Aimee Lucido is up this week with "Inside Jokes," a 3.5/5 difficulty puzzle. Happy solving! In case you're curious how we derive our difficulty ratings, they are an aggregate of the reported times and gut reactions of our test-solvers. YMMV with respect to a given puzzle of course, and in some ways for us--especially since we use unorthodox clues even in our easier puzzles--conventional difficulty ratings are unusually, well, difficult. But rest assured we try our best.
Thanks to all 137 of you who submitted a correct solution to last week's meta contest, offered for a guest puzzle by Andrew Ries. The winners, drawn at random, are Lucas Green, Mark Goodliffe, and Matt Morrisson, each of whom receives a 6-month subscription bump for their cleverness and good luck. Thanks to everyone who turned in an answer!
If you would like to read a synopsis of last week's puzzle, including an explanation of the theme and the meta answer, you can read the Diary of a Crossword Fiend review here.
Ben and the AVCX crew [avxwords.com, @AVCXWord]