This one seemed a little tougher than a normal Thursday, and even though I wrote that yesterday seemed about average for a Wednesday, others I spoke with thought it was on the tough side. With that new information, the whole week seems to have been on the difficult side, which makes me a little wary of the next two days!
But back to this one. DOGGYBAG (1A: It wraps scraps) was a nice start, and I also liked HITHER (26D: This way) and VOODOO (32D: Activity with dolls). DIVORCE (31A: Splitting headache?) was a funny one, and although I immediately thought of DIED for "42A: Was overcome with embarrassment, in slang," it took a while for me to believe it was the right answer.
MENORCA (43D: Mediterranean resort island, to locals) and ASSANTE (45D: Armand of "Private Benjamin") were complete unknowns to us in the SE, but the real trouble was over in the SW. Wanted "phones in" for MAILSIN (46A: Does perfunctorily, as a performance), but it wouldn't fit, so we tried "calls in" for a while. And I put in "USPS" instead of USDA (50A: Letters on a stamp), even though those letters aren't on any stamps that I know of. SMUSHES (39D: Presses together) is a nice bit of colloquialism, but it didn't come immediately, and we had "shrank" for SHRUNK (39A: Downsized), which made HULAHOOP (37D: O) hard to see.
And let's talk a little about that theme... I didn't love it. There. We're done talking about it.
I enjoyed the theme, having seen something similar in the past. However, I didn't immediately figure out what it was. I liked ERASABLE, but didn't get it right away since I originally had oilLAMP for 3D instead of the correct GASLAMP. However, once I figured out the theme, most of the puzzle wasn't very difficult, until...The SW! Having put callSIN (like Horace & Frannie) instead of MAILSIN, and SHRaNK instead of SHRUNK really held me back for quite a while. I'd say that corner cost me over 1/2-hour. I enjoyed the clue for LOLA, which I got right away. Overall, a very difficult but enjoyable puzzle.