Why does one wax the ceiling?

Welcome back to George actually tries the Listener Crossword.  Looks like I wasn’t alone in not being a big fan of last week’s Listener, though I liked one conspiracy theory that the puzzle was specifically written to affront crossword snobbery, a group of which I am proud to be a part of.

I have enjoyed the three previous KevGar Listeners, so I was looking forward to this – it was also the first of four Listeners to be solved during breaks in the play The Man Who Came To Dinner.  OK – what have we here – clashes (an unknown number) and resolution and highlights.  All real words in the grid… hmmm, so normal clues.

There is a 1 across, and it’s a strange type of clue – OVERLOOKS clued as a mash-up of LOVE and ROOKS.  Things get a little knotty from there – as running down from OVERLOOKS we have OWE, VASSALRY, ELKS and LIMA, but they don’t seem to play too nice with TAURUS for 12 across.  I know there’s going to be clashes, but with those three clashes in – and OYSTERCATCHER slotted in the middle column, the game might be given away very very early – when there’s WALRUSes and OYSTERs there’s going to be CARPENTERS…

The rest of the grid fill went pretty rapidly indeed – in fact to the point I don’t think I ever bothered solving 11 down, knowing it had to be CEILING WAX (though I didn’t think MISC was a possibility at 8 across – went to look up the poem to see that it is SEALING WAX and I’ve got a bit of a mondegreen going on.

My other hold-up was being so convinced that 26 down was LIN,O that I didn’t look up LIN to see if it was a badge, so I was scratching my head trying to figure out what the clashes there could make.  In the end it turns out MON,O fits and there were no clashes.

So we have resolutions to WALRUS, KINGS, SHIPS, SHOES, SEALING-WAX, CABBAGES and CARPENTER.  I finished with enough time to spare that I went through and figured out all the clashes for SERPENRTY, but never did get around to what 11 down originally was.  All in all a bit of light fun after my woes the last few weeks!

My working grid for Listener 4392, A Conversation by KevGar

Chalk up another enjoyable and accessible puzzle to KevGar, and I think we can finally claim a Victory to George!

2016 tally:  10-2-2

Feel free to tell me that I can’t claim it without solving 11 down, and I’ll see you next week when Little Hare gives us a French coming-of-age story.


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