Today's puzzle was so easy I actually missed most of the down clues. That's not to say it wasn't enjoyable...some really good fill to go with standard Monday crosswordese.
Those of us who border on obsessive compulsive like when the theme answers are in alphabetical order. The five answers begin with H*CK, rotating through the vowels in order.
17A: Bean-filled bag moved with the foot (Hacky Sack). Well, maybe when someone else is doing it. I never did get the hang of it. Here's some history on the origin of the Hacky Sack.
25A: Comedy club razzer (heckler).
37A: Like some hams (hickory smoked).
52A: Pop artist David (Hockney). I'm not into pop art and never heard of David Hockney, but I thought this one was pretty artistic.
61A: 2004 film "I Heart __" (Huckabees). I didn't see the movie and couldn't tell you a thing about it. Is it something I should add to my list of movies to watch?
In addition to not knowing Hockney's name, there were a couple other unfamiliar things.
15A: Wine: Prefix (oeno). Didn't know that, so checked with Wikipedia. In Greek mythology Oeno was the goddess of wine (hence oenology is the study of wine). Apparently she could change anything into wine...that could be handy.
Also didn't know (and didn't get) 20A: Honor bestowed by Queen Eliz. (OBE). Aah...it's Order of British Empire.
Some of my favorite clues and/or answers:
5D: Chocolate syrup brand (Bosco). I didn't think this was still around, but you can still get it online. It wouldn't have come to mind without most of the letters in place, though. Ancient history. Here's some good Bosco trivia...courtesy of Wikipedia. Alfred Hitchhock used Bosco Chocolate Syrup as fake blood in the shower scene in his black and white masterpiece Psycho (1960). This same technique was reportedly used in other black and white horror films, including Night of the Living Dead (1968).
9D: Insurance co. with a "spokesduck" (AFLAC). When I first saw this in a puzzle, I was flummoxed...had never heard of it. This time it was a gimme.
11D: Oil conveyor (pipeline).
12D: Abated (lessened).
22D: Peanut, e.g. (legume). I like the word...just because. Always have...always will.
37D: 3-D picture (hologram). This one's pretty good.
49D: Actress Lansbury (Angela). Today the answer has a soft G, as opposed to yesterday's hard G...German chancellor Angela Merkel.
55D: Schindler of "Schindler's List" (Oskar). Another one that stumped me when I first encountered it. Never again.
I was entertained by some of the multiword answers:
23A: Postcard sentiment (miss you). I have never written that on a postcard. When I'm gone, I'm gone. Now that I've written that, though, I can remember being away from the girls when they were young. I probably wrote that on their postcards.
1D: "Get out of here!" (go home). I had go away at first.
38D: "You don't say!," after "Well" (I declare). I laugh every time I read that. Other than Scarlett O'Hara, I don't remember ever hearing the expression. If she didn't really say that, she should have. Fiddle-dee-dee!
That's it for this one. Here's the grid...
...and I'll see you tomorrow.