A Completely Normal Variety Cryptic with No Shenanigans Solution (no really this time)

by Jen McTeague (with location help from Julia Tenney)

Welp, it looks like we accidentally printed the solution instead of the actual cryptic. Sorry. Those cryptic clues were so good too!

Well, at least solvers could do the variety section, even if they got more information than intended.

Section 1: Substrings

This deals with the carving of a lion on the T Station Platform. 7 entries contain the substring LEO with a letter in the middle. Pull these letters out.

Section 2: Color Phrases

This deals involves the statues set atop a building with a piano. This statue is a green freeze of a mounted knight. 8 of the entries can have the word GREEN put in front of them to make a new phrase.

Section 3: Unchecked Letters

This section involved the Sarma Octopus Mural. 8 of the rows/columns have exactly 8 unchecked letters. Taking the first letter of the first row in row/column order, second of the second row/column, etc, gives you 8 letters for the final message.

Section 4: Crossing Letters

This section involves the carving on Somerville High School. Those carvings use the letter V for U, and so do 8 entries in this crossword. Find the 8 entries, and then do the indicated shifts on the grid to get the appropriate letters.

Section 5: Books

The jigsaws never materialized. It was probably faster to look them up online anyway. Sorry. The relevant books are:

Putting It All Together

When the grid is completely together, it looks like this:

The grid looks like a mess, much like the end of any variety cryptic, but the message on the side says THE SOULS JOURNEY AS A SERIES OF WEIRD OLD CARS.

This is a public art piece in Cambridge - a painting of a bunch of cars on stairs. When you go to that location, there are a number of street signs in front of it. Ignore the ones written in green, as mentioned in the author's note, and the remaining one gives the answer NO PARKING.