CSotD: A selection of rant-launching cartoons

A bunch of Andrew Cuomo cartoons have dropped in the past 24 hours. Some are pretty good, some are predictable, at least one was an argument in favor of my advice to pencil your idea but then check to see if someone else already did it, because someone else absolutely had.

In any case, my other advice is “You snooze, you lose,” and I’m content to have already covered the topic with the cartoonists who leapt to their drawing boards while the news was fresh.

We may revisit, but, if you come in a day late, you need to come in with something absolutely transplendid.

In the meantime, I’m giving Mark Anderson special credit for today’s Andertoons (AMS), because I’m sure he drew it several weeks ago, and the longer Cuomo postpones the press conference, the funnier that “ostensibly” becomes.

And perhaps the smaller that supportive crowd becomes.

Main point being that the fact that it is a generic gag and not aimed specifically at Cuomo adds to how funny I found it.

You ain’t so special, pal.


Juxtaposition of the Day

(Ben – MWAM)


(Andertoons – AMS)

Anderson is having a good week, and this Juxtaposition with Ben brought a rueful smile because I have a bunch of personal tapes that should be transferred to something else that will also be obsolete by next Tuesday, and it occurs to me that the longer I wait, the more the oxides degrade (or something).

As it happens, I sold a couple of stories to a newspaper and, the graphic files being numerous and massive and, having abandoned Dropbox when I retired, I put them on a disk yesterday, hoping that somewhere at the client paper there would still be a computer with a CD drive.

When I emailed her to let her know the disk was coming, I also let her know that the graphics, which are a couple of years old, are Tiffs, which I’m not sure anyone uses anymore. Neglected to tell her they’re also CMYK, which I’m almost certain nobody uses anymore.

Meanwhile, back at Ben, it also occurs to me that the vast majority of what is on my videotapes is stuff that not only will my kids not want to watch but that even I no longer have much interest in, though one or two, maybe three, are priceless.

And poorly labeled and, no, I have no way of watching them to sort things out.


Being an old guy puts me in a position to use this Bliss (Tribune), which is amusing enough itself, to comment on the strange marketing decision Progressive Insurance has made to sideline Flo and let us know they only want to sell to people under 30.

I understand the odd feeling of echoing your parents in doing things like turning off unused lights and complaining about neighbor’s parties that go past 9 o’clock, but I also welcomed becoming old enough that car dealers treated me like a customer instead of a pigeon.

Thing is, I’ve caught myself “becoming my parents” with a sense of affection, of “I finally understand the old man,” rather than dread.

Harry Bliss adds an element of horror, but, then, so do the Progressive commercials, the difference being that Harry just wants a laugh and they want an investment.

Not bloody likely.


While I’m in rant mode, I have no problem with Off The Mark (AMS) taking a shot at Dad bods, of which I have one, perhaps in part because I like the way human dads are beginning to step forward in the childcare realm, though, no, we’re not yet in a league with seahorse fathers who carry their preborn seacolts.

Not that we wouldn’t be willing, even eager, to do so, an offer I make because I’d never have to.

My rant, however, is that yesterday I heard a story on NPR about endangered sea stars and, while I’m concerned about them, I was also dismayed by the fact that the Department of Pedantry has apparently succeeded in changing the language so that we say “sea stars” instead of “starfish.”

Their reasoning is that the creatures are not fish, but are, in fact, ocean-dwelling balls of intensely hot gases thousands of times larger than the Earth.

Having successfully killed off that delightful bit of poetic language, I’m hoping they don’t notice that seahorses are, in fact, not actual horses, that sea lions are not lions, and that sea cucumbers are not vegetables, though some people eat them anyway.


And today’s Bizarro (KFS), which is impossible to unsee, is a reminder that, whatever manatees think of their beauty, they are no longer referred to as “sea cows” even though you could probably get milk from them.

But that would necessitate having sea cows and sea bulls and how on earth would we know which was which?

In any case, having long since been convinced that they’re all named Hugh, I now will have this silly pun and this even sillier picture stuck in my mind.

By the way, the manatee is sitting at a vanity, and I’m surprised that, according to this source, the disparaging usage is so recent. It feels like it should have been coined by the Puritans, who had neither face paint nor a table at which to apply it.


Charles Allan Gilbert created his classic commentary on the topic in 1892, before the furniture was called that.

As for “Vanity Fair,” it’s a good bet that nobody would name a magazine that (several times) if they’d read Pilgrim’s Progress, and I’m equally doubtful that many of them had read Thackery’s novel, which is a harder slog and no less flattering a portrait.

Then again, my mother once went to a retreat in which the priest wondered aloud why anyone would name a perfume “My Sin.”  To a spiritually healthy person, he said, the name should be as alluring as “My Vomit.”

All is manatee. Therefore, send not to know for whom the bell tolls: It tolls doo-GONG, doo-GONG, doo-GONG.


Finally, this Arctic Circle (KFS) suggests that Alex Hallatt is in no danger of becoming her parents or she wouldn’t casually drop such an obvious cue for today’s Moment of Zen.


13 thoughts on “CSotD: A selection of rant-launching cartoons

  1. Flo is great. And while I don’t like the other Progressive agents now surrounding her (with the exception of Jamie), those Dr.Rick ads are F-U-N-N-Y. They are funnier than the show you’re watching.

  2. I assure you TIFFs and CMYK are still alive and well. Once colored, I send such comic files to the syndicates every week 🙂

  3. The National Library of Medicine’s History of Medicine division is digitizing their public domain materials. The highest-quality version? TIFF.

  4. I do quite a bit of writing answering questions about hydrogen. Now I am cursed with Mike Peterson looking over my shoulder. After I write “a picture of an old bus running on wood gas,” I have to change it to “an old picture of a bus [probably quite new] running on wood gas.”

  5. Nothing wrong with TIFFs and CMYK. I do all my color comics work in CMYK, and in fact my publisher had me write up a little SOP explaining to the young twerps they work with why RGB doesn’t always work in print. If your stuff will only ever appear on the Web then RGB is fine, but if there’s a chance it’ll ever get printed then you’ve got to understand CMYK if you want it to come out right. Still valid as long as printers use ink.

    But you’ve got me on a roll. I mourn the ascendance of digital media over physical media because analog endures and digital won’t. You can look at a 500-year-old painting or a 10,000-year-old pot; nobody will be looking at a 500-year-old JPG. An original “Little Nemo” comic from a century ago is as crisp and beautiful as the day Winsor McCay drew it. Meanwhile, some of my cartooning friends who’ve gone digital are already finding their archives from a decade or two ago unreadable (“What’s a Zip drive?”). Historians of the future will see art, literature, journalism and history disappear into a black hole in the early 21st Century. It’s a shame.

    I enjoy the “Dr. Rick on Becoming Your Parents” ads. I recognize myself in them, especially when I print out things because I just don’t quite trust electronics 100% (“What if I’m standing at the gate and that’s the very moment my phone dies?”). Dr. Rick sees me.

    Hugh Manatee? Reminds me of the water bird that my friend Richard Pini named Charlize. Charlize th’ Heron.

  6. Save that art in lossless format, and maybe make it a lot more pixels than you think you need. Some day, your strip might be on GoComics, and if all they have is a microscopic preview image, that’s what they’ll be running until the heat death of the universe.

    Speaking of nostalgia, I remember paste-ups made with wax, because the station sent out all for all the actual type portions. I watched a filmstrip once on how to prepare separations, and it began “Sometimes a client will bring in separations that they’ve had made, or have made themselves. Discard these. Now, begin by examining the…”

  7. I used to do paste ups with wax! It was one of those newsprint autos for sale magazines. The ads were priced based on size, but then the owner would instruct the typesetters to shave a couple of cms off of each ad, the result being that he could fit one more ad on each page. At least while I was there, none of the clients ever noticed.

  8. Oh yes! Love the smell of the waxer. It’s my predominant sensory memory of working at newspapers in the late 70s and early 80s. Hot wax!

  9. The sweetest riposte I’ve heard (read, seen) in a while:

    “Their reasoning is that the creatures are not fish, but are, in fact, ocean-dwelling balls of intensely hot gases thousands of times larger than the Earth.”

  10. Hey, is that Kip Williams as in Kipper Williams who drew the New Scientist cartoons that I loved?

    I could google all that, but then I really would get no inking done this arvo!

  11. Alas, no. They gave the gig that should have been mine to a mere Kip Williams impersonator!

    Sounds like he handled the job okay, so at least he didn’t trample my good name in the mud.

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