Saturday 1 January 2022

Big Fat Christmas Crossword Answers

 Well, as the Lifers say down the maximum security wing, that's another year Up the Judge's Arse.

Only one more Roast Dinner to endure, then it's back on the steamed white fish and plain white rice. With occasional lettuce leaf.

I think I've told you about the Kirkwall tradition of the Ba' - played on Christmas Day with a return grudge match on New Year's Day; the tradition originated when all the men of the town formed themselves into two teams to play a rugby-scrum type of street football through the residential and retail streets of Kirkwall with a severed head. Such was the fun that it has been repeated annually apart from last year, when Covid put paid to such innocent entertainment. Imagine the viral load in the cloud of steam, spit and piss fumes that hovers above the pack. 

Undeterred by any suggestion of rational thought, the Ba' Committee busily planned the usual games for 2021, until instructed to Cease and Desist by Orkney Islands Council, which has to barricade the buildings and clean the streets post-match, together with NHS Orkney, which has to pick up the bodies, splint the broken bones and treat the concussions and bites. 
And deal with the Covid hospitalisations.
However, we know how to have fun here in Craggy Islands, so entertainment of a High Order was provided instead by a Decorated Tractor Parade through the town. Mustering at the Hatston Industrial Estate, on the evening of the 29th December, 150 tractors poured in (well, proceeded at a tractor pace) from the countryside, and processed around the town. It was All For Charidee, of course, and a sum equivalent to £2.00 per head for every Orcadian man, woman, child and babe in arms was raised to the benefit of Clan and MS Orkney. I didn't go, being involved in entertaining friends to a Roast Dinner, but my dinner guests were caught up in the parade of returning tractors, as they attempted to make their way home.

Such fun.
Here's the answers to mr mongoose's Big Fat Christmas Crossword. Diabolically difficult, wasn't it? Mr mongoose is working on another one, he tells me, with a strongly ishmaelian theme. 
Thank you, mr mongoose. 
Ishmaelites are now saying - really? Of course! That's it, why didn't I get that? So it was TIG not tag, tug or teg!

The publisher informs me that several copies of the two anthologies, Honest Not Invent and Vent Stack were purchased during the run-up to Christmas. I hope that they got to the purchasers in time to pop into Christmas stockings - and I hope you warned the lucky recipients about the outrageous, eccentric, eclectic and hilarious nature of the material. And to have the ambulance on speed dial.


Bungalow Bill said...

It was great fun and too good for me. Roll on the next one. Many thanks to Mr Mongoose.

mongoose said...

ow many did you get, mr BB? If you got half, you were doing OK. My only regret is that I know no Middle English to keep mr v on his toes.

I shall make the next one a bit easier - or perhaps the clues a bit better.

Bungalow Bill said...

A little over half, Mr Mongoose, so yes I was pleased. Thanks, as I say, for sitting down to do it. I know compiling is difficult but I enjoy the bubbling crossword stuff on these pages.

mongoose said...

It's almost as much fun as the rollicking Christmas tractor escapades they get up to on Orkney, mr BB.

Anonymous said...

Doffing my thicko's cap, mr mongoose, may I have the clues for 15 down (Lucy is lunacy so = extremely) and 18 down (vim-smoking us goose = saphead) decoded? Thanks.


(and you won't need ME to keep me on my toes - "agenbite of inwit" stuck in the mind from Ulysses, which I failed to finish, thanks to its awful/accidental Eskimo pun possibilities.)

Mike said...

Well done mr mongoose. I didn't quite get there.

mongoose said...

Sap is the zest, life or vim in a tree, mr v, and a head smokes such things (or did in my day). And a goose is a gentle Australian word for an ass, an eegit, or in America, a sap, or saphead.

Lucy is LUnaCY at its extremes. Or, so, in its meaning of very or extremely.

I'll make betetr clues next time.

Anonymous said...

Nowt wrong with your clues, mr mongoose, just my solvering limitations. Vim in a tree - whoda thunkit. Good stuff. Thanks again.

I was a head once, myself; forever saphead, natch.



Bungalow Bill said...

I don't know how many of you do the dailies. I do the Guardian every week without undue difficulty, it's free online. Elgar (Enigmatist in the Guardian)) on the Telegraph Toughie is my perpetual struggle. I think I've completed two or three of his. I've never been good enough for the real horrors like Mephisto and Azed but I love the world of the cryptics, you can lose yourself and shut out the nonsense. Like chess, it doesn't really matter how good you are but you always, privately, strive to improve.

A civilised pleasure.

mongoose said...

BTW did anyone get 'Hairy Harperson'?

Anyway, it seems to have been fun enough. I shall carry on with the next.

Bungalow Bill said...

Yes I did Mr Mongoose, a beautiful moment.