A variety cryptic’s variety can come in many forms. In the previous Rackenfrackers, the clueing was
straightforward normal standard but putting words into the grid was fraught. Here, the grid is standard and correct answers can be entered immediately … but the clueing is curious, so don’t forget to read the instructions.
Many thanks to this edition’s editor, kaybartplays, the real-life owner of the owl shelf from this puzzle’s 19-Down and an indie constructor that navigates nimbly between the straight and cryptic crossword worlds. (Her cryptic acrostic collaboration is a pip.) We won’t get into the argument about whether being in Kansas makes her a fellow Midwesterner, but we’re proud to at least share a time zone with her. She’s also on Twitch; as she says, “follow to be surprised whenever I happen to start streaming again!” Thanks also to John, Andy and Joe for the test solves.