Welcome back to George vs the Listener Crossword – we’re into the home stretch, and for those of you who still have your unblemished records intact, good luck to you!  For the rest of us… let’s keep on plugging along!  This week we’re up against Calmac, who we’ve run up against once before in Mind the Gap, which was a rather fun puzzle with a hole in the middle.

Calmac is going for the brevity in preamble award… most clues have a misprint and there’s some “apparent clashes”.  Hmm… clashes that aren’t really clashes?  Clayton’s clashes?

Off to the bar I go… not a great start on this one, there is a 1 across, but no luck on the 1 across test at the start.  Nor the 7 across test.  10 looks like LULL and we’re away – doesn’t look like there is a misprint here.

My first laugh was a peek at 1 down where DITTY was obviously going to become DIRTY with SLATTERN the answer.  TUDOR and PLEA(SURE) later and it looks like 1 across is STOPGAPS and the mesage begind with an F.

I’ve given several messages that start with F, but I doubt this is one of them.

The first clashes appear when T,ROUBLES doesn’t appear to play nice with GAUC(y),HOS(t) or the hidden ERGO.  I wonder if they’ll all be in a bunch?  Probably not, I didn’t have any other clashes in the left hand side at all, and the grid is quickly filling up.  Yay for real words!

It looks like most clues means almost all clues, of the ones I’ve solved, only TROUBLES, maybe LULL and REMEDIES have no misprints.  TROUBLES and REMEDIES have clashes, LULL does not… oh… LULL does have a misprint – it’s calm interVal.  And we start off with FIVE  CLUES (so maybe 11 which I haven’t solved yet has no misprint).  FIVE CLUES ARE TO BE REGARDED AS EXEMPLARY.

Ahhh… that only leaves five clues without a misprint and some of them I haven’t solved!

Getting this message helped out a lot – I had pegged 33 across as SP,A,RE but it’s S,PART reversed giving me the T misprint.  So the clues with no misprint (and I guess thus exemplary) are 11ac (not solved),  16ac(TROUBLES), 32 across(not solved), 37 across (SPONSORS) and 19 down (REMEDIES).

Anyone else want to put a misprint of T in 37 across?  You should be ashamed of yourselves!

32 took a bit of parsing, but a hunt through the dictionary gave DA(CO,IT)Y.  Same thing with 11 – I think it’s APHORISM for an &Lit clue.  I may end up doing myself in here.  This is my grid before resolving clashes.

working grid for Listener 4160 - stress gauges by Calmac

clashes circled…

OK… exemplary.  Worth of imitation or notice, serving as a model, a specimen, an illustration or a warning.

I wonder if it’s just a warning that if you weren’t reading the clues, you would have bunged in ANAPAEST, TROCHEES, DACTYLS, SPINDLES and IAMBUSES?  So use the exemplary clues even though I’m now going to get a grid with a bunch of non-words?

My final grid for Listener 4160 - Stress Gauges by Calmac

I hope that I’ve interpreted this the way that Calmac intended.  It was a pretty quick fill and finding of the message – my bar session got me as far as the message, and it was a second sitting to clear things up, but I have this nagging feeling I may have missed something deeper.  Check back later and see if I’m justified in that.

I laughed at a lot of the misprints – PRINK to PRICK, POST to POET, CHARLES to CHARGES, MATE to DATE (there’s a warning right there), and WEAVES to LEAVES.  This was a good bit of fun while it lasted.

But for now I’m going to call it a guarded Victory to George.

2011 tally:  George 35, Listener 8.  Current streak:  George 9.

Feel free to leave comments below (particularly if it turns out I’ve boshed this up – I won’t be around once the solution goes online), and see you next week to find out if we have Lavatch or not have Lavatch.


Well that was a pretty spectacular plunge, wasn’t it?  In my paltry defense, what I know of meter could be written on the back of a postage stamp and mailed to Shakespeare.  Probably should have looked those bungable words up, eh?

Victory to Calmac…

Amended tally:  Listener 9, George 34.  Current streak:  Listener 1.


2 Responses

  1. Sorry to say this, but you are going to kick yourself when you see the solution…


  2. Well, I guess you suspected that there was more to this — the clashy clues were to be treated as exemplars in so far as that they were all written in the meter suggested by the ‘words you would have bunged in’ (SPONDEES rather than SPINDLES).

    The thing is, at least you solved all the clues! I got this ‘right’ but I didn’t solve at least two of the clues (APHORISM (which I still don’t understand) and DACOITY). In fact, once you’ve got the theme, trying to solve those five clues is an active hindrance. Other than that quibble a lovely puzzle though.

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