Mr. Stowe has looked into some nouns and phrases and found expressions of disgust - he exposes the BLECH in a DOUBLECHIN and reveals the ICK in the MAGICKINGDOM. Who knew? Mr. Stowe also put the UGH in JUGHEAD and the EWW in SAYAFEWWORDS. All of these DISGUSTING demonstrations in the theme answers cross word boundaries, which for some reason seems more fabulous and fun than finding them within the same word. Maybe GOUGES is bonus theme material, because, yuck.
Most of the longer answers in the grid were part of the theme, but the two reciprocal ten-letter downs are solid fill. I particularly liked BLINDDATES, on which I have never gone - yet. :)
While I enjoyed TAPER, ROMP, and TIDY, I thought some of the other shorter fill felt a little STALE (ALOE, ESTA, AUDI, ACNE). On the other hand, I was happy to see EELS again. It's been too long. There were also some partials I wasn't partial to: ORTO, SETA, and ESS, for example. I thought the clue "Tippler's favorite radio station?" (WINO) was funny, but also very sad.
During the solve, before the theme became clear to me, I thought we might be in for something more numerical using 144 or 'dozen'. Oops. On the upside, the idea did lead me to take a quick look at the definition of gross as a unit of measure and I ended up learning some very interesting things about the duodecimal numbering system. One more reason I love doing the NYTX puzzle. Woo hoo!