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We’re going themeless today. I’m putting this one at Super-Spicy difficulty not just because I wanted to throw some tough clues at you, but because I think there are probably at least a few names in it that will make you go, “Who?”

There are some new indie crosswords on the scene I should mention: those of you in the know are familiar with Sam Ezersky, a young gun constructor and sophomore at the University of Virginia who’s been published in a few mainstream outlets. He recently started The Grid Kid, a fun little indie site with a new puzzle on Mondays. It looks like his puzzles are going for fresh ‘n sassy, just how I like ’em.

I’ve also become a little familiar with another young gun constructor named Adam Nicolle, who posts puzzles every now and then (I guess usually on Fridays) at his own blog. Now, you know how it’s pretty cool how some puzzlers like Sam are in their late teens and constructing puzzles? Adam is just 12 years old. Seriously. His themed puzzles are still a bit raw and I think his fill at times could use some polishing, as I would expect of anyone building crosswords at his age. But I found this themeless puzzle of his to be pretty solid. And with time and practice, I think he’ll be making some fine grids in the future. He’s obviously way ahead of the puzzle game compared to most other preteens out there, and he’s gone indie to boot.

Enjoy today’s puzzle. There will be a new one (plus a special announcement) on September 25 — that’s a Thursday, so mark your calendars.