Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Tiffin Wallahs (Solution No. 3,272)

When I solved and blogged this week's puzzle, I noted a second theme:  instruments and other music-related terms as well as the main theme of "Yes!"  I don't think Hot and Trazom intended it that way, but it would have been cool if they had, and worked an instrument into all the theme clues.  But there ended up being just as many music entries as theme entries.

Be sure and click through to one or more of the articles referenced in 9d. Or take a look at this video of a day in the life of a dabbawala.  My friend Susan has a set of tiffin boxes she brings her lunch in sometimes.  And we have a growing empire of restaurants called Tiffin here in Philadelphia, which started with (and still does) a delivery service.



Solution and annotation below the fold


Legend: "*" anagram; "~" sounds like; "<" letters reversed; "( )" letters inserted; "_" or lower case: letters deleted; "†" explicit in the clue, “^” first or last letter or letters, “{“ relocated letter or letters, “¶“ letter bank.


Across
1a
*ABSO(LUTE)LY
*LA BOYS (anagram indicated by “irresponsibly”) containing (“smuggling”) LUTE (“instrument”)
6a
_ALTO_
unusu_AL TO_ne (hidden word indicated by “needed to make”)
10a
DOG | MA
DOG (“follow”) +MA (“mother”)
11a
*REALISTIC
*ARTICLE IS (anagram indicated by “rewritten”)
12a
*CERTAINL|Y
*CLARINET (anagram indicated by “broken”) + ^Y^ouths (first letter indicated by “initially”)
13a
_FICHU_
terri_FIC HU_nk (hidden word indicated by “displayed by”)
A fichu is a lace or linen scarf worn to make low-cut gowns look more modest.
14a
FINE
Double definition
Trazom could have used the musical definition of this word. 
16a
*USER NAMES
*MENSA RUSE (anagram indicated by “changed”)
19a
*ORP(HAN)A(G)E
HAN (“solo”) contained in (“interrupting”) *OPERA (anagram indicated by “scandalous”) containing (“about”) G (“grand”)
A double container: don’t see that too often.
21a
<_SURE_<
<deal_ER US_ed< (reversal indicated by “returning”, hidden word indicated by “connection”)
23a
DRE | AM
DRE (“rapping doctor”: Dr. Dre) + AM (“morning”)
24a
O | KEY | DO | KEY
O (“love”) + KEY (“tonality”) + DO (“to be sufficient”) + KEY (“clue”)
And you don’t see the same word used in a charade twice very often either.
26a
DISC | RED| IT
DISC (“something round”) + RED (“bloody”) + IT (†)
27a
A | TRIA_
A (†) + TRIA_l (“court proceeding”, omission of last letter indicated by “reduced”)
28a
AID | A
AID (“support”) + A (†)
29a
*BY ALL MEANS
*MANY LABELS (anagram indicated by “redesign”)

Down
1d
AB | DUCT
AB (“muscle”) + DUCT (“tube”)
2d
<SUGAR<
<RAGUS< (“spaghetti sauce”, reversal indicated by “turned up”)
“Ragu” is a type of sauce as well as a brand name
3d
LE(AKA | G)E
LEE (“actress Grant”) containing (“conceals”) AKA (“alternate name”) + ^G^raunstein (first letter indicated by “initially”)
Lee Grant’s original name actually was Rosenthal
4d
*TAR(ANT)UL | A
*ULTRA (anagram indicated by “creepy”) containing ANT (“multi-legged creature”) + ^A^rachnids (first letter indicated by “chiefly”)
5d
LO | AMY
LO (“see”) + AMY (“March girl”)
Amy March was a character in Little Women
7d
<LATE | (CO)MER<
<REM (“rock band”) + ET AL (“and others”) containing (“surround”) OC (“Orange County”)<  (reversal indicated by “on the way up”)
8d
O_ | *F COURSE
^O^boists (†, first letter indicated by “at the opening”) + *REFOCUS (anagram indicated by “freely”)
9d
_TIFFIN_
s_TIFFIN_g (‘leaving a lousy tip”, omission of first letter indicated by “starting late”, omission of final letter indicated by “cutting short”)
Tiffin would be more associated with Mumbai than with London, though I’m sure many in London see it as a taste of home.  There are some terrific articles out there about the tiffin wallahs, who with little or no formal schooling, no paper records, and no computers, developed and perfected a network and logistic process to precisely deliver 200,000 lunches from people's homes to their workplaces and schools every day. 
15d
IMPRESSED
Double definition
17d
~EL ~EM ~EN TAL_
~L ~M ~M (“three consecutive letters”) + TAL_k_ (“conversation”, omission of last letter indicated by “curtailed”)
18d
GOO | D ID |E_A
GOO (“sentimentality”) + DID (“achieved”) + ^E^xtr^A^ (†, first and last letters indicated by “superficially”)
20d
AD | MIRE
AD (“spot”: advertisement) + MIRE (“swamp”)
21d
*SIDEARM
*DREAM (cross-reference to 23a) * IS (†)
22d
BY *PASS
BY (“near”) + *SPAS (anagram indicated by “running amok”)
24d
ODDLY
Or DiD i LaY (alternate letters implied in the answer, thus the question mark)
25d
<KAR_MA<
<AM_t_RAK< (“railroad company”, omission of T indicated by “timeless”, reversal indicated by “in the ascendant”)

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