CSotD: And now, in other news …

Oh, lord, I hope so.

Granted, Pat Hudson is an Aussie, not a Pom, but it’s not like the wretched excess was only present in the UK, where I understand it. It was also throughout the former Commonwealth, where, as Hudson suggests, it’s reasonable.

But perhaps even there, enough is enough.


Deb Milbrath points out the excessive coverage here in the US of A, and, in commenting on her cartoon, suggests it was a welcome break from our otherwise depressing news. Fair enough, but it occurs to me that, when your life gets to the point where a funeral is the fun part, you need to do some serious recalibrating.

It also occurs to me to wonder how many people saw the death of this woman as substantially different than an episode of “Here Comes Honey Boo-Boo” or “Dancing With the Stars” or the half-time show at the Super Bowl?

But we all need distractions, even if it means occasionally killing a nice old lady, and there is plenty of commentary emerging from the UK itself about all that excess, much of it pretty amusing.

So onward and upward and I suspect that, in another month or six, we’ll stop hearing about the grandeur and the music and all that.

While we await that happy day, here’s a New Yorker cartoon by Brooke Bourgeois that ties in both with our fascination with royalty and our current fascination with Danes of Indeterminate Color, since Hans Christian Andersen wrote both “The Little Merperson” and “The Princess and the Pea.”

I heard the story often as a wee lad and never much questioned it until I saw “Once Upon A Mattress” with Imogene Coca and Edward Everett Horton and began to see it through less pre-programmed eyes.

Somewhat later, when I had begun dating, I really shifted perspective and felt the Queen should have tossed that high-maintenance whiner out on her ear and spared the prince a lifetime of misery.

Check out “The Ugly Ducklings,” pal. They become wonderfully attractive, while once a princess, always a princess.


Juxtaposition of the Dogs

(Bliss — Tribune)


(The Buckets — AMS)

Speaking of breeding tiny monsters — these having four legs, not two — this is a challenging juxtaposition.

The advantage of a purebred dog is that you can, with some assurance, predict what you’ll have on your hands for the next 12 to 18 years. It’s not absolutely necessary, particularly if you’re looking to adopt a dog that is two or three years old, as long as you have enough experience with dogs to make a solid appraisal.

But, while I have several friends who exhibit at Westminster, they’re my friends because they approach things sensibly. Beyond that, I tend to agree with the dog in Bliss, because I’ve seen dog show snots destroy some fine breeds by going for looks rather than temperament or practical physical traits.

Here’s a well-known set of examples, and shame on everyone who contributed to the disasters. But even laying those genetic monstrosities aside, it’s fairly well-known among purebred owners that when a breed becomes popular, the time bombs begin ticking.

However, at the other end of the extreme spectrum are canine adoption people who, at their worst, are more concerned with making an adoption than with making a healthy match.

At least half of my dog’s friends, probably more, are adoptions, but that is skewed by the fact that our park is not an actual dog park: There are no fences and the only dogs who come there are, of necessity, very sociable and well-behaved enough to be trusted off-leash.

If you stay in town, however, you’ll see far more dogs being walked on leashes because they aren’t friendly and can’t be trusted, and it’s an echo of the old expression “Marry in haste; repent at leisure.”

Eighteen years is a long time to ponder the cute little puppy who bites people.

Adoption is a good thing and most agencies are ethical. Still, since you can rarely meet the parents, at least make sure you have time with the dog itself before you commit, and, if you’re not experienced in canine matters, bring along someone who is.

And then listen to them.


Bringing a child into your life can be even more problematic, and this Barbara Smaller cartoon from the New Yorker brought me back to a particularly absurd moment in parenting.

We had our first child by the Bradley Method, but, having since moved from Denver, our second was delivered by Lamaze, which required us to go back to baby-birthing class. Towards the end of this second series, one of the other pairs of parents offered to give us tips on how to raise children, because he was a psychologist and, while this was his first kid, he knew all about it.

Turns out he was at best a Skinnerian and at worst an insensitive jackass — perhaps both — because his advice was that you should never pick up a crying baby unless it had a dirty diaper, a safety-pin stuck in it or it was time for a feeding. Not only was random hunger out of the question, but, we were warned, any other giving in would reinforce, well, “existential angst.” Which he insisted doesn’t really exist.

As one of a handful of parents in the room, I suggested that perhaps emotional contact was an okay thing, but was told it absolutely was not, and Mrs. Psychologist reminded us, “My husband has a Phd!” which is every sane person’s cue to slowly back out of the room.

It’s what we call a learned response.


And speaking of academic expertise …

I have often mentioned how much I hated Aristotle in college, to which I would add that I still hate him but I no longer have to read him.

But even before I ran into Aristotle, I ran into metaphysics, and today’s Existential Comics reminds me of my deep hatred for metaphysics and why I thought — and continue to think — that it was a damned silly discipline.

And Aristotle wrote the Metaphysics, which obviously compounds the matter, if anything can truly be said to be obvious.

Anyway, I’d rather be screamed at in boot camp than be lectured on metaphysics.

Not. Even. Close.

10 thoughts on “CSotD: And now, in other news …

  1. Our pre-school parents’ group heard from a psychologist who told us his 3-year-old was being brought up to call him by his first name because – and this is literally what he said, still burned into my brain 60 years later – ‘I don’t want him to see me as a father figure.’

  2. It’s a stereotype that psychologists, psychiatrists, and counselors have the most screwed-up kids. In my experiences, it’s also true. Combine the immense power parents already hold over their children with expertise in manipulation and motivation, and it’s like handing a monkey a nuke. Or handing Trump a classified document.

  3. Mark, I saw it as a cat, too, but the relative size put me off and I decided it was a mixed-breed dog. Either works, but the mutt would be funnier. And I don’t care what Harry Bliss wanted it to be because we’ve decided that no longer matters.

  4. It’s a cat. Note the longer whiskers, the nails coming out of the pads that are spread apart, the pointy ears.

    There are cat shows, too, so I don’t know what s/he’s so incensed about.

  5. The official colors for Danes are Black, Blue, Fawn, Brindle, Harlequin, Mantle, and Merle. I’ve never seen a white one, but I would assume that it would be an albino.

    Oh, you were no longer talkin’ ’bout dogs? My mind stayed on the same dog/cat track. I assume you switched from dogs to merpersons . . .

  6. Ironic that if CSOTD would stop harping on QEII’s coverage, we could get back to some comic strips.

    The Skinnerian you met in Denver is reminiscent of Lindsay Graham’s suggestions on how women should handle their reproductive organs. Or rather, let HIM handle their reproductive organs. Cause, as you say, he knows all about it.

  7. Reporting and commenting on what is in the cartoons isn’t harping. It’s journalism. And damned if they aren’t still going on and on and on.

    I saw another corgi cartoon today. You should be grateful I don’t report on them all.

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