Interesting theme today. A very “long-winded” answer comprising 5 long acrosses (see 29-Across for which they are) in sequence, summed up in a (very common) phrase going down the center of the puzzle at 24-down. There’s no indication in the clues of what either the long or short version is going to be, so the approach to the puzzle is pretty straight forward: Solve as many of the crossing clues and the long answers will gradually take shape.
10 Specific hints (of answers that cross the long theme clues):
First a few that cross the “simply put” phrase:
27-Across Swearing: Though the clue is a gerund (-ing) the answer is a noun.
36-Across Validates: Letters, not a word as such
53-Across Shoes without heels: Well, sandals won’t fit. CLOGS would, but these are a little more likely to be found in a workplace.
85-Across 180s: As in turns drivers make.
90-Across Stout _____ : Well, the clue gives with the blank after the word “stout,” though it could be considered an alternative to stout. Don’t think fat, think pub.
And 5 Downs crossing the long acrosses:
4-Down Works the room: Well, it isn’t GLAD HANDS, but that’s the idea and it’s also 2 words.
51-Down Not go beyond: 2 words. Think of a time limit of an appointment
81-Down “Yeah, yeah”: Only 4 letters, but 2 words
79-Down Nov. 11 Honoree: And whose day is Nov. 11? Not mom’s, though they could be mom’s. 4 letters, no words
76-Down Let someone else take over: 2 words. Clue could be “Get out of my way, I’ve got to do the crossword puzzle before you!”