CSotD: Friday Funnies Strike Again!

Sunday’s Barney & Clyde reminded me that one of the pleasures of going to Manitou Springs back when I lived out West was a stunt painter who was camped out on a corner.

Manitou Springs was a fun place, even if you didn’t want to climb Pikes Peak, which starts there, or take in the waters, which taste like bubby, sulfuric seltzer.

But it had, back in the 80s at least, a large penny arcade with Skee-Ball and a significant collection of vintage machines, including nickelodeon flip-photo peep shows and that Buck Rogers looking thing you look into and shoot down enemy aircraft, not to mention old-school pinball machines.

And a stunt painter.

I call him that because his gig was painting landscapes really fast, which drew a crowd. Obviously, they weren’t very good paintings, but I don’t think anyone cared and I guess he sold each one at the end of his show, but I never stuck around to see.

However, I think I’ve stayed at some motels where they ended up, to which I would only add that, if you’re traveling to the North Country fair, where the winds hit heavy on the borderland, you’ll find that the paintings in the motels and waiting rooms do, indeed, feature animals.

Mostly deer.

Very badly painted deer.


Non Sequitur reminds us that toads are toads and, no, I don’t know why he said “toad” instead of “frog” but the point remains that, if you kiss one, well, that’s what you kissed, and no matter how well he plays the part of the Ken doll through your Barbie Dream Wedding sequence, he’ll revert to his true nature once he’s comfortable living with you.

Or, at least, that’s my observation, though it’s been a long time.

When I was a young tadpole, my move was to imitate Charles Boyer, lighting two cigarettes and passing one over.

It was incredibly cool and then everyone quit smoking but, fortunately, by then I was already married and no longer required to be cool.


But, listen, this is a two-edged sword. Read your kid that story about the prince whose mother persuaded him to wait until he found a girl who, if you put one single pea under an entire stack of mattresses, would bitch and moan about it.

She’s also not gonna change after you marry her.

Be careful out there, folks.


Everyone Poops


I think the fellow in Bliss is being a bit too kind.

Fact is, German Shorthaired Pointers, the mascots of the Westminster Kennel Club, have won Best of Show twice since 1999.

But I suspect owners of the breed seek out dog parks where nobody is over 20, because they’re tired of being reminded of this.


Meanwhile, Bizarro lays out the territorial imperatives, and I suppose we should be glad he went for the classic version of the expression, rather than the modern/modified, which would have called for a silhouette of the Pope.


And Dave Whamond slips one past the goalie, which is actually funnier than the gag itself.

There was a time when editors would have gotten this joke and spiked it, but these days, even if they saw it — and the comics page was probably assembled by someone in the Philippines who doesn’t read English anyway — they wouldn’t tumble to the point.

Editors no longer have a grasp of indirect humor.


In evidence of which I once again post this Jack Ohman cartoon that becomes more brilliant every day than it was 27 years ago when he drew it.

That old Lou Grant type wouldn’t have needed some outraged little old lady to call him up and tell him what had been in his paper.

Fortunately for Dave, she won’t understand this one either.


Speaking of bottled water

I’m only giving Alex Hallatt partial credit for this one. I like it, but beer requires more than simple assembly and I think the joke would be funnier if it were Coke.

I’ve never understood why people get their knickers in a knot because some company is bottling water while, if they throw in some corn syrup and flavoring and carbon dioxide, everything is fine.

I guess the point is that the Coke bottling plant is using municipal water, so they pay for it, while the spring water bottler is taking it out of the ground and absorbing the cost of checking for purity. And paying local taxes but not for metered water.

Or something.

I’ve lived near a Poland Springs spring and toured their bottling plant, and I know that, if nobody intercepts it, the water just flows into the Androscoggin River and out to sea, and that intercepting it provides good jobs in rural areas that don’t always have many.

Except that Poland Springs sold out to Nestle, which I suspect is the real nub of the problem, which I would agree with if we could cut the balloon juice and admit it.

In any case, bottled beer is artisanal and bottled water is artesianal and, as the cartoon explains, never the twain shall meet.


National IQ Testing


Real Life Adventures reminds me that I had a brief career selling the Great Books of the Western World door-to-door (I atoned by testifying against them in front of the FTC, back when that had teeth) and part of the pitch was asking them about their TV watching habits.

Of course, since I was wearing a jacket and tie and selling Shakespeare and Plato and other smart stuff, they’d always claim they didn’t watch TV.

Meanwhile their cat would be comfortably curled up on top of the warm set.

The stuff on TV is shit, but I’ve worked in that industry, too, and that shit wouldn’t be on the air if people weren’t watching it.


Meanwhile, Joy of Tech reminds its own hipster generation fanbase not to be so goddam smug.

Now test your own gullibility with Edison Lee:


Don’t Despair

Here’s another sign of promise from the Parkland/Greta generation

4 thoughts on “CSotD: Friday Funnies Strike Again!

  1. “Great Books of the Western World “

    I tried selling them door-to-door ca. 1960. Tried for a month but didn’t sell one set… probably because I felt like I was misleading the potential customers..

  2. I thought we should just sell the empty bindings, since they were never going to actually read them. A few decades later, I was writing about new residential construction and discovered that they actually do sell empty bindings for model homes.

    I sold one set to a college student whose parents had her cancel the sale immediately, but not before I turned in my paperwork and was told that the blank box needed a “20” or “40” to show if they were white or not. It was for our credit people.

    Which got a good shudder from the young attorney the company sent to take my deposition before the FTC hearing — young idealistic black guy who I think was only beginning to realize what hell he’d volunteered for.

    Good times! Funny thing is, that wasn’t what the FTC was nailing them for. (False promises to employees, never mind ripping off the customers.)

  3. I actually own a full set of the Great Books, as well as the Gateway series and most of the annuals they used to publish as updates to the series (Side note: the annuals do contain several essays and works by minorities, as well as some pretty pointed stuff about systemic racism). It’s easy to poke fun at them as being pompous, but the simpler truth, IMHO, is that folks rebelled against them not because they lacked authors who were women or black, but because many of the books pushed you out of your comfort zone as a reader. It’s a daunting series, but it *does* represent some of the best in the way of Western thought. The fact that sales fell off a cliff in the 1980s makes me wonder if that was when the whole dumbing-down of America started, when those Ivy League egghead professors were to be scorned for being just too gosh darn smart.

  4. I majored in that stuff, so I had a decent collection to start with, but I bought paperbacks for the ones I actually wanted to read.

    One issue is that the translations were ancient and not very good, but copyright free. Better to pay less and get something better.

    Which, by the way, is something to remember when looking at Kindle and other downloads — Dickens is dead and doesn’t get royalties, but his books are exactly as he wrote them. OTOH, if Tolstoy and Flaubert and Plato were still alive, the creaky translations of their works would kill them. Download free English books, pay for modern translations of the others.

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