Today's theme answers are made up of two words, each of which, when paired with the word BOY from the revealer (BOYOHBOY), make another word. For example, from BALLGAME (Something to "take me out to," in an old song) you get BALL BOY and GAME BOY. My favorite was HIGH BOY. According to Encyclopaedia Britannica Online, the "BOY" part of the name for a tall piece of furniture is a corruption of the French word for wood. I guess we have to admit that sometimes bois will be boys.
I did get a little hung up in the middle east. I had erroneously entered ILIa Nastase (of 1970s tennis) so when I got to 42A I had _OWBaLL, which tempted me to drop in the letter L. The corresponding down,"1950s Coummunist-bashing grp. in Congress," was no help. Fortunately, however, I stopped to consider why lOWBALL would be a "Means of locating one from the herd," and nothing came to mind, so I LOOPed back to consider the theme and was able to get more COWBELL into the puzzle - like everyone likes!
I thought LATEEN "Triangular sail" was a little esoteric for a Monday puzzle, but I was happy to see it as a reminder to write in to the creators of our other daily word game, "Spelling Bee" to try to get the word "luff" accepted.
There was also fun fill like JOSTLE, JUMBOTRON, TOOLUP, and YOYOS. And I enjoyed the references to some favorites like CARL Sagan, ALEC Guinness, and ACADIA National Park.
There was a lot to like about the puzzle. It had that nice clue precision I enjoy and for most of the grid, I read the clue and was able to type the answer right in. I particularly enjoyed STUFFS for "Fills tightly" and ROUT for "Crushing defeat." You could say that this one is a poster boy for a good Monday puzzle. :)