In which we leave a conflict unresolved

Oh boy it’s been a rough day at George vs Listener central.  The entire Eastern seaboard of the US (self included) have a cold, and last night I sat down to start writing this and just couldn’t get it together – I got as far as putting the grid on the scanner and the eyelids started drooping.  To the extent that this morning  I woke up barely in time to make it to work for a series of bleary-eyed meetings.  And so, four hours after the answer has presumably gone up somewhere, welcome back to George vs the Listener crossword.

Two left to clear out 2013!  And this one is Pointer.  Two Pointers, two successful completions – I’ve tagged both of the old posts as Pointer, so you can peek back at them through a little link at the bottom if you so wish.  What have we here – remove words, something to do later, six clashes, a problem with clues.  Hmmmm, OK.  Well at least it’s all real words bar six clashes, so let’s get to solving.

The clues are almost all the same length.  Wonder if that means anything.

OK – there’s a 1 across, and the definition really looks like PARA, but it took a while to justify the wordplay PARA(SITE) – in any case we’re off.

It was a pretty steady gridfill with two moments of arched eyebrows – the first was seeing DOWNURN and TURNDOWN.  That was made curiouser and curiouser when I already had MILLHAND in the top half and thought of HANDMILL.

Next up – what’s going on with these extra words… EESSHDR… I’m not making any sense of this…

Does it mean that the clues are in the wrong order?  Does the top half of the grid switch with the bottom half of the grid?  That still won’t solve the problem with the first letters of extra words being nonsense.

I pressed ahead until I had a full grid, with six clashes…

my working grid for Listener 4272 - Conflict by Pointer

So what am I meant to do now?  The kept letters spell DRROER which is close to REORDER.  But I can’t see a systematic way of rearranging these clues to have real words in the message.  Are we meant to feed the whole set of extra letters into an anagram finder?

Pointer, you have me completely stumped as to where to go next, so in the penultimate Listener for 2013 we have a whopping great Victory to the Listener Crossword.  Better luck next year!

2013 tally:  37-7-7

Feel free to tell me I’m missing something completely obvious, and see you next week when Porlock sends us into a state of SONAMBulism.

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