It was refreshing to have a Sunday puzzle that I could finish without tearing my hair out. Throw in a few puns...and I'm a happy solver.
The theme answers are all in-the-language phrases, with the addition of DIS (hence, the title, How Insulting!). Each new phrase is then cleverly clued.
22A: Foul weather condition? (disgusting winds).
30A: Some moralizing about getting off a balance beam? (sermon on the dismount)...the best theme answer.
38A: "Do your thing, Jack the Ripper"? (go disfigure). Funny in a sick way.
59A: Sophistication of clubs like Sam's and BJ's? (discounterculture).
68A: Concerns of someone who's choking? (food and dislodging). The first theme answer I got, which paved the way to several others.
88A: Her Royal Daunter? (dismay queen)...and the last one to fall.
96A: Coleslaw-loving children? (cabbage dispatch kids).
111A: Find chewing gum under a desk, perhaps? (tuck and discover). We actually had duck and cover drills in elementary school...in case of a nuclear attack. Beyond the 5-mile radius of total destruction, but still within range of the immediate killing power of the bomb, you would have split seconds to save your life. These words were on the back of a calendar we made in the fourth grade...right beneath Helpful Hints for Coloring.
[Update: ET pointed out that the answer should be duck, rather than tuck...see comments. When I came back to update, I saw that I had duck and cover in the sentence that followed. I sure can't explain that. The cross at 97D: Old Norse works (Eddas) obviously didn't help much.]
Favorite answers include 1A: Polish Peace Nobelist (Walesa), 62A: Wool source (angora), 83A: Asian shrine (pagoda), 117A: Samantha's cousin on "Bewitched" (Serena), 3D: Crosses the international date line from east to west (loses a day), 10D: Sci-fi, e.g. (genre), 13D: Place in Monopoly (St. James), 39D: '50s teen star (Fabian), 41D: Car financing co. (GMAC)...they financed my Camaro, 44D: Nobel pysicist Niels (Bohr), 56D: Puzzled (out) (sussed), 58D: Metal refuse (slag)...remembered it from a puzzle a few weeks ago, 81D: Mass. neighbor (Conn.)...where I was born, 94D: Honshu metropolis (Osaka) and 96D: Banana liqueur drink shaken over ice (Capri).
I struggled to remember 73D: Judy Garland's real last name. I was thinking it was Gull, until I finally got the last theme answer. And here she is...the darling Frances Ethel Gumm.
Favorite clues in the puzzle:
19A: Head of Great Britain (loo).
77A: March master (Sousa).
115A: Chihuahua drink (agua).
15D: Doing the same old same old (in a rut)...love the answer as well.
61D: Seals are part of it (US Navy).
65D: 9 to 5, e.g. (odds). Good one...had nothing to do with the office workday hours.
78D: Diamond center (mound). I went right to baseball on this one.
90D: Preserves fruits (quinces). If you read preserves as a verb, this took a little longer to see.
108D: TV host known for his mandibular prognathism (Leno)...from the Greek pro (forward) and gnathos (jaw).
52D: "Coming Home" co-star (Dern). This was such a tragic movie...but something about it really got to me at the time. I might need to watch it again.
I don't get 7A: Story development (arc)...I didn't get its cross at 9D: Subordinate person (cog) until just this minute.
That's it for this one. Here's the (not corrected for DUCK) grid...
...and I'll see you tomorrow.