I hesitate to ignore the Biden Huggy cartoons lest they start to pile up and block the exits, but it is Friday and so let’s have some funnies instead.
Over at Zits, Jeremy and Pierce discovered, to their mutual embarrassment, that they both enjoy reading kids books. I thought the punchline on this particular strip was pretty daring, since they’re both KFS strips, but that just made me laff harder.
When I was Jeremy’s age, I had a study hall in which I sat at the desk of a younger kid who always had a sports novel stuffed in there, one of those Clair Bee-style potboilers, which I read, first, out of boredom and then out of a weird fascination, after I read one about a city kid who moved to the country and wanted to be the quarterback for his school, immediately followed by a book by the same author about a country boy who moved to the city and wanted to be the star pitcher for his school.
It prepared me for my current job, which involves editing kids’ reviews of books that are more extruded than written, only now they’re about girls with magical powers, and some boys with magical powers, and I don’t think JK Rowling is in any danger of actually being ripped off, just faintly, poorly imitated.
Which allows me to slip in a quick plug for Lincoln Peirce’s “Max and the Midknights,” a hybrid that stars a girl who people mistake for a boy and a certain amount of magic that is of dubious effect in a story that will crack you up and would get laffs from JK herself.
The kids it’s intended for are old enough to read it alone, which is a shame because, in addition to being funny on their level, it’s also jam-packed with “Rocky and Bullwinkle” level of winks to an older audience.
Let them read it, but make sure they leave it where you can find it later.
Meanwhile, one of the best things I did as a parent was read to my kids every night, and whatever the benefits for them, it allowed me to go through my favorite kids books again. We did the full “Little House” and Narnia series as well as some other classics and some contemporary titles.
Tip: “Through the Looking Glass” is the best read-aloud ever, because you can use all sorts of amusing voices for the characters, knowing they’ll only be in tonight’s reading and you won’t have to remember what they sound like tomorrow. Well, until the banquet at the end, but by then perhaps your audience will have forgotten, too.
Other Tip: Skip “Mary Poppins” and “Dr. Doolittle.” My mother confesses that she did some on-the-fly editing when she read them to us back in the 1950s and they haven’t become any more inclusive or sensitive since. Eek.
“Between Friends” suggests a good reason to expose your kids to something more than cheesy, imitative, extruded novels: So that they don’t grow up to be fans of cheesy, imitative, extruded movies.
They may hand out Oscars to the thoughtful films, but that’s not what pays for all the glitz at those award programs.
And, hey, let’s not pretend we’re all that classy. The first time I heard someone talking about playing corn hole, I wondered what they called it in front of their mothers.
Turns out they call it “corn hole.”
Lola is hardly a typical mom, but, still, there’s more than a limerick lurking in the name of that game.
I remember getting chewed out for using the term “bitchin'” (as in “really cool”) at the dinner table. If we’d mentioned the term “corn hole,” there’d have been a bite out of the Ivory and some long-term groundings.
Here’s Bug Martini with a salute to snot, and I’d add a timely one as we’re getting all the mold up into the air right now in preparation for a flood of spring pollen.
But as the song goes, “Always Look On The Bright Side of Snot,” or, at least, slime.
Scientists are currently researching fish slime to see if the antibiotics that lurk in it can be domesticated and turned to use in humans. Turns out that fish goop not only traps any micro-organisms that might otherwise slip in under a scale, but actively fights them.
I’m just hoping it isn’t something we have to slap on like sunblock.
And speaking of protection
Andertoons hits me at the right time, because my credit card got compromised somehow, which is interesting since I don’t use it for a whole lot.
Which is to say, whoever got the info didn’t get it from Johnny’s Rib Joint, but probably from a pretty major somebody — an airline or a hotel chain or some place like that.
They didn’t get it from Playstation Vue, because I spent half an hour on the phone with them arguing about their stupid software that wouldn’t let me sign up with the aforementioned credit card.
Their software turned out not to be so stupid, because the card had been deactivated, although the card company didn’t bother to give me a phone call or email to let me know.
I found out because it’s also where I put recurring charges like newspaper subscriptions and NPR gifts, and now they’re peppering me with notices about bounced charges, only I haven’t got my new card yet, so, hey, what can I do?
What’s in your wallet?
At the moment, not a got-dam thing.
Juxtaposition of the Day
Wallace the Brave has been rocking his kilt at school all week, and if that isn’t enough to crack you up, Mike Lynch chose the moment to share a related Laurel & Hardy short.
He has some interesting background on it and it’s worth the trip to his blog, so, although I could use a video to close out with, I’ll only steal his still shot and send you there to see the movie itself.