We spent the entire fall in the throes of a major house reno. It was tons of fun, everything worked out well, and I learned a great deal. The most important lesson was the golden rule of construction: measure twice and cut once.
This is smart advice to take literally but it's also a wise principle to apply more generally. Spend a lot of time planning. Review your work. There will be fewer mistakes and when surprises do crop up, you'll be better prepared to deal with them.
23 Down: Obligation surrounding university introduction (5)
These are straightforward clues. The first is DR+E+Ad and the second is DEB(U)T. But when I started fitting in the rest of the clues, it became clear that "Debut" was problematic. The answer for 23 Across confirmed it.
Then I wondered if Fraser Simpson had started with DEBUT in an early draft of the puzzle, then, as he developed it more, intended for DEBUT to be turned upside-down but never made the change in the clues.
What clue would you write for TUBED? "Climbing first step, rode the London subway? (5)" is the best I can manage.
I'm curious to see if the mistake will be acknowledged in next Saturday's solutions. But I'm even more curious to know something I'll never find out: what clue for TUBED would, had it been measured twice, made the Fraser Simpson cut.