CSotD: Stepping Up To The Friday Funnies

Pros & Cons (KFS) comes as close to political as I plan to get today, in part because I’m finding the whole thing exhausting and in part because Lyndon sums up my take more concisely than I would.

People are complaining that Bill Barr didn’t step up sooner and that Mike Pence didn’t step up sooner and on and on, which raises the question of why the hell didn’t the Good Guys step up sooner?

Were you born yesterday? It’s not like anyone should have expected Al Capone’s bookkeeper to step up in the absence of Eliot Ness and J. Edgar Hoover.

Maybe it’s my experience in reporting such things. I never heard of a mule simply admitting to the nice Customs Officer that he had ingested a bunch of cocaine-packed condoms.

First, you catch them. Then you flip them. They rarely flip themselves.

Anyway, I’ve always wanted to balance the political and the funny here, but things have been so fraught that ignoring politics seems like dereliction of duty.

Or, y’know, failure to step up.


So, like Ben (MWAM), I’ll take a break from politics. To paraphrase a semi-wise man, “You go into retirement with the status you have, not the status you might want or wish to have at a later time.”


And speaking of stature and status, if you have not been following the incredible story arc in Between Friends (KFS), you need to start here and go forward and experience the vicarious horror of Susan’s situation.

Her obvious solution was to have resigned about halfway through the procession of degrading moments, but the strip reflects real life and, in real life, one rarely steps off a sinking ship without a lifeboat or at least a raft. Whatever mortgage Susan and Harvey are carrying, they’ve still got a daughter in college.

I don’t blame Susan for not simply standing up and stomping out, but she needs to hire a lawyer, which I say because I had a friend who, faced with a clearly slanderous performance review drawn up to justify her termination — and chock-full of violations of the union contract — still had to spend $750 just to have it removed from her files so she could go teach somewhere healthier.

Which brings us to Australia:

First Dog in the Moon reflects upon winter down under, and specifically in Hobart, Tasmania, at 42° 52 50 S, which is roughly the equivalent of Milwaukee, where they expect a high today of 87 — thank God it’s not Celsius — and hours and hours of sunshine because we passed the summer solstice just as poor First Dog hit winter’s.

The connection between that and Susan’s situation being that I once had a cunning plan to swap jobs for six months with a reporter in Hobart, which would include each of us doing the regular reporting job there but sending a weekly feature back home about our experiences in another land.

The first barrier being that my plan to call my weekly feature “A Year Without Winter,” suggested a possible problem in persuading anyone to write a feature called “A Year Without Summer.”


Particularly since, for all for First Dog’s whinging, winter at 44.6995° N is a lot more grim than winter down there. As is summer.

The larger, moral barrier — and the specific connection to Susan — being that I was in a similar management situation and wouldn’t wish it upon someone I hated, much less some hapless Kiwi I didn’t even know.

So, instead, I put my initiative into finding that aforementioned lifeboat and getting out of hell permanently rather than for six months.

Go thou and do likewise.


Juxtaposition of the Job Tips

(Bizarro – KFS)

(Rhymes with Orange — KFS)

First tip: Don’t take a job where you can be replaced by a nylon tube and an air compressor.


And especially don’t take a job where you have to stand on the street wearing an idiotic costume, as seen in this 2011 Derf Backderf cartoon, and I’d note that the fifty bucks had better reference no more than a three-hour day, which I’ll bet it didn’t.

Have some dignity: Sell your plasma and pick up soda cans from the gutter for the refund.

Admittedly, I don’t really understand the retail mattress industry. I see ads where they promise a $500 discount on a mattress, which is more than I was planning to spend in the first place.

But I regularly see spent mattresses leaning against Dumpsters outside cheesy apartments, so maybe the whole thing involves preying upon the poor, which makes me wonder how long you have to stand out there degrading yourself before you can afford even the bottom-line crappiest mattress in the place.

Though if they said, “Stand out there looking like a dork for three days and we’ll give you one of our crappy mattresses,” it might be a tempting offer.

Perhaps not a generous one: When I quit selling the Kirby, my boss let me keep my demonstrator, and I know what his cost was, compared to what I’d been selling them for.

Which was a large part of why I decided to flip burgers instead.

Meanwhile, the whole scabdriver phenomenon continues to puzzle me as well, for much the same reasons.

People think they’re going to make a bunch of money as rideshare drivers, which is a pipedream. It seems you’d basically do just as well flipping burgers and sparing the wear-and-tear on your car. Which you might end up having to sleep in, since the best average earnings coincide with the most expensive places to live.

So I got a laugh out of Rhymes with Orange mostly because it’s based on the notion that some people just don’t pick up on the hints.

Depend on them, instead, to never discover the Egress!.


Finally, I have no idea of Todd Clark’s intentions with this Lola (AMS), but I remain astonished that people refer to that game as “cornhole” in front of their mothers. And that their mothers call it that, too.

Then again, when the Fonz first said “Sit on it,” I remembered the traditional accompanying gesture and the cornholian implications of the phrase, but nobody else seemed fazed.

My ability to be gobsmacked continues unabated.


10 thoughts on “CSotD: Stepping Up To The Friday Funnies

  1. Here in sunny Florida, the sign spinners and Statue of Liberty advertisers[?] are still abundant – despite heat indexes/indices of 110F. I feel so sorry for them (altho some now have canopies over their heads so they don’t get heatstroke).

    I mean, who, whilst driving 60 mph down the highway, sees a WE BUY GOLD sign spinner and thinks, ‘Gee, I have some gold necklaces/rings/bracelets on; I think I’ll STOP right here to sell it RIGHT NOW’? Or, ‘Yeah, I could use a new mattress, RIGHT NOW’?

    I see them as exercises in futility; at least those air dancers are impervious to the heat/rain/lightning that we have almost ev’ry summer day.

  2. The first time one of my friends asked if I wanted to play cornhole I said, “Beg your pardon?” and then laughed because I’m 9 apparently.

  3. Tasmanians are Aussies (or Tassies, I think) but not Kiwis, who would be New Zealanders.

    I actually watched a professional cornhole game some months ago while flipping channels. Second silliest game I’d seen all year, topped only by a professional “tag” competition (within a special confined mini-stadium).

    Can professional tic-tac-toe be far behind?

  4. Whoops, yes Denny. I meant Tassie.

    As for the silliness of cornhole (apart from the appalling name), I’d point out that all you need for horseshoes is the shoes, a stake and a hammer, and you can skip the hammer if you can find a large rock. Cornhole requires a large board that takes up half the space in your card.

    I think the appeal of the game is in the painting of the board. Silly is as silly does.

  5. Bean bag toss (the name of the game as I learned it) does require more equipment, but’s favored by many due to the safety factor. It’s better for kids (the likely culprits) to be hit by a bean bag than by a horseshoe. Also, falling on an inclined board may result in scrapes or cuts, falling on (or running into) a horseshoe stake can result in more severe injuries.

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