CSotD: Random Observations

I really like The Other Coast (Creators) because Adrian Raeside has a solid handle on dog behavior.


I have to assume he doesn’t have a dog that requires grooming or he’d know that the first instinct, after a $70 trip to the groomer, is to luxuriate in something that will restore a more dogcentric look and smell: Water, mud, something dead, whatever’s available.

Most of the dogs I know that require grooming are either golden retrievers or some form of doodle, and keeping them out of the Connecticut River is hopeless, whether they are freshly trimmed and washed or not. They’re delightful animals, but why anybody would get one and then fuss over its propensity to wallow is a mystery.


They Can Talk is based on understanding animal behavior and then satirizing it, though in this case, it’s more a matter of satirizing their owners, since the dogs are invariably aware of what they’re up to.

Expecting dogs not to indulge in rough-and-tumble play is as hopeless as expecting them to stay out of the mud, though, at the park, we keep an eye on games that turn into two-on-one and we break up three-on-one play-fighting, probably to the consternation of the players.

One advantage of a park where the dogs know each other is that they recognize certain dogs who, for instance, are toy-jealous and flip out if challenged for a ball. They respond by not doing that, though they often maintain good relations otherwise.

Dogs are pretty smart.


Still on the topic of “Is this a game or a fight?” Dan Misdea offers this commentary on the World Cup.

I broke down and watched the USA/Iran game the other day, mostly because I wanted to see if the Iranian team could get through to the next round and continue to torment the mullahs with their open support of the hijab protests.

I was struck by the crowd shots of people dressed up either in Uncle Sam regalia or in bright Iranian colors, the women notably not in proper conservative cover-ups.

But of course, photographers and editors seek out these folks, which is why you would think that everyone at Woodstock had hair to their waists and no clothes, or that everyone at a demonstration is either dressed like Death or as Uncle Sam with a machine gun.

Wider shots showed a less frenetically-clad crowd.

The announcers, however, were whipping things up, talking about scoring “for his country.” You never hear them say Aaron Rogers threw a touchdown pass “for Wisconsin,” and it reminded me that the first time I heard chants of “USA! USA!” were the 1960 Olympics, during then-Cassius Clay’s gold medal victory.

At the time, it seemed incongruous, since we thought of the Olympics as a coming together of all nations in peaceful competition, but I guess that’s how long ago that was.


Yes, I’m old enough to remember the 1960 Olympics. I’m even old enough to identify with Leroy Lockhorn (KFS), because about half the celebrities whose names pop up in my news feeds are people I’ve never heard of.

It’s not a sign of senility but rather of paring down to the essentials, like not going to every party and not hanging out for no particular reason in places with juke boxes.

But another element is the amount of entertainment available, which you would think would increase your exposure to mediocrity and transitory fame, but does the opposite, allowing you to cocoon within your own sphere.

I miss the days of three networks and TV variety shows, where you’d sit through acts you didn’t care about in order to see acts you did.

I was just talking to someone the other day about my musician friends getting excited about the Andy Williams Show — yes, Andy Middlebrow Williams — because he was going to have a  young pianist named Elton John on as a guest, which brought up the week in which another square, Merv Griffin, snagged Woodstock performers on their way home from the festival, upon which occasion Jefferson Airplane dropped an M-F on national television.

That was must-see TV!

But I also remember, as a kid, watching Two Ton Tessie O’Shea on Ed Sullivan, and my mother telling me not to be such a little snob.

I didn’t become a fan, but back then, you couldn’t avoid having some knowledge of who was out there.

And I’d have never stumbled over Myron Cohen on my own. Ed Sullivan was a major plus.


Part of my cocooning is that I haven’t been to a movie theater in a couple of years, and Brendan Loper explains why. Chatter annoys everyone except the chatterbox, but it’s particularly galling when you’ve got ADD and every extraneous noise jolts you out of the movie.

Don’t just tell him. Reach out a leg and give him a shove.


The Duplex (AMS) takes on the self-check controversy, which I continue to not understand, unless it’s being ginned up by unions that want more jobs in an economy already desperate for workers.

There was some resistance when gas stations began self-service, though Vance Packard was reaching a bit with his theory that women would reject the phallic implications of inserting the pump into the tank. But it was nice to just sit there and have someone clean your windshield, check your oil and top off your radiator.

Not to mention replacing your water pump if you limped in in a cloud of steam.

But we seem to have adjusted to that, and to ATMs and to the way you have to fill your own cart at the store instead of having shop girls fetch the things you want.

I was at a grocery yesterday with three checkers working and nobody to tend the self-check, which was, accordingly, shut down. There were long lines at the active checkstands, and people complaining that, had they assigned one checker to mind the self-check, they’d have gotten six people through at a time.

The Luddites should remember Satchel Paige’s warning: “Don’t look back; something might be gaining on you.”


I usually post entire Existential Comics pieces, but I’m sending you to the site this time, because the accompanying explanation is as funny as the comic itself.


2 thoughts on “CSotD: Random Observations

  1. My additions to grooming vs mud . . .
    REF: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26FIEX6muAo
    . . . AND . . .
    REF: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n–OjXr5IqM

    . . . and to the ‘special acts’ discussion . . .
    . . . for years, it was Charlie Brown Christmas and The Grinch, one after the other, only available once a year. Since they became available online, on DVD, etc., I’ve not watched either. Nor A Christmas Story.

    . . . As for are they playing or fighting, anyone who has ever had multiple dogs soon learns to recognize the signs and the sounds of each, and when the former morphs into the latter.

  2. I understand, it’s just The Lockhorns, and the way this strip is made these days they wouldn’t use the name of a real magazine, but wouldn’t the punchline have been more effective if he was actually reading a “People” magazine.

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