I liked "Raps with barbs"
for ZING. Sounds painful.
"The(with an acute accent), basically" for EAU doesn't work for me for three reasons. The French for tea
is not so common in English that one should know it (fortunatly I took French in high school). Crossing EAU with ENERO, Spanish for January (fortunately I took Spanish in college), is not really fair. And tea is not basically
water; it is mostly water. At any rate, using it on Tuesday seems inconsistent with the ease of the other entries.
AGUE pops up in Xwords a lot, and yes it denotes a "Fluelike symptom"; and if we were Elizabethans, I'd have no quibble. I don't believe the word is used today by anyone ever, but it may be found in medical texts describing malaria. (There is also an ague grass or tree). I would ban the term from my Xword lexicon, but if I had to use it, I might refer to the humorous Shakpearean character Aguecheek, maybe from Henry IV, Part I or Part II
, though that would be a bit of a stretch.
Tuesday morning quarterbacking:
Since SIRS, clued by "Knight titles," appears mid-grid, I might have clued BLOKE with "A chap probably not one of 50 Across."