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7/15/2016 12:37:16 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Here's another one that doesn't quite make full sense to me:

Frontman for heavy metal show's premiere in Germany (4,6)

The answer is LEAD SINGER.

I know that "frontman" is the definition, "heavy metal" refers to "lead," "show's premiere" refers to the first letter (premiere) of "show's," which is "s," and then you add "in Ger" to make "singer."

My question is, what is the indicator that tells you to use "in Ger" to form "singer?" It doesn't really seem to make sense. It seems like one of those clues where you just basically have to brute force that part of the answer, because I don't see any logical reason to take the "inger" part out of "in Germany."

What am I missing?

Thanks!

7/15/2016 12:38:55 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Ah, as I read it again, I think I know the answer to my question, but it raises the same question elsewhere.

"Premiere" isn't referring to "show's," it's referring to the premiere (first part) of "in Germany," which is "inger."

Ok fine, but then what is the indicator that tells you to add the "s" to the start of "inger"?

7/15/2016 2:44:02 PM

Semipro
Semipro
Posts: 292
I think this kind of clue is called a charade and the S is given by "show's premiere," as you thought the first time. The answer, LEAD SINGER, is built up as a string of small units, like link sausages before they're cut apart. There's no indicator for any of the three components.

Heavy metal > LEAD
show's premiere > S
in Germany > IN GER

But then how do you know to drop "many" from "Germany"? My best guess is that "Ger." may be an abbreviation for "Germany," although I don't recall ever seeing it used, so the writer treated those three letters as an equivalent of the whole word.

7/15/2016 6:19:16 PM

floyd
floyd
Posts: 17
Semipro wrote:
My best guess is that "Ger." may be an abbreviation for "Germany,"

Yes. Similarly, I sometimes see SP for Spanish. You've got the charade construction correct.

7/18/2016 2:09:50 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Semipro wrote:
But then how do you know to drop "many" from "Germany"? My best guess is that "Ger." may be an abbreviation for "Germany," although I don't recall ever seeing it used, so the writer treated those three letters as an equivalent of the whole word.



Ah yes, I suppose that makes sense! I kind of find it annoying when they use weird abbreviations like that. A couple of times I've seen "US" as the answer to "an American," which really makes no sense. But I guess I just need to keep it in mind for the future.

Thanks!

7/18/2016 4:26:44 PM

Amy Lowenstein
Amy Lowenstein
Posts: 1599
If the puzzle is written by an American publisher, I guess they think of "us" as "us," if you know what I mean. That reminds me of a joke about a married couple who had some towels marked "his," and some marked "hers," but their favorite thing in the line of linens, was the Army blanket that said "US."

--
Amy

7/19/2016 10:01:13 AM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
JohnJSal wrote:
A couple of times I've seen "US" as the answer to "an American," which really makes no sense. But I guess I just need to keep it in mind for the future.


Well, John, in so many instances "America" is used synonymously with the United States, but of course, there are many other countries/nations in North/South/Central America. So the answer to "an American" could very well be Mexico or Canada, etc. as well as the "US." smile

Bernadette

7/19/2016 10:07:12 AM

Amy Lowenstein
Amy Lowenstein
Posts: 1599
You're right, Bernadette. This whole hemisphere is often known as "The Americas." The editors of the puzzle may have thought of "America" as "US" but you're right that it includes Mexico, Canada, and many other nations.

--
Amy

7/19/2016 10:27:43 AM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
Amy Lowenstein wrote:
The editors of the puzzle may have thought of "America" as "US"


Well, no, I don't believe they necessarily did. They evidently meant "An American" (country), they just didn't include that last word, I imagine to make the clue a bit more difficult. The answer, "US" for United States, then makes perfect sense.
edited by Bernadette1959 on 7/19/2016

7/19/2016 12:04:37 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
If "US" was the answer to "America," that would definitely make sense to me. But what I found confusing was that the clue was actually "an American," which to me seemed to be referring to a *person*, not a country.

So using "US" to refer to a person makes no sense to me.

7/19/2016 2:11:27 PM

Semipro
Semipro
Posts: 292
JohnJSal wrote:
If "US" was the answer to "America," that would definitely make sense to me. But what I found confusing was that the clue was actually "an American," which to me seemed to be referring to a *person*, not a country.

So using "US" to refer to a person makes no sense to me.

Was "American" used as a noun or an adjective? If the clue said "an American holiday" or "an American landmark" or something, substituting "US" might make sense. Seeing the whole clue would make it easier to figure out what they might have been getting at. Sometimes where the parts of a clue divide isn't clear.

7/19/2016 8:27:17 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Semipro wrote:
JohnJSal wrote:
If "US" was the answer to "America," that would definitely make sense to me. But what I found confusing was that the clue was actually "an American," which to me seemed to be referring to a *person*, not a country.

So using "US" to refer to a person makes no sense to me.

Was "American" used as a noun or an adjective? If the clue said "an American holiday" or "an American landmark" or something, substituting "US" might make sense. Seeing the whole clue would make it easier to figure out what they might have been getting at. Sometimes where the parts of a clue divide isn't clear.



I wish I could find the clues (I remember there were two different ones that did the same thing), but I'm not sure which issues they are in. I could very well be wrong about the wording of the clue, but at the time I remember thinking it didn't make sense because the clue seemed to be referring to an American person but used "US" as the answer.

7/19/2016 8:34:55 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Okay, I was able to find one in an old issue. Here is the clue:

Taking advantage of American in general (5)

The answer is USING. I'll admit, "American" doesn't necessarily refer to a person here, but it still sounds strange to me. In fact, I think it would make more sense (and the clue would still be valid) if the word were simply "America" instead of "American," because "US" means "United States," which is a country, and "American" is not a noun, unless referring to a person -- which still doesn't make sense.

Edit: I'll also add that this clue does another thing I find annoying in cryptic crosswords. "in general" becomes "ing," even though there is no indication that you are only supposed to use the letter "g" from "general." I don't think I've ever seen "general" abbreviated with a "g" before either. I'm not a fan of these abbreviated word clues, unless there is an indicator such as "initially."
edited by JohnJSal on 7/19/2016

7/19/2016 9:05:32 PM

Semipro
Semipro
Posts: 292
JohnJSal wrote:
Taking advantage of American in general (5)

The answer is USING. I'll admit, "American" doesn't necessarily refer to a person here, but it still sounds strange to me. In fact, I think it would make more sense (and the clue would still be valid) if the word were simply "America" instead of "American," because "US" means "United States," which is a country, and "American" is not a noun, unless referring to a person -- which still doesn't make sense.

"American" is a noun in the clue, but in other contexts, "in the wild," so to speak, it can be an adjective, and so can "US." In such contexts, "American" and "US" are synonyms. So sometimes they're equivalent. The American landscape, the US landscape; an American soldier, a US soldier, . . . I understand that you'd like a word to be the same part of speech in a clue as it is outside the clue, but evidently the writer/editor didn't do it that way.

Edit: I'll also add that this clue does another thing I find annoying in cryptic crosswords. "in general" becomes "ing," even though there is no indication that you are only supposed to use the letter "g" from "general." I don't think I've ever seen "general" abbreviated with a "g" before either. I'm not a fan of these abbreviated word clues, unless there is an indicator such as "initially."
edited by JohnJSal on 7/19/2016

Possibly the "in" serves here as a containment clue. Those usually mean that the whole answer is hidden inside the clue, though.

7/20/2016 12:17:21 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Semipro wrote:
"American" is a noun in the clue, but in other contexts, "in the wild," so to speak, it can be an adjective, and so can "US." In such contexts, "American" and "US" are synonyms. So sometimes they're equivalent. The American landscape, the US landscape; an American soldier, a US soldier, . . . I understand that you'd like a word to be the same part of speech in a clue as it is outside the clue, but evidently the writer/editor didn't do it that way.


Hmm, I suppose that does make sense. It still feels like a stretch to me, but at least I'm aware of it now for the future!

Possibly the "in" serves here as a containment clue. Those usually mean that the whole answer is hidden inside the clue, though.



I have to disagree with that, because "in" is actually a literal part of the answer word itself. I've never found a clue to contain an indicator that is also a part of the answer. It's usually one or the other. And like you said, that's not how containers work.

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