful king in Germany shows tenderness at first (7) KINDEST {K}{IN}{DE}{Shows}{Tenderness}
19 Tearing comment on death by priest in grief initially (7) RIPPING {RIP}{P}{IN}{Grief}
22 Tear in damaged part of eye (6) RETINA {TEAR+IN*}
24 Light fin is folded when flying (2,6) IN FLIGHT {LIGHT+FIN*}
26 Idly utters soft sounds (8) PRATTLES {P}{RATTLES}
28 Bug Indian religious group (6) INSECT {IN}{SECT}
30 God’s authority? To some extent... (4) THOR (T)
31 Enchanting lady and woman with urge (5) WITCH {W}{ITCH}
32 Retrieve implement and plunder (4) LOOT {TOOL<=}

1   Jack’s friend Juliet gets sick (4) JILL {J}{ILL}
2   Dear me! US could be considered (8) MEASURED {DEAR+ME+US*}
3   Sailors pen song for quarters (6) ABODES {AB{ODE}S}
4   Baseball player’s  // 10 (7) PITCHER (DD) 10a=Ewer
5   Dizzy PM of the UK? (8) DISRAELI (GK)
6   Wrong about young lady (6) REMISS {RE}{MISS}
7   Devas composition? (4) VEDA {DEVA*} &lit
14 Spry soldier surrounded by beer (5) AGILE {A{GI}LE}
16 Managed church farm (5) RANCH {RAN}[CH}
18 Gulps // birds (8) SWALLOWS (DD)
20 Shoe treating limps? LOL! (8) PLIMSOLL {LIMPS+LOL*}
21 Hairy US heir dances around model (7) HIRSUTE {US+HEIR*} around {T}
23 Bury new trainee (6) INTERN {INTER}{N}
25 Scare Roundhead during battle (6) FRIGHT {F{Round}IGHT}
27 Swimming hour for South Asian fish (4) ROHU {HOUR*}
29 Rookie in bed is an idiot (4) CLOT {C{L}OT}

Reference List

Money=L, One=I, International=I, Student=L, The French=La, English=E, Right=R, King=K, Germany=De, Priest=P, Soft=P, Indian=In, Woman=W
Juliet=J, Sailors=ABS, About=Re, Soldier=GI, Church=Ch, Model=T, New=N, Rookie=L

Colour/Font Scheme

DefinitionSolutionComponent lettersEmbedded linksTheme word Anagram IndicatorC/C indicatorReversal IndicatorHidden word IndicatorLetter Pick indicatorDeletion IndicatorHomophone IndicatorMovement IndicatorPositional IndicatorSubstitution, IndicatorOpposite indicatorLink/Connector, Extraneous

Dr RKE's TalePiece

JILL, an INTERN in a law firm, is holidaying in a RANCH. She takes a bite of BLINI, SWALLOWS quickly a MEASURED quantity of orange juice from a PITCHER (or is it an EWER), wears her PLIMSOLLs and is out of her ABODE early morning, for an AGILE  jog in the LACROSSE ground. She ENSUREs that the sun is up before going for a DIVE in the pool. Her HIRSUTE dog, a bearded collie, runs with her but stops at the pool edge, because of his FRIGHT of water. Today, THOR has sent a thunderstorm RIPPING through the ranch and she is REMISS at not having brought a raincoat. She breaks the CLOSED door of a cabana by the poolside, LOOTs a mackintosh, and emerges in the rain, unaware that there is an INSECT in its sleeve. The bite from the insect causes a CLOT in her arm. She cuts short her holiday and despite the pain in her arm, while IN FLIGHT on her return she PRATTLES to her fellow passengers about what a CARNIVAL of a time she had, displaying proudly her selfies on her iPhone with its unmatched RETINA display. Aren't we all good at that kind of self-deception?

Friday, 27 March 2020

No 12894, Friday 27 Mar 2020, Neyartha

Day 3 of 21 Stay safe at home


All those who are not regular commenters but who are rookie commenters or silent followers of the blog are requested to post answers with annotations in the comments section. In your own interest please avoid looking up the answers from the interactive version. Don't hesitate to post your annotations, in case you make a mistake in the annotation someone will correct it with the right annotation.


Each commenter is requested to post only 5 answers thereby giving others also a chance to participate. Please provide all your answers in one comment.

Regular solvers/Veterans can post 1 answer each, but after 11 AM only

The regular blog will replace the clues at 4 PM.

Thanks for the response, here's the regular blog.

1   Superior cricket club seen in the pits turns out well (8) SUCCEEDS {S{U}{CC}EEDS}
5   Delay in obtaining a part of the Gothic cupboard (6) HICCUP [T]
9   Relating to the study of matter deformation by the man entering the cool rig at sea (9) RHEOLOGIC {HE} in {COOL+RIG}*
11 Substance to be carried along in a part of a mine (5) DRIFT [DD]
12 You may be required to work it for a free trip to a part of a mine (7) PASSAGE [DD]
14 Unnatural locks protecting the wall from the south (3-4) MAN-MADE {MAN{DAM<=}E}
15 Capable of being fixed, the rabid element gets treated (12) DETERMINABLE*
17 Distended veins of the college teams’ in-charge boarding to pick up the ball (12) VARICOSITIES {VAR{IC}{O}SITIES}
20 German leader at the wrong place showing sensitivity in a part of a mine (7) GALLERY (+g)GALLER(-g)Y
22 Twisting motion sent back group of criminals in front to a part of a mine (7) GANGWAY {YAW<=} after {GANG}
23 Adult getting rid of ego to relocate a part of a mine (5) SHAFT SH(-i+a)AFT
24 Come around and cut short the British textile dealer’s business on the Internet (1-8) E-COMMERCE {COME*}{MERCEry}
26 Department’s ball (6) SPHERE [DD]
27 Loans from government funds to influence Tesla’s participation (8) IMPRESTS {IMPRES{T}S}

1   Letters from the maestri peddled as a rank indicator (6) STRIPE [T]
2   Water clock and the frolicking pterodactyls models go missing after the ring's removal (9) CLEPSYDRA PtERoDACtYLS*
3   Lifted cover to reveal a slippery character (3) EEL LEE<=
4   Eyed group rate arrangement for a photograph taken with an outdated method (13) DAGUERREOTYPE* Thanks to Google
6   Nick’s hotel hoarding antidote mixture (11) INDENTATION {IN{ANTIDOTE*}N}
7   Hard to replace worker in a wine shop in the country (5) CHINA C(-ant+h)HINA
8   Oceanic bird delivering a crude-oil derivative to the auditor (6) PETREL (~petrol)
10 Arrival with a clutched box in the class to explain a linguistic element (9,4) COMBINING FORM {COM{BIN}ING}{FORM}
13 Cinema crew member’s rubbish turning up under the refurbished cartridge’s not good (3,8) ART DIRECTOR {ROT<=} under {CARTRIDgE}*
16 Famous ones quoted for remembrance? (4,5) LAST WORDS [CD]
18 Discharges erudite George executing strangely tricky steps first (6) EGESTS Acrostic
19 Cored out fragrant Asian fruit for the French schools (6) LYCEES LYChEES
21 Strain to draw blood reportedly (5) LEACH (~leech)
25 Blemish in the Switzerland-banned parade (3) MAR MARch

Reference List
Superior = U, Cricket club = CC, In charge = IC, Adult = A, Ego = I, Tesla = T, Model = T, Hard = H, Worker = ANT, Switzerland = CH

Dr RKE's TalePiece

It is rare that one SUCCEEDS in making an easy PASSAGE, without any HICCUP,  through a NEYARTHA puzzle without looking up at LAST for WORDS in THCC. Of course, you get the word play - remove T and O from pterodactyls - but how is one know that the remaining letters go on to form a water clock called CLEPSYDRA? Or that those who "eyed group rate" would know about the outdated "DAGUERREOTYPE"? Is it easily DETERMINABLE that it is a  COMBINING FORM of a rabid element? I know most of you got CHINA but did you really get it by working Hard to replace the ant in CANTINA, an Italian wine shop? You also need to be familiar with abstruse SPHEREs such as vascular flow dynamics to get words like RHEOLOGIC or VARICOSITIES. They didn't teach all that in the LYCEES. I suppose you get the DRIFT of what I am driving at.

Even an ART DIRECTOR like Sabu Cyril or Thota Tharani would not be able to create such a perfect MAN MADE setting of a mine, complete with SHAFT, GANGWAY, PASSAGE and GALLERY, as our favourite setter has done. And that too with surfaces as smooth and slippery as an EEL! Some may feel that the verbosity of some clues MAR the beauty but the brevity of 26A is striking. Neyartha proves that he is not a the stormy PETREL like NJ once was. I must say this crossie is a perfect "antidote" to not being able to visit the "inn" during these lockdown times.

Thursday, 26 March 2020

No 12893, Thursday 26 Mar 2020, Arden

Day 2 of 21 Stay safe at home

1   Sacked right away after PM made changes (8) MODIFIED {MODI}{FIrED}
5   Maybe lethargic after unscrewing the bulb (6) GARLIC LethARGIC*
10 “Follow anonymously” — One hears it in parts of Asia (7) TAGALOG {TAG ALOnG}
11 Kind of proteinits back in style (7) ELASTIN {ELA{ITS<=}N}
12 Teacher rises and greets the holy man... (5) RISHI {SIR<=}{HI}
13 ...so that it’s tried on or off (2,5,2) IN ORDER TO*
14 Ready to book what’s found in a store (4,8) CASH REGISTER {CASH}{REGISTER}
18 Innocent chap moving vehicle (12) PANTECHNICON*
21 Country gets expert academician to check, target reviewed (9) MACEDONIA {ACE}{DON} in {AIM<=}
23 Taking care, team achieves excellence in Greece (5) ARETE [T]
24 I love to enter, criticize and keep away (7) ISOLATE {I}{S{0}LATE}
25 At first, we lie in wait perhaps (7) INITIAL Anno pending (Addendum - {LIe+IN+wAIT}* [CA] - See comments)
26 After midnight he went finally to the favela (6) GHETTO {niGht}{HE}{wenT}{TO}
27 All in one voice say “bliss at last in marriage!” (2,6) IN UNISON {IN}{UNI{b..sS}ON}

1   Majesty, a true representation of age (6) MATURE {M}{A}{TRUE*}
2   Assimilate the summary (6) DIGEST [DD]
3   Rail almost complete, team informed (9) FULMINATE {FULl}{TEAM+IN}*
4   Educt two sections between UK and France (7,7) ENGLISH CHANNEL {ENGLISH}{CHANNEL}
6   A tie up gets recognition (5) AWARD {A}{DRAW<=}
7   Drunk? Time it’s taken up by the intelligentsia (8) LITERATI {LIT}{ERA}{IT<=}
8   Features to study, goes around later (8) CONTOURS {CON}{TOURS}
9   Government’s surprise decisionestimation done was wrong (14) DEMONETISATION* Semi&lit
15 Sit in a loo — another way to tackle Coronavirus (9) ISOLATION* &lit
16 Plans to go North, China is spreading useless information (8) SPAMMING {MAPS<=}{MING}
17 Starts entering confidential data into a memo, it’s related (8) ANECDOTE {A}{N{En...g}{Co...l}{Data}OTE}
19 Kind to admit one’s very brainy (6) GENIUS {GEN{1}US}
20 Conductor’s capital! (6) BERLIN [DD]
22 It gives you the depth, underneath is the pontoon (5) DRAFT {D}{RAFT} &lit

Reference List
Right = R, Love = 0, Majesty = M, E = English, Drunk = LIT, Study = CON, Depth = D

Dr RKE's TalePiece

DEMONETIZATION was a GENIUS move IN ORDER TO curb the flow of counterfeit currency that was SPAMMING the economy and to ISOLATE the black money. Agreed, there were INITIAL difficulties, especially for people in GHETTOs, who didn't have money to buy onion or GARLIC and ANECDOTEs of people in bank queues having heart attacks.  The so-called LITERATI, who could not DIGEST the abrupt manner of the move, FULMINATEd IN UNISON the PM and the RBI on the talkathons over the ENGLISH television CHANNELs. They pointed out how a similar measure had crippled MACEDONIA in the past. CASH REGISTERS stopped ringing and people had to switch to cheques, DRAFTs and cards. The police would stop any PANTECHNICON plying at night to check for the demonetised notes being taken to be converted to new notes. The finance secretary did his best to break the BERLIN wall of opposition but the PM maintained a RISHI like silence after having dropped the bombshell on 8.11.2016. Even a TAGALOG newspaper from Manila, hailed the ARETE of the Indian economic experiment. The people were MATURE enough to bear their difficulty and AWARDed the PM with a resounding win in the next election. A wag quipped that the CONTOURS of the Indian economy had become "MODI"FIED for ever. 

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

No 12892, Wednesday 25 Mar 2020, Arden

Day 1 of 21 Stay safe at home

1   Regular pain to intercept call sign for bloodlines (11) CAPILLARIES {CA{PaIn}LL}{ARIES}
7   Money with Charlie remains (3) ASH cASH
9   In general has adequate capital (5) LHASA [T]
10 Maybe Sellers accept a buck — that’s a factor (9) PARAMETER {P{A}{RAM}ETER}
11 Show displeasure with a cafe (4,1,4) MAKE A FACE {A+CAFE}* [RA]
12 Hope everyone can suppress discontent (5) PEEVE [T]
13 Bag of tricks — grabbed it, getting ultimate thrill (4,3) TOOL KIT {TOO{t...lL}K}{IT}
15 Image exposed — nice and long (4) ICON {nICe}{lONg}
18 Hard to check vehicle daily (4) CHAR {C{H}AR}
20 He gets a bird on flight (7) STEPHEN {STEP}{HEN}
23 Only role of abstractionism in painting (2,3) OP ART {O}{PART}
24 Landlord will glance around before entering empty room initially (9) BARKEEPER {BAR{PEEK<=}E}{Room}
26 Used for divining friend’s secret, reportedly (9) PALMISTRY {PAL}{MISTRY}(~mystery)
27 Well earned, no odds on this animal (5) ELAND {wElL+eArNeD}
28 One breaking a contract is a fool (3) NIT {N{1}T}
29 Free, in case trade is established (11) ASCERTAINED*

1   Disaster — one on the run through London, say (8) CALAMITY {C{A}{LAM}ITY}
2   Support not the growth of marine creatures (8) PLANKTON {PLANK}{NOT<=}
3   Climber gets a fix up (5) LIANA {A}{NAIL}<=
4   It will slither and stop on tarmac (7) ASPHALT {ASP}{HALT}
5   Subject of King's ascendancy — they say ‘Ayes’ have it (7) ISRAELI {I}{LEAR'S<=}{I}
6   Communicate as per home design (9) SEMAPHORE*
7   Perhaps later allowed new growth overhead (6) ANTLER {A{N}TLER*}
8   Complaint with business software he has acquired (6) HERPES {H{ERP}ES}
14 Unkempt, hairy task for him is to fight (9) KSHATRIYA* Task on Double Duty
16 After drink understood he’s a man of God (8) CHAPLAIN {CHA}{PLAIN}
17 Butted in, but perhaps didnt stop offensive (8) INTRUDED Anno pending (Addendum - {INT{RUDE}D*} - See comments for the extra 'D' in the fodder)
19 Automatic turnaround for contributor (7) ROBOTIC COntrIBuTOR* [CA]
20 Endless plea by painter (7) SPRAYER {lesS}{PRAYER}
21 Move on with a ticket (6) COUPON {COUP}{ON}
22 Everyone's sunk low, Tom goes for vote (6) BALLOT {B{ALL}OTtom}
25 Purge the opponent, finally there’s change (5) ENEMA ENEM(-y+a)A

Reference List
Charlie = C, Buck = RAM, Hard = H, Only = O, Contract = NT(No Trump), Aye = I(~i), New = N, Business software = ERP, Drink = CHA,

Tuesday, 24 March 2020

No 12891, Tuesday 24 Mar 2020, Arden

Tough workout today.

6   In theory, it could be to avoid the sarcasm (5) IRONY {IN+theORY}*
7   Mike's taken off the shoe, takes only a moment (8) OCCASION {mOCCASI{O}N}
10 Payment overstated — the stock gains weight here (7) F?E?L?T (Addendum - FEEDLOT {FEE}{TOLD<=})
11 Add spirit to a pigment (7) TEMPERA {TEMPER}{A}
12 Russian’s short gambit accepted — nothing much (7) MOLOTOV {M{O}{LOT}OVe}
13 It’s offensive to restrain the ju ju man (7) WARLOCK {WAR}{LOCK}
14 Accompanying picture on the way back (11) WITHDRAWING {WITH}{DRAWING}
19 Well, agree Scot essentially was a painter (2,5) EL GRECO {wELl}{aGREe}{sCOt}
21 Swimmer close to finish, miscalculating (7) HERRING {f...sH}{ERRING}
23 Spell able to make you fall (7) CANTRIP {CAN}{TRIP}
25 Come back over and over I-beam (7) RIPOSTE {R{I}{POST}E}
26 A strange flower indeed (4,4) ARUM LILY {A}{RUM}{LILY} &lit
27 Agents called Herb (5) SPIES (~spice)

1   Spooner’s fish finger salad (8) COLESLAW (~ sole claw)
2   I said block the opening (6) EYELET {EYE}{LET}
3   Maybe evident in low capital (10) MONTEVIDEO {MO{EVIDENT*}O}
4   Tie not a Glaswegian (4) SCOT aSCOT
5   Give up fine state, briefly (6) FOREGO {F}{OREGOn}
6   It’s fashionable and loud, girl gains notoriety (6) INFAMY {IN}{F}{AMY}
8   Amateurish move by the warrior (7) SAMURAI AMAteURISh*
9 Procedure to keep check, both sides are crazy (5)  WACKY {WA{ChecK}Y}
13 Stand and watch with alertness (7,3) WEATHER EYE {WEATHER}{EYE}
15 It’s believed they consume raw material (7) THEOREM {THE{ORE}M}
16 Gets help, it's disputed (8) GAINSAID {GAINS}{AID}
17 Wood and sand, essentially they're different (5) BEECH  BE(-a+e)ECH
18 Man eater therefore will climb on board (6) OGRESS {ERGO<=}{SS}
20 Spy exposed, go after those at the top (6) GENTRY {aGENt}{TRY}
22 Father among others gets food (6) REPAST {RE{PA}ST}
24 Ache for French bread (4) PAIN [DD]

Reference List
Mike = M, Only = O, Over = RE, Low = MOO, Fine = F

Monday, 23 March 2020

No 12890, Monday 23 Mar 2020, Arden

1   Eleanor Cortez shot — no concession to lawbreakers (4,9) ZERO TOLERANCE*
10 Cover both sides of fish basket (5) CREEL {CoveR}{EEL}
11 Tom writes novel, cheats (3-6) TWO-TIMERS*
12 Five were part of a gig beforehand (2,7) IN ADVANCE {V} {IN A DANCE}
13 Light direction in actual review (5) LASER {RE{S}AL<=}
14 Work interrupts participation, energy wasted (7) ENTROPY {ENTR{OP}Y}
16 Hormone evens out — snugly wrapped up inside homes (7) INSULIN {IN}{SnUgLy}{IN}
18 Right of ship to go through — it’s Germany bound (7) TRUSSED {TRU{SS}E}{D}
20 A wave able to take on a sea creature (7) ABALONE {A}{BAL{ON}E*}
22 River and mountain range in the countryside (5) RURAL {R}{URAL}
24 Can feel as free and unbound (9) LOOSELEAF {LOO}{FEEL+AS}*
26 Nocturnal creature gets thing moved by crane, perhaps (5,4) NIGHT BIRD {THING}*{BIRD}
27 Worked mostly in army unit on Sonar (5) ASDIC {DId} in {ASC}
28 Opposed to American lumberjack featuring in the advertisements (2,11) AT LOGGERHEADS {A}{T{LOGGER}HE}{ADS}

2   A gentle representation, artistic (7) ELEGANT*
3   Slip contents in plain cover, being forgetful (9) OBLIVIOUS {OB{sLIp}VIOUS}
4   Frequently soothes when naked (5) OFTEN sOFTENs
5   Recondite matters as coterie is formed (9) ESOTERICA*
6   Mostly everyone follows a team along the centre (5) AXIAL {A}{XI}{ALl}
7   Coolers used to make phenol (7) CREOSOL*
8   Strange pairconnected but always getting hurt (8-5) ACCIDENT-PRONE*
9   Design nicer features as part of software (4,9) USER INTERFACE*
15 Shouting about work piling up, it's music to some (9) YODELLING {Y{DO<=}ELLING}
17 Status quo on Spooner’s sex, say (9) STALEMATE (~ male state to stalemate)
19 By changing vertical direction absolutely becomes erect (7) UPRIGHT {UP}{RIGHT}
21 Old composer died — it’s exaggerated (7) OVERDID {O}{VERDI}{D}
23 Free time to check building blocks (3,2) LET GO {LE{T}GO}
25 For derivatives there is domestic demand (5) ORDER [T]

Reference List
Direction = S, Work = OP, Germany = D, River = R, Can = LOO, Army Unit = ASC(Army Service Corps), American = A, Team = XI, Old = O, Died = D, Time = T

Dr RKE's TalePiece

Frederick Banting and Charles Best were working in the early 1920s at Toronto in ORDER to find a cure for diabetes. Being NIGHT BIRDs, they sought and obtained permission from Prof. MacLeod to use the laboratory OFTEN after office hours. They noted down the findings of their ELEGANT experiments on dog pancreas in a LOOSE LEAF notebook. Banting was the brain behind the study but the slogging was done by Best, who had ZERO TOLERANCE for error. They tried making pancreatic extract with CREOSOL and later, at MacLeod's suggestion, with saline. When they managed to cure a dog with experimental diabetes using their extract, Banting presented the findings in a conference at Yale University but he OVERDID the ESOTERIC details so much so that the audience were OBLIVIOUS to the message. This caused a STALEMATE between Banting and MacLeod. Being AT LOGGERHEADS with the chief investigators (Banting and Best), MacLeod, roped in a biochemist, James Collip, to purify the extract. He used ethanol and got a pure anti-diabetic substance. It was MacLeod who made the announcement IN ADVANCE to the world about the discovery of INSULIN, although he did little actual work. The flighty but UPRIGHT Banting could not take it when the Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine was conferred in 1923 on MacLeod and Banting, ignoring the work of Best. He accused MacLeod of being a TWO TIMER and even of stealing the loose leaf notebook from him.   Charles Best, who was just 25 years old then, with a RURAL upbringing that had taught him magnanimity, prevailed on Banting to LET GO of his acrimonious battle with MacLeod. Thus, Best was able to stem the ENTROPY in the scientific circles. In spite of their personality clashes, what they all achieved in those days, without modern inventions like LASER, AXIAL scans or medical software with easy USER INTERFACE, was remarkable indeed.

Sunday, 22 March 2020

Special, Sunday 22 Mar 2020, Novice

Three answers per commenter as usual till 6 PM (Annotations compulsory)
Please submit all your answers in one comment.

1   Vibrations of hot fourth God give mental nourishment (4,3,7)
10 Just one out and out remote place (3,4)
11 Support five on a trick show (7)
12 Suffer junior government officer (7)
13 After odd hour barber moving end to start lost direction to plant (7)
15 Applause to palace on wheels without a point with roof up giving nothing away (1,4,3)
16 Spots men can spot inside returning (4)
19 Do this to the hatchet! (4)
20 Satanic and wicked to give around (8)
23 Remedy for nosy Trump missing ends (7)
24 Not game comic superhero (7)
25 Fast tempo music by metal support on endless row (7)
27 Mass measure to grow taking in direction repeatedly (7)
28 Three on danger mix with model in blockbuster film (5,3,6)

2   Drone prepared for alarms in readiness (2,3,6)
3   Worded perhaps by poets extremely, nature’s morning pearls (8)
4   Substitute gives away starts, an idiot making contradictory speech (8)
5   Roots of tributes dodgy, lacks sex appeal (6)
6   Nothing left out of coating over teeth, nothing seen beyond (6)
7   Target student leaving state (3)
8   Pester host moving with hesitation to carry ring for fixer (7-7)
9   Heartless oaf picks odd hour to manage 007 in classic novel (2,5,7)
14 Andaman and Nicobar for one, a place rich go at sea, without a cent! (11)
17 Cop equipped thus, helped me get in taking time, but not softly (8)
18 State of Indian Airlines was unspoilt before (8)
21 Killer on vacation supresses uncontrolled urge at wildlife park (6)
22 Frictionless movement of moths around circle (6)
26 Allow to lease (3)

Across Lite version can be accessed at NOVICE 3


The Sunday Crossword No 3092, Sunday 22 Mar 2020

1   'People seen in church', paper reported (6) CHOIRS (~quires)
4   ... world’s a stage ... (3,5) THE GLOBE [DD]
9   Foreign newspaper very into Milan fashion house (6) PRAVDA {PRA{V}DA}
10 Sad vocal remixed with Gallic spirit (8) CALVADOS*
12 Collapse, ululating at first, before god in place on the Euphrates (8) FALLUJAH {FALL}{Ul...g}{JAH}
13 Novel where Scrooge gets jolly in the end (6) MISERY {MISER}{j..lY}
15 Study disparaging Bright Eyes singer? (3,9) ART CRITICISM {ART}{CRITICISM}
18 Wild, Met opera? Hang about (2,3,7) ON THE RAMPAGE*
21 Funny jokes about parking in capital (6) SKOPJE {SKO{P}JE*}
22 Those who are smart voiced opposition to Trump policy (4-4) KNOW-ALLS (~ no walls)
24 Wanting leader, sheltered deposed king (8) ETHELRED sHELTERED*
25 Scratched a Monet, reportedly (6) CLAWED (~ claude)
26 Duly pick playfully in this activity? (5,3) LUCKY DIP* &lit
27 Everyman, they say, given drink, acts creepily (4,2) EYES UP (~ i)(EYE}{SUP}

1   Romp involving vacuous farce: a shocking movie (4,4) CAPE FEAR {CAPE{FarcE}{A}R}
2   Old earl taking short sleep on toilet, making no effort (2,1,5) ON A PLATE {O}{NAP}{LAT}{E}
3   Bloody dog – shouting, explosive – that’s seen next to lamb (10,5) REDCURRANT JELLY {RED}{CUR}{RANT}{JELLY}
5   Here, every athlete tussles – to begin with? (4) HEAT Acrostic &lit
6   Shivering, Im wet, short of time, so get lively, get lively! (4,2,4,5) GIVE IT SOME WELLY {IM+WEt+SO+GET+LIVELY}*
7   Many dogs taking a pee (6) OODLES pOODLES
8   Some theses, say, specifically? (6) ESSAYS [T} &lit
11 Captain and chief briefly advanced security protocol (7) CAPTCHA {CAPT}{CH}{A}
14 Decorator to make a mark here, curling’s seen (3,4) ICE RINK {ICER}{INK}
16 Actor who starred in Calamity Jane and Homeland? (3-5) DAY-LEWIS {DAY}{LEWIS}
17 Admitted being frustrated about part of Superman costume (6,2) FESSED UP {F{ESS}ED UP}
19 Top grade – excellent – in addition (2,4) AS WELL {A}{SWELL}
20 Baffled by drunken noise of moody teenager (6) GOTHIC  {GOT}{HIC} Iffy definition
23 Sperm oil oddly seen in kind of pad (4) SEMI {SpErM+oIl}

Reference List
Very = V, Parking = P, Old + O, Earl = E, Time = T, Advanced = A, Superman = S(ess),

Saturday, 21 March 2020

No 12889, Saturday 21 Mar 2020, Gridman

1   Unawareness of old big cat having eaten four (8) OBLIVION {O}{B}{L{IV}ION}
5   Aches for a long time with Poles (6) YEARNS {YEAR}{NS}
9   Setter backs Hindi talk essentially sick and relating to clots (7) EMBOLIC {ME<=}{BOL}{sICk}
10 To rig a mixie involves some paperwork (7) ORIGAMI (T)
11 Most important soldier to hop on (9) PARAMOUNT {PARA}{MOUNT}
12 Express a view: “Leaders of old public institutions not enterprising” (5) OPINE (Acrostic)
13 Every youth leader’s one on your side (4) ALLY {ALL}{Youth}
14 Portrayed as evil, stupid minors having not a shade of remorse indeed (9) DEMONISED {DE{MINOrS*}ED}
17 Thus trade leader’s present and in favour of end to Sale (9) THEREFORE {Trade}{HERE}{FOR}{salE}
19 First letter is first letter backing continent (4) ASIA {A}{IS}{A}}<=
23 “What’s the purpose of green light?” “Pass” (5) FORGO {FOR}{GO}
24 Terms home circulated for electrical resistance calculators (3,6) OHM METERS {TERMS+HOME*}
25 Make too much of what’s plain about account (7) OVERACT {OVER{AC}T}
26 Musical effect confuses lot more (7) TREMOLO {LOT+MORE*}
27 Sorrowful to back that woman as dancer’s teammate (6) DASHER {SAD<=}{HER}

28 Mentioned half of redact is in and attributed (8) CREDITED {C{REDact}ITED}

 Exaggerate the importance of soft song finished first (8) OVERPLAY {OVER}{P}{LAY}
2   Generous // one on the Left (7) LIBERAL (DD)
3   Book quantity (6) VOLUME (DD)
 Conductor fled in a hurry in the face of this weather condition (8,5) OCCLUDED FRONT {CONDUCTOR+FLED*}
6   Somewhat poised, in-charge is coming at intervals (8) EPISODIC {POISED*}{IC}
7   Become aware of a pack of lies (7) REALISE {RE}{A}{LIES*}
8   Party thus has anger over ultimate impudence (6) SOIREE {SO}{IRE}{impudencE}
10 Exhausted executive group takes a little time to begin repairing removable engine (8,5) OUTBOARD MOTOR {OUT}{BOARD} {MO}{TO}{Repairing}
15 Claim from English spa with no introduction (8) ARROGATE {hARROGATE}
16 Father’s procured weapon with security code (8) PASSWORD {PA}{S}{SWORD}
18 Control run around partner on ship (7) HARNESS {HAR{N}E}{SS}
20 Leave pets? (4,3) STEP OUT {PETS*} Reverse Anagram
21 Manage the cost of a foreign car (6) AFFORD {A}{F}{FORD}
22 The French officer’s beginning to destroy key (6) LEGEND {LE}{GEN}{Destroy}

Reference List

Old=O, Big=B, Four=IV, Poles=NS, Setter=Me, Soldier=Para, Account=Ac, That woman=Her
Soft=P, In-charge=IC, Of=Re, Little time=Mo, Father=Pa, Partner=N, Ship=SS, Foreign=F, The French=Le, Officer=Gen

Colour/Font Scheme

DefinitionSolutionComponent lettersEmbedded linksTheme word Anagram IndicatorC/C indicatorReversal IndicatorHidden word IndicatorLetter Pick indicatorDeletion IndicatorHomophone IndicatorMovement IndicatorPositional IndicatorSubstitution, IndicatorOpposite indicatorLink/Connector, Extraneous

Dr RKE's TalePiece

Janata curfew

ASIA and Europe are the worst hit by the coronavirus pandemic. The Chinese appetite for wild meat has been DEMONISED and OVERPLAYed as a cause. Virologists REALISE that coronaviruses EPISODICally shift their host and THEREFORE OPINE that human-to-human transmission is now PARAMOUNT. Every Government YEARNS to stop the contagion. Some have OVERACTed with a draconian  lockdown, while the more LIBERAL ones who have permitted SOIREES to go on, are witnessing an unprecedented VOLUME of cases. The PM must be CREDITED with the idea of HARNESSing the people as an ALLY in this battle, as our country can ill-AFFORD the heavy cost of widespread testing. He says "on the day of Janata curfew, do not STEP OUT and  keep your FRONT door OCCLUDED". I  may add "FORGO your Sunday outings, do some pious reading of a LEGEND like the Ramayana, PASS your time by teaching kids some WORD games or ORIGAMI, walk about inside the house to avoid an EMBOLIC complication, mentally holiday by imagining that you are DASHing in the sea on a Goan beach in a boat with an OUTBOARD MOTOR, etc". There is no OHM METER to test the resistance of the public to such measures, but unless we act now, we are sure to be pushed into an OBLIVION. Curfew or not, don't forget to wash your hands.