Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Irregular Ways Of "Regularly"

regularly-letter-picking

Experienced solvers will recognize "regularly" as an indicator to pick odd or even letters from a word/phrase in the clue.

Standard "regularly" clues look like the ones below.

Even letters:
Independent (Crosophile): Soft pedal, say, when regularly used (4) EASY
Even letters of 'pEdAl SaY'

Odd letters:
Guardian 24938 (Puck): Poet writes, dipping into sherry regularly (7) SPENSER
PENS (writes) in SER (odd letters of 'ShErRy')

But there is more to "regularly". The word means "at fixed intervals", and those intervals can be wider than a single letter.

Intervals > 2:
Guardian 25109 (Puck): Language coming from Jack and Vera, regularly (4) JAVA
J (Jack) + every third letter of 'AndVerA'

Another clue with a more helpful indication for picking every third letter:

Times 24747: Ornament and tattoo-marks cut when couples go out regularly (4) TORC
From the letters of 'taTtoOmaRksCut', pairs of letters are dropped in symmetry - the letters that remain spell TORC.

Though theoretically defensible, I haven't come across a clue that uses "regularly" for gaps larger than three - stretching beyond that can make the clue too long, unwieldy and possibly unfair.

Finally, beware of the case in which "regularly" is present in the clue but you aren't supposed to go letter picking at all!

No letter picking:
FT 13701 (Redshank): Drink and travel regularly, showing flexibility (6) SUPPLY
SUP (drink) PLY (travel regularly, as in "On which route does this bus ply?")

Solve These

Guardian 25374 (Crucible): Frank's in gym regularly taking hooks (4)
Enigmatic Variations 969: Welfare state provides regular contributions for bridge player (4)
Times 24810: Staff annoy team by regularly showing up (5)

Annotate this ->
Azed 1898: Clots regularly feeding eggs to dogs? (7) The answer is CRUORES. Can you see how?

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9 comments

Chaturvasi said...

Clots - def
regularly feeding eggs - c/c ind with 'content' fodder. The instruction is to insert ROE (eggs) at regular intervals and not in one go as we usually do
to
dogs - CURS, which is the container

So

cRuOrEs

PS: I didn't know this word when I underwent a surgery recently to tap blood clots from both sides of the brain.

Bhavan said...

Guardian 25374 (Crucible): Frank's in gym regularly taking hooks (4) O(PE)N
gym = PE
regularly taking = ON
hooks as in traps, took a while to fall in place

Enigmatic Variations 969: Welfare state provides regular contributions for bridge player (4) wElfAreStaTe

Times 24810: Staff annoy team by regularly showing up (5) BATON from annoy team by<-

Annotate this ->
Azed 1898: Clots regularly feeding eggs to dogs? (7) The answer is CRUORES
CRUORES

Crucifer said...

Guardian 25374 (Crucible): Frank's in gym regularly taking hooks (4)
I want this to be POKE (hOoKs in PE) but I can't square it with "Frank"

Enigmatic Variations 969: Welfare state provides regular contributions for bridge player (4)
EAST wElfAreStaTe

Times 24810: Staff annoy team by regularly showing up (5)
BATON yBmAeTyOnNa

Azed 1898: Clots regularly feeding eggs to dogs? (7) The answer is CRUORES.
ROE and CURS regularly spliced (would have struggled to get that one as the answer is pretty obscure. Might be handy for Scrabble though!)

Shyam said...

Doesn't Redshank's definition lead to 'SUPPLE' rather than 'SUPPLY'?

Azed: Very tough! C{R}U{O}R{E}S

Inserting ROE (eggs) regularly in CURS (dogs), Clots = Definition.

Deepak Gopinath said...

Azed 1898: Clots regularly feeding eggs to dogs? (7) The answer is CRUORES.

ROE regularly within CURS {C{R}U{O}R{E}S}

SandhyaP said...

Frank's in gym regularly taking hooks (4)?

Welfare state provides regular contributions for bridge player (4)EAST (wElfAre StaTe)

Times 24810: Staff annoy team by regularly showing up (5)BATON<- (aNnOy TeAm By<-)

Clots regularly feeding eggs to dogs? (7) The answer is CRUORES.
ROE regularly in CURS

Siva said...

Welfare state provides regular contributions for bridge player (4)
EAST

Clots regularly feeding eggs to dogs? (7)
Insert ROE (eggs) into CURS (dogs) to give CrUoReS

Shuchi said...

Nice work cluenatics. I'm impressed to see so many right answers for the parsing of CRUORES.

OPEN was another tricky one, took a while for me to see "regularly taking = ON", as in "He is on drugs".

Shuchi said...

Doesn't Redshank's definition lead to 'SUPPLE' rather than 'SUPPLY'?

Hi Shyam, I think the definition works. e.g.

Baba Ramdev did the mandukasana showing flexibility.
Baba Ramdev did the mandukasana supply.