CSotD: Comics that make you say hmm

I have nothing to comment about over this Pat Byrnes panel, except that, for someone with such a simple style, it’s remarkable how he builds the gag through their respective facial expressions. Someone working in more detail would have a harder time drawing our eyes to that.

And well after getting the joke, I look it again and laugh as if I were seeing it for the first time. Brilliant work.


I’m also lost for criticism on this Matt piece. I just like it because I saw my own doctor two weeks ago and it had been a long time, though we call them Primary Care Physicians, having ditched General Practitioner some years ago.

I’m at an age where I see doctors regularly, and so I’d seen three or four specialists of one type or another since I’d met with my own regular doctor.

It was nice to touch base with him, but everyone is so understaffed and overbooked these days that you can’t just call in for an appointment and think you’ll get something anytime soon.

It’s not just people, either. I called the vet yesterday to get my pup in for her annual and the nearest slot they could give me was October 15.

And speaking of pups …


This Bliss (AMC), riffs on an old Groucho Marx classic but touches something specific to me, because my dog is a rare breed and is on the Miscellaneous list which means they’re pending AKC recognition, which I don’t see as a particularly positive thing.

The AKC is full of dog show people, and breeding dogs for appearance rather than for temperament and vitality is a bad idea.

This article gives a number of examples of how dog-show breeding has damaged once hearty and useful breeds. The English Bulldog is only one example, though, as the caption here says, the most obvious and oft-cited.

I’ve seen breed clubs take steps to preserve their dogs but I’ve mostly seen breed clubs roll right over and let the breed be ruined in pursuit of ribbons and stud fees.

The popular rejoinder is to insist that adopting mutts is a better bet, but that’s no guarantee: A mixed breed can pick up all sorts of unhealthy genes, and it’s something of a pig in a poke.

I’m not against adopting, certainly, but you’d be wise to pick a three-year-old so you have some idea of what you’re getting into for the next decade or so.

An alternative, if you want a puppy but don’t like surprises, is to look for field-bred rather than show-bred dogs, though hunters and sheep herders are sometimes reluctant to sell a pup that isn’t going to have a steady job with someone who knows what they’re doing.


This Baby Blues (KFS) also made me think more than it made me laugh. My initial reaction was that it was another case of a cartoonist losing track of time and that the children of men with mullets would be at least in college by now.

But I wasn’t sure, so I looked it up and it turns out there have always been mullets.

Another sad example of breeding for looks rather than for temperament.


This La Cucaracha (AMS) spurred a more serious case of looking things up, though I didn’t have to, because the hard facts were featured in an On the Media broadcast.

Turns out rents in middleclass neighborhoods are not much different than rents on the poor side of town. The difference is in (A) quality of housing, as Eddie says, and (B) who the landlords are willing to rent to.

If you’ve had a little tough luck, you can forget about “movin’ on up.”

You won’t be accepted in those well-kept apartments in those nice, safe neighborhoods, whether you can afford the rent or not.

If you haven’t been in that position, you need to listen to that podcast.

If you have, it will confirm that you’re not crazy. It’s really true.


Back to more trivial things, Mt. Pleasant (Tribune) raises the question of dagnabbit, whatever happened to showers?

Showers used to be mandatory after gym class, not only because we would otherwise stink but because “sound mind in a sound body” included lessons in personal hygiene.

Now, back then, we didn’t mix genders in gym class, and the girls had separate stalls in their locker rooms, while the guys all showered together as if we were old-school Olympians and not ashamed of our bodies.

There’s fodder for several doctoral dissertations in that last sentence.

There’s also some science behind the old saying “Horses sweat, men perspire, women glow.” When I worked in an office, there were women who would lace on a pair of running shoes and go for a brisk power walk over lunch hour, then come back and change into their fancy shoes as if nothing had happened.

I promise you, if the guys did that, you’d be begging for them to start smoking in the office again, just to mask the stench.


Frazz (AMS) raises another dagnabbit issue, and one that doesn’t make me laugh, though the cartoon did.

The people who bray about how they used to ride in the backs of pickup trucks and ride around without helmets and on and on are the people who got away with it. You don’t hear it from people like my friend Jack, who fell off the back of a car, hit his head and died, or the son of a friend killed in a bike-car accident.

It’s as foolish as saying that we didn’t have laws against drunk driving, and I’m still alive, so obviously they weren’t needed.

As the kid said, it’s best not to turn out like those people.

If for no other reason than that we seem to be overstocked already.


Though there is always room for Ian the Climate Denialist Potato to explain why climate change alarmism is oppressing young people. You can, and should, read the whole story at First Dog on the Moon.

Though while there, I found this story in the righthand gutter to reassure me that the kids are alright.


(Boy, were we young!)

One thought on “CSotD: Comics that make you say hmm

  1. “we call them Primary Care Physicians” — Does than mean our health depends on PCP? (This is why I detest the modern predeliction for initialisms.)

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